Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Summer Bible Study Session Two - Pizza and Peace

I learned so much from this section's lesson about Sarah in Genesis. I hadn't thought about how much control Sarah tried to take over her situation and what complications arose from her trying to meet her own needs. This passage from Kelly's book spoke to me:

In Genesis 21 we see the fulfillment of God's plan, and this was going to happen with or without Hagar; with or without Ishmael; with or without Sarah's manipulation; with or without Abram's passiveness. But how nice if the story had simply been Isaac, without all the baggage.

How we complicate the process. I can't tell you how moved I was by this revelation last night, even on my crampled flight. God had this beautiful plan for Sarah in spite of how bleak things looked. Defitinely she was in a bind. She had genuine cause for concern. But that's always going to be the place where our faith is tested. If it all looks easy and doable, it doesnt require faith.

Certainly Sarah had waited a long time for a "life". But God had fully intended to give that to her. Not through Hagar. Not through Abraham. Not through Sarah's scheming. But through Himself. And of course we know He fulfilled this promise in Isaac. This gives me great encouragement to wait for God and keep my feisty little mitts off the process. It doesn't mean I sit around. There's plenty to do. It just means don't force the outcome.

How many time have I idolized the kind of control that Sarah so desired? I think control is especially hard for women. I mean, weren't we born to "fix boo boos"? It's hard to let God have control. But what I realized, is how actually "peaceful" it can be to give it to Him. Let him have it........ and wait........

This is the post I left on the LPM blog for our session update:

"Our group met last night in Pocahontas, AR (we are swapping between two small towns of Walnut Ridge and Pocahontas--about 15 miles apart). Three of the four of us were able to attend and enjoy the pizza, cheese bread, Greek cous cous salad, and cheesecake.....mmmmmmmm.

We identified our idols as success, control, worry, and happiness.

We were terrible at the acrostic and decided to take it on as homework.

We talked about our "laughable" moments of joy or turnaround delivered to us by God. One of the girls' husband has overcome some significant religious and family issues to bring their family to a deeper faith. One of us recalled a time that I just had to share with you.

About 4 years ago, the three of us bonded over your LPL meeting in Little Rock, AR. This was the event where "In Christ Alone" was the "theme" song. That song greatly impacted all of us and became a favorite. Little did I know, in just two months I would be facing the most difficult time in my life--the stillbirth of my daughter at 8 months pregnant. I don't know what I would have done without these ladies and my renewed faith in God. I played "In Christ Alone" at her funeral.

Almost 2 years to the day, we decided to attend another ladies conference together...... unfortunately I can't remember the name, but it was Priscilla Shirer, Angela Thomas, and Kelly Minter leading worship. We had another faith deepening experience and commented, after Priscilla's much needed lesson on discerning the voice of God, that we felt like things had come full circle-- like God was telling me in particular that it was time to heal that hurt. We also commented that it would be even more of a "moment" if we sang "In Christ Alone". Well, low and behold, guess what the next song was........ it was unbelieveable and all we could do was laugh and cry......

We are lovin' this study!



Stephanie said...

I saw your post on Beth Moore's blog and I had to write you. I lost four babies to miscarriage and my greatest healing came from ministering to those who went through in the past or are currently going through the pain of losing a baby. When I see those who have found the "personal" and "passion" in their relationship with Jesus through this sort of tragedy, all I can do is praise Him, cry and smile at the same time. So just know that someone in Ohio is praising God, crying, and smiling at the same time thanking God for your faith.

KrisPT said... touched someone so much that she commented from Ohio...I have chill bumps! I haven't been able to formulate the words to blog yet, but stay tuned. Now, if you could only get PRISCILLA Shirer's name right :-).

The Anderson said...

Oh, I'm an idiot..... I knew that, I don't know what my brain was thinking...... I'll fix it on here...DUH


Amanda said...

It sounds like I missed a good night of study and food! I'm back home and online again. I admit I'm a bit behind in the study now but I have gotten to the point that you blogged about. I'm really dealing with some control issues myself here. I'll have to share more later... But, I really missed you guys and can't wait for the next one!