Cultivating Faith: Post-Resurrection Appearances of Christ
Apr 22, 2022 · Courtney Jacob
Many of us desire to intentionally cultivate our faith, but we don’t always know how exactly to do it. People are quick to suggest ideas like:
Go to church.
Set aside time for personal devotions.
Join a Bible study.
All of these suggestions, and many others not mentioned, are good, but they do not automatically build faith. Just going through the motions of any of these suggestions isn’t the answer. So, what is it about how we do these things that develops our faith? How can we be sure growth will result from these practices? Join Groundwork as we observe and learn from the earliest Christians, the first people to root their faith in Christ after his resurrection. In our series, “Cultivating Faith: Post-Resurrection Appearances of Christ,” we’ll study the appearances of Jesus to his followers in the time between his resurrection and his ascension into Heaven. And together, we’ll discover how we too can nurture and enrich our faith today.
What does it mean to “cultivate faith”?
Much like we cultivate gardens to yield fruitful harvests and beautiful plants, we need to cultivate our faith to flourish in whatever conditions we find ourselves in.
We all experience high moments and low moments in our faith life. Celebrating Easter, attending a spiritual retreat, experiencing a conversion moment, are all powerful, important times in our life of faith. They are invigorating, joyous, and valuable milestones. Likewise, we all experience those valley lows, those difficult and sometimes spiritually dry times in life when practicing faith is hard.
Cultivating our faith prepares us not only for the highs and lows but for the day-to-day of “normal life.” It is the key to helping our faith thrive despite our circumstances. However, cultivation doesn’t just happen. We must intentionally nurture our faith and develop it so that our trust and confidence in God and his Word are deeply rooted and strong. Nourishing our faith regularly sets a biblical foundation for our life through which the Holy Spirit can work and upon which the Spirit can continue to grow our faith.
A wonderful place to see what this kind of cultivation of faith looks like is in the Bible, in the lives of the first Christians.
Early Christian Faith
There are not very many stories in Scripture about what Jesus did after his resurrection. But the stories that we do have can teach us a lot about how faith is formed and what it needs to grow.
By focusing our study on Jesus’ appearances between his resurrection and his ascension, we’ll witness how interactions with Jesus catalyzed the faith of the early Christians. We’ll discover how experiencing, understanding, believing, and following Jesus shaped their message of the gospel, informed their understanding of the truths of salvation, and rooted their faith.
Discover Four Verbs that are Key for Cultivating Faith
I encourage you intentionally invest in caring for your faith through our Groundwork series, “Cultivating Faith: Post-Resurrection Appearances of Christ”:
- Experience: Jesus and the Women - Matthew 28:1-10, Luke 24:1-12, and John 20:11-18
- Understand: Jesus on the Road - Luke 24:13-35
- Believe: Jesus and the Disciples - John 20:19-31
- Follow: Jesus on the Shore - John 21
...and together we’ll discover how experiencing, understanding, believing, and following Jesus, our risen Savior and Lord, nurtures and enriches our faith still today.