Luverne UMC offers two new Bible studies courses
Patsy Jeffcoat learned the power of words when she started researching possible Bible study courses to present at Luverne United Methodist Church. The words she found on the cover of author and motivational speaker Sharon Jaynes’ book was the deciding factor in selecting “The Power of a Woman’s Words” series.
“The title caught my eye,” she said. “It’s important to know our words have a lasting impact on those around us.”
The six-week series will focus on each relationship in a woman’s life and remind women how important it is to inspire and praise others. “This will just challenge us to use words to build up, not tear down,” Patsy said.
Luverne UMC offers Bible studies in the fall and spring. The classes are open to anyone. “We’ve had women from all different churches not just Luverne Methodist,” Patsy said. “It’s for the community.”
After viewing a DVD, the women follow a study guide and discuss how the chapter applies to the significant relationships in their lives.
“I think this builds up a group of friends that can support each other,” Patsy said.
While the class targets women, anyone is welcome. Over the years, Patsy and her husband, Kline, have found that classes separated by gender allow people to speak more freely than they would in a larger setting.
“It’s based on Promise Keepers,” Kline said.
He started an 11-week Bible study focused on men’s issues. His and Patsy’s courses will run concurrently.
Kline skipped the prepackaged DVD programs and commentaries, opting to create a course based on the Gospel of Matthew.
“What I do is come up with 20 questions for a week’s assignment,” said Kline.
The program is designed to offer 30 minutes of prayer and contemplation per day. Kline recommended taking 30 minutes of your lunch break to complete questions and readings.
“Every day, they’re in scripture,” he said. “They pray about it before they do it and just write down whatever the Holy Spirit gives them to answer. You’d be surprised what you get from 10 different guys.”
Kline said people are often afraid to study the Bible because they do not know all of the answers. The fun part is learning what God’s will is for each member of the group and seeing the plethora of ideas.
This is not Kline’s first time leading a Bible study structured in this manner. He has done the life of Moses from Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy and Numbers; Acts of the Apostles: and the Book of John. Last spring, he did Israel and the Minor Prophets, starting with Samuel.
“That was a lot of reading,” he said.
Separating genders offers Kline a more comfortable and casual atmosphere. He said men are often intimidated in a room full of women who perhaps, know more of the Bible than they do. He reminds them the knowledge comes from practice, hence the daily lunch break lessons.
“Once you start doing it, it’s just addictive,” he said.
Kline has found additional advantages to all-male Bible study groups.
“Iron sharpens iron. Men sharpen other men,” he said. “It also helps men in their biblical role as heads of our family.”
The hour-long classes are held Mondays and start at 6 p.m. For those who wish to join one of the classes, Kline recommended sending an email so that he could provide this week’s questions and his answers as a guide.
According to the Jeffcoats, the classes have something to offer everyone, regardless of his or her knowledge of the Bible.
“The more you study, the more you’re given,” Patsy said.
For more information, contact Kline Jeffcoat at firstname.lastname@example.org or Patsy at email@example.com.