Today we’re sharing an inside look at Kandi Gallaty’s The Bible in a Year—a yearlong guided Scripture reading journey from Genesis through Revelation. With journaling and weekly Scripture memory challenges, you’ll walk through key passages of the Bible at a manageable, 5-days-per-week pace.
Get an inside look at the first two weeks here:
And now, hear Kandi’s heart for doing this yearlong resource with a group in this excerpt from one of The Bible in a Year coaching videos (included in The Bible in a Year Launch Kit).
We need to be women who share our lives with each other. We need each other. I have found that a lot of times we can share the gospel, but we may not be able to truly let someone in and share our lives with them. Sometimes that takes a little practice, and practice makes progress. You may open up small in the beginning, but hopefully you’ll get to a point where you feel like you can be very open with the women who are in your group. You’ll be journeying with them for the rest of the year as you go through Bible study together, so you definitely want to make friends and deepen those relationships.
We Are Better Together
Paul told us in 1 Thessalonians 2:8 that he became so pleased to share his life with others: “We cared so much for you that we were pleased to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us.” That is something that we also need to be willing to do. I’m not talking about a very surface level life or only the happy times that we see on social media. I’m talking about the nitty gritty, the real stuff. Whether it’s good, bad, or ugly, we want to be able to be women who share those things.
As a leader, I’ve led these groups for so many years, and I’m not asking anybody in the group to do anything that I’m not willing to do myself. I’m trying to be just as open, honest, and transparent with my group as they are with me. That is a process where that unit really works together. You’re a group doing so many fun things together, but you also will be doing some serious things together, too. We live in a day and age when it’s easier sometimes to be isolated or alone, but that’s the exact opposite of biblical community and what we have seen Jesus exemplify with His disciples.
Following Jesus’s Example
In life and in our group time, Jesus is the model for everything we do because we’re trying to be transformed into His image. That whole sanctification process happens with discipleship. If you have any questions about anything, go back to Jesus’s model to see what He did. Jesus lived, traveled, ate, celebrated, cried, and prayed with His disciples. So should we do any less?
Community and accountability are key in the lives of disciples. It is truly what helps us continue to grow and be lifelong learners, because we won’t do those things if we’re left to our own devices. We’re only going to do those things if somebody loves us enough to hold us accountable—and that’s what accountability is. Somebody loves you and they want you to be successful, to grow spiritually and grow in depth with the Lord and with the Spirit. Don’t be afraid of accountability.
Sharing Your Testimony
When you share life with each other, one of the biggest steps and entries into doing that is to share your testimony. I absolutely love testimony time, and my ladies love it, too. At the end of every year, I ask my group a question: “What was one of your favorite things about the discipleship process?” So many times the answers have been sharing their testimonies. A lot of times women have never shared their story before, whether that’s because they’re ashamed of something, they’ve found it unimportant, or they don’t think they have anything radical enough to share, so they may just not really go about sharing it. I promise you God has given you a story for a reason, and there are people who want to hear it.
Sharing your testimony is a great way to begin to let people in. It’s also very therapeutic and reflective for you to go back and process what the Lord has done in your life. Then to openly share that knowledge with the ladies you’re journeying with is a life-changing and bonding experience. After sharing, you also receive so much encouragement from the ladies when you find out what God has done in their lives, and it’s likely completely different than what God has done in your life. We need stories of all magnitude. We want to see what the Spirit has done in and through other people’s lives. …
You share your lives all throughout the year and everything that you do—whether it’s journal discussion, Scripture memory, sharing your testimonies, meeting weekly, praying together—all of these things will be multiplied and enhanced because you’re doing it together as a small group. Don’t only restrict yourself to the things that you do every single week when you meet. Be creative. Travel together. Go out to dinner together. Celebrate birthdays together. These are your friends. Work to develop these relationships outside of just meeting every single week around a table or sitting in a living room and discussing all that God’s doing in your life. Have fun together. Share your lives. Go all in, and don’t be afraid of fifty-two weeks. Stay committed and steady. If you face a hard season, push through it. I promise you those ladies and the Lord will be there for you through all of it. And if you come to a place where you don’t know what to do, simply continue to do what you know is right: Stay in the Word and in community with other people.
Want to learn more about The Bible in a Year? Watch the short video below or view coaching video clips at lifeway.com/bibleinayear.
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