Explore the Bible Study: Ordinary (ETB Title: Conceived)

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Does our society affirm, respect, or even embrace those who are viewed as "ordinary"? Ordinary can take on a negative tone in a society in which everyone is focused on following those who society holds up as extraordinary. Whether it is in the world of entertainment, politics, work, social media or even in the church one, might think he or she is “ordinary” compared to those who society has lifted up as being extraordinary. We must understand that God uses the ordinary in extraordinary ways. We can learn this lesson today as we look at the life of Mary, the mother of Jesus in this Explore the Bible Study: Ordinary.

We can discover through Luke 1:26-38 that God has a place for everyone in His redemptive plan; He uses ordinary people in that plan. As you study these passages consider these thoughts:

  • God's plan for ordinary people is intentional - Luke 1:26-29
  • God will provide guidance to help us understand the extraordinary plans - Luke 1:30-33
  • God will offer reassurance to help us understand His extraordinary plans - Luke 1:34-37
  • An "ordinary person" will respond with humble obedience to God's extraordinary plans - Luke 1:38

Look back at your life and consider the “ordinary” people God has used to help you grow in your faith. You will see a pattern of obedience that is not driven by arrogance, but humility. I invite you to join the multitude of ordinary saints before you who became extraordinary because they served a God who is glorified, not by self-serving people, but by people who willingly say as Mary said in Luke 1:38, See, I am the Lord’s servant.

In November of 2016 Dr. Jack Graham, pastor of the Prestonwood Baptist Church, Plano, Texas posted these thoughts. He entitled it, “God Uses Ordinary People to do Extraordinary Things”

“I love the stories in the Scripture where people are called by God to do something special for him. These people are just like you and me, just common, ordinary people.
  • Moses was living on the back side of the desert, a total failure as the prince of Egypt, and God called him to deliver a nation.
  • When Goliath was taunting the Israelites, everyone discounted David, a teenage shepherd boy. But God didn’t! And David defeated the giant and became the king of a nation.
  • How about Nehemiah? He was living in Persia in complete obscurity serving as a cupbearer and God called him to rebuild the walls around Jerusalem.
  • Mary was a teenage girl living in Nazareth when God called her to be the mother of the Messiah.
  • And Simon Peter would have lived and died an ordinary fisherman except that Jesus called him to establish the church.
Do you see the pattern here? God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things. He uses improbable men and women who have nothing of their own to offer, but their faithfulness and willingness to say, “Yes.” 

So, what has God called you to? I’ll tell you. It’s something wonderful and extraordinary! He’s calling right now. And all you have to do is say, ‘Yes, Lord.’”

DOWNLOADABLE STUDY HELPS
The Bible study helps have been modified in order to provide opportunities for both online and face-to-face teaching venues. Ideas in boxes will be provided for engaging groups more when meeting in person. The boxed items could also be modified and used for online discussion as well. 

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