- When you think about the Garden of Eden, do you think of a good place to get back to, or a good place to go from?
- When you think about heaven, do you think of it being an idyllic place that God gives us, that we leave untouched, or do you think of it being a place full of potential that we develop?
Problems in your field of work….
- What problems do you encounter with your work? When you encounter problems, do you lose hope? How do you relate to God at those times?
- What problems does your work try to address? What problems would you like to be able to address with your work? What problems would you like to be able to address in the world?
If you feel particularly burdened by particular problems, find other Christians who share that burden and start praying about it.
- Is there something you could do?
- Could you encourage people who are working in that field? Could you learn how to be a part of that yourself?
Potential in your field of work …
Do you feel limited in your own potential? Are there things that you want to do, but you feel like you can’t?
- Ask God for His perspective – how does He see you? What potential does He see in you? Ask Him to help you develop.
- Find people in your local church who can help in this – perhaps with prayer, encouragement and accountability – but perhaps experienced people who can advise or even train you up.
Do you see the potential of people that you work with?
- How can you help them develop?
- Is it your job to help them develop – are you a teacher, or a trainer?
- Spend time learning how God helps people develop.
Do you find it natural or difficult to see the potential in situations? What would you like to be possible? What do you dream about?
- Sometimes we find it easier to pray with people about problems – but if you have dreams, try to find Christians who share those dreams, and then start praying about them.
- Ask God how those things could be achieved. Ask Him to help you understand.
- Could you encourage those already working in that field? Could you even become a pioneer in that field yourself?
God as Creator
Read through the first couple of chapters of Genesis.
- What good things do you see God creating? What potential do those things have? Throughout today look for those good things, and spend time appreciating their potential still.
God addressing problems
What problems do we see God addressing in the Bible? You could think of problems like our sin separating us from Him, or things like idolatry, or even the problems faced by individuals. Perhaps ask God to highlight one or two examples for you to consider.
- How does God address those problems?
- Do we see those areas getting better with His intervention?
- What can we learn from God about addressing problems?
- How do you think the Law in Exodus-Deuteronomy made things better for the descendants of Abraham? This could be a huge study – so if you want, look for specifics – how did the Law make things better in terms of government, or farm management, or family relationships, etc?
Solomon built a lot – he developed his nation, as well as his own household – and yet he then wrote Ecclesiastes, where he expresses the limits of what he’d achieved.
- What were those limits? What good did Solomon lack?
- When you think about development, do you think about wholeness? When you think about developing wealth, for example, do you think about developing family life as well?
Favourite characters in the Bible
Think of your favourite characters in the Bible.
- How were they involved in development? What good did they create? What bad situations did they make better?
- Look for specifics – how did they do it? Did they work with others? How long did it take them? How did they relate with God in this development?