2013 Siesta Summer Bible Study: 2nd Gathering

Hey, summer Bible study sisters! Watch the video if possible because I only put the barest bones in the written part of these summer Bible study posts. This version of your instructions is mostly for back up but, if you prefer to just get your assignments for your gathering this way and bypass all my verbose video-commentary, I certainly do understand that! Feel free! I just want to make sure you’ve experienced some personal interaction on here. Smiling.

OK! Here are your instructions for today and, remember! Your comments to this post are meant to be comprised of your responses to each of the interactives:

1. Based on the question in the middle of p.37 of your homework: To what specific area of holy bravery does God seem to be calling you in this present season?

2. Drawn from the portion on p.46 regarding the 5 ordinary tasks you perform on a daily basis, share a memory of an ordinary circumstance in which God met with you in an extraordinary way. If you’re new to all this and can’t think what to share, don’t feel lame or unspiritual. Pray for Him to do this very thing with you over the coming days and I have a feeling you won’t be disappointed.

3. Based on p.50 and the discussion about the first part of the divine declaration to Gideon, how confident or insecure do you tend to be regarding God’s promise that He is with you? Explain your answer.

4. Look at the bottom of p.57. Would you be willing to share the pair of terms that best describe a disparity you’ve dealt with between your self-perception and a biblical view of who you are in Christ? If you’re willing, also briefly explain your answer.

Ok, Sisters! That’s it! When you leave your comment, please be sure to put your first name, your city, whether you are in a small group or going solo, and your succinct responses to all or at least several of the interactives.

I’m crazy about you! Stay in the Word! We’ll meet again in 2 weeks on July 9th. Have Weeks 3 and 4 of your homework finished for that gathering if at all possible. So much love to you.

Siesta Summer Gideon Study – Week 2 from LPV on Vimeo.


447 Responses to “2013 Siesta Summer Bible Study: 2nd Gathering”

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  1. 351
    sandy hay says:

    Sandy Mt Holly NJ Solo

    1: “standing up” to a close family member who has VERY different ideas of pursuing God and His Truth. Remembering that I am capable to do this even though I often feel intimidated. (see question 4)

    2. dishes: My kitchen window at the sink looks out over my backyard. I can’t count the times God has pointed something out to me in the beauty of the trees or clouds or animals or flowers. The time turns into a wonderful communion with God.

    3. I am CONFIDENT. I turned to God many years ago during a time when I had confidence in no one, except my little boys. God carried me through those days and many more since, always remembering what He had done and will continue to do.

    4. incompetent/capable In high school I had a teacher who regularly told me I wrote so much but said so little. That stopped me in my tracks, all through college and about 20 more years. One day I was writing a letter and in reviewing it I said to myself (or was it God talking) “That’s good!” And it’s been uphill ever since.

  2. 352
    Jo Anne says:

    Jo Anne, Chicago, IL Solo

    1. I need holy bravery with my husband and children who are not believers.
    2. I go to the beach early every morning with my dog. I talk to God about HIs amazing wonders there–beautiful cloud formations, rays of sun streaking the sky, layers of fog covering the water, sometimes huge waves, and sometimes total calm. Every day is different.
    3. I know the Lord is with me because He supported me through many difficult things in my past.
    4. Fearful/courageous I lack self confidence and I love to think that God sees me as courageous and bold!

  3. 353
    Brynn Alford says:

    Brynn in Rogers, AR

    1. To be a more fearless witness amongst the people I am around daily, but also to trust that God knows what he is doing and that he is always with me in my efforts.

    2. I was getting ready for a big work picnic at a job I had just started and it was really important to me that I got there on time because I couldn’t stay very long before I had to go to a wedding. But absolutely everything was going wrong, my makeup, my hair, couldn’t decide what to wear, had to go back in the house twice to get something I had forgotten, my phone was dying, etc. I ended up leaving almost 30 minutes late and I was furious but I tried to thank God for that morning and believe He always had my good in sight. Well, when I made it to the picnic, I got there at the exact same time as a girl I had started to make friends with and we were the first two there. If I had gotten there on time, it would have been incredibly awkward. God showed me concretely that even in the little things he was working all things for my good, which helps me trust him in the big things, something that’s really hard for me.

    3. Usually the problem is that I don’t think about it. I just go through out the day without even realizing it. When I do it can be incredibly encouraging. But I can also take it for granted, thinking, “well what good is that?” because I don’t have his steadfast love and omnipotence fresh on my mind.

    4. In the past, rejected/accepted. But today, more fearful/courageous.

  4. 354
    Marsha R. says:

    Marsha R. solo/Lexington Park, MD
    Area of holy bravery-To pray specifically and fervently for my 3 adult children, who have all sidestepped from their Christian training.

    An ordinary circumstance in which God met with me in an extraordinary way-maybe not so extraordinary…but with 2 surgeries this year and other medical challenges…God has reminded me that I can still brush my teeth and dress myself, and needing help is only temporary.

    disparity vs. Biblical view-insignificant vs. special. I think this has kept me from serving with my gifts in our church. Now I claim that He will rejoice over me with shouts of joy…so I know I am pretty special in His eyes and that’s what counts.

    God promised Gideon that He was with him. He promised me the same thing. It’s a fact and I’m secure because God said it.

  5. 355
    Sandy says:

    Durant, OK
    Small group

    1. “holy bravery “: to share a secret from my past with my adult children and then let Him use my testimony to help young girls.

    2. God speaks to me daily if I am alert. Just after reading these instructions, I took out the trash and then washed my hands. God reminded me that he has thrown away the trash of my past, and He has washed me.

    3. I am confident that God is with me. I have held this one area back, but am becoming more confident in Him.

    4. Fearful/courageous, with un gifted/equipped close behind.

  6. 356
    Jennifer says:

    Jennifer S, Olathe, KS, solo

    1. I need holy bravery in being a step-mom. Patterns can run deep and any change, even good, is met with cynicism, doubt and unbelief. I want to see victory in this area God has placed me in to refine me.
    2. God does speak in the mundane, and always when I am in an attitude of thankfulness and prayer. The shower and car are common places. So good to be ALONE with God!
    3. So thankful for a Christian upbringing that doesn’t really doubt God’s Goodness or that He is with me.
    4. Fearful/Courageous: I loved this list and the corresponding verses. I think we feel all of these at times. His Word is the key; the Truth that sets us free; mentally, psychologically, and emotionally. Get that Word hidden in your heart!

  7. 357
    Lydia says:

    Lydia, Nampa, ID — Solo

    1: To not be like my peers who focus on just certain parts of the Bible (love, tolerance, peace, etc) and not also on what it says about what’s right and wrong. And to not be afraid to say what Scripture says.

    3: I tend to be more insecure in knowing that God is with me because I struggle to “feel” it. I do “know” that it true, but every now and then it’s a struggle when the “know” and the “feel” don’t match up.

    4: incompetent/capable — I’m a part of the worship team at church, and lately have struggled with feeling like I’m not a good enough musician to be a part of the group. But I’m learning that God has gifted me with my abilities to praise him and he gifted others with different abilities.

  8. 358
    Terri Tripp says:

    Terri from Winchester, VA
    In an online group!

    1). Continuing to share my faith with a less than receptive son
    2). Feeling God’s presence while cleaning up the kitchen to “Do Everything” by Steven Curtis Chapman
    3) I am in need of this powerful reminder daily.
    4) insignificant/special: claiming Zephaniah 3:17 daily!

  9. 359
    Erin says:

    Erin, TN, solo

    1. “Holy Bravery” – I have struggled with debilitating fear (including seasons of nightmares) since I was a little girl. I had a wonderful childhood, an amazing upbringing. There is nothing in my past that should make me so fearful. But it’s there, and if I don’t constantly stay on top of it (and wear out my spirals of scripture) fear ebbs into agoraphobia and paranoia. God has done such a work in me over the past few years. That’s why I know better than to believe it is coincidence that I’ll be taking a job-related trip soon, and meeting with many, many important people in my field. This is my dream job that I have prayed and prepared for for years, but my initial gut instinct was to decline the invitation, to back out because I knew I would mess up everything with my shyness. I’ll tremble the whole time I’m there, but I’m still going to do it, trusting He’ll get me through (and let me do a little victory dance on the other side :).

    2. One of the sweetest ways God speaks to me is when I pray (before I get into the Word) that He will teach me something about Himself. I pray He’ll reveal something about His personality. Or His heart. Or show me something about the scripture that I haven’t noticed before; make it dear to me. When I pray, I sometimes imagine He’s holding me close enough that I’m whispering in his ear. All of that has added such tenderness to my prayer time.

    3. I keep a journal of how God answers my prayers, and I’ve seen answers so often. If not all out deliverance, I’ve seen Him deal with me and work in me so kindly, so compassionately. I’m so glad I keep it all down, because sometimes they don’t come to pass for years. When I doubt, I thumb through the pages again, praise Him for all the moments we’ve shared so far, and know He’s with me.

    4. Fearful/courageous.

  10. 360
    Nanette Rivera says:

    1. Living in a place and season that pushes my faith to a different level. Realizing that in my obedience lies the success of my children that their destiny is locked up in ours. If I step into this lifestyle of holy bravery my family is destined to succeed.
    2.Realizing God’s faithfulness all around me. Cleaning, cooking, and caring for my children are the very promises of God. HE is faithful.
    3. I am confident that he is a loving and faithful God, although my heart tends to be fearful. I know my hopes and dreams are not to big for my God.
    4. worthless/valuable-The challenge is to always keep in the forefront of my mind the way God sees me. Constantly clothing my self in his word and letting his word cleanse away the feelings of worthlessness. letting my mind be transformed.

  11. 361
    Rachel says:

    Rachel, Ft. Smith, AR (solo)

    1. To keep thinking about things above, not on earthly things. Not to get sucked into the trap of worldliness and the comforts the world offers/throws at my family and me.

    2. Several of my daily activities take place in the kitchen where I have windows to see my bird feeders. God had reminded me multiple times (when I am questioning His presence/timing/working) that He cares for the birds, yet I am much more valuable than they!!

    3. My head is confident in it, but my heart is sometimes insecure when I’m in a period of silence or waiting.

    4. Incompetent/capable: As a mother I often feel like an incompetent failure, but I know through the power of the Holy Spirit in me I am capable to bear fruit and impart that to my children.

  12. 362
    Kay says:

    Kay, Deer Park, Tx, solo
    1. Holy bravery – embarking on a new season of life and want to throw out any plans I might have thought of and just listen for what God wants this new chapter to look like.
    2. Ordinary tasks – I have always enjoyed the peace of being home and away from the non-stop pace of the workplace. As I read through the section on “Unseen Abundance” I experienced such an outpouring of God’s love just realizing how each mundane task really represents a series of blessings.
    3. Have lots of head knowledge regarding God’s promises to always be with me, but often have not slowed down enough to even make the connection. Feel it strongly now – from the heart.

  13. 363
    Jackie UK says:

    Hi Beth and Lyndsey,
    I will not receive my book until about 12th July. I will catch up on the weeks I’m missing and get up to date. I’ll post my answers on this set of comments when I get the book. Is that OK?


  14. 364
    Samantha says:

    Samantha / London, England / Solo

    1. Holy Bravery – To throw away all fear and anxiety that comes from being in an endless cycle of debt. To lovingly trust in my God and KNOW He will provide. To KNOW this season has a reason.

    2. Ordinary task – Listening to music on my bus journey to work. Really FEELING His presence during the song “Don’t Try So Hard”
    The chorus such floored me. I regularly worry when I get on public transport that my scars of life are visable, that people can SEE the insecurity that surrounds me and the physical scars that were a result of intense depression.
    It’s a song I listen to regularly and it’s a journey I make 5 days a week, but I passed an elderly couple and the line “You’re lovely even with your scars” just filled me with incredible hope. I felt as though God was letting me know that I WILL find love again one day, and it will be strong and powerful as long as I trust in HIM.

    3. This is difficult. The facts are there for me, I KNOW He is faithful, I KNOW He is with us always, but when I am insecure or afraid or feeling worthless I struggle to hold on to knowing He is walking this journey with me.

    I LOVE what Beth said about stopping in mid-anxiety and praising Him. Telling God that I KNOW He is there and I KNOW His provision will always be present.

    One of my favourite verses is Jeremiah 29:11 and I cling to that in my current season, as I battle the consequences of depression, the debt that has mounted up and threatens to overcome me daily. He fills me with HOPE. I do worry that I’m not doing as He wishes me to do though, that I’m misunderstanding His plan for my life.

    4. worthless/valuable
    I have struggled for a long time with self-worth and not ever truly being happy. God is working His Truth into every aspect of my life at the moment and showing me that I am WORTHY, I am valuable to Him, and some day He has a plan for me to find true happiness and to help others who walk in the same shoes I do in this season.

    1 Peter 2:9
    “…chosen…called you out of darkness into his WONDERFUL LIGHT”

    I am valuable to Him, I know this because I am chosen, He picked me out of the darkness and has walked the long journey through my desert into His wonderful and bright LIGHT!

  15. 365
    Martha says:

    Martha, Brevard, NC (doing study with a friend near and a friend far)

    1. To stand against the current of culture. To stand even in the face of open & subtle opposition from others, family & friends & enemies. To LOVE in the midst of opposition. To stand against insecurity and fear.

    2. As a stay-at-home mom of two little ones, so much of my day seems to be taken with the routine and the ordinary. Diapers, bills, laundry, making yet another meal or snack, dishes, errands, etc. It can feel very isolating. And the temptation can be to escape the mundane by just avoiding some of those menial tasks. It may sound odd but I can’t tell you how many times the presence of the Lord has suddenly come upon me, how quietly in my soul I have heard Him say “I take great pleasure in you” when I am just scrubbing the toilet or mopping floors. Sometimes in the silence while I’m scurrying to do my house cleaning while kids are napping and I’m just lost in thought, He will break through with those whispers and it will often bring me immediately to tears. He sees me. He loves me. This season is not lost on Him. It still blows my mind every time. It’s what I live for.

    3. I forget. I am not often confident. And yet He so continually and faithfully reminds me, as I mentioned in the example above. But it wouldn’t mean so much to me if it weren’t something I fear losing or if it wasn’t something I’m insecure about. I still feel like the one that was just “allowed” to sit at His table, just barely let in, maybe I squeezed through the door without Him noticing. Deep down I think I still fear He will tire of me and my failings and boot me out. I think this is why I still struggle with so much legalism.. trying to earn, trying to prove. Trying to secure. Day after day I wake up to strive again.. I want to break this vicious cycle, but I often don’t know how! It is so natural to me.

    4. To be honest they all hit hard. It made me realize I have some serious work to do. It’s so neat that this is where we are in the Gideon study as I am also watching/following Louie Giglio’s latest “WORD” series on Ephesians.. “Who do you think you are?” Obviously.. God is speaking. This girl needs to hear it. To be made new by it! But if I had to choose one of the disparities I would say fear/courageous. As a Christian I know it shouldn’t be.. but fear is like a constant companion.

  16. 366
    Beckie Potterfield says:

    Beckie, Florence, SC, Solo

    I am truly 2 weeks behind. My father-in-law passed away unexpectedly and so study has been brief each day. But still want to do this with all of you.

    1. I am being called to not only pray in my circumstances to speak boldly with love. I tend to not speak up – call myself Moses sometimes – because I stumble over explanations of how I believe. So boldly speaking and trusting God to give me the words to say an to know when not to speak.

    2. Washing dishes one day I marveled at the difference between the unclean glass and the unclean casserole dish. I knew that the glass had been used and needed to be washed but no one else knew it needed to be washed because it “looked clean”. Made me realize that there are some things that only God and I know about. They need to be confessed just like the stuff that the world can see. The casserole dish had baked on food and all the world could see it needed to be washed.

    3. When I am in a season of shallow study – does that make sense – maybe my routine has been interrupted and I am not “feeling” the presence of God, then I tend to panic or allow my thoughts to run to the negative. I am becoming more aware of these times so that I can return to that deeper study and awareness of God.

    4. Most of them resonated with me. The one though that truly spoke was incompetent/capable. Because at this time in my life I am feeling called to speak boldly I am having to cling to the truth that “God has enriched me in every way – in all my speaking and in all my knowledge” paraphrase of 1 Cor 1:5.

  17. 367
    Amy L says:

    Amy/Richmond, VA/solo
    I’ve been on vacation but am thrilled to be catching up here …

    1. I believe God is calling me to be more public with my faith, particularly around those who do not share it. I tend to avoid conspicuousness at all costs, in all aspects of my life, but I’d love to reach a point where my love for Jesus is obvious to everyone I meet.

    2. We’ve had a stretch of severe weather around here, and we’ve all been feeling jumpy, particularly about falling trees. My daughter in particular gets pretty frightened during storms. A couple weeks ago a severe storm was bearing down on us; my husband was out of town and the kids were getting nervous. Thunder rumbled and trees started to bend; as the wind really picked up I said aloud, “I trust you, God, to keep us safe.” I envisioned His hand over our house, protecting us. And the wind just stopped. Just STOPPED! It was an awesome, humbling moment. I hope I never forget the sense of trust and gratitude that washed over me.

    3. I do feel pretty confident that God is with me. I still struggle daily with fear, but I know He’s here.

    4. Fearful/courageous: fear has been a part of my life for so long. I know that God has equipped me for courage, but it’s not (yet) a natural response for me.

  18. 368
    Dawn Laird says:

    1. By faithfully prayerfully taking the next step in doing the next home bible study with my friends. I get extremely nervous when teaching others who have had more education then me. I know I could not do this without God giving me words to speak . That is stepping into my bravery . My next study is The Patriarchs.
    2. Just the mundane household chores everyday ones . My blessing in these is the fact that God has provided so much for me beyond what I deserve. I have a small apartment and food , plus clothes to wear. He provides more then enough for me. That is my blessing . There is so many out there with nothing. So everyday while doing these chores I can truly say God tells me to be thankful for just that, I have ………… 🙂
    3. The Lord is with you. Amen

  19. 369
    SKay Fires says:

    1) Encouraging faith in our children and placing important principles in the lives of our grandchildren in order to pass down the legacy of faith in God through generations yet to come.
    2) God is with me throughout my ordinary days and I am constantly reminded of His presence. God often awakens me in the night to spend time with Him in prayer and Bible study. He reveals to me solutions to problems or prepares me for future encounters. God speaks to me. His presence in my life through the Holy Spirit is very real.
    3) Answered in previous response
    4) In the past few years, God has been humbling me and changing my perception of myself. During this process, I have almost become incompetent and ungifted. Throughout my life God has blessed me with the skill of leadership and musical talent. I was very confident of my abilities to the point of being prideful and selfish. God has been humbling me in this season of my life. Because of changing circumstances (retirement, relocation), I have been forced to “take a back seat” and have not been presented the opportunities to use my talents and skills. Hence, I’ve become complacent and satisfied with these changes and this season of my life which now lacks commitment and service for the cause of Christ. Now I feel God calling me to serve again and I’m hesitant to make the commitments required for this service. God is changing me.

  20. 370
    Kerre Bogard says:

    Kerre, Chattanooga ,TN, Group

    1. Bravery as I join the new prayer warrior ministry for an additional service our church recently added.

    2. This may sound funny but in the tanning bed. No distractions (kids, cell phone, tv, etc.) Just me, my thoughts/prayers and my God. And yes he has clearly spoken to me during this time.

    3. Confident and I see evidence of it everywhere. In answered prayed, through twitter post I have read, and just asking him to feel his presence.

    4. Incompetent/Capable. I think I used the excuse of incompetent so I wouldn’t feel capable even though through him I was and I knew it.

  21. 371
    Marcy says:

    Marcy, Euless, TX/solo
    1. To turn the tide of my family legacy
    3. Confident – have had many diffcult times but The Lord blesses us, gives us strength and provides
    4. Fearful/courageous – not only holds me back but allows others to make me feel incompetent

  22. 372
    Katie T, says:

    Katie, San Antonio, solo

    1. Still praying about my specific area of holy bravery. It might be sharing Jesus with a non-Christian friend, or being more intentional in teaching my young children about the Lord.

    2. Many years ago at a Christian summer camp I was stumbling up a steep, dirt hill in the dark, upset about a conflict with a friend and when I reached the top of the hill I realized I had been holding a flashlight the whole way! God spoke to me so clearly as I looked up into a starry, mountain sky that He was present with me, but I must acknowledge Him for comfort and guidance.

    3. I tend to be confident that God is with me, but fail to be conscious of it on a daily basis.

    4. Just recently I had the experience of feeling beyond incompetent as I helped my family care for my dying grandmother in her home. God was so present with me in those days and nights by her bedside, giving me the wisdom and peace to do what needed to be done. Never before have I felt so fully dependent on His strength to carry me through a difficult situation. I hope to use this experience in building my trust in God’s ability to make me a competent stay-at-home mother for my 2 children.

  23. 373

    Shellie P.
    Spokane, WA

    Sorry, I’m 2 weeks behind! I hope I can still participate and someone will read my post! I actually had worked on it for about an hour and shortly before I hit “Submit Comment” my daughter decided that unplugging the internet would affect absolutely no one so my comment went nowhere and was gone!

    1. I’m really not sure. I mean, I know I need to be brave to stay sober, but I don’t have any specifics.

    2. I’m not new to this and I still have nothing. Can I feel lame and unspiritual? Too late!

    3. I feel extremely insecure about this. I don’t understand how I can ask God day in and day out to remove the obsession to drink from me, just like I was told to do in AA and He doesn’t. I’ve been sober for months while working a program to the best of my ability while having to resist an almost overpowering urge to drink to the point that it feels like my skin is crawling I want to drink so bad while I sit back and watch Him lift the obsession from others with only days of sobriety! How can I trust that He’s with me when He doesn’t even do for me what hundreds of people have told me I need to pray for Him to do?! They’ve done it and it worked and for me it just hasn’t worked.

    4. I could have chosen ALL of the pairings, cause every single one of them is a part of my daily life, but I chose incompetent vs. capable because that very week I had used the word incompetent to describe myself at least twice! That’s pretty much how I feel at camp when I don’t understand any of the instructions I am given to do anything and always just feel confused and frustrated. And that’s true in any area of work that I am asked to do!

    • 373.1
      Jackie UK says:

      Hi Shellie,
      Congratulations on the months you have been sober! You have done so well and the Lord is with you through every difficult hour. You sound incredibly brave to me clinging to Jesus to get through each day whilst feeling so insecure.
      I am praying for you through this very early period of recovery,that you stay strong in Jesus and feel His presence. He is close.

      Love Jackie

      • I did have 6 months of sobriety last month and then a week later drank again. I have 30 days again today and I think I’m doing better, even though the obsession still has not lifted. Some days it’s quieter than others, but it’s always there.

  24. 374
    Heather E says:

    It’s been extremely difficult to do this study and stay up on it which internally is a must for me as a teacher/admin type. Really hard to extend grace to myself.
    We are in the middle of our home being listed on the market while multiple showings each day, and now to all the inspections, and details headed to closing. Then there’s the slower than molasses pace of the place we hope to move to. We are shocked to find ourselves in the place between all the children raised and retirement for my husband in a few years. In two days, half of our furniture is being loaded on a worthy ministry’s truck as donation. Half the time I can’t find my workbook to do it in the few quiet times that come. I am downloading the Priscilla’s videos from Lifeway, and it may be that’s all the further I get: I can watch them on my phone (goes everywhere with me) when I can’t grab my daughter’s laptop.
    1. This will be a solo feat,but God is able and I know I will never be alone.
    2.Years of raising children, homeschooling and teaching at a Christian private school have provided me with ample material for learning how God shows up in the daily grind.
    3.As an early Christian, I stuggled with the idea that God was with me. Now, I know it as an immovable truth: He will never leave or change His mind about us. Glory!
    4.From childhood, rejection is an 8 lane expressway in my flesh. God’s Word shows me over and over again that in Christ Jesus I am accepted.

  25. 375
    Ally says:

    Ally, Edmonton, AB Canada, solo
    I am up to date with the study, but have been procrastinating on the posting.
    1. God is calling me to holy bravery to share Him with friends, neighbours and family.
    2. I see glimpses of His footprints in my life daily, but usually it is in reflection and not necessarily at the time. I pray that it will become more apparent to me when it is happening.
    3. It would be comforting and free up so many resources just to praise Him.
    4. rejected/accepted

  26. 376

    Kelly from Hollidaysburg, PA – going solo

    1 – As the culture in our country seems to become increasingly hostile to Christianity, it may very well be a literal bravery that we need to have to carry out our faith and pass it on to others. God has called me to an arena that is very “dark” spiritually (the performing arts), but He always manages to provide another glimmer of “light” to remind me that I am not entirely alone.

    2 – Raising 4 children (ages 11, 8, 5, and 2) keeps me quite busy. And God is frequently providing opportunities for me to learn lessons through them or to impart His truths into their lives.

    3 – I tend to be quite confident that He is with me… but this has taken time for me to fully realize and appreciate!

    4 – I certainly can relate to the fearful/courageous disparity, but more often I relate to the incompetent/capable disparity. As a singer/actress who is constantly putting myself out there to be judged for my capabilities through auditions, it is hard not to believe the judgments that others make about me and not give up altogether!

  27. 377
    Amy Coxhead says:

    1) Holy Bravery required as oldest child leaves the nest.
    2) Daily task getting the mail, God met me there (more than once) to calm me and give peace with bad news.
    3) Our church is enduring division and strife and I wondered why we should keep going there if God was not “in it”, only to find out He is there EVERY time I enter and will never leave me or forsake me.
    4)Worthless/Valuable, countless hours discussing with so many moms how much we should be in the workplace, and forgetting God allowed the sacrifice for so many of our kids who needed us home more.

  28. 378
    Karen E says:

    Karen E, Rochester, MN
    with one other

    1. to stand firm on taking care of myself instead of succumbing to others’ manipulation.
    2. Just “happening” to be somewhere, bumping into someone who needs a hug or a kind word.
    3. I am firmly convinced that God is with me and has been with me always. I haven’t always known this. Such joy to have that confidence now!
    4. rejected/accepted

  29. 379
    Linda Francia says:

    Linda, Mobile,AL, solo

    1. To be a bold witness to some unsaved family members.
    2. Do laundry…I am reminded of how God has cleansed me whiter then snow.
    3. Varies depending on how much time I have spent with God that day.
    4.fearful/courageous .. Struggle with anxiety

  30. 380
    Tracy says:

    Tracy, Marion,IL Solo
    1. God is calling me to Holy bravery in speaking the truth to my family and friends about his goodness, love and mercy.
    2. One of my favorite times spent with the Lord lately has been weeding my garden. Nobody else wants anything to do with it so it gives me great opportunity for uninterrupted quiet time. A while back the Lord had been convicting me regarding a neighbor and he actually provided a perfect opportunity for me to strike up a conversation with that neighbor and show some love.
    3. I do feel pretty confident in knowing that God is always with me. Sometimes I think we all need a reminder though.
    4. I can feel bits and pieces of all of the disparities but the one between insignificant and special is the biggest. It’s often hard for me to grasp who significant and special I am not only to God but to those around me.

  31. 381
    Heidi says:

    Heidi~Lindale, TX, Solo
    (Been out of town, still on track with Bible study, just catching up with blog posts 😉
    First of all, I want to say I am absolutely loving this Bible study and am getting so much out of it. It is like water for my dry bones! Thank you for providing this framework to be in such a great study this summer!
    1. I think God is calling me to be brave in the area of honest communication both at home and at my job. To stand up for what is right in our society is like a salmon swimming upstream. Sometimes it is easier and safer to just remain quiet and avoid conflict than to be bold and speak up lovingly for what is right.
    2. This section was powerfully impacting for me. It helped me to freshly see that God’s favor is on my life in the very fact that I have ordinary, everyday tasks to do. It caused me to well up with thankfulness for all the abundance of blessings in my life (and rethink complaining). Often when I am sleeping or wake up in the middle of the night (I am a teacher) I will get an idea of a way to teach something the next day. Because I want God to use me in my classroom and be effective in what I am doing with my students, I constantly ask Him to guide me each day. I love it when He gives me an idea I have never had before.
    3. Even though I KNOW God has revealed Himself to me and spoken to me at times, I still struggle with insecurity in whether or not I am hearing His voice. I know in my head He is with me, but sometimes doubt in my heart.
    4. The two words that resonated with me were incompetent and ungifted. I think this especially happens when I compare myself to others. God sees me as capable and equipped and although I do not feel like I “see” Him at work all the time, He is. I think when we get to heaven we will have a “Wonderful Life” experience (like the movie) and clearly see how God used us and equipped us to do the task He set before us. Insecurity can be so dibilitating!

  32. 382
    Darlene J says:

    Darlene, Macedonia, OH
    Ordinary tasks… Laundry-Blessing of clothes to wear/choose from. Paperwork–Job, $ to pay bills do things.

    Self Image of Rejected & Insignificant

  33. 383
    Stacey says:

    Stacey, Garland, TX, small group
    I think God is calling me to take on a large role in the children’s ministry at my church. As a teacher I have shied away from working with the kids because, in my sinful nature, I want to take on something that has a little more recognition. So, it seems that he is calling me to bravery in serving Him humbly. I’m pretty jazzed about it actually, it involves acting and leading the large group worship sessions for elementary students which is nothing like I’ve done before, so it’s challenging. There is no room for doubting Him now! Sunday it will be lights, camera, action, and I have to believe He will guide me through learning and memorizing the lines and Bible story, and then allow me to serve Him by equipping children and families through our children’s ministry. I most often think of myself as ungifted and insignificant so to be on a stage in front of a large crowd teaching His word … Well, that seems like more than I am equipped for ,,, but he’s called me to do it, and I’m ready to follow orders! Lord, I am so honored that you trust me with your children and that you’re giving me this opportunity to directly impact their spiritual growth. I pray that I might serve you in a way that brings glory to your name and that allows me to make deep and lasting connections with families and children that need you and might not yet know you! Be with me as I study my lines. Help me to internalize the messages as I have the material I teach at school, and allow it to flow through me as it comes from you! Thank you for loving us, for equipping us, and allowing us to walk on this earth in the light of your majesty! Amen.

  34. 384
    Cindy says:

    Studying with 1 other.

    1. Challenging my daughter in her walk with The Lord.
    2. Opportunities to pray for others. Also the things God teaches me ie how He desires to cleanse me as I cleanse our dishes.
    3. The fact is God is always with me. Thank Him for His presence and intentionally invite Him into each day.
    4. Fearful and courageous. Try to do things in my own strength. Excited when I see God working in and through me for His glory.

  35. 385
    Darlene in Monroe, GA says:

    1) My parents nor any of my siblings are Christians. Trying to live a godly life in front of them and telling them about Jesus

    2)It was VBS week and the AC was out at church (of course right!). Anyway the AC guy was talking to me and it sounded like a foreign language. I finally said plain English please. And it was like God hit me over the head and impressed on me not to use “Church” words while talking to kids that don’t come to church. Talk in their language about Jesus.

    3) It was such a freeing and beautiful thing when I got it through to my heart that it doesn’t matter what I feel – God is still there and He still loves me. My cicrcumstances don’t change His character. GLory!

    4) insignificant / special – again when I finally got it that I wasn’t being vain or self loving when I said I am a Princess – my Father is King!

  36. 386
    Missy S says:

    Missy S, Chapel Hill, NC

    *Sorry I am a few weeks behind*

    1. God is calling me to have the courage to tear down the altar of perfectionism that I have worshiped at for so long. Several years ago, God began to liberate me from this stronghold, but this study has helped me to see that I have allowed it to remain erect in certain areas of my life.

    2. I am a terrible runner, but I do jog for exercise on occasion. Something about my inadequacy as a runner helps me to realize my dependency on God and see things more clearly. I now call them “vision runs” because this is when God most often thins the veil for me and speaks to me most clearly.

    3. I think I always realize this truth intellectually, but it doesn’t always seep down to the level of my practical awareness.

    4. Definitely fearful/courageous, but when I read the verse for incompetent/capable, it also resonated with me. Both are tied in with the stronghold of perfectionism. I am terrified of making mistakes and equally terrified that I won’t be enough in and of myself, which reveals the pride that festers in my heart. Why am I not ok with Christ being enough? Why am I still trying to justify myself? Oh, God, help me to rest in Your sufficiency alone. This is why 2 Cor. 3:5-6 is so beautiful to me and why I chose it for SSMT this month.

  37. 387
    Twyla McAmis says:

    1.When I focus on my weakness I become fearful,defensive, and ashamed. This causes my confidence to dwindle, and keeps me from moving forward, because i start to get passive. 2. I have given credit to certain spiritual leaders before instead of God and was dissapointed when they failed me. I realize now that I put my trust in them too much and it was my fault not theirs. I know that many times without meaning to I have also taken just a little bit of the credit and praise for what God alone has done and then I fell that pride rising up. I dont want this in my life and I want to be able to recognize it and get rid of it. 3.He still loves me, but is frustrated and impatient with me. 4. The four steps of giving God our gofts was a real eye-opener for me. So many times I have tried to present my gofts to God and its seems like nothing didnt work out. I realize more and more that I wasnt prepared because I really didnt take the time to prepare. I let other things and people comsume my time.This was very encouraging to me because I had never thought about these four steps before. I think I have had honest doubt and still full of faith when trying to trust God with family in many different areas of their lifes. Although many times I doubt and get anxious, deep down in my heart I know that God can, and will do above all that I think or ask. Therefore I know that I have an imperfect faith that needs to be strengthened. Praise God for his longsuffering and unconditional love for me.

  38. 388

    Hey there! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading through this post reminds me of my old room mate! He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this post to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Many thanks for sharing!

  39. 389
    Rachelle says:

    Rachelle, Eastern NM, solo

    1. God is calling me to quit hiding and take ahold of the calling he has placed on my life.For me that means acknowleding that I am the person that is supposed to be in the leadership positions in which I’ve been placed. No one else is going to show up and be the “real person” in charge, it’s me.

    2.Running. God has been revealing his glory to me over and over as I literally run miles down the road. The communion time is amazing and almost overwhelming. I continue thinking about how each of us run our own God ordained race.

    3. It’s funny, as a church-raised youngster I was very confidentin God’s revelation to me. At 13 I traveled to Mexico with a missions team because I was knew I was supposed to go. I had no money but signed up anyway and my way was anonymously paid. As an adult some things have happened and it has caused me to question past revelations, so I became insecure. So much so that I decided I must be an introvert(God is laughing). But he is graciously moving me back into something. I don’t know what. I don’t care what. I am just ready to go anywhere with Jesus.

    3.worthless-valuable. There was a long season in my life where I felt that God was finished with me. But I know that I have been chosen by God, that I am his very own(reference to 1 Peter 2:9)

  40. 390
    Sue says:

    Sue. Carmel, IN
    He [Christ Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the Firstborn over all creation.
    Colossians 1:15 NIV84

  41. 391
    Joan-Indianapolis says:

    “Be joyful always. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus”.

    Thessalonians 5:16-18

  42. 392
    Lorraine Volk says:

    from Lorraine, Corpus Christi, “I thank Jesus Christ our Lord, who has given me strength,
    that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service.” 1 Tim 1:12

  43. 393
    Kathy says:

    Kathy, Missouri City, TX
    Romans 12:12 (NIV)
    Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

  44. 394
    Debbie Gentry says:

    Debbie G July 16, Poplarville , MS

    1 John 4:14 ( NIV)
    14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world

  45. 395
    Leslie Crawley says:

    Interactive #2 (A little behind)
    A pair of terms that best describe a disparity I have dealt with between my self-perception and a Biblical view of who I am in Christ is:

    Fearful – versus – Courageous/NOT having the spirit of fear = II Timothy 1:7

    “God has NOT given me a spirit of fear but of power & of love & of a sound mind!”

  46. 396
    Nancy Cherota Sonnier says:

    Proberbs 27:17 (NIV)

    Iron sharpens iron
    And one man sharpens another

  47. 397
    Laura says:

    Laura, Prairieville, LA; solo:
    1)witnessing without fear of other’s ridicule
    2)I was doing the dishes when the Lord told me to go through my purses to donate some. I did. The next day at church someone wanted gently used purses to auction on Facebook to help with a terminally ill child’s expenses.
    3)Not confident enough. Help me Jesus!
    4)fearful and courageous. Fear keeps me from saying things, witnessing and standing up for my beliefs. Courage helps me make an impact for the Lord’s kingdom.

  48. 398
    Karen Wood says:

    Karen, Nampa, ID (praying for a spirit of sensitivity) In reply, Jesus said,” A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He bandaged his wombs, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him’,he said,’and when I return I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’ Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Luke 10:30-37 NIV

  49. 399
    Rachelle says:

    1. Holy bravery: To be content where I am planted, to do the mundane dailyness of life with a more contented and grateful spirit. For me it will take supernatural courage to do this, rather than to do what others expect/want me to do. This is walking “against this current” in our present culture.
    2. Meeting God in the ordinary: I thinks He meets me here (in the ordinary) most often. He has reminded me often (thankfully He is patient) as I clean and do daily household tasks that He has given me four people to nurture and care for. The “extraordinary” is that I really do have be reminded of this frequently.
    3. God’s promise that He is with me: Often, I am insecure in that promise even though He has proven over and over again that He is with me. His Word is my anchor and my security when I cannot see or feel. In that I can be confident.
    4. Disparity: Fearful/Courageous I tend to be fearful, yet if God has given me a truth, He has enabled me on an occasion or two to speak up.

  50. 400
    Denise says:

    Denise from Lenexa, KS in small group of 2

    1. Holy bravery to walk through this very rocky point in our marriage and to not settle for divorce despite the obstacles
    2. God in the ordinary: Just realizing how blessed I am for family, the beauty of nature, food on our table, shelter and air conditioning, etc.
    3. God’s promise: I feel His presence at all times and the Bible verses we’ve been learning have helped immeasureably
    4. Insignificant vs. Special: Feel insignificant in my little world compared to others in my church, LPM, etc.

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