Lately, I’ve been hanging out with a great group of people online. I stumbled upon them when I noticed a recurring hashtag (a word with the little “#” sign at the front of it) on some great tweets in my Twitter stream. I believe it was Mike Kelly (@BibleMemCoins on Twitter) whom I finally decided to ask about the hashtag. I was happy to learn that #MKBibleChat is a recurring–and growing–group on Twitter.
At first, I found #MKBibleChat difficult to catch. Every so often, I would check in on Twitter to find the #MKBibleChat in progress. One day, I learned that the chat was being held at various times on different days in order to allow people from time zones around the world to join in (although, I understand #MKBibleChat is “based” in the eastern United States). That explained why it was so hard to catch.
I also learned, about the same time, that there is an #MKBibleChat schedule posted online. I checked it out and bookmarked the link.
A couple weeks ago, I intentionally joined in on Saturday evening’s “Bible Jeopardy”. There are a lot of knowledgable Bible scholars on #MKBibleChat. We had a lot of fun, and learned some things in the process!
Then last Friday, I met “the challenge”. I caught another tail-end: the introduction to a study on Philippians. It was very inspirational. Mike Kelly was the fill-in leader of the study, and, at the end, he challenged us to take the Philippians challenge: Read the book (yes, the entire book—it’s only four chapters) of Philippians daily for a week and journal/write out your thoughts.
I was not real sure I wanted to add another commitment to my day or another item to my Bible Study plan, but I prayed as the last few minutes of #MKBibleChat were concluding and decided to, at least, give it a try.
This was a new way to study for me, and admittedly, I was a bit skeptical at first. But you know, friend, I have been blessed! Here is a quick glimpse into how it has gone:
- Friday: Read Philippians the first-time through. Was impressed by many things, including Paul’s confident statement that even the enemies of Christ, talking bad about Him and His followers, can only help the cause of Christ.
- Saturday: Had a very full day, including church and our Southern Oregon Ministry Fest 2012. Arrived home very late, hardly able to stay awake. Missed my Philippians reading.
- Sunday: Determined not to miss another day of the challenge. My eight-year-old daughter wanted to join me, so we read aloud and discussed our way through Philippians. Intended to mark out things in blue, which indicates “the Law”, or things God is asking me to be or do. Ended up marking a lot of things, using my usual Bible study marking method.
One thing that struck me was how Philippians 4:19 is a direct conclusion to Paul’s commendation of the Philippian church for sacrificing to support Paul in his missionary work.
- Monday: My eight-year-old study partner joined me again. I guess I did not take any new notes, but we discussed our favorite passages as we went. I think this may have been the day I noticed the phrase, “chiefly they that are of Caesar’s household” after “All the saints salute you”. Even Paul’s imprisonment was not without fruit!
- Tuesday: Studied alone again. Knowing the Bible is clear that death is like a sleep, and the dead know nothing, I saw how Philippians 1:23,24 could be misunderstood: “…having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ…nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful….” Tuesday, I noticed an explanation verse not too far away, in Philippians 3. Philippians 3:11: “If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.” (Of course, that will be at the coming of the Lord, as Paul himself says in I Thessalonians 4:15,16.)
- Wednesday: I was very tired last evening, but I was craving my time with the Lord in Philippians! I quietly read through without marking or writing anything, but found great comfort in the Word of God, which is becoming so familiar to me.
- Thursday: Today is Thursday. I look forward to reading through again and seeing how the Lord leads. Maybe my young study partner will join me again.
- Friday: Is yet to come, but I am eager for the #MKBibleChat on Philippians. I printed out the #MKBibleChat schedule yesterday, so I don’t miss any more that I could have attended! Come on over at 7 pm EST (Fridays). (For us US Pacific timers, that’s 4 pm.) I’m sure you won’t regret it.
“Notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice….” ~Philippians 1:18
“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” ~Philippians 4:19
While I cannot say that I agree with everything that is said or implied on #MKBibleChat (How many of us can even say that about our closest friend?), I definitely agree with the spirit and purpose of the chat: to meet together with our brethren and sisters in the faith and be inspired by our Lord! Check it out!
P.S. #MKBibleChat—or any Twitter chat—can be greatly simplified by using TweetGrid (a feature-rich real-time search program) or TweetChat (a pretty, and less internet-intensive search program). Both collect the tweets you want and add the hashtag for you once you get them set up, which makes participating in the fast-paced discussion much easier—and both are free!