January 22, 2018

CHRISTLife – Week Three

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A recurring theme this upcoming week in our study CHRISTLife: Embracing Your True and Deepest Identity will be the incomparable, unconditional, amazing LOVE that God has for us! Our author reminds us over and over of God’s love for us!

In Jeremiah 31:3 we hear God tell us of His love.

I have loved you with an everlasting love;
therefore with lovingingkindness I have drawn you.

We also are reminded of God’s love in Psalm 36.

How precious is Your steadfast love, O God!
The children of men take refuge
and put their trust under the shadow of Your wings.

As well as in 1 John 4:9-10.

In this the love of God was made manifest among us,
that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.
In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us
and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

Along with this, Mrs. Myers puts in front of us the Truth that, in spite of our actions at times, God is always faithful and keeps His promises. Whether we ever believe them or not. Think about the children of Israel. They knew of God’s promise to lead them, protect them, guide them, feed them, guard them. But they were often disobedient to His simple commands. As such, because of His love for them, God had to help them to learn…as He will with us, too.

You must carefully follow every command I am giving you today, so that you may live and increase, and may enter and take possession of the land the Lord swore to your fathers. Remember that the Lord your God led you on the entire journey these 40 years in the wilderness, so that He might humble you and test you to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep His commands.

Deuteronomy 8:1 and 2

During this week, we also make the transition from ‘Part 1: Who You Really Are…At First’ TO ‘Part 2: Your Life IS Christ.’ Listen to the following statement Mrs. Myers makes.

“As we hear and believe all that God tells us—as we intentionally think these truths and begin to act accordingly—He unfolds the true personality He designed us to be” page 60. (Oh! Don’t you just love that!)

And so we learn more of the Truth as we begin to believe what God says about us. And as we trust Him and take Him at His Word, we will begin to be freed from lies and misconceptions we have held in our hearts.

As we continue our study, the fact remains that we need to be diligent in reminding ourselves constantly of these Truths. One would think that, with all the many many many examples and proofs that God so graciously shows us about how very much He loves us, we would be convinced. However God is equally as patient with us as He loves us. The negative images that we have allowed into our hearts can be replaced by the Truth of just “Who we ARE” in Christ. But it takes work and effort on our part. Thankfully, we are not left to do this on our own. God can and will help us through His Holy Spirit! Remember to pray, pray, pray!

Friends, I hope that the beautiful lyrics of this song can be a tool for you to use to pray and sing your heart out to God. Your heavenly Father has MUCH to say to you…MUCH to remind you of…MUCH healing and deliverance and blessing to give to you as you seek Him!

*  ~  * ~  * ~ * ~ *

Over time You’ve healed so much in me, and I am living proof
That although my darkest hour had come, Your light could still shine through
Though at times it’s just enough to cast a shadow on the wall
I am grateful that You’ve shined Your light on me at all

Who am I, that You would love me so gently?
Who am I, that You would recognize my name?
Who am I, that You would speak to me so softly?
Conversation with the Lord Most High…who am I?

Oh, “Amazing Grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me
I once was lost, but now am found. Was blind, but now I see”
And the more I sing that sweet old song, the more I understand
That I do not comprehend this love that’s coming from Your hand.

Grace, grace; God’s grace
Grace that will pardon and cleanse within
Grace, grace; God’s great grace
Grace that is greater than all my sin

Lord, Who am I? Who am I?
Lord Who am I? Who am I?

 

CHRISTLife—Five: Acknowledging Wrong Images

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Wouldn’t we all like to pretend that there are no negative and unhealthy images of ourselves hidden in our hearts and minds!?  But the fact is that there probably, almost assuredly, are.  I would prefer if the bad self-images would run off like water on a duck’s back, and the good self-images would be like water on a sponge, which soaks into the core of the sponge and still remains visible on the outside.  Former experiences and people from our past all have an effect on us, whether good or bad.

Our emotional reactions to situations are often “clues to negative images of ourselves” due to past experiences, whether we remember those experiences or not. They influence our attitudes and behaviors.  2 Corinthians 13:5 (AMP) tells us to: “Examine and test and evaluate your own selves….”  To better understand ourselves and our “inner identity album,” we need to examine our viewpoints and beliefs.  They have been formed either from previous bad experiences or from good experiences. We need to separate the bad from the good so we can get rid of the wrong images that distort the truth.

An example might be that as a child in school your teacher gave you a hard time because you were left-handed, you wore hand-me-down clothes, and/or you couldn’t see the blackboard from your seat.  That experience might have distorted your view of those in authority.  It might also have caused a negative self-image to grow in you that has led you to believe you aren’t good enough and you can’t do anything right for those in authority over you.  Your emotional reaction might be to withdraw or to be defensive.  Ruth Myers says this, “We need to become more objective in our viewpoints and beliefs. We must learn not to color the facts with our misguided conclusions and opinions” (pg. 23).

Do you ever hear yourself say, “If only…?” Yes, I know I have said that at times and I’m sure you have too. When those negative, unrealistic “If only….” thoughts come into your mind and even on your lips, you (and I) need to begin to replace them with reality and God’s Word.

“If only my situation would change…”
For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
Philippians 4:13

“If only I hadn’t committed that sin in my past…”
So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.
Romans 8:1

“If only my parents had been better examples…”
…let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.
Romans 12:2

Recently I saw the movie, “The Guardians” for the first time.  Although just a whimsical, fictional story (of which I will probably forget most of it in short order), there was one line that popped out at me.  Jack Frost asks, “How can I know who I am, before I know who I was?

Obviously, I am contemplating this question from the perspective of this study as well as God’s Word.  Check out Psalm 139.  Here are just a few verses in response to that question:

O Lord, You have examined my heart and know everything about me…
You made all the delicate inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb
You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion…Every day of my life was recorded in Your Book…
How precious are Your thoughts about me, O God.

We are His!

In Jeremiah 31:3, God tells us, “I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love; with unfailing love I have drawn you to Myself.”  Because He loves us so, He wants to help us.  Let’s not waste time wishing the past had never happened.  We have today, and we have God’s Word.  Let’s take on the privilege, the responsibility, the hard work, and the joy of rejecting all the unrealistic and false images in our “inner identity albums.”   With God’s help, let’s replace the lies with truth—His Truth.  How freeing and uplifting that will be when we aren’t carrying around the burden of those lies anymore.  Then, too, our negative reactions will be replaced with responses that bless and glorify Him.

I want to encourage you to go back to chapter 5, page 25, and read again the Scripture references and answer the questions in light of God’s love for you.

Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
Point out anything in me that offends You,
and lead me along the path of everlasting life.
Psalms 139:23-24

  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~

Dear Lord, thank You for this first week of our study. Already, You are revealing to each of us wrong images from our past that still produce negative emotions. We thank You that Your Word is The Truth. As we study together, help us break down the negative past and rebuild our lives based on the truth that is Your Word. ‘I love the Lord because He hears my voice and my prayer for mercy. Because He bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath’ (Psalms 116:1-2). In Jesus’ Holy Name, Amen.

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16 Day Love Challenge: Chapter 16 – Love Never Fails

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Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast; it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking,
It is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the Truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8

Quite a list of accomplishments, wouldn’t you say?  Perhaps you might say to yourself, ‘Do you really think anyone can do that—love that way?’  Well, I DO know someONE Who can!  (You do, too!)  Our Father, Almighty God, the Great I AM…He can! And He does!

Here are a few verses just to remind us of God’s never failing love.

But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me.
Psalms 13:5 and 6

I have loved you with an everlasting love….
Jeremiah 31:3

Psalm 136 tells us “Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good, for His love endures forever.” And this truth is reiterated in every single verse throughout this psalm…26 times!

As our study of the 16 Day Love Challenge: Matching our Words and Actions with 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 draws to a close, we look at God’s final statement in this passage about LOVE.

Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 13:8

It doesn’t say ‘almost never’ or ‘almost all the time’ or ‘99 out of 100 times’, does it?  No, ma’am…it says ‘Love never fails.’

never (adverb)

1. at no time in the past or future; on no occasion; not ever.
synonyms: not ever, at no time, not at any time, not once, ne’er.

2. not at all
synonyms: certainly not, not for a moment, under no circumstances, on no account

(and here are a few informal synonyms: no way, not on your life, not in a million years, when pigs fly, when hell freezes over.)

Can I tell you something?  I do know someone else, besides our great God who can love that way!  Really!  It is y.o.u.  Yes, my friend, you CAN love others in that same way!  Hey, now, no scoffing, no pshawing, no doubting—the Scriptures clearly communicate this!

…Because God’s love has been poured into our hearts
through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
Romans 5:5

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another,
even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if You have love for one another.
John 13:34-35

This is my commandment: that you love one another as I have loved you.
John 15:12

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God
and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.
Anyone who does not love does not know God,
because God is love.
Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
1 John 4:7-8, 11

God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God and God in them.

This is how love is perfected with us
so that we will have confidence on the day of Judgment;
because as He is, so are we in this world.
Verses 16 and 17

And He has given us this command:
anyone who loves God must also love their brother or sister.
Verse 21

God’s Word is Truth!  And so, we are what the Word of God says that we are!  We ARE able to love as God loves.  As we were reminded the other day by Cherie, truth is not determined by our experience but simply by the Truth of the Scriptures.

Try this! Read through these verses again (out loud, please!), inserting your name along with ‘love.’ Like this…

{Cherie’s} love is patient, {Rebecca’s} love is kind.
{Kim’s love} does not envy, {Cynda’s love} does not boast; {Rae Ann’s love} is not proud.
{Darcie’s love} does not dishonor others, {Jennifer’s love} is not self-seeking,
{Cyndie’s love} is not easily angered, {Clella’s love} keeps no record of wrongs.
{Beverly’s} love does not delight in evil but {Robin’s love} rejoices with the Truth.
{Shari’s love} always protects, {Chelle’s love} always trusts,
{Kristen‘s love} always hopes, {Aminah‘s love} always perseveres.
{Christi’s} love never fails.

Let’s Pray:
Lord, we are so thankful that it was Your plan for us to study together and to work the 16 Day Love Challenge together!!!  Our lives are forever changed.  We do so need Your help through the Holy Spirit that You have placed within us, Lord!  You know (we do, too) that there will be times we are tempted to think that we cannot love like this.  Help us to recognize that lie and to replace it with the Truth that we can love because You have placed Your love within us! Today may we reach out to everyone around us with Your love that is in our hearts!  Thank You, Lord!  It is only because of Your great grace and mercy!  We pray these things in Jesus’ name.  Amen.

Glorious Living w/ Coach Megan: Stress Management

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Dear Megan,

I have been feeling really overloaded and burned out lately and I’m not sure what to do to make it stop. I was on your GCH call last week and I completed the exercise you gave us and talked about in your blog last Friday…. but I just feel stuck with what to do next. I know I need to delegate more and God showed me some tasks He does not intend for me to do, but I feel like I could be handling it all (especially the stress) better. I’m hoping you can give me some advice on this!

~M.

Sweet sister,

Thank you for taking the first step by doing that exercise from last week ! I pray it was a blessing for you to be able to see in black and white how you are spending your precious resource of time. Our world makes it easy for us to feel overloaded, over burdened and over worked! What I heard through your cry for help is that you are looking for some practical stress-management tools to help you now that you are beginning to spend your time more wisely (as God intends you to).

Adopting healthy stress management skills will enable you to slow down, stop, yield and reduce speed at appropriate intervals on your path of life. In turn, your pace will be regulated and you will be lifted out of the ditch of overload and burnout. As you work through this exercise, you will see how you can begin to walk the road to transformation in the peaceful assurance that God will never call you to do more than He gives you time and ability to do (1 Thessalonians 5:24).

SLOW

{Slow down and make the necessary changes for good physical health}

  • Do you eat a balanced and healthy diet?
  • Do you exercise at least three times a week?
  • Do you take at least one day of rest per week?
  • Do you get adequate restful sleep most nights?

Psalm 127:2

 In vain you rise early and stay up late,
toiling for food to eat—for he grants sleep to those he loves.

{Slow down and evaluate your priorities}

  • Do the exercise from last week if you have not done so (Link up above)
  • Consider other priorities that should be on the list
  • Choose your commitments with careful prayer
  • Eliminate unnecessary stressful obligations
  • Don’t accept impossible deadlines
  • Don’t give in to the pressure of urgency
  • Tackle only one problem at a time

Ecclesiastes 4:6

Better one handful with tranquility
    than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind.

{Slow down and nourish your spiritual life}

  • Remind yourself daily to “be still, and know that (He is) God” {Psalm 46:10}
  • Open lines of honest communication with God about your concerns, needs, and fears
  • Set aside time daily for personal prayer and Scripture meditation
  • Memorize Scripture that builds assurance of God’s love {Psalm 36:7; Jeremiah 31:3; John 14:21; Romans 8:39}

Psalm 119:71

It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees

STOP

{Stop and look at the real reason you are experiencing stress}

  • Do you try to meet your own needs instead of waiting on the Lord?
  • Do you think God cannot accomplish His purposes without your over-achieving?
  • Do you seek self-worth through proving your adequacy and effectiveness?
  • Are you Spirit-led or people-pressured?

Galatians 1:10

Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people?  If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.

{Stop, confess and turn away from any known sin in your life}

  • Do you manipulate or control others?
  • Do you feel envious or jealous of others?
  • Do you express your feelings inappropriately?
  • Do you overreact to criticism?
  • Do you have impure motives?

Proverbs 28:13

Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper,
    but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.

YIELD

{Yield to God’s sovereign control over your circumstances}

  • What is God doing in your circumstances?
  • In what way does God want you to change?
  • How does God want you to respond?
  • Do you have impure motives?

Proverbs 21:1

A king’s heart is like streams of water in the Lord’s hand:
He directs it wherever He chooses.

{Yield to God your rights and expectations}

Dear God,

  • “I yield my right to control my circumstances.”
  • “I yield my right to be accepted by others.”
  • “I yield my right to be successful.”
  • “I yield my right to be heard and understood.”
  • “I yield my right to be right.”

Proverbs 3:5

 Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding

RESUME SPEED

{Resume speed, living in the presence of God}

Dear God,

  • “I choose to let Christ live His life through me.”
  • “I choose to live in the present, not worrying about tomorrow.”
  • “I choose to refocus my thoughts away from my pressures to Your purposes for allowing these pressures.”
  • “I choose to have a thankful heart regardless of the pressure I feel.”
  • “I choose to call on You, Lord, for wisdom and peace.”
  • “I choose to commit to talking less and listening more.”

Psalm 62:1

My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him

Blessings,

Coach Megan 🙂

Glorious Living w/ Coach Megan: Releasing Present Anger

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Dear Megan,

I pray you can help me. I have spent a lot of time working through the anger from my past, but I am really struggling releasing anger I am currently feeling in a constructive way. Maybe that means I haven’t truly released myself of the pain of my past anger, I don’t know. I do know that I need help now and I pray God can speak to me through you on this. Thank you for any help you can give!

~C.D.

Dear one, thank you for your question. I think we need to start off by understanding what is at the core of anger. Really, when we feel that our real or perceived rights have been violated, we can easily respond with anger.

This is something very real that many people struggle with…sometimes in certain seasons, situations and circumstances more than others. What is not okay is if we are walking around with the wrong belief that we have the right to be angry about our disappointments and choose to stay angry for as long as we feel like it. It is not okay to walk around with the belief that you have the right to express your anger in whatever way is natural to you. That is why I loved in your question when you said that you are struggling with releasing anger in a constructive way…. this implies that THIS is the type of guidance you are looking for and THAT, I believe, is pleasing to God!

What we want is to believe in our hearts that our Lord is sovereign over us and that we trust Him with our lives. We must yield our rights to Him and, through that, our human disappointments become God’s appointments to increase our faith and develop His character in us! We must choose to NOT be controlled by our anger, but to use our anger to motivate us to do whatever God wants us to do.

1 Peter 1:6-7

In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.

These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold,

which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

I pray that the following steps will help you to handle your present anger constructively and biblically.

1. Acknowledge Your Anger {Proverbs 28:13}

  • Be willing to admit you are angry
  • Be aware of when you feel angry
  • Become aware of suppressing or repressing your anger because of fear
  • Be willing to take responsibility for any inappropriate anger

2. Analyze Your Style { Psalm 139:23-24}

  • How often do you feel angry?
  • How do you know when you’re angry?
  • How do others know when you’re angry?
  • How do you release your anger?

3. Assess the Source {Psalm 51:6}

  • Hurt, injustice, fear, frustration, _________

4. Appraise Your Thinking {Proverbs 21:29}

  • Are you expecting others to meet your standards? “She should take better care of her children.”   “They ought to notice what I do for them.”
  • Are you guilty of distorted thinking? {Exaggerating the situation, assuming the worst, labeling one action based on other actions, generalizing, etc.}

5. Admit Your Needs {Anger is often a tactic used to get inner needs met} {Philippians 4:19}

  • Do you use anger as a manipulative play to demand certain “musts” in an attempt to feel loved?
  • Do you use explosive anger to get your way in an attempt to feel significant?
  • Do you use controlling anger, insisting on certain conditions in order to feel secure?
  • DO you know that only Christ can ultimately meet all your needs?
6. Abandon Your Demands {Learn to look to the Lord to meet your needs instead of demanding that from others}  {Jeremiah 31:3} {Jeremiah 29:11} {Psalm 118:6} {2 Peter 1:3}
  • “Lord, though I would like to feel more love from others, I know that You love me unconditionally.”
  • “Lord, though I would like to feel more significant to those around me, I know that I am significant in Your eyes.”
  • “Lord, though I wish I felt more secure in my relationships, I know I am secure in my relationship with You.”
  • “Lord, though I wish others would be more responsive to my needs, I know that You have promised to meet all my needs.”

7. Change Your Attitudes {Take these steps outlined in Philippians 2:2-8}

  • Have the goal to be like-minded with Christ
  • Do not think of yourself first
  • Give the other person preferential treatment
  • Consider the other person’s interests
  • Have the attitude of Jesus
  • Do not emphasize your position or rights
  • Look for ways to demonstrate a servant’s heart
  • Speak and act with a humble spirit
  • Be willing to die to your own desires

8. Address Your Anger {Galatians 2:20}

  • Determine whether your anger is really justified
  • Decide on the appropriate response {How important is the issue? Would a good purpose be served if it is mentioned? Should I acknowledge my anger only to the Lord?}
  • Depend on the Holy Spirit for guidance
  • Have constructive dialog when you confess
  • Don’t speak from a heart of unforgiveness {think before you speak}
  • Use personal statements such as “I feel…” instead of “How could you…” or “Why can’t you…”
  • Stay focused on present issue {don’t bring up past grievances}
  • Don’t assume the other person is wrong… actively listen for their point of view
  • Don’t expect instant understanding. Be patient and always respond with gentleness
  • Show the love of God by saying the following to yourself: I placed my anger on the cross with Christ. I am no longer controlled by anger. I am alive with Christ living inside me. I will let Christ forgive through me. I will let Christ love through me. I will let Christ reveal truth through me.

****Please, please journal out your thoughts, prayers and fears as you begin this journey to constructively release your present anger. I am praying God will move in your life in a mighty way through this and may He get all the glory!

Are YOU struggling with anger? How might you benefit by using this exercise along with our dear C.D?
Blessings,
Coach Megan 🙂

Captivating: Chapter 7 Romanced – Longing for Romance (pp 111-113)

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I remember the first time that I heard the above words some few years ago.  My sister, who was staying with me at the time, had just gone to visit my parents in another city.  I felt so alone that evening and I decided to listen to music in order to drown out the silence that was in the house.  I had just bought a new praise and worship CD which contained a song based on Jeremiah 31:3. “I have loved with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with my loving kindness.” The song was so overwhelming; and I felt like God was speaking to me directly.  God LOVES me with an everlasting love.  I can’t express the exact feelings that I felt then but every fiber of my body felt that love.  I was so in awe of God for reaching out to me and telling me how much He loves me through that song.  My loneliness was replaced with God’s presence; it was an experience that I will never forget.

Each one of us wants to feel loved and to be romanced; we want to know that we are special to someone.  There is something about love that changes the way we feel and look at ourselves.  When I am first in love with someone I see things differently…I tend to smile at anything…what could easily annoy me does not bother me at all…the way I walk and carry myself…the time I take to look beautiful…happiness bubbles from inside my heart waiting to burst.  The day dreaming and secret messages that are shared with my loved one all seem to make my world beautiful—like I am on top of the world and nothing can touch me.  I feel special, worthy, and beautiful!

I have come to the understanding that I don’t need to wait for a man to feel special, worthy and beautiful every day because there is Someone who already makes me feel these things and so much more.  His love for me is eternal.  His romance is for eternity.  The romance that the Lover of our Soul, Jesus, has for us.  This romance is ours to experience every day.  It began long before we were born. “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you” (Jeremiah 1:5).  Yes, that’s how much God knows (and loves) you and me.  He pursued us way before we came to be and He will never stop.  Like the great lover that He is, He woo’s us with everything that He has created: the flowers and vegetation, the beautiful sunset, the blue skies, the glorious mountains, the enormous lakes and oceans.  Everywhere we look, we are enchanted by the beautiful things that He has made for us to enjoy.

I always wondered why the Song of Solomon was in the Bible until I realized that it was a love message from God to us.  God is so romantic that He dedicated a whole book for romance.  Wow, that’s something not to be taken for granted.  This book beats all the romance novels that you and I have read by far.  The way the writer uses words to describe different animals to reflect the beauty of a woman is intriguing.  The love that is shared between the two lovers is mesmerizing.  I hope you find some time to read this book and embrace its uniqueness, and experience the romantic side of God.

Stasi Eldredge writes, “God longs to bring this into your life Himself. He wants you to move beyond the childlike ‘Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.’  He wants to heal us through His love to become mature women who actually know Him. He wants us to experience verses like, “Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her” (Hosea 2:14). And “You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride” (Song of Solomon 4:9). Our hearts are desperate for this. What would it be like to experience for yourself that the truest thing about His heart toward yours is not disappointment or disapproval but deep, fiery, passionate love? This is, after all, what a woman was made for.” (pg 113)

Jesus is our Bridegroom and we are His Bride.  I pray that you will accept Him to romance you the way your feminine heart needs because YOU ARE HIS DARLING!  “How beautiful you are, my darling” (Song of Solomon 1:15).

Be Blessed,

Jackie

________________

LET’S PRAY:

Lord, how wonderful it is to know just how much You love us.  You loved us even before we came to be, and You are coming to take us with You as Your bride.  May we experience this romance with You every day.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

YOUR ASSIGNMENT:

How comfortable are you with the idea of Jesus being your “Bridegroom” and you being His Beloved?  Is this a relatively new category for you to think about in your relationship with Him?

 _______________

If you are interested in sending Jackie a private message in regards to this blog, please email her at: Jackie@GirlfriendsCoffeeHour.com

Lady in Waiting: Lady of Patience – Why Is Waiting So Hard?

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Have you ever made decisions in life because they seem right at the time but when you look back you realize that it wasn’t the right thing to do?  Well, I have and there are many times when I ask myself why I didn’t wait before making such drastic decisions.  Why did I allow my emotions to get ahead of me?  Why did I let the temporary feelings to determine my future? Why didn’t I seek the face of God before doing this?  Why didn’t I wait?

Waiting for anything is hard, it’s even harder when you are single and you feel like you have limited options available to you.  Some of us have made life altering decisions because we were tired of waiting for what seemed like forever.  Loneliness crept in and we allowed FEAR get to the best of us.

We were afraid of being the odd ones out, the only one who is always the bridesmaid and never the bride, how many bouquets have we caught and believed the myth that the one who catches the bouquet is the next in line to get married?  But year in and year out, we continue the journey as a single lady.

We were afraid to attend family functions where everyone has a partner by their side and a quiver full of kids.  We don’t want to sit next to the nosy cousins who can’t help but taunt us at the dinner table with the following remarks: “this year we were looking forward to being introduced to the man in your life!” or “your nieces are worried that they are growing taller so they will no longer qualify as flowers girls at your wedding.”

As years passed by you asked yourself “when is it going to happen for me? Is Prince Charming going to notice me before the clock strikes 12? Sadly you didn’t have the answer to this question and the more you thought about it the fearful you became.

Fear has been defined as False Evidence Appearing Real.  Fear can cause us to take matters into our own hands and forget God’s promises and fear can make us to accept the proposal of the first guy who comes along without taking into consideration if He is the right man.

You see, the right man won’t rush you to the altar.  He will get to know you first and allow you to get to know him in the process.  He will want to become your friend first before becoming your lover.

Girlfriend, I urge you, do not allow fear to control your decisions, give God back the control of your plans and future.  He knows the desires of your heart.  He loves you with an everlasting love and He is saying “Be still and know that I am God.” “I know the plans I have for you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Isaiah 40:31 tells us:

“But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint
.”

Have patience, beloved.  Waiting may be hard but it is worth it in the end. This week let us be willing to learn how to boldly soar like the Eagle as we wait patiently upon the Lord regardless of our circumstances be it the ticking of the biological clock, the number of bridesmaids dresses in our closets, the statistics that are so depressing or what our beloved family thinks of us.  Let us put everything in the capable hands of our Precious Father, “Our Daddy’s got this!”

LET’S PRAY

Precious Father, we come before you this week empty and waiting for you to fill us with your Holy Spirit.  As we learn how to be Ladies of Patience, we ask you to help us because waiting is not easy; we admit that this is a struggle for most of us.  However, we don’t want to hurry and go ahead of you because that is worse than waiting up you.  Father, you know what is best for us; we are not single because you don’t love us but because you want what’s best for us.  Teach us to content and wait upon you.  In Jesus Name.  Amen.

 YOUR ASSIGNMENT

Write out the things that make you lose patience. Which of these cause your Sovereign God concern? Give these concerns to Him and ask Him to help you trust while you wait. “I will trust while I wait, for my God is never late” is a good motto.

Be Blessed

Jackie


Our Next Single Women’s Online Bible Study

“Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul”

by John & Stasi Eldgredge

Begins January 6, 2013

To sign up for this Online Bible Study, click HERE and follow the instructions. You will also be given a link to where you can purchase this bible study. We’re looking forward to studying “Captivating” with you!!