Thursday, August 14, 2008

What Happens When Women Walk in Faith

Chapters Ten and Eleven

I'm behind....I have been so busy that it's been unreal. I love this study and I'm not behind in my reading, just my posting!

Chapter 10 - Roadblocks and Reassurances was a wonderful chapter. I love the way Lysa starts off, "What exactly are you up to, God?" I have asked that question many times! Yet no matter how many times I run into roadblocks, the reassurances follow.

Lysa wrote: Our spiritual life is very much the same. We must continue to grow and embrace God's plans for the life we've been given. We don't grow by changing the adverse circumstances. We grow by embracing God's plans for the circumstances and allowing Him to have His full way in us. Allow Him to work out kinks and imperfections in the core of your soul. Let Him help you find a perspective beyond your own. Only then can you find incredible peace in the storms of life.

She is so right! Growing and embracing God's plans and allowing Him to work make the roadblocks not seem as huge in our own eyes and it does give us a peace that passes all understanding. I faced a huge roadblock in my life in the summer of 1998. It was not one that I could have changed on my own and my own resistance of it certainly wouldn't have changed the outcome. I had to embrace it and let God help me find a perspective that was certainly beyond my comprehension to understand. I lost the only child I had ever carried. Because I said Yes to God and allowed Him to work in my life, the peace that I had for the journey I was on opened the way for blessings on down the line. No, I never had biological children of my own, but God opened my eyes to let me see the blessing of the children around me, and to conquer the Enemy who tried to fill the core of my soul with doubt. I resisted and God won that victory.

Lysa also wrote: You have His peace because you have His presence. Give your heart permission to grow in fertile soil by making right choices that honor God every step of the way. Take your eyes off the problem and focus on the good and loving God who has great plans for you.

God knows everything that is going to happen in my life - He has known it from before I was born. I pray that I practice the presence of God and of honoring God every step of the way in my life and focus on Him, allowing my heart to be fertile soil for Him to use as He wishes in His dream for me. I believe that He wants me to write devotions. I do not feel called to write a book, I only feel called to right now to just write. He has assured me that He will provide the media for me in His timing and not my own. He has assured me that as long as I honor Him and stay knitted in His precious presence, that He will use my writing for His purposes and not my own. What does that mean exactly? I'm not sure, but I trust God for the outcome and realization of my dream.

This chapter was primarily on trusting God to lead us through the roadblocks in our lives. The Enemy causes our enemies to throw up these roadblocks and speedbumps in our lives, but the choice is ours in how to react to it. Lysa did so by seeking the Lord and by trusting Him. Yes, she was still shaky but she offered her enemy a cup of water. The verse in the personal Bible study section Mark 9:41, really spoke to me, "I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward." These are the words of our Savior! My earthly father can be a huge enemy in my life, and in my responses to him (for Christ) I must "give Him water" in God's name. This means that when I am with him all day on Tuesday and he makes cutting and hateful remarks to me, I must measure my responses to him and try to remember that there is more than meets the eye to this man. I will choose to have the attitude Christ mentions above, not only for my sake and my sister's sake, but for the sake of Christ.

Chapter Eleven - God Will Make a Way - don't you just love the promise that the title to this chapter holds?

Lysa wrote, "Yes, we will suffer in this life. Something may be causing you to suffer right now, but the pain has a purpose, and you aren't alone. Jesus is right there with you to comfort you in a way only He can, for He knows what real suffering is like." I have no idea! I cannot compare any kind of suffering on this earth to the suffering Christ endured on the Cross for not only the world but for me! I am humbled and trust that God does have a plan and will never abandon me. I trust His comfort to come just when I need it.

Lysa also wrote, "Yes, indeed, we have no way out except through the blood. This blood-stained path is the way God has made. Through the blood of Jesus we can be saved, we can be healed, we can be taught, and we can be part of an eternal glory that we can't even imagine. Second Corinthians 4:16-17 assures us, "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all." Can I get an "AMEN!"? Truly!

Lysa also wrote, "I experience Him because I choose to. I make choices every day to look for Him, listen for Him, and acknowledge Him. Even though the world tugs at me to serve many lesser gods, in the depths of my heart, I choose Him." As do I. I have the choice to experience God or just experience day-to-day life, and frankly, experiencing any day in my life without God terrifies me.

Lysa reminds us in the personal Bible study to "Seek God with all of your heart, and don't be satisfied with merely paying lip service to having a relationship with Him." Admit it, we've all been there. We've all had our days where we haven't practiced what we've preached. Lysa is telling us *not to be satisifed with that*. I'm not. I choose this day to live hyper-aware of walking my talk. I may not always be perfect, but I will try. Oh, how I will try. Then His best will shine through for me! And it will for you, too.

Lysa wrote, "We don't need to worry about our abilities or our shortcomings when we know we already have all we need through Jesus." Jesus has already overcome all our shortcomings. HE has our back. Whatever is holding us back we need to do as Lysa recommends and make a list of them and cross them out. What holds you back? What's your fear? Mine is of sounding like a dork. Crossed out. I won't sound like a dork to Him! He loves what I write. Another fear I have is of being excluded because I don't fit in. In His eyes, I am a part of the body of Christ. I fit in no matter how I look! Whatever our fears are, we need to lay them on His altar and leave them there.

And now I'm going to go pray about practicing what I just preached.

Night, all.


LAURIE said...

thanks for sharing. this ministered to me where I am at right now. Please pray for me, I need a miracle in my life and God used you tonight to minister to me as I seek to know He has my back.

Blessings, Laurie

Earthmommy said...

This was such a wonderful post. I have a very hard time surrendering on regard to certain circumstances in my life. I needed this today.

Jill said...

Laurie Ann,
I loved reading your words, such honesty, that is a good thing. Yes, we do have a choice and oh to make the right one every time!! It's difficult, but you reminded me we need to accept the challenge. Like you closed, He has equipped us!! Thanks for sharing, Jill

Denise said...

You are so awesome my friend.

Lysa TerKeurst said...

Thanks for sharing all that you are learning. You have just totally blessed me with this post.

And thanks for asking about my mom. She is slowly getting better. Keep praying for her when you think about it. I know the prayers of many are the very thing God is using to draw her body to healing and her soul closer to Him.

Thanks friend!

Pam @ Beyond The Red Door said...

These are certainly challenging chapters. Plenty to think and pray about.

LynnSC said...

This really blessed me Laurie Ann.

It is all about choice... not feelings as Lysa pointed out. We have to choose to honor God by loving those that are difficult in our lives. Only through Him is this possible.

Thanks so much for sharing,

Michelle said...

I enjoyed reading your honest thoughts. Thanks for your comment on my post. I'm trying to catch up on other blogs. I look forward to your next post.