Elisabeth* is one of the many people across the country reading Word One-to-One (John’s Gospel) with someone in the City Bible Forum network. Elisabeth works in the Financial Services industry. Here is her story.
How do you find reading Word One-to-One?
As we read about Jesus, I do feel like I am not just conceptually learning about Jesus but actually engaging with him. I feel like I am experiencing who he is and what he can do for his people.
Have you read the Bible before?
Yes, I read the Bible with a friend when we were both working in the city. I even went to church for a while. I remember thinking: “Wow they are so into it”. I felt like I was looking in on someone else’s experience.
So what’s different this time?
Firstly, it’s my circumstances. Earlier this year my life hit rock bottom. My dad had major surgery around the same time my serious long-term relationship ended. Perhaps “hopeless” is too strong a word but at that point the future looked so bleak. I turned to Buddhist meditation. I tried to find solutions. But there was a big part of life that was simply not controllable. I felt very vulnerable.
Secondly, it’s my attitude. I really am curious to know what life with God at the centre every day could look like. And what could be possible with having a deeper faith. I’m talking about things like peace and contentment. I’ve had a small taste and I want more!
What do you mean by “small taste”?
I’ve prayed on and off for many years. But since starting Word One-to-One in August I’ve been praying a lot more. Prayer seems more real now. God has been answering my prayers. I accept that he might not always answer them the way that I would like but that he is still good. There might be something he wants me to learn, for example.
You said you started Word One-to-One in August, how did that come about?
A friend (the one I read the Bible with in the city) happened to reach out and ask me along to her Reframe** group. There I reconnected with another Christian I had met several years ago now. She and I caught up and I shared how hard things had been this year and how I was questioning life. She asked me if I wanted to read the Word One-to-One.
What was your latest Word One-to-One discussion about?
We talked about what it means to actively choose Jesus. We talked about the foundation of the relationship being the forgiveness that Jesus provides. I have to admit that was a new piece of learning for me.
What would you like prayer for?
Pray that God would touch my mind, my heart, my being. I have lots of questions and feel like pieces are still being put together. Pray that I would make the decision to be “all in”.
* Name changed and stock image used for privacy.
** “Reframe” is a City Bible Forum ministry. They are small groups for women that discuss a topic of interest. As viewpoints are shared (which may or may not include a faith position) there is the opportunity for perspectives to be reframed. For more information contact caroline.spencer[at]citybibleforum[dot]org.