click on the button to link
1. We talked of the importance of encouragement when God has called us to task. Has a lack of encouragement or even ridicule ever taken you back to a place of insuffiency you thought you had conquered?
I dont think so
2. Is there someone you know right now who is attempting a new ministry that could use a world of encouragement from you? Why do you think this thing may be scary for her? Will you commit to write a note, make a call, or send an email with a dose of courage inside?
yes I do I didnt think I did but then this lady at church who is taking over the childrens ministry has just taken on this position. it might be scary for her as its a new thing for her. I shall send her a card. I often encourage verbally those in ministry 🙂 and give them a hug
3. Read Moses’ song in Exodus 15:3-18. What line speaks to you most? Why does it touch you?
18 The LORD will reign for ever and ever.
He will always be in control. He will always look after us. Such reassurance.
4. Based on the applications of living either inside or outside the Promise, where would you now say you currently reside?
Inside the Promise
5. If you are ‘Somewhere in the Middle’ between the girl you were and the one you want to be, how do you plan on changing that? Is there a barrier you feel you can’t climb? Knowing God is for you and this study group is for you, is there a way we can help?
Living the way He wants me to all the time. Please pray for me I am not married yet I have not and am not saving myself for it 😦 Its a secret that I am ashamed to share. I realize that some things have to be worked through before I can marry the man of my dreams Muzz. Basically it comes down to the fact that I feel I need to get a job before we get married. His job wont support us enough. I dont really want to get a job as I love being a sahm to Daniel. I feel I am making excuses. I feel maybe I should be trusting God more. However I have strong beliefs that it was a lack of $$ and other things that made my marriage to my daughters father fail. I dont want to go into marriage without a job. It feels like a bit of a mess Im in.
click on the button to link
1. Do you struggle with a sense of self-worth? How do you perceive this has affected the way you are able to ‘keep your head upright’? If not, do you know someone who suffers in this area?
Yes I have always struggled with a sense of self worth. I think this stems from childhood. However I have gotten better since finding the Lord. It doesnt really matter what people think of me as long as I am pleasing my Lord. Also when I muck up He forgives me – how blessed I am because of Him
2. What are you most afraid of? Does this fear affect the way you move through life? (Ex. Are you overprotective with children? Afraid to take risks?)
I am a bit of a worrier. Being safe is important to me. However, I have lived through some unsafe times and He has seen me through I am confident that if rough unsafe times should come He will see me through again. I do prefer not to take risks.
3. What is one of the most marvelous ways God has provided a need? I can’t wait to hear your stories on this one!
We were going through a rough time at the end of last year God reminded me to lean on Him. He taught me that whatever comes He will be there. He is a need that thankfully I have because of Him.
4. Steve Brown, a Moody Broadcasting Bible Teacher, is one of the first people I ever heard teach the concept that God was not mad at me. I grew up in a denomination that led me to believe He was in a continuous state of disappointment over my failures. How about you? Though in your heart you know God says He loves you, does Satan in your mind ever try to convince you otherwise?
Sometimes Satan does try but I tell Him where to go now. I know God is always there for me and that He loves me unconditionally.
5. How close are you to your own Promised Land? Not at all, 1/2 way, almost there? By this I mean the place of abundant living and effectiveness here on earth, not the ultimate fulfillment in Glory! Though I hope you are going to heaven, I don’t want it to be today! 🙂
I think I am 1/2 way there. I believe God has put me where I am today and He will lead me on even further as the years go by.
Its not a matter of “hanging in with this study!” I LOVE this study. Im taking this opportunity to thank you again for all the work you put into it Lisa
1. We discussed how we are God’s fame and He is ours. Have you ever been in a situation where you are applauded for your ministry and had to fight back the idol of pride? Ever been tempted to believe your own press? It’s okay to admit it! Your testimony will help others in their resolve!
I use to live in Auckland and once when I was there I patted myself in public for serving morning tea (it was my regular ministry. I felt I should be thanked. And as no one else was doing it. I did). The room went very quiet. No one said a thing. Later I learnt that I shouldnt have puffed myself up in public. Its not really up to people to say “well done” unless they want to. God sees all. He is the one we should seek approval from not those around us.
Another time that comes to mind (again in Auckland) was when it came to prayer time just after the sermon. One older man always use to say how wonderful I was. I told the Pastor I didnt like it. I think because it drew attention to me. Im not a person that likes to be in the spot light. Anyway I told the Pastor and it stopped.
2. Did it ever occur to you in the 3-way drama of God, Job, and Satan that Satan was the only one outside the loop as far as Job’s reactions would be? Does this encourage you in resolving to make a fool of him when he attempts to use you to defame the Name?
No it never occured to me that Satan was the only one outside the loop. Yes this is a great encouragement. Praise the Lord.
With God on our side like this, how can we lose? (The Message Romans:31)
If God is for us, who can ever be against us? (Romans 8:31 NLT)
3. Are you in a situation now where you feel you are being overcome? Better yet, are you in a situation where you should have been overcome but are not?
No not at the moment. God is good. Also see above verses.
4. Have you failed in a Satan-designed trial? Can you recognize God intends for this failure to refine and resolve you for next time? God is not out for your destruction but your perfection!
I thought so at the time. However, it made me finally lean on God like never before.
5. Can you describe yourself as a Wonders Junkie? Found yourself in spiritual highs and lows depending on whether you perceived God was doing wondrous things or not?
God is good all the time.
6. Have you ever been like Philip and had God right in your face and not recognized Him?
Lots of times. God is always with us its just that sometimes Hes there. He never leaves or forsakes Him. Shame we cant always say the same thing.
I found this tonight Bringing Glory to God in All Circumstances
Mercy Me (Easter) Bring the rain
I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that
I’ve gone through
The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You
Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It’s never really ever crossed my mind
To turn my back on you, oh Lord
My only shelter from the storm
But instead I draw closer through these times
So I pray
Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings
You glory And I know there’ll
be days When this life brings me pain
But if that’s what it takes to
praise You Jesus, bring the rain
I am yours regardless of the clouds that may
loom above because you are much greater than
my pain you who made a way for me suffering
your destiny so tell me whats a little rain
Holy, holy, holy
Holy, holy, holy
is the lord God almighty
is the lord God almighty
I’m forever singing
[2nd Chorus 2x]
Holy holy holy
you are holy
you are holy
[2nd Chorus 2x]
To link click on the “I AM” button above
1. When is the last time you encountered a Fist Shaker? This may be a stranger to you or as close as a loved one in your own home. Does anything in our description help you to understand their animosity towards God? Are you able to have more compassion towards them?
One person in particular comes to mind. It is years since I encountered this person. I understand the person has a huge problem with control issues. I pray for her.
2. Does anything about Rahab’s redemption strike a nerve? This may be a question you would like to ponder privately. Sexual sin and/or victimization can be an area where Satan has an enormous stronghold because it can hold so many painful and shameful memories. If Rahab teaches us anything, please know God can redeem any life and any situation, no matter how heinous it seems, and plant you unashamedly ‘in the midst of Israel’. Rahab deserved death according to Mosaic Law, however she was shown nothing but lovingkindness by the God and nation of Israel.
He is much better than we deserve. It took me years to believe in God’s Grace. I am so grateful very day that He loves us and forgives us no matter how badly we screw up.
3. Is there an area of your life in which you feel you have come full circle? Where you’ve come to a place where everything and nothing are the same? (I’m thinking Lord of the Rings when Frodo goes back to the Shire after his long adventure. You have no clue what I just said if you are not an LOTR nerd so just ignore this if it doesn’t make sense! 🙂
LOL shame on me. I have never seen any of the LOTR movies even though they were made here.
I can remember what I was like before I accepted the Lord and I think He has helped me accept who I am. I believe that through life experiences He has made me the person I am today particularly when it comes to confidence.
4. When you were born again, did you gain a new appreciation for your surroundings as Rahab did when she received the Promise along with the Promised Land? Has some old place, object, or relationship been redeemed by now serving a ‘high and holy purpose’?
Yes!!! 🙂 We (Lisa and I) have discussed this before. After I was baptized my surroundings seemed to come alive. I was aware much more of my surroundings. I remember looking at leaves in my garden and they came alive to me. Much more greener than I had ever seen them before. I believe God opened my eyes to my surroundings and I believe He continues to do so. I love looking at sunsets and reflecting on His greatness.
5. Believers can still be Fist Shakers. Do you have circumstances in your life in which you find yourself shaking your fist at God? Something He has asked you to endure, asked you to do, seemingly taken away from you? Can you see how shaking your fist is keeping you from your Promise? (I’m not talking eternal security here – Only abundant living.)
There have been a few times when I have asked God why. I wouldnt say I shook my fist at Him. But I did ask Him (when I was terribly upset) why he made such and such happen. He has had to take me to rock bottom a few times but I praise Him as He took me from there to where I am today and I thank Him. He is much better than I deserve and I Love Him.
click on the picture to link
Before I start the study today I would like to pray for our host Lisa. She has been a busy lady and a bit overwhelmed . I pray that she gets everything done that she needs to do. That she is able to draw her strength from the Lord. And that she would get time each day to get a little rest for resting in Him will help her cope.
I would like to address one of Lisa’s points in her lead up discussion before the questions
“I can think of many times when I have withheld punishment on my own children in public because of what I thought others would think of me” I think with the government (talking about the New Zealand government as I dont know much about other countries ones) and their laws regarding what a parent is allowed and not allowed to do with their children causes a lot of us to now raise our children in fear. We should be allowed to punish our own children (within reasonable limits) as we see fit. But alas we cant. If we are viewed to be over stepping the mark and may i add is there even a mark these days then we could face our children being taken away from us. In New Zealand even time out is viewed as kidnapping.
However, I fear this will all lead to a generation that have no respect for their elders. To a generation that are not well-behaved and have no self-control. Contrary to what some people believe (even ministers) I do believe that God expects us to punish and correct our children when they misbehave. But it comes back to Lisa’s statement can we actually do this because of the way we may be viewed by others???
I do not think that punishing our children in public is “airing ones laundry.” I think that if a child is misbehaving anywhere the parent should have the right to punish and correct that child right there and then. This does not mean I would smack my child in a shop but even taking it to a more private place in a public place may be seen as incorrect. However, for some children to “wait until you get home” lessens the impact of what they have done. And I for one will not stand aside while my child misbehaves. To do so only asks for more trouble. God corrects us because He loves us. I love my children therefore I punish and correct them when they do wrong. But deep within me is that fear of how it may be viewed. What the consequences may be (to my family and I) if I simply correct my child in a public place. Any place really if someone views how I am raising my children as not correct in their eyes.
1. Have you ever experienced trials that were best dealt with “in the family” for either your reputation’s sake or God’s? You may still choose to leave them there, but you are welcome to share if you are comfortable.
Yes but I firmly believe that trusted discreet Christian friends should also be included as they can offer us support. We are not suppose to be “lone rangers.” Last year when we wrongly and hurtfully accused of terrible things by my daughter we at first felt we should keep quiet but as time went on and as it got worse we leaned on our trusted friends and drew strength from not only from God but them as well. It helped us.
2. Have you ever found yourself in a bizarre circumstance and later were able to walk someone through the same/similar situation? Did you recognize the hand of God in it?
I dont know how bizarre my examples are but they nevertheless have allowed me to get alongside others.
I have been through 2 abusive relationships with men and through these experiences I have been able to sympathise and help other women through these difficult times.
Also I think that the way I was treated at school has allowed me to look out (when teaching) for children who are shy and left out and get alongside them and support them.
3. I was in my late twenties before I ever let myself believe God was for me instead of waiting to smack me upside the head every time I made a mistake. Do you truly believe God is on your side?
Yes I do but like you it took me years to realize I was worthy enough to be loved and forgiven by Him.
4. If God has ever had you in the Holy Spirit Choke-hold (and who hasn’t He?), how have you reacted to God’s chastisement? Were you bitter? Brokenhearted? Grateful?
I was brokenhearted and at times anger but through it I learnt so much and so am now so grateful. I am the person I am today because of Him
5. Write a brief prayer of Thanksgiving for God’s long-suffering.
Dear Father I thank you for all have done for me. For loving me unconditionally just as I am. I am not worthy of your sweet love but You forgive me and love me anyway. Thank you Father for always being at my side. Carrying me when I am weak therefore making me strong. Thank you Father that you seeked me out and called my name and allowed me to be one of your daughters. I love you father forever and ever Amen
I was blessed by Gretchen recently. This award was created by Alátáriël,Lady of Lorien . Here are her stipulations for granting the award:
“As for my award, it is called The Blogger Reflection Award. Why? The reason for the title is because this award should make you reflect on five bloggers who have been an encouragement, a source of love, impacted you in some way, and have been a Godly example to you. Five Bloggers who when you reflect on them you get a sense of pride and joy…of knowing them and being blessed by them. This award is for the best-of-the-best so consider who you pick, carefully. This award should not be given to just anyone. If you’re going to do the award don’t just write a few words and slap it on your blog. Write real thoughts about these bloggers and what they’ve been to you, and if the bloggers you pick have already been given the award, don’t be afraid to give to them again. They deserve it as many times as it’s given.
This is what Gretchen said about me:
Jen truly is a Prayer Warrior, as her blog’s name implies. I have been blessed over and over again by her faith in the face of adversity and her gratitude for what some might consider the smallest things (e.g. earth mover machines for her young son to enjoy watching). Her humility and grace teaches me something new each time I read her blog.
Awwwwwwwwww bless you my dear friend
Here are my picks… (Im not going to worry about whether these ladies and gentlemen have been award yet or not. Sometimes I try to bless those that I think are deserving but havent been awarded yet. However, at least one of these ladies has been awarded already but she blesses me so much. I couldnt possibly not include her)
This lady reflects God to me in so many ways. She has a heart of gold. She is so caring, loving, supportive and loyal. She sends me emails and ecards EVERYDAY she cares so so much. She prays for me too. She is one of my biggest encouragers. This is all regardless of how shes feeling. Like my Muzzy she has diabetes hers is robbing her of her sight and her health is not the best. However, this does not stop her from caring deeply about others. Everytime I lok at her blog I am blown away by her faith. She is incredible. For some of us we would be asking why me Lord. Havent I been through enough but not my sweet friend she troops on with God right beside her. I am so blessed to have gotten to know Denise through her blog. Love you my friend.
This lady reflects to me what a good parent should be like. God is a Father to us and I feel Barb is like a mum to me. She is caring, generous and loving. She is sensitive to the feelings of others without being overbearing. I love reading about her life. I especially like her Sunday Meanderings that she starts with a devotion. I love these devotions. I love reading and reflecting on them. I feel loved every time I visit Barbs blog.
Lisa runs the “I AM” study off of her blog. I have been doing this study since its beginning. I enjoy it. I in fact get excited when I see a new study session is up. It is a wonderful study. I am confident through running this study on her blog Lisa is going to be responsible for bringing more people to Christ. I know I have been able to learn and relearn more about God through this study.
Through this blog and God working through Lisa I got the confidence to say what I felt and not be afraid to goof up if I had answered any of the questions in this study wrong. He reminded me of a long held believe that it is through making mistakes we learn. Through putting my responses on my blog I received amazing and loving comments that encouraged me. This study does reach out and touch a wide range of people keep it up Lisa. Your hard work is paying off.
Through this study and Lisa’s blog I have been able to get to know other woman who share the same faith as I do and through some of the study sessions I have began to understand just how much I care for these woman and they in turn care about me. The study has allowed me to reflect on things in my past and continue to heal from them.
I like the way this study solidifies ideas about my faith and share them with other people. I like it when someone says “oh me too.” As Lisa did to me a few studies back.
I am sincerely thankful and grateful that Lisa has been doing these studies. May God bless you Lisa.
A week or so ago I honored Patricks wife with the rockin award. Today I want to award them again and this time I have decided to give the award to Patrick (however they both really deserve this one and the other one). God might have been the King of Kings but He was also a servant. He gave of Himself so many times over His life and afterwards. Patrick, too gives of his time, expertise and self. He and his wife are missionaries caring for some of the poorest children of the world that without him and his wife Carol would not be where they are today. Patrick is making a huge difference. To these children and their families. Bless you Patrick I pray that through God you will continue the good work you have started.
I havent been reading Connies blog long. However, in the time that I have she had certainly spoken to me through her beautiful blog. She is a hospice nurse and as such it is part of the job description to be caring, loving and supportive and I believe Connie is all of this and more. I was brought close to tears Connie sees part of her job as walking people along the road to Jesus in their final days. What a privilege, what a blessing, what a lady. Connie I sense has been through some rough times yet she knows that it is through Him that she is where she is today. I love her blog and her faith clearly shows through it.
I am so so so blessed to these great people that reflect God to me in their blogs, emails and them themselves
click on the picture to link
Id like to quote Lisa before I start as this has happened to me
I was sent an ecard today thanks Denise. I love the quote that was part of the card and I feel it ties in with the study:- It is through the hard times that we often rediscover that our hearts can only be comforted by the One who invites us to come to Him
1. On a scale of 1 to 10, rate yourself on how often your conversation is seasoned with the works of the Lord on your behalf? If you speak very little of Him, is there a reason you know of? If you speak often, how do people respond?
7. Sometimes people tell me they dont believe. More often people accept what I say outwardly anyway.
2. Have you experienced a Set Up for a Show Up when you were uncertain whether the situation was the chastisement of the Lord or a temptation of Satan?
Yes. However, i believe that whenever this has happened to me God has shown up and seen me through. He has reminded me to lean on Him and it has helped so much 🙂
3. Have you ever or are you now experiencing any Job trials where you can still not identify any wrong-doing on your part?
Yes. However, as bad it was at the time I have come to learn to focus on what I do have and be very grateful to the gifts God has bestowed on me. I have learnt to be grateful for my boys and Muzz
4. Apply this principle: How can my response make my God famous? Will obedience result in my sanctification and God’s Glory?
I like to remember that God will remind me to lean on Him. And that everything works together for good for those that love the Lord. No matter how bad the situation may seem something good will come of it if we look for it. God is a good God. If we can show this though our attitudes people will come to see and understand Him better thus bringing glory to Him. If we mope around in our trails what does that tell the world? If we can show that we still have hope then it models a much better demonstration of our faith.
5. Does the origin of our affliction matter in view of the fame God can gain from it?
NO. I believe I am a stronger person because of the trails I have endured and this is all thanks to Him. I am nothing without Him.
click on the picture to link
1. Have you ever been in a situation where you had to ‘go back’ to a place of shame or ridicule? How did that make you feel?
Yes I have and I wished I could have done things differently but hind sight is a wonderful thing and it may not have helped in the final outcome anyway
2. Is there any circumstance in your life that still has you running for cover? Share if you feel comfortable.
A bit. I worry a wee bit about this guy. However, I have trust in God He will keep us safe. I also reassure myself by talking to Muzz and have an action plan should he show his face at my door.
3. When is the last time you felt like an overcomer?
At the end of last week. I know I dont have to go through that trial anymore. I can get on with my life without it hanging over my head.
4. If you have not yet taken the serpent by the tail, are you willing to stop running, take hold and trust God to transform it into a tool for wonders?
Yes!!! I regularly tell the evil one where to go. As I said in question 2 I put my trust in Him. He will protect me.
5. I would like for you to write down this statement based on 1 John 2:14 somewhere you will see it often this week: “I am strong, the Word of God abides in me, and I have overcome the evil one.” Memorize it. Say it over and over until you believe it. Will you do this?? Most of the time, there are no right or wrong answers, but on this one, I’m expecting a ‘yes’!
Done and it reminds me of the fact that when I was going through last week a lot of bloggie friends said I was a strong lady – more than I even realise – I say again its because of whom is right beside me every step of the way – God. Praise His Holy name. Through Him everything is possible.
1. How would you answer the questions, “Who Am I?”
I am a child of God’s. I am His princess. I am one of His chosen ones.
2. Have you ever been in a situation where you felt inadequate because of your lack of a ‘tagline’?
I dont think so. I think God has only called me to do things that He knows I can handle. He after all knows what my abilities and skills are.
3. Do you have skills or position that you believe God could use mightily if only He would?
Maybe? I get along well with preschoolers. Ive always wondered about going to China and looking after orphans. If God wants me to do this one day He will make it very clear to me and open the doors. I can accept that there might be something even more wonderful He has planned for me though
4. Have you ever lost a position or station in life you believe could have ‘helped God out’ with
something He has asked you to do? If you haven’t lost out, do you perhaps feel you have to gain this in order to be useful to the Kingdom?
I have lost the right to be my daughters mother on a day to day basis. He asks us to take care of His children for Him and yet that was taken away from me. It was taken away from me by circumstances she brought about. Yet we have survived as a family. We are in fact some ways more settled with the way things are now. I believe God brings us through things to teach us things. I dont know quite what He was trying to teach me. It has brought me closer to Him. However, all I can do now is pray that He may use to me to be the best mum I can be to the boys and that He gets alongside Sarah and brings her close to Him. Whether she knows it or not she needs Him. We all do.
5. How are you with your dialogue vs. doubt conversations with God? Which does God hear most from you?
I have worked hard over the years to overcome doubts I had about my salvation. I didnt believe God could love me enough. Now I know within my heart soul and mind that He indeed does love me just as I am. I dont doubt anymore instead I am everyday thankful for what He has done for me and praise His holy name
6. Do you believe God’s Wonders become more wonderful if they originate in the ordinary? Any Scripture references come to mind?
God does use ordinary people and items to bring about extraordinary things. Id like to take a look at this slightly differently to how others have. God made everything around us. Before I was baptised (apart from once when I was girl listening to a bible in schools teacher tell us about creation) nature looked very ordinary. However, once I was baptised and accepted God into my heart I remember looking at what had been very ordinary everyday trees and plants within my poorly kept garden (I dont have much of a green thumb) and suddenly seeing how green they were. They seemed to stand out to me. They seemed to be the brightest green I had ever seen. If one looks at a sunset in the evening it too may be taken by some to be just a sunset. But to me it is one of God’s paintings in the sky. The colours the effects the beauty of it. It is indeed amazing and wonderful. I would urge you to check out this website video
click on the picture to link
sometimes. However, I tell him where to go. I take it to God again and He comforts me again 🙂 I believe He knows it takes time to work through stuff. He always there to comfort me and bring me through it.