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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
5/7/08 3:47 P

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I've really enjoyed the study, too. And, I did write down the 5 purposes, so I guess I did get something out of chapter 40. I think I was just let down after the first 38 chapters touching my heart so much.

Thanks so much for all of the wonderful insights and being a "study partner". It's been great seeing what you think and feel throughout the study.

We will have to do another study sometime.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
5/7/08 3:42 P

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I'm not sure that that is something that I would do either, writing down a purpose statement; but I did like the five questions that he asked. It's not just a matter of knowing biblical truth, it's applying it to my life that matters. I have to make Jesus the center from which all else radiates in my life. I have to love and serve others, I have to tell others these truths. I think that if Jesus is all in all to me, the other things will be a natural extension of my life, not something that I have to remind myself each day to live by. I've enjoyed studying this book with you, thanks for staying with it with me.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
5/6/08 10:50 P

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On Chapter 40--I couldn't get past the necessity to write down "My Purpose Statement". I think that it just turned me off and I read the rest of the chapter with a bad taste in my mouth.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
5/6/08 10:41 P

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Kim, I agree about the chapter sounding like a commercial! Of all of the chapters, I really didn't get anything out of this one. There were a few things I liked, for one the concise way he listed the 5 purposes. That makes it easy to look at and remember what we have learned over the past 40 chapters. I agree with your comment about "A great commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission will make you a great Christian". I do believe that you cannot be a "great" Christian without commiting youself to those things, but any Christian should be commited to them.

Again, this chapter wasn't a learning chapter to me. That's why I hadn't commented on it earlier. I think it was meant more as review (and to sell another of his books).

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
5/6/08 9:46 P

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Connie, I read chapter 39 and thought it sounded a lot like an advertisement for this book and his other writings. I didn't like a lot of things about this chapter either. For some reason "blessed are the balanced" bothers me, because it is balanced according to his five steps. I also didn't like when he said "A great commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission will make you a great Christian." I guess to me, living by those standards simply makes you what you are supposed to be as a Christian, it is what every Christian should live up to, not just the "great" ones.

I did like his idea about keeping a journal of things that you learn in the Lord. This had been suggested to me by my pastor many years ago when I was going through that really difficult time; helping to keep my mind on the positive, looking at the solution rather than the problem. I did try it for awhile, but most of what was in there was negative and full of fears and doubts. It seemed to say the same thing every day. But God has really been helping me see so many new things these past couple of years and I think that I will try and do that again.

I will try to get chapter 40 read tomorrow.

Thanks for hanging in there with me on this, I really appreciate it. Kim

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
5/6/08 8:34 P

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Last and final chapter

Day 40 --Living With a Purpose

Point to ponder -- Living with a purpose is the only way to really live.

Verse to Remember -- "For David...served the purpose of God in his own generation." Acts 13:36

Question to Consider -- When will I take the time to write down my answers to life's five great questions? When will I put my purpose on paper?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
5/2/08 8:59 P

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Day 39 Balancing Your Life

Point to Ponder: Blessed are the balanced

Verse to Remember: "Live life with a due sense of responsibility, not as those who do not know the meaning of life, but as those who do?" Ephesians 5:15 (Ph)

Question to consider: Which of the 4 activities will I begin in order to stay on track and balance God's five purposes in my life?

5 Purposes:
1. Love God with all your heart (Worship)
2. Love you neighbor as yourself (Ministry)
3. Go and make discliples (Evangelism)
4. baptize them into....(Fellowship)
5. teach them to do all things (discipleship)
5.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
5/2/08 3:54 P

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I guess we are in accord on this one, Connie!

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
5/1/08 7:15 P

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I really don't like the term "World Class Christian". I think it sounds proud and that's what he's saying that we need to leave behind. I also believe that having the world on our mind is very important. We need to keep our missionaries in prayer and support. They are doing a mighty work for the Lord. I don't think it is necessary for us to do short term missions, but some are called to it. I know Doctors and teachers that do them often. They have the time to be able to expend on it. People like me have a hard time taking more than one vacation day at a time.

I think that we definitely need to be a part of the great commission. We need to have the world on our mind.

I also did not like the title of the paragraph "Shift from local thinking to global thinking." I feel that most of us are called to the world that we know. No one else has the same contacts as I do, so my "world" is different than anyone elses. If I am not witnessing and living the life before them, I stand accountable for their souls. Sometimes I think that people pray for Africa or somewhere and ignore the mission field at their work, in their neighborhood, etc.

This is the one chapter in the book that I do have serious issues with. I guess that's not too bad of an average.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
5/1/08 5:03 P

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I'm not sure that I liked this chapter. One, I didn't like the title. I could care less about being a world-class Christian, but rather I want to be a Christian who is aware of those who are in need in the world. I'm sure he was just trying to turn a phrase, but it didn't sit well with me. I also didn't like that he dared people to go on short term missions. I really believe that that is a special call, not just something that you do on a dare. If your life isn't where it should be with the Lord, or you aren't very strong in your faith, you should wait to do something like that. I think that you have to be spiritually fit to be a part of a missions team, be it long term or short term.
On the other side, I do believe that we have to be aware of our brothers and sisters all over the world, lifting them up in prayer. There isn't a lot that I can do for the lost over there, but my brothers and sisters in the Lord who are there can, so I pray for them; I pray for the missionaries who are in those places. I pray that they would be faithful to the truth, faithful to their call, obedient to God in everything. I think by praying for Sarah, encouraging her in her faith, we can be a help to those in Ireland. I have another spark friend whose family are missionaries in Indonesia. I can pray for her, encourage her, help her in any way that I can so that she can do the work that she has been called to do, which I haven't been.
Anyway, that is my take on this chapter.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
5/1/08 12:18 A

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Day 38 Becoming A World Class Christian

Point to Ponder: The Great Commission is my commission

Verse to Remember: "Send us around the world with news of your saving power and you eternal plan for all mankind." Psalms 67:2 (LB)

Question to consider: What steps can I take to prepare to go on a short term missions experience in the next year?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
4/30/08 6:46 P

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Day 37 brought a lot of conversation from my other team when I gave them the devotional. I think one thing that came out of it is that we have to make our sharing with others personal, from what we know. We have a past, we have a present, and we have a future. Just spouting verses or yelling out hell and damnation on a street corner isn't going to reach people, you have to meet them where they are and share passionately with them what Jesus has saved you from, how He is working in your life now, and the hope that He gives in your life for the future. If you aren't passionate about your relationship with Jesus, people are going to see that and not really care about anything that you have to say. He has to be our first passion.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
4/27/08 9:04 P

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Yep, I knew it would be a hard chapter!

There's just so much in my past that I love to keep there, even if it can help someone else. My life now is so immensely different than it once was and when God calls me to share parts of that life, it is so very painful. I know that God allowed those things to happen so that I could comfort others, but sometimes I have a very difficult time opening those memories.

I had never thought about writing cards or outlines of my testimony, life lessons or my passions. It does kind of make sense to keep those things fresh in our minds so that when the opportunity to minister comes around that we are free in our thinking and speak confidently. God calls us to minister, but it isn't an easy task. Actually living a good Christian life isn't "easy", it's fulfilling and wonderful, but not necessarily easy.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
4/27/08 8:57 P

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I agree about Day 36. I didn't get the message that you had replied, so I gave us a few more days. Chapter 37 looks like it may be a hard one, too.

Chapter 37 -- Sharing your life message

Point to Ponder -- God wants to say something to the world through me.

Verse to Remember: "Be ready at all times to answer anyone who asks you to explain the hope you have in you, but do it with gentleness and respect." 1 Peter 3:15b-16 (TEV)

Question to Consider: As I reflect on my personal story, who does God want me to share it with?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
4/24/08 2:59 P

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Well, Day 36 was a challenge. I am always looking for an opportunity to share, but also keeping in mind that I have to wait for the Lord to lead me in that direction. Sometimes when I do feel the leading, I feel so inadequate to say anything, or that what I say won't come out right. Mostly my mission field is with my nieces and nephews and the lady across the street. I guess I just feel so unworthy to share; but I know that none of us are worthy except for what Jesus has done in our hearts and lives. We have a mircle inside of us and we should be busting at the seams to share it. God, give me a heart that is just busting to share You with others!!!

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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4/23/08 11:56 P

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Well ladies, here we are at the final lesson. It's been a wonderful study! I pray that each one of you received a blessing from this, that each of you have grown closer to what God wants for each of us. I entered the rest because I was not sure of my avalability, and unfortunetly I return home on Sunday. Have a wonderful week and weekend....


Day 40
Living with Purpose

1) What are the 3 basic issues most people struggle with in life?

2) Where can the answers to these issues be found?

3) After we figure out our purpose, how does God bless us?

4) How can we keep from getting off course when trying to stick with the purpose God has for us?

5) What is a Life Purpose Statement and how does it differ from setting goals?

6) List the 5 things you should have in your Life Purpose Statement.

7) What are the five questions you should consider when writing out your Life Purpose Statement?

8) What will be the center of my life: explain this question.

9) How do you know when God is at the center of your life and how do you know when He's not?

10) What will be the character of my life: explain this question.

11) What will be the contribution of my life: explain this question.

12) What will be the commission of my life: explain this question.

13) What will be the community of my life: explain this question.

14) God is far more interested in ____________ you are than what you _______________ .

15) Does who you marry, where you live, etc....matter most in your life? Explain your answer.

16) What is wrong with focusing on "our" plans for our life?

Questions to consider: When will I take the time to write down my Life Purpose Statement?


What shall we study next?

Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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4/23/08 11:50 P

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Can you believe only one more chapter. Gosh does the time fly when you spend it with friends, the bible and God.
Week 39 questions


Balancing Your Life

1. Blessed are the___________; they shall ________ ___________.

2. To what olympic event does the author compare our life?

3. The pentathlete's goal is to succed in how many areas?

4. Explain your purpose in loving God with all your heart.

5. Explain your purpose in loving your neighbor as yourself.

6. Explain your purpose in 'Go and make disciples'.

7. Explain your purpose in baptizing them into.......

8. Explain what your purpose is in teaching them to do all things.....

9. A great _________________ to the great _____________ and the great_______________ will make you a great ______________.

10. Why is keeping a balance in the five purposes for our life difficult?

11. How can you keep your l ife balanced and on track?

12. We learn best in ____________. Why?

13. How does a small reading group benefit you?

14. We are meant to grow ______________ not ______________.

15. The bible is intended to be studdied by ________, ___________, and even _________ __________.

16. For your spiritual health, what 5 things do you need to check regularly?

17. Why is it a good idea to keep a journal?

18. Should you just record the pleasant things? Why?

19. Problems force you to focus on ________, draw you closer to __________ in ________, build ________ ________, privide you with a _________, and give you a ___________. (whew)

20. If you want to keep on growing, what is the best way to learn more?

21. Now that you understand the purpose of life, it is your repsonsibility to do what?

22. The more you know, the more God expects what?

23. Why should we pass on what we learn?

24. So what is purpose-driven living all about?

Question to consider: Which of the four activities will I begin in order to stay on track and balance God's five purposes

Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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4/23/08 11:48 P

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Late, Late, Late for an important sate


Day 38


1. The Great Commission is __________ commission.

2. What is the choice you have to make?

3. Describe the difference between a world-class Christian and a worldly Christian.

4. What is the greatest, largest, most diverse, and most significant cause in history?

5. History is ____ ______.

6. Being a world-class Christian will allow you to __________ a little of what _________ will be
like ___ ____________.

7. Do we have any excuse not to spread the Good News?

8. What is the only barrier to fulfill your commission to go to the whole world?
What must we change?

9. What do you need to do to begin thinking like a world-class Christian?

10. Children only think of __________; grownups think of __________.

11. How does God help us to become world-class Christians?

12. Your __________ is to figure out where _________ are in their _______ journey, and then do _______
will bring them a step closer to _________ ____________.

13. What is global thinking?

14. What is the first way to start thinking globally?

15. What is the most important tool for your mission in the world?

16. People may ______ our love or _________ our message, but they are __________ against our ______.

17. What 6 things should you pray for?

18. What is another way the author mentions to develop global thinking?

19. When are people the most receptive to God?
20. What are the 4 groups we are called to reach out to?

21. Name 3 of the common excuses for not fulfilling your commission.

22, Do you need a special call from God? What are the 5 purposes for our lives?
23. If you want to be like Jesus, you must have a _______ for the _______ ___________.


Question to consider: What steps can I take to prepare to go on a shert-term missions experience in the next year?



Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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4/23/08 11:46 P

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WOW.....this chapter was full of stuff,
and I hope I didn't do too many questions.
I could have done a lot more, cause there
was so much information. hehe
Same time, same place. *grin*

Day 37 Questions:

1. When you became a believer, you also became what?

2. Why do you feel that you have nothing to share?

3. Your life message has how many parts to it. What are they?

4. What is your testimony?

5. What are your life lessons?

6. What are your Godly passions?

7. What is the Good News?

8. This is the essence of witnessing -- simply ______ your ______ ________regarding the _______.

9. Why is sharing your testimony an essential part
of your mission on earth?

10. Why is your personal testimony more effective than a sermon?

11. What is the best way to 'be ready' with your testimony? What are the parts?

12. Different _______ call for different _______

13. Define life lessons.

14. While it is wise to learn from ________it is _______to learn from the _______ of _________.

15. Share some of your major life lessons here, and if you would like to, please share with the group.

16. As you grow closer to God, he will give you a passion for something he cares about deepely. Why is that?

17. Why does God give us differnt passions?

18. What is the Good News?

19. We must learn to love ______the way ______ does.

20. How is being a messenger of His Good News to others (our fifth purpose) different than the other four purposes we have learned about in this book?

Point to ponder: God wants to say something to the world through me...........

Question to consider: As I reflect on my personal story, who does God want me to share it with?



Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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4/23/08 11:38 P

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Day 36

Purpose 5 - You Were Made For A Mission

1) List the 5 purposes we were made for

2) What is the difference between your ministry and your mission?

3) Explain this statement: Your life mission is both shared and specific.

4) Define the word "mission"

5) What is the mission God expects of us?

6) Why is our mission so important? List 4 reasons the book gives.

7) Give the scripture reference to the Great Commission and explain what it means to you personally.

8) What does Ezekiel 3:18 and 19 mean to you and how should it impact your mission?

9) What two privledges does your mission involve?

10) One is one problem that keeps long-term Christians from fullfilling their mission?

11) Why should we feel an urgency about our mission?

12) How does God view it if we fail to fulfill our mission?

13) How does completing our mission impact the timeline of Time's conclusion?

14) What happens the moment you become dedicated to fulfilling your mission? What can you expect to happen?

15) What is required of you in order to fulfill your mission?

16) Explain the difference between these two prayers:
"God bless what I want to do..." and
"God help me to do what You are blessing."

17) If we commit ourselves fully to our mission, what does God promise we will experience?

Question to Consider: What fears have kept me from fulling my mission?


Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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4/23/08 11:37 P

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Day 35

God's Power in Your Weakness

1) What do we usually do with/about our weaknesses?

2) When we excuse away or try to defend our weaknesses, how does this affect God's work in our lives?

3) What is more important to God than the fact that we have weaknesses?

4) Why does God allow weakness (es) in your life?

5) What is the number one attitude that God blesses?

6) What is the difference between a sin or vice in your life, and a true weakness?

7) Read 2 Corinthians 4:7 and discuss how this relates to you and your own weaknesses in the service of God.

8) Name 4 ways in which we can allow God to work through our weaknesses.

9) Spend some time praying and meditating and asking God to show you your weaknesses and then, list them here...you do not have to share them with the group...but it's time to take inventory. Remember, these are limitations and weaknesses, not sins or vices in your life:

10) What two confessions from the New Testament illustrate what we need for healthy living? Please write down where they are found.

11) Define contentment and give a spiritual basis for it (scripture).

12) Paul gives us several reasons to be content with our inborn weaknesses...list them here (I found 5):

13) What did Paul share through his letters that we can use as a model today?

14) Ministry begins with _____________________ .

15) Why is vulnerability risky?

16) Define humility.

17) Pretentiousness_____________________ but authenticity ________________, and vulnerability is the pathway to ________________________ .

18) Explain this statement: "Our strengths create competition, but our weaknesses create community."

19) Explain what the difference is in impressing people or influencing them.

20) What is the most essential quality for leadership and why?

21) When Satan points out our weaknesses, what should we do?

22) Think of the story of Jacob, wrestling with God...has God turned one of your strengths into a weakness?

Question to Consider: Am I limiting God's power in my life by trying to hide a weakness? What do I need to be honest about in order to help others?




Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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4/23/08 11:35 P

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Day 34
Update on my father he is responding very well to the new antidepressant, going to physical therapy, and He even went outside and sat under the portico. Wow. Praise the Lord...

Thinking like a Servant

1) Where does service start?

2) To be a servant requires what?

3) __________________ count more than _____________________ .

4) Why did King Amaziah lose God's favor?

5) What mindset of 5 attitudes do real servants have?

6) What is true humility?

7) What is the difference between ministry and manipulation?

8) Why is humility a daily struggle for most of us?

9) What is at the core of servanthood?

10) How can we measure our servant's heart?

11) What does being a stewart have to do with being a servant?

12) Let's talk about money.....discuss Luke 16:13 and how it applies to your life as a servant.

13) Is there anything wrong with money? Explain what its role in your life is when you are a servant of God.

14) How does God use money in your life?

15) (Servants think about their work, not about what others are doing) What 3 things does a servant NOT do?

16) How should a servant handle personal criticism?

17) Should servants be concerned with proving their worth? Explain your answer.

18) Why is having our identity rooted in Christ so important to being a real servant?

19) What does Jesus' example of washing the disciples' feet mean to you?

20) Albert Schweitzer: The only really _________________ people are those that have learned how to ____________________ .

Question to Consider:

Am I usually more concerned about being served or finding ways to serve others?


Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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Day 33
So sorry I am late. In Pennsylvania with my daughter. Check out my blog. God bless you all
How Real Servants Act

1) How do we serve God?

2) Why is being a servant an unpopular concept in the world today?

3) How does God determine your greatness?

4) Everyone wants to ______________; no one wants to be a ______________ .

5) What is more important than determining your shape with regards to being a servant for God?

6) What two things might we be tempted to do if we do not have the proper servant's heart?

7) How does God often test our hearts?

8) What is your primary ministry and your secondary ministry?

9) Your shape reveals your __________________, but your servant's heart will reveal your _________________________ .

10) What characteristic is required to be a servant?

11) Read 2Timothy 2:4 and discuss how this applies to your life of service.

12) What are 6 characteristics of a real servant?

13) Is where or when we serve always a matter of choice? Explain your answer.

14) How should a servant view interuptions to their lives?

15) How do real servants become aware of opportunities to serve?

16) Read Galatians 6:10 and discuss how it relates to your life of service.

17) Why is it we miss many occasions for serving?

18) Give John Wesley's definition of greatness. How can you incorporate this into your life?

19) Do you have to have special resources (money, experience) to serve?

20) What keeps some people from serving?

21) Is the size of the task relevant to God?

22) How is your servant's heart revealed?

23) Great __________________ often disguise themselves in small __________________ .

24) Do we ever retire from serving God?

25) Discuss Matthew 6:1 and how it applies to your life of service.

26) When we start to feel unappreciated for what we do, what should we remember?

27) Sum up what you learned from this lesson today that you can apply to your life right now.

Question to Consider: Which of the six characterists of real servants offers the greatest challenge to me?


Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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4/22/08 7:19 P

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When I was in Bible College as a youth, I said that I was called to the mission field. I always qualified it and said that I didn't know where it was going to be, and that it could be to the next door neighbor in my home town. Well, sometimes I forget that Old Navy may be the mission field that the Lord called me to! The store where I work has a lot of Christians in it, but there are a lot of people that need the Lord, too. Maybe I need to listen a little closer. Although we are not to speak a lot about our beliefs in the work setting, there are always the personal times. This chapter has made me think a lot about the calling of my youth.

Connie

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4/21/08 11:10 A

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That line in chapter 35 hit me too, Connie.

I've only read the beginning of Day 36 and already I have seen that it is going to be one that challenges me. The question to consider especially!

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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4/20/08 8:37 P

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Day 36 -- Made for a Mission

Point to Ponder -- I was made for a mission.

Verse to Remember -- "Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." Matthew 28:19-20 NIV

Question to consider: What fears have kept me from fulfilling the mission God made me to accomplish? What keeps me from telling others the Good News?

This chapter is convicting!


Edited by: CONNIERAND at: 4/20/2008 (20:37)
Connie

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4/19/08 8:49 P

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As I read through chapter 35, it made me look at myself a little closer. I know I have weaknesses, but my pride sometimes gets in the way of letting others know about it. I have had some times in my past that hurt very deeply and have caused me to kind of set myself apart to keep from being hurt. It has made me very independent and somewhat leery in certain relationships.

I think that the line in the chapter that hit me the hardest was: "At some point in your life you must decide whether you want to impress people or influence people. You can impress from a distance, but you must get close to influence them....."

Whoa! Maybe I need to let others see that broken side a little more often.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

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4/18/08 1:49 P

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I wasn't sure about Day 35 when I started reading it, but by the sixth paragraph he allayed some of my fears by defining weakness. So many people talk of how weak they are in resisting sin, always giving in to certain sins. I was glad that he made it clear that weakness isn't sin or vice, because that can be changed. Our weaknesses are the limitations that we were born with, the talents that we don't have an abundance of, and even the emotional scars (which I believe that many of those should be overcome). I struggle with thinking that I am not good enough, or that anything that I do is not good enough, mainly because growing up I so often heard "Why can't you be more like your sister?", or "You can do better than that." At times I feel like I have to be perfect for God to accept me and love me and smile down on me; and it has taken a long time for me to realize that that just isn't true. Those are the emotional scars that I think we have to overcome, the things said to us that affected us, or things done to us that affected us. The loss of a loved one, the sorrow it brings, the changes in our lives - we have to move on, but we are forever changed by that in some way. I think that those are the emotional scars, the weaknesses that can help us to serve more with empathy as well as sympathy.
The part about being content with a weakness is difficult for me too, only because weakness isn't seen as a good thing and we should do all we can to overcome it; but some weaknesses can't be overcome, they need to be accepted and we need to live our lives in spite of them, using them to glorify and honor God. Our weaknesses keep us humble, seeing how desperately we need God.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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4/17/08 11:18 P

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I'm running behind on this chapter. I'll get my comments soon and get the next chapter posted. I need to get re-organized after going back to work full-time.

Connie

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4/16/08 1:32 P

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I'm going to be sorry when we do finish, I have really enjoyed this study! I will read Day 35 tomorrow and get back to you on that. As I was doing my devotional for my other team from day 34 I was writing about the fourth attitude, Servants base their identity in Christ. It was good for me to read this, because I do worry about what people think of me, but not necessarily to get their approval, but I worry so much about saying the wrong thing or messing something up. What will they think if I say this to them? Will I say it right? Do I have the knowledge to make my point further? Doing things for people is easy for me, but talking to them is harder. I have to remember that if I am sharing God's truth with them, it really isn't me that they are questioning or getting upset with, it is God that they have a problem with. I have to just speak confidently about the things that I know to be truth, trusting God to give me His words and the right time.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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4/15/08 11:15 P

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Day 35 -- God's Power In Your Weakness

Point to Ponder: God works best when I admit my weakness.

Verse to Remember: "My grace is sufficient for you, my power is mad perfect in weakness." 2 Corinth 12:9a NIV

Question to Consider: Am I limiting God's power in my life by trying to hide my weaknesses? What do I need to be honest about in order to help others?

Can you believe that we are this close to being done?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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4/15/08 10:26 A

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Connie, I hadn't received an e-mails telling me that there had been posts here! I loved that story, it gave me goose bumps - oh to have that little boys heart!!! Oh to have the heart of the bus pastor who cared about that little boys soul. Awesome story.
I had to learn the same lesson you have learned. Someone put it to me this way: Are you blessed when you do something for someone else? Yes, I am. Then why would you rob them of their blessing when they want to do something for you? It is hard to receive, but I have learned to gracefully allow others their blessing.

I enjoyed this chapter as well. Most of this I know, but to have it separated like this into separate attitudes made things more clear and solid in my heart. As I read I would think, "Yeah, that's right, that needs to be in me all of the time!" They all go hand in hand, and at the heart of it all is love. Love for the Lord and love for others.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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4/13/08 9:21 P

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Since we are running a little behind here, I am going to wait to post another chapter until Wednesday.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

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4/12/08 9:20 P

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There was a lot of serving in that little story....the bus pastor (I have worked in the bus ministry and believe me, it IS service!) and the little boy!

One thing that wasn't mentioned in this chapter is that sometimes it is very hard to ACCEPT someone else serving you. This has happened a couple of times to me and I got a stern lecture from one of the ladies in my church (in a wonderful and loving way). I am more the one that wants to do than the one who wants to accept. I can do it myself....thank you! When my husband had knee replacement the ladies in the church wanted to bring in food (knowing that he is the main cook in our house) to help out after I went back to work. I told them that it wasn't necessary that I could take care of it. After the conversation, I realized that I was taking away a ministry from those ladies. They wanted to serve the Lord by doing this and I was telling them "no". It came up again when I had my neck surgery and it was very difficult for me to allow one of the ladies to bring food that first night, but I remembered the ministry involved, turned off my pride and totally enjoyed her wonderful meal.

Edited by: CONNIERAND at: 4/12/2008 (21:20)
Connie

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4/12/08 9:15 P

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This was on the other team that I am involved with. I think that it is very fitting here on this thread.

The Collection Plate (a must read)
This will touch your heart.

Here is a true story about a
nine year old boy who lived in a rural town in Tennessee .
His house was in a poor area of the community.
A church had a bus ministry that came knocking on his door one afternoon.
The kid came to answer the door and greeted the bus pastor.
The bus pastor asked if his parents were home and the
small boy told him that his parents take off every weekend and leave him at
home to take care of his little brother. The bus pastor couldn't believe what
the kid said and asked him to repeat it.
The youngster gave the same answer and the bus pastor asked to come in and talk with him.
They went into the living room and sat down on an old couch with the foam and springs
exposed.

The bus pastor asked the kid, "Where do you go to church? The
young boy surprised the visitor by replying, "I've never been to church in my
whole life."

The bus pastor thought to himself about the fact that his
church was less than three miles from the child's house. "Are you sure you
have never been to church?" he asked again. "I sure haven't", came his answer.

Then the bus pastor said, Well, son, more important than going to
church, have you ever heard the greatest love story ever told?" and then
he proceeded to share the Gospel with this little nine year old boy. The young
lad's heart began to be tenderized and at the end of the bus pastor's
story the bus pastor asked if the boy wanted to receive this free gift from God.

The youngster exclaimed, "You bet!"
The kid and the bus pastor got on their knees and the lad invited Jesus into his little heart and
received the free gift of salvation. They both stood up and the bus pastor
asked if he could pick the kid up for church the next morning. "Sure,"
the nine old replied.

The bus pastor got to the house early the next
morning and found the lights off. He let himself in and snaked his way through
the house and found the little boy asleep in his bed. He woke up the little
boy and his brother and helped get them dressed. They got on the bus and ate a
donut for breakfast on their way to church. Keep in mind that this boy had
never been to church before. The church was a real big one. The little kid just sat there, clueless of what was going on.

A few minutes into the service these tall unhappy guys walked down to the front and picked up some wooden plates. One of the men prayed and the kid with utter fascination
watched them walk up and down the aisles. He still didn't know what was going on.
All of a sudden like a bolt of lightning it hit the kid what was taking
place. These people must be giving money to Jesus. He then reflected on the
free gift of life he had received just twenty-four hours earlier. He
immediately searched his pockets, front and back, and couldn't find a thing to
give Jesus. By this time the offering plate was being passed down his aisle
and with a broken heart he just grabbed the plate and held on to it. He
finally let go and watched it pass on down the aisle. He turned around to see
it passed down the aisle behind him. And then his eyes remained glued
on the plate as it was passed back and forth, back and forth all the way to the
rear of the sanctuary.
Then he had an idea.

This little nine year old boy, in front of God and everybody, got up out of his seat. He walked about
eight rows back, grabbed the usher by the coat and asked to hold the plate one
more time. Then he did the most astounding thing I have ever heard of. He took
the plate, sat it on the carpeted church floor and stepped into the center of
it. As he stood there, he lifted his little head up and said, "Jesus, I don't
have anything to give you today, but just me. I give you me!"

I do love Jesus. He is my source of existence and my Savior. He keeps me
functioning each and everyday. Without Him, I will be nothing. Without Him, I
am nothing. With Him I can do all things.
Phil 4:13


Connie

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4/10/08 10:47 P

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Chapter 34 -- Thinking Like A Servant.

Point to ponder: To be a servant I must think like a servant.

Verse to remember: "Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus" Philippians 2:5 NIV

Question to consider: Am I usually more concerned about being served or finding ways to serve others?



Connie

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4/9/08 3:47 P

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I just read my last post....I think I must have been in never-never land.

Let's go into the next chapter on Friday, not Wednesday. I meant to give us more time on it. I really enjoyed the chapter, too. I need to get the book out and read through it again before I go further in posting.

You are so right Kim, Bambi does have the right idea with her RAK. She's ministering to others, and sometimes it not even people that she knows. What a testimony!

Connie

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4/9/08 10:35 A

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I think that's a good idea! I think I underlined most of Chapter 33, what a treasure of information. It's things that you know, but to have it all right there in a challenging format was great. It will take me three days to break it down into devotions for my other team because it is almost the entire chapter. Think of how wonderful the Church and even the world would be if Christians would just live with this servant's mentality. Marriages would run much smoother if both spouses had this attitude. Work atmospheres would be enjoyable if the employees had this attitude. Family life would be wonderful if parents and children had this attitude. The sad thing is, is that this is the attitude that we are supposed to have! The attitude that God expects us to have! I need to have it more than I do. Bambi, at Camp Accountability has a challenge for herself to try to do a random act of kindness each day - this is really just a servant's heart, the attitude that we should have every day; I think that it is great that she choose to make it a challenge for herself. It doesn't have to be "great" things, just small kindnesses, small thoughtful giving with a humble and loving spirit.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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4/8/08 8:38 P

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We will put off doing chapter 34 until Wednesday. Kim...you are in our prayers. I know that this has been a rough day!

Connie

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4/7/08 5:37 P

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Read Day 32 this morning. There was a lot in there from the last two chapters, pretty much just encouraging us to find our shape and then stay true to it. I thought a lot about your situation, Sarah, as I read this. I am praying for you. You have to be where God created you to be. Remember, you aren't a failure, this was an experiment that simply showed you what you are not made for, now you will have more time to find a ministry that better suits you.
I'll read Day 33 tomorrow!

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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4/6/08 6:12 P

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Chapter 33 -- How Real Servants Act

Point to Ponder: I serve God by serving others.

Verse to Remember: "If you give even a cup of cold water to one of the least of my followers, you will surely be rewarded." Matthew 10:42 NLT

Question to Consider: Which of the six characteristics of real servants offers the greatest challenge to me?

*make themselves available to serve
*pay attention to needs
*do their best with what they have
*do every task with equal dedication
*Faithful to their ministry
*maintain low profile

When I was in high school I had a pastor that took Isaiah 40:31 and used the work "wait" as in waiting tables or serving. When you read the verse in that manner, it really opens your eyes! That verse has always been one of my favorites, but that gave it a new perspective. (It had to have made an impression since I graduated from High School in 1971 and he left our church in 1970!).

Sarah--it looks like you have been working with the children as a servant. It wasn't in your comfort zone, but I'm sure that the children were blessed. You saw a need and stepped in to fulfill it.

Edited by: CONNIERAND at: 4/6/2008 (18:12)
Connie

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4/5/08 7:45 P

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Yeah thats so true, thanks Connie.
I'd appreciate it if you guys would pray too - and also that I would have the guts to break this news to the superintendent!! lol

Sarah, from Northern Ireland

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7


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I know exactly what you mean! I have done the same thing before. I think that you will have a star in your crown for stepping into a need and doing your best. Sometimes we have to step out of our comfort zone. God will always help us when we step out for Him.

I am sure that there is someone in your church that God is working with at this point that will be comfortable working with the Children. Now you should be praying for God to work in their lives and equip them to be ready and WILLING to step into your shoes when you step down.

Edited by: CONNIERAND at: 4/5/2008 (10:28)
Connie

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This chapter was really relevant to me at the moment. For the past two years I have been a Sunday School teacher at our church. And frankly, I don't enjoy it, largely because I'm not cut out for it. I am really not good at working with children and in fact am quite uncomfortable around them.
I took it up two years ago when they were short of teachers and the superintendent asked me. I thought I should give it a go, as it was a service to God.

But after realising I was not SHAPEd to be a teacher, I'm going to step down at the end of this term. I'd been feeling a bit guilty about it to be hoenst, but Warren reminded me that we all are formed to perform different roles in the Lord's body. Quitting Sunday School would leave me much more time to focus on my God given talents - music.
I intend to make the most of the gifts God gave me in this field to serve Him in the next year.

As Warren said, it wasn't a failure, it was an experiment!!

And boy do I respect those who have the gift of working with children!

Sarah, from Northern Ireland

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7


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4/4/08 6:59 P

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Day 32: Using What God Gave You

Point to Ponder: God deserves my best.

Verse to Remember: "Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth." 2 Timothy 2:15 NIV

Question to Consider: How can I make the best use of what God has given me?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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AMEN!

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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Oh, I love that about being a little toe and bringing balance! Often it is the work of those quietly loving and giving in the background that draws people to a Church, and then truthful preaching that keeps them there.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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Kim, your comments remind me of work. The young man that works just under me is my total opposite. He is very much a people person and reads people very well. He loves to spend time training and interviewing and does a wonderful job. He is in no way organized and his business acumen is there, but lacking. I am organized to the extreme, and am known among my peers in two districts for business acumen. I will interview and I will train, but I know that they are not my strong suits.

The reason that this young man and I have such a great work relationship is that we depend on each other. I let him maxamize his people skills and I maxamize my organizational and acumen skills. The result is that he becomes more organized and knows the business much better due to my strong points. We also have great people that are trained very well due to his skills.

This also works in the church. We are all different. Not all of us are heads or eyes. Some of us may be little toes, but the body is not balanced without them. Isn't it great that God knows our needs and the needs of the body so well that he shapes each of us to be a special part?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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There are a couple of things that really struck me in this chapter. The first is that God has given us not just spiritual gifts to minister with, but also our individual abilities, be they singing or cooking, or building, or whatever; it can all be used for the Lord. And God gave me just what I need in every area to do the work that He has called me to do, so there is no reason to bemoan the fact that I can't do something as good as someone else (unless I refuse to hone my ability by use and practice). The other thing was about the personality types. We did a study on this in our Church quite a while ago, finding our personality type and how we can bring that under the power of the Holy Spirit so that He can use that in us for His glory and honor. It also helped us to understand the strengths and weaknesses in each personality group. He said a lot of the same things that I had learned before, but brought back to mind that my personality comes from God and He can mold that for His glory and honor. I have a melancholy personality, too aware of feelings, but creative. Sometimes I do bemoan being the way I am, but this helps me to remember that it is unique to me and that God can use it for His glory and honor, I just have to bring it under the control of the Holy Spirit! I love how he makes you feel special, unique, a precious creation of God.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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Connie, I hope that the doc lets you go and that you have a great time! We'll wait on you. I'll post my thoughts on chapter 31 tomorrow.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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Day 32

I promise the answers are all in the book! Some might not seem so clear, but they are there....trust me! (*wink*)

1) What does God want us to focus on with regards to our abilities?

2) What happens when we try to serve in a way that God has NOT shaped us? (name at least 5 things)

3) How do we begin the search to find out what service or services God has shaped us for?
(name 3 ways)

4) Name 3 ways that we can begin the process of assessing and discovering our shape.

5) Can we manifest the characteristics of a spiritual gift without actually possessing that gift itself? Explain how this happens.

6) What is the best "active" way to discover your abilities?

7) Why is this statement backwards? "Discover your spiritual gift and then you'll know what ministry you are supposed to have."

8) Explain what this means in your life today, right now: "Until you're actually involved in serving, you're not going to know what you are good at."

9) What questions (to ask yourself) would help you determine your abilities?

10) Why are life experiences so important in determining your abilities?

11) If you desire an ability you do not have, what should you do?

12) What happens when we overstep our limitations in serving?

13) How does Satan try to steal the joy of serving?

14) What are two reasons we should never compare ourselves to others in our abilities to serve?

15) How should we handle criticism in our ministry?

16) What two things does the parable of the talents teach us with regards to using our abilities God has given us?

Instead of a Question to Consider this week, I'd like us all to take a look at what we've studied and start seriously assessing our abilities using all the tools Rick Warren has given us in these last few lessons. What life experiences have you had that would aid others? What passions do you have that you can turn into service? Please list those here:

Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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Day 31
Understanding your Shape

1) How unique are we?

2) What are "abilities"?

3) Where do these abilities come from?

4) Does it matter how we use these abilities? Why or why not?

5) "I just don't have any abilities to offer." What is wrong with this statement?

6) "Many studies reveal that the average person possesses from 500 to 700 different skills". What was your response or thoughts about this statement?

7) Whose responsibility is it to determine our skills and abilities?

8) If you have the ability to make money, how should these skills be used? (4 things to consider)

9) How can we discover our abilities?

10) God doesn't ___________________ abilities, He matches our _______________ and our (to our)_______________________ . Discuss what this means.

I want to discuss this next point because I really feel we need to head in a little different direction than he does in the book. I'm going to ask a series of questions to kind of get us on the right track in thinking about serving the church.

11) What does "church" mean in a spiritual sense?

12) God found artisans to work on the physical temple in the Old Testament. In the New Testament...the Christian age, what is the temple?

13) Does serving the church mean servicing the church buiding?

14) If we have drawn the right conclusion about what the "church" is....does God care that we even have a building...or flowers in the flower beds or the right "site" for the building?

15) If we are using Christ as our example on how to serve the church...what should this mean on how we serve the church?

16) Is there a "right" or a "wrong" temperment for ministry?

17) How does our personality effect our ministry?

18) Why does mimicking someone else's minsitry never work?

19) What do we experience when we minister using the abilities God gave us?

20) How do our life experiences come into our ability to minister to others?

21) Your greatest ministry will probably come out of what?

22) In order to use our life experiences in God's ministry, what must we be willing to do?

Question to Consider: What God given ability or life experience can I use in my ministry to the church?


Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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Here we are...ten days from being finished. That's still a month away, if I counted right, but that will fly by. God bless you as you study this week!

Day 30

Shaped to Serve God

1) Were we haphazardly formed in our mother's womb?

2) What were we "shaped" for?

3) Read Ephesians 2:10. The Greek word for "workmanship" is "poema" from which stems our word "poem". Re read this verse and insert the word "poem" for workmanship. Does it take on a different meaning for you? Discuss....

4) Did our formation stop in the womb? What does this mean to you?

5) What do our life experiences serve to do in God's plan for us?

6) What acrostic can help us in understanding and finding what God's will for us is?

7) What do the letters in SHAPE stand for?

8) What are Spiritual Gifts and where do they come from?

9) Does everyone have spiritual gifts? How do you know?

10) Do we earn or deserve our gifts?

11) Why don't we all have the exact, same gifts?

12) For whose benefit do we have these gifts?

13) What is the outcome when we don't use our gifts?

14) An unopened gift is _____________________ .

15) What are two common problems in the Church with regards to one another's gifts?

16) Explain "gift-envy".

17) Explain "gift-protection".

18) Do our spiritual gifts make up the whole spiritual person?

19) In Bible terms, what does "heart" mean?

20) What do the attitudes of the heart portray?

21) Another word for heart is _____________________ .

22) Why is our emotional heartbeat important in understand our shape for service to God?

23) God wants you to serve Him ____________________ not ______________________ .

24) How do you know when you are serving God from your heart?

Question to Consider: In what way can I see myself passionately serving others and loving it?




Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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Day 29

Purpose #4 - You Were Shaped For Serving God

1. What are the first 3 purposes that we have reviewed?

2. What did God design us to do with our lives here on earth?

3. How can we tell if we are fulfilling God's purpose?

4. You are not saved ______ service, you are saved ________ service. Discuss what this means to you.

5. What should be our attitude about fulfilling our purpose here on earth for God?

6. 1 John 3:14 - discuss how this is a "ruler" or "guideline" for our lives.

7. We are healed to _____________ _______________. We are blessed to be a _________________. We are saved to ____________________.

8. Is there such a thing as a non-serving Christian? Why or why not?

9. Why is it so important to be attached to a church family?

10. Does God put acts of service into catagories....the "big" act of service or the "small" act of service?

11. Can you think of a time in your life when a small act of service someone did for you, on your behalf, made a big impact on your life? Share this with group if you wish.

12. Is ministering to others an option for us? Why or why not?

13. How do we emulate Jesus when we minister to others?

14. In order to grow spiritually, what must we do with the information we learn from a study like this?

15. What causes spiritual stagnation?

16. Rather than looking to serve, what is the human inclination?

17. What are the eternal repercussions of not rising to this fourth purpose for which God has created us?

18. What matters is not the __________ of your life, but the ______________ of it.

Question to Consider: What is holding me back from accepting God's call to serve Him?


Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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Day 28

It Takes Time

Read Ecclesiastes 3:1
Philippians 1:6

1. While we worry about how fast we grow spiritually, what is God concerned about?

2. If God views our lives from a view on eternity...how is it we sometimes tend to view our lives? (answer is not in the book....*wink*)

3. Based on the parallel that you read in the book about Lane Adams, think back on when you were converted. What was going on in your life? What brought you to accept Jesus as your Savior?

4. "You can only give God as much of you as you understand at the moment." Explain in your own words what this means.

5. What is Discipleship?

6. What does the journey to becoming Christlike involve?

7. Why does it take us so long to change and grow up in Christ? (book mentions 5 things)

8. Slow learners: what example in the Bible do we have of this?

9. A lot to unlearn: what does unlearning require?

10. Facing the truth about ourself: what sort of an attitude does this take?

11. Growth is painful and scary: There is no ___________________ without _____________; there is no __________________ without ___________ or ______________ ; and there is no ___________________ without _________________ . (Good grief...it's no wonder we don't want to go through change!)

12. Habits take time to develop: what defines our character?

13. How do we develop Christlike characteristics?

14. What are "spiritual disciplines"?

15. How do we cooperate with God as He tries to mold us spiritually? (book mentiones 4 ways)

16. What is a spiritual diary and why is it important?

17. Why do we need to be patient with God just as He is patient with us?

18. To keep from getting discouraged, what must we remember?

Question to Consider: In what area of my life to I need to be more patient and persistent?

Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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Welcome back ladies! I hope you enjoyed your little break. I am so far behind. Connie can you tell me if this thread will be still posted for the next several months, I want to do it again when I have the time to do it right. As we begin day 27,
I encourage you to share additional scriptures that you may find that relate

to this study.

Day 27

Defeating Temptation

Read 2 Timothy 2:22
1 Corinthians 10:13

1. "God will not put anything on you that He will not
put within you to handle it" Awesome statement!
What does this mean to you?

2. What are the 4 biblical keys to defeating temptation?

Refocusing our attention:

3. Why does trying to "resist" a thought, only make it worse?

4. What must we do in order to neutralize temptation's hold on us?

5. Where is the battle for sin won or lost?

6. How does temptation begin? (extra reading: James 1:13-15)

7. Discuss....in the world today, in our day to day life, where do the temptations lie
and how can we avoid these situations? Is this always easy to do?

Reveal our struggles to a godly person or support group

8. How does healing begin?

9. What do you think keeps us from seeking out, or revealing to others, our battle with
a particular sin?

10. "You are only as sick as your secrets"...wow! Why does revealing our secrets help
us overcome them? If we don't reveal them and seek help in overcoming them, then who is really
in charge of our lives?

11. Why do we hide our faults?

Resist the devil

12. How does the New Testament often describe our Christian walk?

13. In this section, Rick mentions two ways to resist the devil. What are they?

14. Who is our absolute model at resisting the devil?

15. Why is memorizing scripture so important?

Realize our vulnerability

16. How can we strengthen our armor so we're not so vulnerable?

Question to Consider:
Who can I ask to be a spiritual partner to help me defeat a persistent temptation?


Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
but they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.



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3/30/08 5:39 P

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Chapter 31 -- Understanding your shape.

Spiritual Gifts
Heart
Abilities
Personality
Experience

Point to Ponder: Nobody else can be me.

Verse to remember: "God has given each of you some special abilities; be sure to use them to help each other, passing on to others God's many kinds of blessings." 1 Peter 4:10 (LB)

Question to consider: What God given ability or personal experience can I offer to my church.


on another note: I am going to be away for a few days this week (if the Dr. releases me). We are going to visit with my parents. I will not be doing the questions on Wednesday, but should be back and be able to do them sometime on Friday.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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This chapter reminded me of an earlier chapter. Chapter 2 talked about us not being an accident, that everything in our lives was for a purpose. We were planned by God and everything that makes us who we are was planned from the beginning. I thought that chapter 30 was almost a review of what we had previously studied. If we were planned and made acording to His purpose, then we must have been "Shaped" by God.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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Peggy, you are going through quite a bit right now - wow! I am praying for you.

This chapter reiterated things that I had already been taught, but as always, it is good to hear them again. Our pastor did a study a while back about the body, soul, and spirit; how our lives our shaped by the three different parts that make us who we are and affect our relationship with others and with God. A lot of what he said in chapter 30 reminded me of that study. I really like the acronym and can't wait to see what he has to say about the other three factors.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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Sorry it has been so long. Dad is out of the hospital and he is in rehab. His skin has cleared up very nicely, now if he will cooperate and do his physical therapy and start to walk. So far he has been very stubborn. Nothing new, he will try anything to not do what he knows he must do. The nurses asked if he was going to stay this time, unfortunately I do not have the power to decide that. And that is out of my hands anyway, At the end of April my niece Nikki will be moving back to Miami, and that will leave me by myself and I can't do it alone. My sister will most likely put him in a nursing home there in Miami because that is where the family is, and I will be here until my bankruptcy and social security disability applications are taken care of. I have to figure out how to get laylay up to Pennsylvania. So I have to check the airlines, and if my daughter can meet me half way at South of the Border to take laylay the rest of the way. I have had her too long to just not do anything. That would kill me.
I went to the Ortho dr last tuesday, I sprained my lt rotators cuff, and have to have physical therapy for a month. Loads of fun. So I figure I will start going to the Y because I found out my sister is still paying for the membership, I thought she stopped it last year. So, I will take full advantage of it while I can.
I wanted to let you know to check my blog I will be posting a study called the "50 days of Love" which my church did awhile back. In today's world I thought it would be relevant. I am so happy to be part of this wonderful group, I will also be posting on my teams this same mail , that way you know and you have it already.
I love you guys, keep up the great support.....

Peggy

Peggy (aka blueangelgirl58)

Isaiah 40:31
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Chapter 30 -- Shaped for God

Spiritual Gifts
Heart
Abilities
Personality
Experience

Point to Ponder: I was shaped for serving God

Verse to Remember: "God works through different men in different ways, but it is the same God who achieves his purposes through them all" 1 Corinthians 12:6 Ph

Question to Consider: In what way can I see myself passionately serving others and loving it?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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The sad thing about it is that it isn't just the "kids". I have found that the "kids" need their jobs for college, etc. The adults are many times the worst offenders. The ones that you wouldn't expect to be that way at all. Oh, well... on to the next chapter.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

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Preach it, girl!!!
I haven't worked since about 6 months after we got married and I still have bad dreams about forgetting a schedule or waking up and realizing I should be at work. I didn't do those things when I was working so I don't know why it comes up in dreams! Anyway, I never even thought of doing those things, but I guess that it is another of the things that happen because kids today feel like they are entitled and that they are the only ones that matter. It's more of a pity and shame when adults who definitely know better do the same thing. I think that this "me" attitude is a lot of why so many marriages don't work anymore. People are more interested in getting something from the other person than giving to the other person. Having their needs met rather than meeting the other person's needs.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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Unfortunately, the same goes into the work-place. There are so many people that don't take their jobs seriously. They think nothing of calling and saying that something came up and they can't come in today or telling you a day in advance that they decided to go out of town and won't be at work for xxx days. They don't take into consideration the people that are having to cover for them to run a business. Also there are those that decide to just fall off the face of the earth. They don't come in, they don't call and you don't know what happened....they just drop out of sight.

So, Connie....stop preaching to the choir!

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

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You're right, Connie. If you can't find it in yourself to commit to the Lord, or to follow through on a commitment to the Lord, then I have to question what your word is really worth. The last couple of generations have been all about "me"; What's in it for me? I have to take care of me first! The world owes me! Unfortunately it's that way in the Church too. People want to warm the pew, get in their hour on Sunday so they can call themselves a Christian, feel good about themselves, and go on their way. Also, people have filled their lives up with so many other things, that the Lord gets pushed into a corner. They wouldn't think about treating their jobs the way that they treat their commitment to the church; you don't show up just when you feel like it! It's something that he mentioned in this chapter. I'm sorry that your church is going through that right now. Stay committed! Keep serving and God will bless your efforts!

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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I feel that commitment in today's world is falling away. People don't commit to work, to the Word of God, to marriage, to working for the Lord. They SAY that they will do something, then break the commitment. We see this in the workplace where people float from job to job, we see it in relationships and unfortunately we see it in the church.

Kim I love the scriptures that you quoted. Our attitudes do count toward our service, but also, we should be held accountable to what we commit to doing...and we should not hesitate to commit when it is for the Lord and we are called.

In case you can't tell, this is something that I have on my heart right now. In our small church, unfortunately we are having a commitment problem right now and it is hurting severely and breaking my heart.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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3/26/08 5:41 P

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As I read these verses I thought of James 2:17-18 "Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. 18 But someone may well say, 'You have faith, and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.'" I like too that he points out that our attitude matters in our service, not just serving because we are supposed to, but doing it with a willing and happy heart. "Service with a smile." Many times in the Word we are told that we will be judged according to our deeds; and for the Christian, what he does for others and for the Lord will be the reward that we lay at His feet; in fact we will be clothed with our righteous deeds (I don't want to be wearing a mini-skirt in heaven). This is something that I'd been taught for many years in the Church that I was a part of, and, praise the Lord, it was definitely a Church of servers.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
3/25/08 7:16 P

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Chapter 29 -- Accepting Your Assignment

Point to ponder: Service is not optional

Verse to remember: "For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do" Ephesians 2:10 NSV

Question to Consider: What is holding me back form accepting God's call to serve him?

When I read this chapter, in my mind I said "AMEN, preach it brother!". But I do have to admit to not always serving the way I should, either. More later.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
3/24/08 6:41 P

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There are a lot of lessons that I have learned the hard way and would not want to have to learn them again!

I read through the part about the journal and just kind of filed it away in my mind. I know that it would be good to have a prayer journal and a learning journal, but I can't see me keeping up with it. Maybe someday the Lord will convict me to do it, but at this time I don't feel the urge or unction.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
3/24/08 6:01 P

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Another good chapter. On thing that really stood out to me was keeping a journel. I was told to do this, writing down all of the things that the Lord was doing in my life, the things that He was teaching me and changing in me. I tried it for a while, but all of the days sounded the same, so I quit. I have tried off an on, but again, they all sound the same. I guess I really am a slow learner!!! Something I know that I have learned over the last several months is that God is good, and all of the working that He does in my life, no matter how hard it is, is for my good. If I am pliable and willing to learn and change, then none of it has to be difficult or take a long time! And again, with the journel idea, I can look back and see what I have learned, and Lord willing, never have to learn that lesson again!!!

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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PIANO*LADY's Photo PIANO*LADY Posts: 8,934
3/23/08 10:22 P

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I'm glad you're leaving this chapter up until Wednesday, Connie, as I haven't had time to read it yet. Your thoughts are exactly right.

Carole in GA
Co-leader, Christians Maintaining Weight Loss
Co-leader, Christian Bookworms

By his perfect life, Jesus fulfilled the commands of the law.
By his death, He satisfied the demands of sin.

"Think often on God, by day, by night, in your business and even in your diversions. He is always near you and with you; leave him not alone."
- Brother Lawrence


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
3/23/08 9:50 P

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Since we haven't really delved into Day 28 yet, with Easter this weekend. I thought we would leave it up until Wednesday.

I think in this day and age people are looking for "fast" and "instant". Microwaves, drive-thus, instant oatmeal, instant coffee.....

When we are so used to things being faster and faster, we get discouraged when things don't work that way. Whether it is weight loss, spiritual growth or answers to prayers!

Thank God, that even if I am slow, I am growing and I am going to be there at the end of the journey!

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
3/20/08 7:44 P

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Day 28 -- It takes time.

Point to ponder: There are no shortcuts to maturity.

Verse to remember: "God began doing a good work in you, and I am sure he will continue it until it is finished when Jesus Christ comes again." Phil. 1:6 NCV

Question to consider: In what area of my spiritual growth do I need to be more patient and persistent?

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
3/20/08 7:38 P

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I think that the thing that I have held onto since I first read this chapter is that we need to distract ourselves from the temptation instead of dwelling on it. That is true with many things in our lives. They say to conquer a habit, to start a new habit.

Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
3/19/08 9:55 A

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Connie, I was surprised I didn't! I usually do all of those things!

There was a lot in here that I have recently learned to do, and wish that I had done sooner and saved myself years of grief. One of the four things I was counseled to do was let a thought go no matter how it came, and that is a lot of what he says in this chapter. Don't fight it (which I used to do), just let it go. Another thing that I really liked was that we shouldn't argue with satan but rather just resist him, turn away from him. We are not to give him an opportunity, and by arguing that is what we do. This was a good chapter for me, cementing more deeply in my mind that things that I need for victory.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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CONNIERAND's Photo CONNIERAND Posts: 6,485
3/18/08 8:38 P

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Day 27 -- Defeating Temptation

Point to Ponder -- There is always a way out.

Verse to Remember -- "God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becomming so strong that you can't stand up against it. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out that you will not give in to it." 1 Corinth 10:13b nlt

Question to consider -- Who could I ask to be a spiritual partner to help me defeat a persistent temptation by praying for me?

Sounds like I get a little ahead when I started quoting 1 Corith 10:13. huh? It's still going to be my memory verse this week. I had forgotten so much of it and it's not a verse I want to forget.


....and yes, I did yawn. If you haven't read the chapter, you will understand when you get there!

Edited by: CONNIERAND at: 3/18/2008 (20:39)
Connie

Co-leader Christian Bookworms

"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up on wings as eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."

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RESTFINDER's Photo RESTFINDER Posts: 12,846
3/18/08 10:31 A

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That's a verse that I memorized a while back, almost a life line in a difficult time.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

1Co 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good morals." 34 Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.


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MISSPIGGY726's Photo MISSPIGGY726 SparkPoints: (0)
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3/18/08 5:19 A

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In fact, I've been looking for one to memorize this week for Camp Accountability!
Think I've found it! emoticon

Sarah, from Northern Ireland

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7


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PIANO*LADY's Photo PIANO*LADY Posts: 8,934
3/17/08 9:36 P

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Connie's verse should be on our "to be memorized" list. You summed everything up very nicely, Kim.

Carole in GA
Co-leader, Christians Maintaining Weight Loss
Co-leader, Christian Bookworms

By his perfect life, Jesus fulfilled the commands of the law.
By his death, He satisfied the demands of sin.

"Think often on God, by day, by night, in your business and even in your diversions. He is always near you and with you; leave him not alone."
- Brother Lawrence


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