This week:

-We have a two devotionals from Rene Grimes and David Griner.
-Access this year's reading plan
-Reminders about upcoming opportunities at Collegeside

Family Devotional
Rene Grimes

 Rene Grimes is an instructor in the College of Education, Special Education, at Tech. Dennis is a former Air Force fighter pilot and retired American Airlines pilot. At the time of this writing, they are on their way to Macedonia, the setting of this passage from Ephesians. 

I“…with “feet fitted with the readiness…” Ephesians 6:15

 The Summer Olympics are around the corner. No one who knows me would ever describe me as a sports enthusiast…or athlete! Nevertheless, I love watching the Olympics. Something is inspiring and encouraging about humans whose “feet are fitted with readiness” from years of dedicated, laser-focused training driven by passion. I can almost feel the adrenaline pumping as athletes wait for the words, “On your mark! Get set! Go!”

 We are probably familiar with the verse quoted above, and the rest of that passage describing how to clothe ourselves with the Armor of God, but what about the last few verses? Have you thought about the relevance of Paul’s final greetings? Paul ends his letter to the Ephesians by telling them that he is sending Tychicus to fill them in on how he’s doing and also to encourage them. Tychicus was important enough to Paul, and to God, to name him explicitly. I like to spend time thinking about the numerous individuals, such as Tychicus, mentioned only a handful of times in the Bible. Why would God want us to consider their stories and their contributions? They must have something to teach us, or their names would not have been retained in God’s Holy Word for thousands of years.

 We know very little about Tychicus: he was with Paul on his return journey to Jerusalem (Acts 20:4), and Paul considered him to be a faithful servant and a dear brother (Eph 6:15 and Col 4:7). Yet, unlike Timothy, Paul did not write a letter to Tychicus, nor dozens of other women and men he mentioned throughout his writings. I cannot say for sure, but I think God has retained their names for us as examples of faithful followers prepared and ready to serve in different capacities. We do not need to know the exact details of their lives or work to understand their importance to God’s purpose for His kingdom. 

 The funny thing about Olympic athletes is that we are not likely to know or remember most of their names. I feel certain that the athletes know the odds of winning a medal are against them, and yet I doubt that the hope of winning a medal is the sole reason they compete. It’s more likely that they are driven to perform. They are trained and ready, waiting and listening for the signal to start; not entirely unlike the less known individuals mentioned by Paul, and others throughout the Bible.

 Like Olympic athletes, the odds are we will not win any “spiritual servant” medals, nor will even a small percentage of the world know or remember our names. However, because we are faithful, like Tychius, our names are included in God’s Book of Life; our service encourages the people in our circles of influence when we listen for the signal and respond.
 What compels you to serve God? Are your feet on the mark? Are you listening and ready to go when you hear His calls? Maybe, like me, you aren’t quite sure you are on the right mark, or maybe you are waiting for the signal to go. This song by Matthew West helps me remember that the important thing is that we are ready…and we are prepared to do something!

Family Devotional
David Griner

Greetings, Born in 1954, I grew up in Iowa. I went to college and started married life in Minnesota. I lived in Illinois for 26 years. I now have lived in Tennessee for 16 years. Yes, Tennessee is my favorite place to be. My parents and Laura’s parents went to college together. Laura’s parents babysat me as a toddler. After college everyone reconnected when Laura and I began to date at the same college some 20 years later.

During the 35 years of Paul’s ministry, he was in prison or custody for approximately 5 years. We know of 4 letters he wrote while in prison and our recent text in Philippians is one of them. The work of the apostles, Paul included, seemed to simply adapt and continue on when others were doing their best to stop their efforts. Remember Peter and the jailer? It would have been easy, in my opinion, to feel discouraged and give up if I found myself imprisoned.

Today we can find all kinds of sources for joy. Yet we can find joy to be an illusion
and often easily evading us. Here one moment and gone the next, even with our best efforts we can struggle to maintain joy in our lives.

When reading through the book of Philippians one finds Paul often, either expressing his joy for them or his desire for them to rejoice in the Lord. While in prison he found reason to be joyful and encourage others to find real joy in the Lord. So I have to ask, how does Paul do it and what can we do to have joy in the lord?

A couple of ideas,
- Read through the life of Nehemiah. He said in 8:10 “The joy of the Lord is his strength”
- Consider your foundation. Also in our reading this week is Luke 6:48, which tells of a foundation that can withstand all the challenges of life.
- John said  “it’s not what we produce but what is produced in us” Are you allowing God to produce joy in you?

Take a look at a couple quotes from chapter 3 (NLT). Remember he is writing from prison.

“Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ”

“I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death, so that one way or another I will experience the resurrection from the dead!”

“I press on to possess the perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me.”

“I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus is calling us.”

“But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. We are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior.”

What a joy to claim Christ and his promises! We have so much to look forward to! I’m reminded of the words from a childhood chorus. “Real joy is mine no matter if tear drops start. I found the secret, it’s Jesus in my heart.”


July 1st-5th - Short Mountain Bible Camp
July 14th-17th - Vacation Bible School

Go Deeper

Whether you are studying alone or in a group, check out these available resources.

1. Use the Right Now Media Bible Study Library

Right Now Media is considered the "Netflix of Bible Study Resources". It provides thousands of studies on various subjects as well as great content for our children. This resource is provided for free to all members at Collegeside. If you already have it, take advantage of Right Now Media for an easy at-home Bible Study. If you do not have access, please email and we will help you register. 

2. Use Discovery Bible Study to have your own home Bible Study.

The Discovery Bible Study is a great tool that allows you to walk through any passage from scripture.
As you read, consider the following questions:
HE IS: What do we learn about God?
WE ARE: What do we learn about People?
I WILL: How will I put this passage into practice?
YOU CAN: Who do you know that needs to hear this? 

NEW DAY RESOURCES from the North Boulevard Church of Christ provided downloadable Bible studies and instruction on how to use DBS. Click the button below for more information. 

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