Siesta Summer Bible Study 2014 Gathering 3!

Hey Everyone! We’ve made it to Gathering 3 of our summer study! You guys are doing a fantastic job! The summer months are challenging for maintaining a discipline like in-depth Bible study. I’m tremendously blessed you’re carving out the time to take this journey with us and I am asking God to reveal His Son so powerfully to you through these pages.

SSBS Session 3 COTD from LPV on Vimeo.

If you have trouble viewing the video or simply have no time for it, here are the written discussions for you and your small group. Your answers will comprise your comments:

1. Turn to p.71 in  your Week Three homework and glance down the page at the two questions on the equations. First, if you wrote any additional “minus hindrance” equations, I’m dying to hear them. Don’t stress if you didn’t add one but share it if you did.  Second, were there two equations among those I listed in the lesson that resonated with you? If so, which ones and perhaps even why?


2. We’re going to do something a little different in response to Week Four. Instead of locking in on a specific question I posed in print during the week of homework, I want you to choose any day that from that week that God emphasized with you. In other words, did one day of homework stick out the most to you in your journey with Christ? If so, which one and why? Feel free to take a full paragraph in your comment to answer this question since it’s a big one.


The video for Session Five, which is completely optional in our summer study, goes into the portion of scripture that addresses healthy sexuality. If this topic resonates with you, you might consider downloading this particular session. (All of the teaching sessions can be found by clicking here.) In this session, I introduce the 28-Day Challenge, which can also be found in your workbook on pages 112-113. The rest of the study stays focused on the remaining chapters and wide range of topics found in 1st and 2nd Thessalonians but the 28-Day Challenge comes with much love to anyone who could use some help getting on a path of victory in the area of sexuality. You would do the 28-Day Challenge and the remaining 4 weeks of the study simultaneously. The 28-Day Challenge is primarily Scripture-focused prayer and would only add a few minutes to your homework. Those few minutes could be the difference between victory and defeat in an area strategically targeted by the enemy. I love you and I’ve been there. I deeply want you to know the dignity and honor of Christ’s gracious will for you.

OK!! For our next gathering in 2 weeks, please complete the homework assignments in Weeks Five and Six of the study! Here are your memory verses:


Week Five Memory Verse: (Our title verse! We have to do this one!)
“For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness.” 1 Thessalonians 5:5 ESV


Week Six Memory Verse:
“To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of His calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by His power.” 2 Thessalonians 1:11 ESV


Thank you for the privilege to walk with you through these eight weeks of study. PERSEVERE!!! You are already halfway! So much love to you.


269 Responses to “Siesta Summer Bible Study 2014 Gathering 3!”

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  1. 151
    Holly says:

    Equations I added:
    Waiting-hindrance= rest/trust

    Equations that resonated with me:
    Singleness-hindrance= a gospel globetrotter
    Waiting-hindrance= rest/trusting
    I have been struggling with waiting on God’s timing in this season of singleness, so these equations help me to remember that there is good in this season of my life. God has a purpose for it.

    Day One’s homework stood out the most to me. God recently revealed to me that there is a stronghold of insecurity in my life. I kind of knew it was there, but just within the last week, He put the spotlight on it, and I can’t ignore it anymore. The Lord spoke to me this week and told me that the reason why I cannot give out grace is because I haven’t experienced it and I cannot experience it because I have not given it out. I realized that I have never truly experienced the wonder of grace. Christ has saved me and given it to me, but I never truly received it. I haven’t been able to embrace grace and all that it means. Day One’s homework pointed out Romans 5:20 “But where sin multiplied, grace multiplied even more.” I had never realized what that meant. I knew it in my head, but I’m still trying to get it in my heart. (It’s no wonder why I’ve been struggling with unforgiveness!) I want to experience grace in its fullness so that I can grant others the same grace that I have received.

  2. 152
    Sandy says:

    My pain-hindrance=my passion
    My shame-hindrance=testimony of His Mercy & Grace

    Others have already put into words so eloquently, my feelings about these equations. They are my story. God is continually working on me, at age 51, to be able to share it in the right way with the right people.

    Each day spoke to me so much, and I have sought for many years to love from the inside out, and live the way these scriptures teach to live.
    I guess the day that spoke to me the most would be Day 5,because my husband and I teach a young couples Life Group. We had a question from a wife of an agnostic that, after asking several people that we value their opinion about Biblical matters, and after reading Day 5, still do not know how to answer her question to give her hope, but. . .Day 5 spoke to me.

    Thank you, so much Beth. This study is amazing. We are continuing to have more ladies join us, and we are planning to do the study again in the Fall or as soon as we can,, with the teaching videos.

  3. 153
    Nancy Wiseman says:

    Mistakes – hindrance = trust in God, not myself
    Loneliness – hindrance = closer relationship with God

    Week 4- day 1 – “perfect love drives out fear”- more of Him, less of me. More of Him means more maturity in Him, attaining the full measure of the fullness of Christ. I needed to hear that from The Lord – these words reaffirmed a recent change in my life and why God is leading me where He is in this current season. Thank you, and thank You, Lord Jesus!

  4. 154
    Diane E. says:

    1. struggle – hindrance = endurance
    anxiety – hindrance = impetus

    2. What really spoke to me this week was lesson 3, “Stop in the Name of Love”. I really did a lot of underlining in this section because the words and ideas struck me, and because I could relate to them so much. I keep want to make life so much harder than it needs to be. Maybe because of the way I grew up, I can relate to the neurosis of assuming that God always wants the really hard things for me and that he wants me to do things that I really don’t want to do. Maybe that’s true from time to time, but it was a real wake-up call to me that God wants to work WITH my gifts, not against them, and that I don’t have to keep pushing myself so much, bending over backwards to try to please God, because God is using me just the way that I am because he loves me just the way I am. He is using me when I am quietly doing my work and going about my business; I don’t have to do more and more in order for God to use what I’m doing for his greater good.

  5. 155
    ValinKY says:

    Valerie, solo, Louisville KY
    Pg 71 – I added sadness-hinderance=joy and lonliness-hinderance=fellowship

    For week 4, day 4 resonated with me because I am in the middle of a grieving time. This portion of scripture has always been a favorite but now it has a different more personal meaning. My BFF went to sleep Jan 22, 2014 and I long for the day when Christ will awaken her for us to be reunited in Him. I wrote the entire paragraph at the bottom of pg 105 in my journal because it is exactly where I am and what I want God to heal in my heart. I bought the book you recommended, Spiritual Rhythms, and am working my way through the Winter activities. Thank you so much for that suggestion.

  6. 156
    Cindy M says:

    1. Hit after hit – hindrance = Praise The Lord.
    Anxiety – hindrance = Trust

    Devastation – hindrance = Trust

    2. Day 4-
    A friend from church passed away very suddenly on the day before I did this lesson. It was a great comfort to me. I also shared it with others who were in shock & pain. Also a lady at church who just lost her job suddenly due to the fact her husband has been in the hospital for over a month with bone cancer just after her sister passed away. I sent her Ps 130:7. Your last paragraph on page 105, I sent out to friends who are all hurting right now with the lost of loved one suddenly & unexpected. We praise God for His words & His timing. While we do not know His plan. We Praise His Holy name, Jesus Christ, the one & only who we await for to come with the sound of a trumpet for all of us to hear Him & praise Him… Lord of Lords & King of Kings…. Jesus.

  7. 157
    Amy says:

    Heartache-hindrance= joy
    Exhaustion-hindrance= rest in Christ
    The equations that included heartbreak and singleness spoke right to my heart. I’m just walking out of a long season of hurt from a previous relationship, but Christ has used it to deepen my walk with Him and to draw my heart close. Although I sometimes struggle with the “what ifs” (And I’ll never forget the lessons from Esther about ‘what if’!) especially related to singleness, I know that the Lord has my life in His hand, and He is working for my good and for His glory.

    Day 1 of Week 4 was what I needed- which way to I want to go? Something will get more of me, and I pray with all of my heart that it is more of Jesus and less of myself. I’m so thankful for His love that pursues my heart!

  8. 158
    Tangila Webb says:

    1. Heartbreak-hindrance= depth and my pain-hindrance= my passion were the two that reonated most with me.

    2. The topic of hopelessness in Day 4 really spoke to me because this is where I find myself currently. When my marriaqge was in distress, I prayed, fasted, obeyed and more with the hope that God could (would) heal and save my marriage. Well, my then husband left, filed for divorce, and has since re-married twice. This last one is the one that has thrown me into a state of hopelessness because I believe that I’m doomed to being alone with respect to committed love and companionship. I try to focus on the love of my children- two boys who love their dad- but honestly, it’s not enough. I know the truth in my head but my heart is having a hard time catching up.

    Thanks for this study because it is making me face the truth about the condition of my heart.

  9. 159
    Amanda says:

    1. Childlessness-hinderance= Mother of many
    My husband and I tried to have children for eleven years and we were never able to conceive. Month after month I cried tears of disappointment which became year after year of tears of pain and hurt. I just couldn’t understand but I knew God had a reason and I held onto this thought then and now. I may never know the reason here but in Heaven all will be revealed. Although we have no children of our own, we have been able to give our love and support to many children all over the world. God has given me a sense of peace on this matter. It is still difficult at times but I know God has something in store for us we just have to remain faithful and trust in Him.

    2.Day three was when God said to me, “I’m listening.” I had been praying to God and asking if I was living too quiet a life, am I keeping to myself too much. Did I need to be a more outspoken Christian. No kidding, these were the exact words I was using and then I came to day three and I Thessalonians 4:11. God’s words were so loud and clear I was so in awe of His voice. I attended the LPL Biloxi event and God spoke so clearly to me through the event about other things I had been asking about and day three came after the event and I remember a lady saying she attended the leader portion of the event and found her calling and how excited she was. She said, “God is telling me to calm down and enjoy the ride.” If feel that is what God said to me with this verse.

    • 159.1
      Amanda says:

      P.S. In all my years of searching and asking for scriptural guidance on childlessness, this Bible study is the first and only place I have found scriptural support. Thank you Beth for leading me to finally find the scriptural support I needed.

  10. 160
    Krystal says:

    1. My failures-hindrance= humility, growth
    The two that stuck out to me were disappointment-hindrance=faith
    And devastation-hindrance=trust these stuck out to me most because they seem to be the ones I see in my own life within the last few years I’m so thankful for God’s faithfulness to turn a situation that may be opposite of what I hoped for and turn it and use it for our good, to draw us to Him
    2. The day in week 4 that spoke the most to me was day 4, in the fact that it brought to light some new ways to think about Christ’s sacrifice that I had not thought about before and in the way that it highlighted the way that He makes us whole even through the process of grieving the loss of a loved one. It brought to mind how He carried me through the loss of my grandmother and I was reminded of the hope and joy of where we will one day see each other again with the One who gives us hope of an eternity with Him

  11. 161
    Carrie says:

    Sorry I am late 🙁

    The main focus of Day 3 resounded in me! I am absolutely crazy about the LORD JESUS and sometimes it’s that “crazy” that messes with me! I want to do what HE wants. I want to obey and walk in HIS best, not just what is good. It’s the “church girl” in me that I battle, that can make me a little neurotic to over analyze, I think. But now, I think the LORD has been bringing me to where I just want to be HIS girl. It’s just what you put into words on Day 3. HE has shown me that I just need to love HIM and just walk! No fear of messing it up! Sometimes HIS rhema comes in such a clear way. Sometimes it is nothing more than the fact that I asked for HIS wisdom and no matter how I feel, I walk in faith and receive that HE has given it. That is hugely freeing for me!!
    It was really cool to see this thing that GOD has been doing in me , brought up in the study. Not that it necessarily needed validity but it was as though it affirmed that the freedom is real.

  12. 162
    Tiffany says:

    This was hard to choose because I identified with so many. Thank you for all of your examples because it really stirred my mind.
    1. Insecurities-hindrance= BOLDNESS
    I have had to put my insecurities aside and pray for boldness to be a light in every moment that God places me for his glory.
    2. Injustice- hindrance= God’s wrath
    I have someone close to me who has been harmed by someone and I loved this example because it reminds me to leave room for God. I am not in control.
    3. Loneliness- hindrance= contentment
    Sometimes we can be surrounded by people and feel so lonely. It is when I learn to get what I need from God and take expectations off of my loved ones that I find contentment. Open my hands to thanks for everything in my leads to this contentment.

    Day One was my favorite although I get so much out of each day. Can you tell it is hard for me to make decisions:-) I loved the examples of increase for good and bad things. Then I loved that you showed a step further that, “right there in the increase, a miracle of decreases forced into play: as we are more and more aware of His love, we fear less and less”. As a new mother I was full of fear and worry and constantly played the if..then scenarios in my head. I love this thought because as I am more focused on His love not only for me but also for my three boys, I can’t help but fear less. Loved how you pulled this together in day one!

  13. 163
    Amy says:

    1) devastation-hindrance=trust
    These spoke to me because I have been dealing with some things from my childhood that are impacting my current life situation.

    2) Day 3 and minding your own business – this is sometimes hard for me. God has brought some things to light in my current situation.

  14. 164
    Linda says:

    Linda, Johnstown, Pa.

    1. My additions: grief – hindrance = comforter
    loneliness – hindrance = student of the Word
    Beth’s 2 that resonated with me:
    heartbreak – hindrance = depth
    disappointment – hindrance = faith
    I chose these 2 because I have known a lot of heartache and disappointments in my life, and I feel they have caused me to go deeper into the Word and to value the deeper and lasting things in life more than just surface things, and have also caused my faith to grow stronger.

    2. From week 4, day 3 “Stop In The Name of Love” spoke to me because I have a hard time knowing when to say “no” to others, especially family members who keep asking me for things (mostly money). I feel used and taken advantage of, and I know that “tough love” sometimes says “no” in order to force the other person to take responsibility for things they should, but on the other hand, the Bible says that if my brother is in need and I can help him, I should. So I struggle to find the right balance.

  15. 165
    Rosalie Castleberry says:

    Lessons 3, 4, and 5 were all resonating with me and I could write on all of them. However, I will go with 3. They story of your uncle really grabbed me. We have a friend who is driving us crazy with end times stuff and the current political situation. She is a believer and knows “the end of the story” but she is overcome with fear. She watches Fox News 24/7 (and yes, I also believe they have better coverage of the news) and she will talk about nothing else. She doesn’t believe any sermon at church or any Bible study should be about anything except end times and/or politics. We try to convince her that since she is a believer she knows that all of this is working out to HIS purpose, but although she agrees, she will not quit the obsessiveness. She has lost almost all her friends over this. She, and chapter 3, remind me NOT to become a fanatic and to remember that GOD IS IN CONTROL and HE has it ordained what is going to happen.

  16. 166
    Beverly says:

    Childhood trauma – Hindrance = Testimony/Ministry

    Painful social – Hindrance = Freedom from default into
    attempts Tower Of Isolation

  17. 167
    Beverly says:

    Day 1, Pg. 90, First full paragraph.
    God is SO taking back land within my life’s boundries that
    the devil has been standing on for 40+ yrs. Just recently,
    brother said to me: “God is going to put you on the racks –
    He’s gonna Stretch you!” Weeks later I began the study by
    Christine Caine entitled, “Undaunted”…God said it to me
    through her too. This Day 1 paragraph, another confirming word and VERY Encouraging.
    I sense that my feet are standing on the edge of the thing (whatever it is). God is SUCH and ADVENTURE!!!

  18. 168
    Jackie Pope says:

    Jackie, Covington, IN: 1. sorrow-hindrance=peace and what spoke to me most was my life-hindrance= destiny. 2. Day 3 – page 101 – mind your own business is a lesson I needed.

  19. 169
    Julie L. says:

    The J & J girls here with this week’s homework:
    a) My workplace – hindrance = a good witness opportunity.
    b) My life – hindrance = my God ordained destiny / my spiritual gift fully utilized.

    2) Week 4, page 105, where it talks about hopelessness and feeling hopeless because you cannot help yourself. Although I know this in my head, it really spoke to my heart this week as a much needed reminder that God is always in control even when I can’t see it and I just need to hold strong to my faith during these difficult times.

  20. 170
    Peggyann Calderwood says:

    Oh Beth, My prayer for this world would be Celibacy – hindrance = sexual purity. If only the boys – especially- would feel God’s Love and know His word shows this to be true. We would have a world full of loving families instead of a world with the guys looking for new girls every two minutes then leaving them! And the girls would not be pressured to “give in to guys to show them they love them. And children would have a Daddy at home to show they love. Always remember Jesus Loves You Beth and so do I.

  21. 171
    Susan says:

    Susan, Piscataway, NJ – going solo

    1. my two additons to the list:
    obesity – hindrance = appropriate weight
    divorce – hindrance = fresh start
    These are the two that speak most to me, because they are intertwined. During my brief marriage my husband told me repeatedly that I was repulsive to him. I responded by overeating and gained 60 pounds in 13 months of marriage. The marriage ended 13 years ago, and I am still carrying around a lot of extra weight which is now affecting my health, general well being.

    2. The day that spoke most to me is day 1. The concept of more and more. The truth that “God has handpicked you to abound”. The page plus of scripture references. The glorious truth at the end of the lesson that God cannot love me more and more – His love is already stretched to it’s limits – it is perfect.

  22. 172
    SandyT/kc says:

    2 listed that ministered to me:
    What happened {and DIDN”T happen}-what hindered=an overcomer
    I have been very challenged/convicted to NOT let hindrances hinder….to NOT let
    hinderers hinder…realizing that I have consistently been my own worst hinderer!
    My own equations:
    Craving/anxiety-hindrance=renewed focus
    Weariness-hindrance=His Strength
    Week 4, Day One: “Something is going to grow. Something will get “more” of us”~~I get
    to choose! Thank You Jesus!!
    Colossians 1:11 MSG….:)sandyT

  23. 173
    Rachel says:

    My own one:
    Unsure future – hindrance = utter dependence on God
    The ones that spoke most to me were:
    Singleness – hindrance = gospel globetrotter
    Disappointment – hindrance = faith
    This was my favorite day of week three- I loved it so much and it was even cool to go back to it right now and be reminded of it!

    The most powerful day of week four was Day 4. I had mentioned in my last post, that I had my first spiritual conversation with my grandma a few weeks ago, and that morning my grandma accepted Christ with my mom and I when we were out to breakfast! After coming home, I started Day 4 and it was all about the hope we have in Christ. After years of uncertainty whether my grandma knew Jesus it was so cool to study about heaven and Christ raising us up there! I’m just so happy to know that my grandma will now get to take part in that as well!

  24. 174
    Lisa says:

    1. Equations I created
    worry-hindrance = trust
    “fix-it-now” – hindrance = patience
    These apply to me so very much because my biggest issue in my prayer life is wanting answers now and then worrying about why certain issues don’t get resolved and trying to fix things myself. God has been so patient and good to me to teach me how to let go and life is a much more enjoyable walk when I let him do that.
    The two equations that were listed that resonated with me were My pain-hindrance = passion and hearbreak-hindrance =depth. An extended family break-up several years ago caused a lot of pain in my life, but God’s grace has seen me through it and when I give it all to him then it ignites my passion to extend grace and love to others and helps me to see everyone from His perspective of unconditional love and grace.

    2. The day that spoke to me the most was Day 3 and the part about determining God’s will. I’m not entering the 12th month of praying for my 28 year old son that God will do a great work in his life, provide him with a job and career and the right place to live. He moved back in with us almost a year ago because he has no job. I pray diligently for him daily for a job and career and yet he still sits here without one. I’m a herder myself by nature and a fixer so it can be absolutely heartbreaking to sit and try and figure out what he needs to do with his life. Questions like “why isn’t God hearing my prayer for him” can be very overwhelming and cause deep pain. I am comforted when reading page 75 that states “When we throw up our hands and say Who knows? the answer is, God does” I know this is true, but sometimes I just forget and want an instant answer. Sometimes I do feel like all our planning has flown the coop. My son has two college degrees and a wonderful resume and I cry out of not understanding this pain. But the reminder with this lesson that God is ever at the helm, patient and foreknowing spoke to me and set me back to my diligent prayers for His will to be done in my son’s life. Lesson 5 was also a great reminder about God’s timing and his patience as He waited to reveal Jesus to the world and then waited while He was on the cross and in the grave.

  25. 175
    Lindsey says:

    1. The two additional addictions I wrote down were:

    a) control – hindrance = trust
    b) anger – hindrance = trust, openness, giver over of control

    The two (I had three) equations from the list Beth provided that stood out to me were:

    a) childhood trauma – hindrance = testimony
    b) disappointment – hindrance = faith
    c) what happened – what hindered = an overcomer

    These three stood out to me because over the past year I have been working on changing my often negative perspective to a positive one and trying to see all things as something God can use and to be more grateful (I read Ann Voskammp’s 1000 Gifts and begun counting my own blessings as well as studied Priscilla Shiver’s Gideon study). As well I have been trying to have appropriate expectations and not unspoken/unrealistic ones

    2. The lessons which stood out the most to me from week four would be Day Two: Inside Out because of the question found on page 97 about learning Biblical truths straight from God, which connected with my response to Q. #1: my lessons about negative to positive perspective change, being more grateful, righting my expectations etc. God first addressed these things through problems I was having and then continued to speak to me through resources such as Ann Voskamp’s novel and a the Gideon Bible study I was invited to participate in. Lesson Three: Stop In The Name of Love also stood out to me especially the directives of 1 Thessalonians 4:11, seek to lead a quiet life, mind your own business and work with your own hands. I thought the concepts were one’s I needed a reminder of and spoke to the sin I didn’t realize I had in my life connected to those directives.

  26. 176
    Melanie Lane says:

    I am on week 5 page 124 and I am confused. I am in NO WAY a bible scholar but as I started researching more about the term orge’ and thumos it seems to me the words in the study are backwards. Can you please further explain. I found thumos (2372) as an emotion of anger and orge (3709) as an implementation of that anger.. On page 123 thumos is described as an outburst which I would think means orge. Thank you so much for your help!!!!!!!!!!

  27. 177
    Michelle says:

    1. My responses to both of these questions were the same (the ones that I felt were additions also speak very personally to me):
    My fear – hindrance = boldness
    My plan – hindrance = adventure
    We are in a season of great change in our lives and I know that God’s hand is mighty in shaping these circumstances. Some days I become stuck in my fear and in “my plan” not working out, but when I am willing to hold these things with an open hand and consider the challenges part of the journey, I believe that God is shaping my into a more bold version of myself, willing to step forward in the path He has shown me, and to consider this journey an adventure WITH Him, no matter where it goes or how long it takes.

    2. We are in a waiting place right now. We are as surely waiting on God as we have ever done in our lives. I do not wish to lose heart as we wait. I do not wish to lose faith as we wait. I do not wish to lose hope as we wait. I do not wish to give up as we wait. So when I read on page 104, “For a child of God, hopelessness is the most unnecessary condition in the entire bag of mind tricks…,” I felt it was just for me. Then on page 105, “Job’s raw confession conveys that he felt hopeless because he could not help himself… God is your help. He is your strength. This whole thing is not dependent on you. In him is your future and it is bright with His countenance.” I prayed the scriptures that followed for myself and my family. I am encouraged that in our waiting, God is near, and the details that I cannot seem to work out will be worked out by the One who can.

    • 177.1
      Michelle says:

      Michelle, you might as well have been speaking for me too! Your season of waiting and change speaks of a journey with an unknown destination, and the same sections of scripture and the lessons resonated with me for the same reasons. For my family, it has revolved around our adoption journey. I wish that I’d had these verses of 1 Thessalonians in my tool belt earlier on in our journey when things were changing and nothing was happening like we “planned.” 😉 Thanks for sharing your response this week, I’ll be lifting you and your circumstances up in prayer today.

  28. 178
    Kristi says:

    Hello Beth,
    The extra equation I wrote for Session 3 is: Loneliness – hindrance = reliance on God. The one that so resonated with me for my life is: heartbreak – hindrance = depth (with God) I came to the place of surrender after being widowed at 36. God stepped in and changed my life. We go real deep, He and I. Heartbreak minus the hindrance it carries so equals depth.

    The day in Session 4 that spoke richly and was much needed by me was the 4th day. How did you know I needed to be admonished on hopelessness? I have partnered with a sense of hopelessness in my marriage recently. A friend told me to repent with all my heart and he is right. Thank you for seconding his advice. I know God has spoken through you both.

  29. 179
    Jackie says:

    1. I added limited resources – hindrance = making a difference for the Kingdom no matter how small it seems.
    The two that resonated with me the most were:
    Childhood trauma – hindrance = testimony
    Disappointment -hindrance = faith

    This got to me because I have often used my past as an excuse instead of flipping it around to show how God was there for me. I’m frustrated by the way my life is now but am starting to recognize that I am the only one who can make the different, often difficult choices. Change is hard, but with God, all things are possible.

    2. My favorite day was day 3 of week 4 because this has been a very difficult year for me with the death of my mom and an unexpected surgery. Many of my friends have stepped in to cover financial burdens and to offer encouragement and support. It reminds me that it’s okay in this season to let people help me, but that I am not to wallow in my helplessness. I will have the opportunity to support them in the future. That’s what it means to bear one another’s burdens.

  30. 180
    Linda says:

    Linda,solo, Bartelso,IL
    2.On day one the part about that we have no power over to affect divine love. That even in my darkest days are the same love as lightest,I want to be more and more aware of His love and have less fear.

  31. 181

    1. Additional “minis hindrance”
    A. Fear of failure – hindrance = victory in Jesus
    Fear of the unknown – hindrance = life

    Fear has left me in a pit too many times. It’s not welcome here. Thank God I can now see how it works.

    B. My pain – hindrance = my passion
    Fear of the unknown – hindrance = life.

    My pain has become my passion in wanting to help others. Fear of the unknown kept me from living out my passion. I always thought “no one else lives with fear”. After accepting that I may not be the only one, I looked around and found that I am not alone. Scary. I can be healthy by accepting & doing what’s required for healing instead of continuing to do my own thing. Praise God!I can share my experience with others & hopefully help someone else who struggles with fear.

    2.Day 4 reminded me of how far I’ve come in this life. I made some tough choices.  Some of my choices were for others, but some for me.  Ultimately, I was putting myself last & now it shows more so than ever that I made the decisions & have to live with the consequences.  Praise God I’m not alone. He’s with me every step of the way. I always felt & sometimes still do feel it’s all on me to sort out or resolve my problems & others. I was always the problem solver.   I am learning that I cannot do it at all. I need God. I used to just feel hopeless, but God. He would remind me of His presence & His son. I never want to give up or give in because I have God in my life. He can do what I never could & never will – give me life. I turn it over to Him!

  32. 182
    Naomi says:

    I hope I’m not too late to post a comment, I’m kind of behind.
    1. Loneliness- hindrance = dependence on God
    Singleness – hindrance = globetrotter
    Disappointment – hindrance = faith
    Week 4 day 4 because the whole bit about grief and finding Him there, even when you know you have in the past and yet you wonder if He could comfort you again in these new circumstances. He keeps surprising me and giving me new hope. Especially the line you said it’s not on us, “God is your help. He is your strength. This whole thing is not dependent on you. In Him is your future and it is bright with His countenance.” I am choosing to believe its true. It’s the only way.

  33. 183
    Julia Broeders says:

    Running a bit behind on the study . . . sorely needed some time away from a DESK so I spent my time with the Lord snuggled in bed with my dogs and Philip Yancey’s ‘What’s So Amazing About Grace”.

    The ‘minus hindrance’ that spoke to me most: Injustice – hindrance = room for God’s wrath.
    My own ‘minus hindrance’: Disrespect – the redefining of who I am = a renewed clarity of who I am in Christ.

    My favorite day from week four: Day Three. It was mind-boggling to me . . . it made me sit back in my chair and shake my head a bit to get the mental whirling to settle down! LOL I have SO much been a Yes-is-godly-No-is-not woman! And when you have people around you who believe themselves to be entitled to most everything . . . bad combo! Thank you so much for the sorting tools of selfishness vs good sense. Now they may accuse me of being selfish but God and I both know that is not what is motivating me and I can now rest in that. Thank you, thank you!!

  34. 184
    Jan says:

    Jan, Hull, Ga. Solo
    Sorry haven’t posted sooner, holiday weekend
    I did not have two of my own, but these two meant the most to me.
    Childhood trauma + hindrance = testimony
    What happened + what hindered = overcomer.
    Because of some of the circumstances of my childhood, I can identify with young adults who have had similar circumstances. God gives me the words to encourage, and share how He can change their hearts.
    Day 3 really spoke to me. Beth when you wrote on page 99 “Does anyone besides me ever keep saying yes to people because you assume that yes is the loving answer even when your insides are screaming no?” Well, that was me you were writing to. Definitely. For the past couple of years our family is working through some trials when I feel exactly as you wrote. Thank you for taking the time to cover this. I am learning to wait and allow God to say “no” for me when family expect me to say “yes”. And, I pray for wisdom and discernment all the time.

  35. 185
    Mary in NH says:

    Disrespected – Hinderance = Worker for the King.

    I liked also – Disappointment – Hinderance = Faith.

    This past year, some changes at work resulted in me working for a new boss. I am disappointed that I am now working for someone who does not respect what I do (I work with immigrant families/children), but I must have faith. I believe I do what I do for Him and His glory!
    (Just starting Week 4 – got a little behind with vacation!)

  36. 186
    Beth says:

    1. I could relate to:

    Disappointment – hindrance = faith
    Devastation – hindrance = trust

    During the lesson I kept thinking about 2 Corinthians 1:8-10 when Paul says, “We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might NOT rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he WILL deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us…”

    These transparent verses show a moment when Paul was hindered and hurt to the point of despair. I have so been there this year. But Paul never gave up even when he wanted to. He tightly grabbed the mighty hand of God, remembering if he can raise the dead, he can deliver us from anything! Jesus walks us to the other side of pain where deliverance waits. Clinging to Jesus helps me release the hindrance and persevere!

  37. 187
    Jodi L says:

    disappointment – hindrance = faith
    heartbreak – hindrance = depth

  38. 188
    Deb Meabon says:

    1) not having children has been a disappointment to me.

    2) I believe it was day 3, the verses about living a quiet life resonated with me to the point that I want to memorize them and claim them as life verses. Thank you for helping to make them come alive to me at a time when I really needed them!

  39. 189
    Dalyn says:

    My additions: my perceived lack- hindrance= God’s provision
    Instability-hindrance= reliance on an ever stable & consistent God
    Yours that resonated with me currently:
    Disappointment-hindrance= faith
    Injustice-hindrance= room for God’s wrath

    Week 3 day 3 was a great reminder for me that God is working it all out even when it seems like chaos. He works it all out and sometimes the “wrong turn” was actually the right direction in the Lord’s plan for us and those in our sphere of influence. I don’t need to panic but sit back and keep a quiet heart, waiting expectantly instead of worrying.

    Also a reminder that God doesn’t merely tolerate me and use me because there’s nobody else available. I’m hand picked and so are my trials and tests, burdens and blessings. Im not living on the edge I’m in the center of His will as I trust Him and obey Him. What a relief! Why do I need continual reassurance that He’s good and I am safe with Him?!’i know why, but I’d like to “graduate” from that lesson and move up a grade 🙂

  40. 190
    Adina Berkner says:

    1. Loneliness – hindrance= caring heart
    Fear-hindrance = freedom
    2. Childlessness-hindrance = mother of many
    This one is so true cause I have no children but God has called me to be a teacher of our Jr high Sunday school class and part of the youth group so children I have more then I could have bore on my own.
    Singleness-hindrance=gospel globetrotter

    3. I loved day one of week four the Even More’s really never thought a bought the more we focus on certain things the more things grow out of us that relates to what we are holding onto wether it be a good thing or a bad thing . And trying to hold onto control.

  41. 191
    Kristin A. says:

    1. Added
    judgement – hindrance = compassion

    The two that really resonated with me the most are:
    injustice – hindrance = room for God’s wrath
    handicap – hindrance = hero

    I am an amputee and spent my young life hiding it from all but my closest friends out of fear of judgement. I’d been judged enough – the whispers, the pointing, the stares – to learn that perhaps it was better left hidden. I wonder who I could’ve had a positive impact on had I been brave enough to expose my disability. My son is an amputee due to the same disorder and now as an adult I am, for the first time ever, proud to be an amputee. This realization just hit me within the last handful of weeks. God has used my journey in being pregnant with my son knowing full well the amputation to come (ultrasound revealed all), the heartache of going through the surgery, etc for His Glory. God took the hindrance out of my handicap and has already used my son and I in the role of hero. He is so good!!!

    2. Looking back over week four’s homework, days three and four both have all kinds of stars, underlining, double underlining, and brackets. Two really great days for me. Day four in particular the segment on feeling the full weight of grief was very powerful (brought to mind a lot of talk about how much God hates death that we discussed back in the “Here and Now, There and Then” study I went through a couple years ago). I really appreciated the dialogue on “for a child of God, hopelessness is the most unnecessary condition” and that we don’t have to grieve as the hopeless do. My answer to what is gained in thinking about death in terms of sleep? They are not really gone and WE WILL SEE THEM AGAIN!

    Thank you for leading us this summer. I love studying God’s Word with one of your studies alongside you! Much love.

  42. 192
    Dianna says:

    Lack of direction-hindrance

    I like where you said some things ache for years while God slowly mends us and shapes us into the image of His son. I need to stop fretting about lack of direction and just rest in His word while He shapes me!

    On page 75 I love Decisions that felt like stabs in the dark at the time were as determined by God as the ones that burned with conviction! Oh my…..I just need to trust more!

  43. 193
    Marissa says:

    I messed up when I posted last week by selecting a day in the 3rd week that most affected me, when I should have selected a day in the 4th week. I’ve now completed the 4th week and, Beth, it’s a toss up between Day 1-Even More and Day 3-Stop in the Name of Love. Day 1 hit me because I just recently found that I have a root of bitterness from when I was 3 (57 years ago) that has affected me all my life, unbeknownst to me. It went unnoticed and undetected and became my norm. When I found out about it, I was angry — at God mostly. So useless, but I ‘m still struggling with it. Day 1 spotlighted the importance of what I hold on to. Do I really want my anger or bitterness to become MORE? Ugh. Day 3 impressed me because I am currently in a situation where becoming friends with someone who is very emotionally disturbed has me wanting to say NO, but is that loving? Thank you for the lesson. I will pray about my motives for saying NO and rely on God to show me the way. Thanks for all you do, Beth.

  44. 194
    J says:

    1. My pain – hindrance = my passion.

    I desperately long to know that my struggles, sorrow and pain are not all for naught. When I was younger and passionately in love with Jesus I used to pray that I would know him and be used by him, no matter what it took – and I sort of longed for pain if it meant my gain and the gain of others. Well, then it happened, a long hard season of what felt like blow after blow, and part of me (ok, much of me) wonders, “What was I thinking!!!?” and the other part is dying to get to the other side to see God use it all for his glory. I don’t want to have suffered in vain – I know God will use it to grow me, but I want him to use it to help others, too!

    2. Day 3. It’s not a new feeling to me, but sort of a nagging thought that God is asking for me to be more bold in my faith. My greater temptation is to be quiet when I should speak up, as you said. I have a bad history of this. The problem is that I have a very large temptation to pride, and so rather than serving God and relying on his grace when I mess up (because his grace is enough!), I hold back and do nothing at all. So, really, fear is still driving me (fear of success or failure), not love, which I think goes back to day 1. I want to grow more and more in love and courage, not fear and hesitancy. Also, I want to become more of a giver, not a taker.

  45. 195
    Melissa says:

    1. Discouragement – hindrance = Perseverance and resonated with Disappointment – hindrance = Faith.

    2. I loved Day 1 of Session 4, particularly that we were called to love more and more. I must be intentional about what I’m “feeding” so that love will grow more and more and not hate, coldness, etc.

  46. 196
    anita says:

    Fear-the hindrance=The Great Adventure
    Failure-the hindrance=God-ordained accomplishment

    I’m sick of being all curled up in a frightened, timid, afraid-of-my-own-shadow ball. I am praying God will shred the hindrances (most of which are in my head) and break me out into a brave, bold woman of God! I can do ALL things through Christ! I do not need to fear rejection or failure because He created me because He wanted to and I have nothing to fear. God is with me always! I can DO this thing!!

  47. 197
    Donna R says:

    forgiveness-hindrance=unconditional love

    My favorites:
    what happened-what hindered= an overcomer

    I hate to admit it but I haven’t completed all of week four yet.

  48. 198
    J says:

    Can I just add that as a result of the lesson on bitterness from several weeks ago, I started praying through the Scriptures on forgiveness using Beth’s “Praying God’s Word,” trying to forgive a particular person. I have several people on my list, but thought this person would be a good place to start since I was about to spend a week with them. Well, I just returned from the trip, and do you know the only thing that has changed? My joy. I feel lighter as a result. And I can tell you it is so worth it!

    The enemy wants us to believe that we are giving the offender something when we forgive (and we think they deserve very little) so we hold back. They may gain by our forgiveness, who knows, but here’s the truth, we gain so much more!!! I just want to encourage anyone struggling with bitterness/resentment/unforgiveness, to give it a try. Pray the Scriptures that speak about forgiveness and ask that God’s will would become your will, too. It’s not magic, it’s truth, and all about repenting of our sin and asking God to conform our life to his will as revealed in his word. Just try it – Your joy is at stake!

    God will be so gracious to you in the process – my forgiveness thus far is imperfect at best and I have more yet to do, but he has been so kind to let me see the beneficial effects of my ever so small attempts at grace. He will more than reward your efforts, you can know that from the start.

    Also, I might add the obvious… just because you forgive someone for one whole set of sins doesn’t mean that they won’t hurt you again. During that week, I found myself given more pleasant opportunities to practice my newfound skill of forgiveness. Ha! But, let me tell you, the more you forgive, the easier it is the next time to just let the thing roll off your shoulders (or at least to not let it take root and become a source of more bitterness).

    It really does make for so much of a happier existence when you can feel genuine love for people (the kind that can put a lump in your throat), not resentment/bitterness/or whatever else hinders you. That can be none other than the work of God. For who can change the most deceptive of things (the heart) other than him? I’ve known in my head this is all true, now I’m learning it by heart.

  49. 199
    cindy says:

    Sorry, our group did not meet the week of the holiday so we will just now cover this week’s lesson and video.

    Cindy, St. Louis, MO small group of 7

  50. 200
    Hannah says:

    1. My favorite one was what happened- what hindered = an overcomer. (Like the Mandisa song Overcomer)

    I also like it that worry, anxiety, and devastation – hindrance = trust
    Worry and anxiety are things I’m learning to lean on God for and to trust.

    2. In week 4, day 3, I learned about saying no to the people who are sucking me dry and making me distrust myself leading to me lying to others. Sometimes it’s not the right time for reconciliation, and in the last sentence in the fourth paragraph on p. 99 it says “it rarely occurs to me that my preference in the situation could possibly reflect God’s (mindset). I do also get “wound up in a knot of neuotic processing” and a feeling of guilt for saying since you chose the other family member’s side of the story which is hateful of my husband, I’m going to have to let you go from my life, because of the havoc it’s having on my marriage and my husband comes before my family. He’s the one I’ve committed to before God. I’ve always been the one in the family who tries to be the peacemaker and who smooths things over, but the time came to say “stop in the name of love.”

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