Beginning The WALK

Every book has a backstory.

I found myself sitting in a large room inside Calvary Chapel-Ruidoso, New Mexico, at 8 a.m. one cold Saturday morning in 2019.

I was the new guy. Scattered around the room at odd tables here and there were fifteen-to-twenty men younger than me, from backgrounds very different than mine, but all eager to hear the morning Bible study from Pastor Alan Stoddard.

They had left their warm homes in biting winds to catch this lesson. I made a mental note of that.

As he shared the scripture passage, Pastor Stoddard began challenging the men with questions.

“What’s the big thought here?” “What does this key word mean?” “What’s the takeaway truth here, and how can we apply it to our lives?” “How do we pray and make this truth part of our lives?”

Hands shot up. Heads nodded. Men explained how the passage spoke to them. Discussion broke out.

I went back the next week, and the next, and the next. I noticed a pattern: Through Pastor’s guided questions, the men were getting more than a Bible lesson; they were learning how to study the Bible for themselves. They were outlining their thoughts, looking up the meaning of words—and bringing their notes to the Bible study ready to share.

One Saturday, Pastor Stoddard asked someone from the group to bring his notes to the front and teach the lesson himself. The man was surprisingly well prepared.

That’s where The WALK Journal began.

Curious, I asked Pastor Stoddard questions and learned he was teaching deliberately. He wanted the men to get more than a Bible story; he wanted them to catch a hunger for the Word and learn how to dig deeper into Scripture than they had before.

To help them, he had crafted a very simple process for engaging the Word, and in the process, explore more deeply its rich meaning.

Those conversations led us to publish The WALK Journal as a helpful study tool for hungry hearts regardless of age and background.

If you are looking for such a tool—for yourself or a church small group, perhaps—I encourage you to give this journal a try. Pastor Stoddard opens with an easy-to-understand explanation of how to use the journal to its fullest, and gives examples to get you started.

Engage the Word, and reap the rewards!

—Steve Lestarjette, Publisher

Tanaya Says Goodbye

Tanaya Hudson, featured in the inaugural edition (Jan. 2015), left the U.S. on Friday, Jan. 9, for a 10-month missions trip in India. Before she left, she shared this message with The Spirit Today readers: “After being home for three months, it is now time to go and finish my assignment….

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