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Episode 31: Encountering God – The Spiritual Discipline of Prayer

Prayer is one of the most needed practices in our lives, but how often do we get distracted when we pray, or give up hope when we don’t feel like God is answering? We have so many questions about prayer—does God really hear us, is He good, and how do we know if we’re praying God’s will? Also, how do we pray when we’re absolutely heartbroken? 

Dr. Knut Heim and I touch on these important questions in this week’s podcast. Dr. Heim is one of my seminary professors at Denver Seminary and, oh my goodness, does he bring an absolute word for us this week! If you’re discouraged, wondering if God hears your prayers, or trying to figure out how to make prayer part of your daily rhythm, do not miss this episode!!!! 

Episode 30: Encountering God – The Spiritual Discipline of Bible Study

We all struggle with wanting to draw closer to God while feeling like we don’t have the time. Our lives are busy. We want a more powerful prayer life, richer Bible study, more heartfelt worship, but we’re not even sure if this is possible. In anticipation of the release of Kelly’s new Bible study, Encountering God: Cultivating Habits of Faith through the Spiritual Disciplines, we’re focusing on 6 spiritual disciplines over the next 6 weeks of the Cultivate podcast. Each week, we’ll help you engage in these life-giving habits, while hopefully taking the fear and intimidation out of the way. 

Today, we’re looking at the spiritual discipline of Bible study. And we’re so excited about this next part—Kelly is interviewing Amanda Bible Williams from She Reads Truth to talk about this essential habit of the Christian faith. You won’t want to miss any episode of this 6-episode collection!

Episode 29: For Such A Time As This (Lessons from Esther)

We often wonder if our lives have a specific purpose in our specific place and time. Does God want to use our positions, backgrounds, giftings, personalities… for such a time as the one we’re living in? In this week’s episode we’ll look at the life of Esther, a woman whom God providentially used to save an entire population of Jews. God used her heritage, upbringing, relationships, and position to bring this to pass. But, mostly, I believe that God used Esther’s trust in Him to bring deliverance however He saw fit. 

We’ll talk about facing our fears, how to determine if something is God’s will, executing plans within community, and trusting the sovereignty of God. You don’t want to miss this episode! 

Episode 28: Your Fruitfulness Is Based On God’s Faithfulness

Sometimes we feel like our less-than-perfect pasts disqualify us from being used by God. Or, we want our lives to have impact and meaning but we wonder how and when God is going to produce fruit in our lives. Perhaps we remember when God spoke a promise to us through His Word, but we haven’t seen it come to pass yet. I can’t wait for today’s episode as we trace through Genesis God’s promise for our lives to bear fruit. We’re going to discover that while we get to participate with God, having a life of impact and meaning is something He’s responsible for! 

So often in the Old Testament men and women felt like God had forgotten them or their lives didn’t matter. They tried to “help” God fulfill His promises to them, like Abraham and Sarah did. We’re going to see that no matter what, our fruitfulness is based on God’s faithfulness. And how resting in that truth makes all the difference. 

Episode 27:  Psalm 19 – God’s Word Can Renew Your Life

Psalm 19 is all about God’s desire to speak to us! He not only communicates to our senses through His creation but He speaks directly to us through His Word. Sometimes we need to be reminded of how much God wants to commune with us. Psalm 19 reminds us! In this Psalm, David tells us what God’s Word is: perfect, trustworthy, right, and full of light. And he also tells us what it does: renews our life, gives us wisdom, makes us glad, and lightens our perspective. All positive gifts! 

Maybe you grew up in a legalistic environment where Scripture came off as oppressive or only a list of rules. David tells us just the opposite—God’s Word is literally life-giving. He goes so far as to say it tastes sweeter than honey (and I am personally a ridiculous fan of honey). If you need encouragement about God’s Word, if you’ve ever wondered if it is truly good and trustworthy, pull up a chair at my dining room table for this week’s episode. And have some honey. 

Episode 26: Putting On The Character of Christ // Love, Peace, and Gratitude

We’re tying up our series on the character of Christ with three crowning virtues: Love, peace, and gratitude. We’ll see that without love all the other virtues fall apart—love is what holds them all together. Peace is more than just a settled internal state of being. Paul longs for us to live in peace with one another because it’s part of what we’ve been called to. And, lastly, he reminds us to be thankful. A heart overflowing with thankfulness will naturally be a spring from which the virtues of Christ flow.

Episode 25: Putting On The Character of Christ // Patience and Forgiveness

Patience can be such a difficult virtue because it usually costs us something, whether it be time, efficiency, or productivity. It means slowing down and forgoing something we want in the moment for the sake of someone else. And we all know forgiveness can be one of the most difficult responses especially when we’ve been deeply hurt or have lost something dear to us. 

We’ll be reminded that we show patience and offer forgiveness because this is what Christ has shown us. We’re in for a meaningful episode as we talk about these two interconnected displays of Christ-likeness.

Episode 24: Putting On The Character of Christ // Humility and Meekness

Humility and meekness can be two of the most challenging virtues to display but they are two of the most impacting. If you struggle with humility, we’ll see how what we’re grasping on to is often what’s keeping us from a humble posture. And if you’ve ever mistaken meekness for weakness, it’s anything but. Meekness is power under control. It takes a great deal of strength to exhibit this particular virtue which is why it’s one of my favorites on Paul’s list. 

This series will impact our relationships, everyone from family members, friends, co-workers, people we love, even those who have hurt us. We’ll be working our way through Colossians 3:12-15 where Paul talks about putting on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, along with forgiveness, love, gratitude, and peace.

Episode 23: Putting On The Character of Christ // Compassion and Goodness

We’re hitting the ground with the first two characteristics of Christ that Paul tells us to literally put on; Compassion and goodness (sometimes translated as kindness). Can you imagine how different our relationships might look if these were the first two qualities people met in us? We’ll take a look at what each word means in its original language and how it applies to our lives today. We’re about to get super practical. 

This series will impact our relationships, everyone from family members, friends, co-workers, people we love, even those who have hurt us. We’ll be working our way through Colossians 3:12-15 where Paul talks about putting on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, along with forgiveness, love, gratitude, and peace. 

Episode 22: Putting On The Character of Christ // Living From A Place Of Belonging

We’re starting a brand new series on the character of Christ and how to practically live out His virtues in our everyday lives. This series will impact our relationships, everyone from family members, friends, co-workers, people we love, even those who have hurt us. We’ll be working our way through Colossians 3:12-15 where Paul talks about putting on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, along with forgiveness, love, gratitude, and peace. 

First, we’ll set the essential groundwork of living from a place of security, calling, and belonging. When we know we’re chosen, set apart, and dearly loved by God (Col. 3:12), it changes everything about how we approach the fruit of the Spirit. This is not about trying harder but about living like who Christ says we already are in Him.

Episode 21: Living And Finishing Well 

Have you ever asked the question, “How in the world did we get here?” Whether the circumstances are good or bad, often the answer is little by little. We’re in our final episode in the book of Nehemiah and its end is perplexing (but oddly hopeful). The people of Judah aren’t in the best spot, especially given their previous accomplishments under Nehemiah. But despite its awkward ending, we’ll discover a hopeful future to which all this frustration was pointing! 

This is a really practical week as we explore four areas that the people of Israel let slide—areas we want to pay attention to in our own lives. And, ultimately, we’ll be looking at the hope of a new heart and new way of life that Jesus lives to bring us. 

Episode 20: How to Find Change When You’re Stuck

What do you do when you’re stuck? Or when you’re in bondage to something you don’t know how to get free from? We’ve all been there at different times. I certainly have been. That’s why I’m especially encouraged by Nehemiah 9 because it gives us specific detail about how the Israelites moved from being stuck to being changed.

They worshipped, remembered, confessed, and ultimately this led to much-desired change. This pattern will look different in each of our lives but the principles hold true. Because we have been set free by Jesus Christ, we are given the power to walk in that freedom. No matter how stuck you are, change is possible because of Him. I hope you’ll join me as we look at how the Israelites participated with God and went from a place of bondage to one of freedom—how much more does Jesus want to lead us to change today?

Episode 19: The God Who Speaks

The Bible has absolutely changed my life and met me in the deepest places of my heart, but that doesn’t mean it’s an easy book to understand. If you feel like the Bible has grown distant or dry, or if you’re simply confused by what you read at times, you’re not alone! This week we’re going to join Nehemiah and the Jewish people of the day opposite the Water Gate in Jerusalem as God’s Word was brought back into the center of city life after a long exile. You’ll be amazed at the people’s reactionthey wept, celebrated, feasted, mourned, studied, and everything in between. God’s Word was and is so compelling. 

We’ll also discover that even God’s chosen people needed explanation and instruction about God’s Law. This should encourage us as we seek to grow in our understanding. Perhaps what excites me most is that the Word of God is meant to intersect with our daily lives all these years later. I can’t think of anything more meaningful than hearing God’s voice through its pages. 

Episode 18: Standing Up For The Powerless

It’s easy to get distracted from what God has called us to do especially in the culture we live in. And it’s tempting to rely on our own strength to accomplish a God-sized task even though we may be burning it at both ends. And how discouraging it can be when conflict isn’t coming from the outside but from within. Nehemiah faced similar struggles and gives us a compelling picture of how to walk through them with God as our strength. 

We have a great passage ahead of us today! We’ll see how Nehemiah took an active approach in dealing with injustice. How He was taken with what God had given him to do overtaking his place at a fancy table. And how he refused to allow distractions to pull him away from the work God had entrusted to him. You do not want to miss this episode as we continue through the book of Nehemiah! There’s a seat waiting for you at my dining room table. 

Episode 17: The God Who Rebuilds

Perhaps you’ve wondered whether God can restore and rebuild what’s impossibly broken. One of my favorite aspects of the book of Nehemiah is that it is not a book about building but a book about rebuilding! Even though Jerusalem was broken down because the people had turned their back on God, God’s covenant of love with His people prevailed! This truth carries into our own day even more so through Jesus. He is passionate about rebuilding and restoring lives! 

In this week’s episode we’ll continue to see that we’re not called to do God’s work alone. All different types of people labored alongside the wall side by side. And perhaps my favorite element of this week’s passage is how even the rubble in our lives can’t ultimately stop us when God is with us and we’re doing what He’s called us to do. Join me for the second episode in our 6-episode collection on the book of Nehemiah!

Episode 16: God Can Use Your Broken Heart

Have you ever wondered what God is calling you to do? Or what your purpose is? Sometimes the very thing that breaks your heart is the area of ministry God is calling you to. This week we’re starting a brand new collection of episodes on the book of Nehemiah! We’ll take a look at how Nehemiah’s heart broke for the suffering Jews so much that he left the comfort of his Persian palace to restore their desolate community. It wasn’t easy but God was with him. 

Join me as we begin our new 6-episode collection on the book of Nehemiah. I hope that over these next several weeks you will be inspired to listen to what God has put in your heart to do. Let God break your heart for the hurting, because He often uses a breaking heart to restore the broken.

Episode 15: Finding Your True Fulfillment 

Finding fulfillment and joy in life can be hard to come by. I struggled with this for the longest time, looking to be satisfied by my pursuits, pleasures, possessions… But my greatest fulfillment came when I followed Jesus into what He refers to as His harvest field. It’s a metaphor Jesus uses to describe serving and loving people in His Kingdom. You have a unique place in God’s mission to this world! And accomplishing His call on your life is where the joy and fulfillment comes! 

In this episode, we’ll also see that when our circumstances are the darkest we can sometimes see Jesus with the greatest clarity. I share a lot of my own personal experiences in our last episodes of the Jesus Changes Everything collection! So Join us today and invite your friends to listen along.

Episode 14: Following Jesus Into Sacred Spaces

Don’t settle for less than the healing Jesus wants to do in your life and heart! He often wants to bring us a deeper healing than what we’re even looking for. This week we’ll see Jesus not only heal a woman physically who had suffered for 12 years, we’ll see Him remove the shame and isolation that plagued her. We’ll also see His ability to operate outside of our timetables. A religious leader named Jairus will witness firsthand Jesus’ sovereignty over time, even in his most urgent trial. Lastly, we’ll follow Jesus and His disciples into a sacred space no one else was invited into. This episode is packed with the goodness and power of Jesus in our lives!

Join me as we continue to learn more about the healings and miracles of Jesus in this collection of episodes called Jesus Changes Everything!

Episode 13: Jesus’ Power To Heal And Forgive

It’s easy to settle into patterns of darkness and dysfunction without even realizing it. This is what had happened in a Gentile region on the other side of the lake of Galilee. When Jesus brought His light and healing to the town, the people didn’t want the disruption of change. Perhaps you know the feeling. On the other side of the lake, Jesus responded to the faith of a group of friends. Have you ever considered how much your faith in Christ affects the people around you? It’s the third week of our Jesus Changes Everything collection in Matthew 8-9!

In this episode we’ll see Jesus bring peace to two oppressed individuals, as well as heal a paralyzed man both physically and spiritually. Truly we’ll see the goodness and power of Jesus’ Kingdom coming on earth! Join me on this journey as we learn more about the healings and miracles of Jesus in this collection of episodes called Jesus Changes Everything

Episode 12: Following Jesus Into The Boat

What is something the Lord has healed you from? How can you serve and worship Him out of that place of healing? And are you ready to follow Jesus into the boat, even if it means storms? It’s the second week of our Jesus Changes Everything collection! This week we’ll be looking at the healing of Peter’s mother-in-law, as well as what it means to be a true disciple of Christ. We’ll be encouraged that it’s infinitely better to be in a storm with Jesus than it is to be in calm circumstances without Him. And we’ll consider what kind of disciple we really are. An under-eager follower who’s putting off a life with Jesus; An overeager follower who hasn’t counted the cost; Or one who’s in the boat with Jesus, leaning into His presence. 

Join me on this journey as we learn more about the healings and miracles of Jesus in this new collection of episodes called Jesus Changes Everything.

Episode 11: Jesus Heals The Outcasts

If you’ve ever wondered what God is like, look no further than Jesus. And if you’ve wondered what Jesus is like, His compassion for the sick, forgotten, and outsider reveals His unmatched heart of love and kindness for people like you and me. Join me as we begin a brand new collection of messages called Jesus Changes Everything! We’ll be looking specifically at His healings and miracles. Today we’ll dive into the Gospel of Matthew where Jesus demonstrates not only His ability but His willingness to heal both a leper and a Roman centurion’s servant. We’ll be encouraged by Jesus’ power and compassion as we watch Him break down religious and social barriers to bring His “contagious holiness.” 

Don’t miss the first of this new collection of messages from Matthew 8-9! In the next several episodes, we will see 10 miracles of Jesus at work and the specific way that Matthew groups these stories together to illustrate the characteristics and life of Jesus.

Episode 10: Stepping Out In Faith When It’s Your Turn

What will you do when God says to you, “It’s your turn”? We’ve all doubted our abilities, wondered if we have what it takes, or whether we can fill the shoes that came before us. No matter the unknowns, are you willing to trust God and step into His calling? Join me as we look at Joshua’s life and God’s call for him to lead the Israelites out of the wilderness and into the promised land. Moses left an enormous task behind, but God had called Joshua and promised to never leave his side. God equips us for what He’s called us to! No matter what challenges we face, God will never leave us or forsake us. Is it your turn? Are you willing to step out in faith believing God is able? 

Episode 9: Finding Jesus In Your Desperation

Have you ever sought Jesus out in your pain only to feel disappointed or offended by Him? Have you wondered if staying with Him is worth it? In this week’s episode we’re looking at a Canaanite woman who ran to Jesus in utter desperation (Matt. 15:21-28). But rather than writing her own story and asking Jesus to sign off on it, she responded to Him from within His story! She saw what others couldn’t see and valued what others didn’t value. We may not know the Canaanite woman’s name but we have so much to receive from her story. Are you willing to surrender your story to Jesus?

Episode 8: The Blessings Of Friendship With Jesus

Has friendship with Jesus felt like a distant, almost-impossible relationship—especially when you can’t see, touch, or hear Him? Today Kelly is walking through John 15:9-17 where we’ll study a fascinating conversation Jesus had with His disciples. Jesus called His followers friends and He did so right before He left them. This isn’t the timing you would expect. But we’ll find that even in Jesus’s physical absence, He intended His disciples to continue experiencing the blessings of being in a real, vibrant relationship with Himself. And He offers us the same. 

Today we’ll look at the blessings that come from a rich friendship with Christ—love, joy, never being alone, answered prayer, and a life that matters. Also, we’ll discover what it means to dwell in the blessings of His love. 

Episode 7: Chosen To Bear Fruit

Is living from a place of rest truly possible? How do we faithfully walk through seasons of pruning and discipline? What does it take to bear healthy fruit? The vibrant imagery used throughout Jesus’s teaching in John 15:1-5 powerfully depicts how, as Christ followers, our lives are meant to matter.

Join Kelly as she walks through the 7th I AM statement of Jesus, “I Am the True Vine.” Your life was meant to matter. You’re called to bear much fruit—fruit that will impact generations. 

Episode 6: Putting On The Character Of Christ

We’re breaking down the practical virtues of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience in today’s episode. Kelly shares transparently about her own failings and how impossible these virtues are when we rely on our own strength. Kelly also points out Paul’s secret to the virtues—you’re dearly loved, chosen, and set apart because of Christ. 

Episode 5: God’s Healing God’s Way

Have you ever wanted God to bring you healing but on your own terms? Today, Kelly walks us through Naaman’s story in 2 Kings 5. Naaman had wealth, power, and position. He also had an incurable skin disease that none of his resources could remedy. When God’s servant Elisha offered Naaman a prescription for healing, Naaman refused. Why should he, a powerful man with status from a land of clear flowing rivers, dunk himself in the dirty water of the Jordan River? Naaman needed more than physical healing on his own terms; He needed an encounter with the living God. And so do we. We hope you’ll join Kelly for this meaningful episode about seeking God’s healing His way.

Episode 4: When People Aren’t Enough

Have you ever thought, if only this person would change I’d finally be happy? Or if this person would choose me I’d be fulfilled? Sharing one of the more personal chapters of her story, Kelly will help us recognize idolatry in our own lives. Especially when it comes to the false gods of people. We’ll look at the lives of Rachel and Leah (Genesis 29-30) who had both made false gods out of people. Things like comparison, jealousy, anger, and manipulation had gotten the best of them. As a result, they often missed the pursuit and blessing of God in their lives.

Episode 3: Trusting Jesus With Everything

Perhaps you’ve wondered how you can have a relationship with Jesus so intimate that you trust Him with all you hold dear. Today, we’ll trace Mary of Bethany’s story through the Gospels. She was the one who anointed Jesus’s body before His burial. She’s also the one who sat at His feet while her sister Martha worked in the kitchen. And she’s the one who lost her brother Lazarus when Jesus could have saved him.

Episode 2: Miracles In The Mundane

We’re so glad you’re back for another episode of the Cultivate Podcast with Kelly Minter. Continuing to work our way down Kelly’s “Top Hits” of her favorite Scripture passages, today we’re getting dressed up and going to a wedding! Many of you are familiar with the story of Jesus turning water into wine, but Kelly will bring your attention to some overlooked characters who play a vital role in this joyous occasion. (No spoilers, though.)

Episode 1: When God Turns Pain Into Blessing (Life of Hannah)

Welcome to our very first episode of the Cultivate Podcast, with Bible teacher and author Kelly Minter! We’re starting off the first few episodes with a highlight reel, of sorts. Think of it as Kelly’s Top Hits when it comes to narratives in Scripture, and how God has used these characters in His Word to teach her clear truths about her own life.

Episode 0: Trailer

The Cultivate Podcast is all about deepening your understanding of Scripture for a deeper love of Jesus. We live in a crazy busy culture that makes it hard to prioritize Bible study. Not to mention, for many of us the Bible can be plain confusing or intimidating. That’s why we’re so excited about this podcast, we’ll get to study God’s Word together.  

It all starts Tuesday, March 23, so make sure to subscribe now so you never miss a Tuesday episode!

Meet Kelly

Well, hey there!  I’m glad you’re here and thrilled to tell you a bit about The Cultivate Podcast. I love the Bible and I love teaching it in relational environments. Enter a podcast where you and I get to study Scripture together, no matter where you are on your faith journey. I hope you’ll come along. Also, if you’d like to go deeper, my latest Bible study is called Finding God Faithful: A Study on the Life of Joseph. I also work closely with Justice & Mercy International in the Amazon jungles of Brazil as well as in Moldova. When I’m not writing, traveling or speaking I love time in my garden, cooking, and being with friends and family.

You can connect and keep up with Kelly by following her on Facebook orInstagram. 

Check out Kelly’s Newest Study

My Missions Partner

I am so thankful that I get to partner with Justice and Mercy International and their mission to make justice personal to the poor, orphaned, and forgotten of the world.

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