This summer was a good time for my family and me to disconnect from a lot of commitments, rest and spend time together. Re-energized and reorganized for what’s to come, we dove right back into the thick of ministry as the fall approached. In addition to the home group we’re leading here in our hometown, my wife and I are each helping teach women’s and men’s Bible studies on the book of Acts.
It takes a lot of effort to teach others. I love it and I have a desire to teach, but I also know that, being new to it, I have to sharpen that skill in order to best serve the church in this way. But as I do, I feel such a deep sense of joy.
When I was in college I remember thinking, “I love the Bible so deeply, what a joy it would be to know it well enough to help make Scripture come alive for others.” There’s something so sweet about being able to teach God’s Word. But I ran into a wall because there I was with a desire to teach, but no avenue in which to practice this skill. You can’t just get on stage and preach.
I was left with the question, “What is God doing with this desire?” Was it just that I loved the Bible and loved it being taught? Or was this something the Lord had gifted me and I needed to hone it? In order to figure out this nagging question, I had to start exercising this skill.
A year and a half ago, I started occasionally teaching at a men’s Bible study to see if the Lord was really behind this desire. As I’ve continued teaching, the Lord has revealed a lot of things to me. Though I’m still discovering if teaching is something I’m gifted to do, I love serving the Church in this way. So for now, I’m able and faithful to teach.
Last year, we taught through the books of 1 and 2 Samuel. With the depth of study it takes to teach Scripture, especially for a 45-minute timeframe, the Lord does so much work in my own heart during the preparation. By the end of it all, I’m so pumped at what God has done in me, how can I not then bring that to others? How do I share with these men just how excited I am about this text?
You really do have to spend a lot of time in the text, diving into Scripture and coinciding commentaries. The Word suddenly becomes so much more than a book; it becomes so much more intimate.
There are so many layers to the Gospel; it’s a book that is living and active. Whether I spend an hour reading a book of the Bible or an hour diving into and seeking to understand just one single verse, that’s an hour spent worshipping and getting to know God. Anytime we become acquainted with His Word, He is glorified.
— Ryan Hollingshead, FC Dallas midfielder/defender
Ryan Hollingshead is a regular contributor to The Increase, providing monthly articles and opinions. Check out Ryan’s Increase profile: https://theincrease.com/author/ryan-hollingshead/
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