gifts

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Andrew

Living in someone else's shadow

If you’ve ever felt overlooked, or in someone else’s shadow Andrew might be a helpful person for you to think about. Brother to Peter, friends with James & John, Andrew had unique qualities that weren’t high profile but made him indispensible. Encourageing for those who serve ‘behind the scenes’ and a chance to think about where we get our security from!

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 1 December 2008

Tags: relationships self-esteem gifts

Barak

Do I have to do it all by myself?

Has God ever asked you to do something you were afraid of? Do you find it easier to rely on other people than on God? This man’s story might give you some things to think about.

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 22 November 2008

Tags: leadership faith courage gifts

Ehud

Not the usual type of leader!

If you’ve ever felt odd, not quite fitting with everyone else, a bit of a misfit, then Ehud is your man. An unusual choice as a leader, God picked a man no one else would have looked at to rescue his people. Definitely encouraging for those who don’t quite tick all the normal boxes!

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 1 December 2008

Tags: leadership self-esteem courage gifts

Eunice

A woman of influence

For a woman who only gets two brief mentions in the Bible, Eunice is a woman of great influence. Addressing questions of family, parenting and the faith of our children this study considers the effect of a mother’s faith on her children and the implications of that.

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 1 December 2008

Tags: relationships gifts

Gideon

Hidden potential to lead

Do you ever doubt God? Or yourself? Do you wonder what on earth is going on with your life? Gideon lived in a time when his whole nation was asking the question - ‘What is God playing at?’ God’s answer was to take Gideon on a journey, to discover both God and his own role in being part of the solution. This study, looking at the beginning of Gideon’s journey with God might give you some food for thought on those questions you have.

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 1 December 2008

Tags: leadership self-esteem faith gifts

Huldah

A Reputation worth having!

What do you think your reputation is? What would you like it to be? Who do you go to for advice when you’re in a dilemma? What sort of help do you seek out? Huldah is a relatively unknown prophetess from times of great trouble in Judah. She offered wise, godly, honest council to those who needed help. She offers us an example of how to ‘speak the truth in love’, rather than speak the truth unkindly, or avoid the truth rather than cause offense. Take a look, see how she might inspire you!

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© Ruth Perrin 2009. Last revised on 20 February 2009

Tags: courage faith gifts integrity leadership

Jael

Guts & Glory!

Ever struggled to get your head around all that violence in the Bible? Ever been camping? Put those two things together and you get Jael; a woman with tent pegs who you wouldn’t mess with! She raises some questions for us about gender, war and courage... read on!

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 22 November 2008

Tags: courage initiative violence gifts conflict

Joanna

Passing on her blessings

In a time of Credit crunch, where money is a touchy subject, and yet where so much of the world has always had so little; how can we - as God's children - respond? Joanna was a lady transformed by meeting Jesus, who provides us with a great example of just that - how to partner with Jesus & use our money wisely. Take a look.

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© Ruth Perrin 2009. Last revised on 18 September 2009

Tags: faith gifts initiative money

John Mark

A man who blew it

John Mark blew it, let his team down, bottled out. This study looks at second chances, how we react to mistakes (both our own & others) what the bible teaches about forgiveness, and the potential God sees even in those who are less than perfect!

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 1 December 2008

Tags: forgiveness relationships integrity gifts

Jonah

A patient, merciful God

Here’s a man who didn’t like the job God gave him – but thorough a long and humbling journey discovered who God really was. Many of us can empathise with Jonah – but it would be great to learn from his mistakes rather than have to make them ourselves!

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 1 December 2008

Tags: forgiveness courage faith gifts

Junia

Have you ever felt overlooked? Taken for granted? Are there times when it seems like no one notices or cares what you do? Do you sometimes feel like the odd one out – a woman in a man’s world maybe? Meet Junia, and her husband Andronicas – the forgotten apostle, a woman worth reflecting on.

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© Ruth Perrin 2009. Last revised on 27 November 2009

Tags: leadership initiative courage gifts self-esteem faith

Phoebe

Although she’s only mentioned once in the Bible – for 2 verses Phoebe is a significant woman, and a great example of how doing some detective work in scripture can pay off and teach us things we’d have normally skipped over.

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© Ruth Perrin 2009. Last revised on 27 October 2009

Tags: gifts leadership money

Priscilla

Wholehearted partnership

'Marriage doubles or halves your ministry'. Here's one half of a great couple. Priscilla married one of the good guys - and look what they achieved together. But what if you're not half of anything? What if you're single? What if you don't want to be? This team give us a great example of marriage in action - but also help us reflect on our obsession with romance.

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© Ruth Perrin 2009. Last revised on 24 August 2009

Tags: gifts leadership relationships

Sheerah & Shallum’s Daughters

Building something significant

What do we do with painful experiences from our past? Times we’ve suffered? These women used their history to build a future for themselves and their families. Remarkable for their time they are an example of how God can use his people in practical ways to demonstrate his love for those in trouble.

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 22 November 2008

Tags: leadership initiative suffering gifts

Tabitha

An extraordinary, ordinary woman

Jesus said ‘the poor will always be with you’ (Matt 26.11). It’s true, but as Christians how do we start to help those in trouble? Tabitha was a compassionate, generous, inspiring woman – she might just give you some ideas of how to start showing God’s love to those in need.

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© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 22 November 2008

Tags: money relationships initiative self-esteem gifts

Cloud of Witnesses is a series of Bible studies on the men and women of scripture. You'll find everyone from Gideon and Andrew through to Tamar and Tabitha.

For ideas on how to use these studies most effectively, click here

Ruth Perrin, the author, is on staff at King's Church Durham and holds an MA in Theology and Ministry.

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