Want to Chime in with Questions to Work into 2nd Timothy Series?

Hey, you guys! I bet you can guess what my head’s down under right now.



Oh, man. It’s a ton of work but I love it so so much. Researching then writing in-depth Bible study curriculum is still my happy place. I’ve never gotten over it. Every few days I get a tweet from somebody who has just started or finished A Woman’s Heart: God’s Dwelling Place and I think, often with a lump in my throat, what an invasive virus I caught from that very first journey. There in the pages of Exodus and in the detailed construction of that Old Testament Tabernacle and then in all that flipping to the New Testament to see it fulfilled, I fell so in love with Jesus and the Scriptures that I knew I’d study them in pursuit of Him for the rest of my days. Gah, I love it. I know so many of you do, too. The divine brilliance and beauty of the Bible still slays this woman right here.

The series I’m working on right now is on 2nd Timothy and will carry the title Entrusted. It will hit the shelves in September of 2016 so it won’t be a long wait at all. You will be so glad to know that Melissa is jumping in on this one with 2 articles a week like she did in the James series Mercy Triumphs. She also has a huge stack of resource books for her part of the study but the difference is, neither you nor I can read most of the titles of her books. I mostly point at her resources and say, “Man, that must be a real nail-biter.” But, boy, do I love what she does with them.

We won’t complete the written part of the series until June but the taping for the six sessions I’m teaching takes place next week on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. I cannot beg your prayers loudly enough. Please ask God to pour out His Spirit on every part of the taping and on every participant and upon me as I serve and teach. WE WANT JESUS. We are seeking such a powerful and fresh work of His Spirit in this series. We’re looking for an Ephesians 3:20. Please intercede for us!

One of the concepts we will develop throughout the series is the profound connectedness between generations so poignantly illustrated in the relationship of Paul and Timothy. Our effectiveness for the sake of the gospel dramatically increases when our journeys overlap and our spiritual gifts converge and we learn with one another and from one another. We will be challenged to become vastly more deliberate in equipping and encouraging one another, on cheering one another on, and helping each other navigate difficulties and get back to our feet when we’ve been thrown on our backs. These things are invaluable in the journey of faith. They can be the difference between us staying the course and quitting.

Needless to say, our biggest objective will be to thoroughly study the verses of 2nd Timothy, deliberating on each exhortation and taking note of the process of connectedness between Paul and his son in the faith. But as an older woman who gets a huge charge out of seeing what Jesus is doing in fellow servants my age and watching Him raise up mighty servants in younger generations, I’ll also be weaving in whatever I have to give from my own experiences and my own journey where it seems appropriate. Things I learned the hard way. What’s been hardest and what’s been the most gloriously rewarding. Lord help me, there’s so much I don’t know and much I did wrong and much I can’t offer but, what I have, I want to give to this study. This is where you come in if you’re willing. I don’t just want to share aimlessly. I’d love to know what you wish I’d address.

So, here’s what I’d like for you to do. Think about what you wish you and I could talk about if we could grab a Starbucks together. Form it into a clear question – just one – and present it in a succinct blog comment to this post. You might even tell me very briefly why you’re asking. (For instance, I’m a 22 year old who feels called to…) Your question can be about walking with God in general or about leadership in particular or about teaching or communicating or about navigating ministry or family. What would you, a person of faith, ask of a woman of faith who’s been around the bend a few times? Anything’s game if it’s genuine and I’ll consider questions from brothers in Christ, too, if any feel like pitching one my way. I will carefully go through your questions and answer as many of them as I can through the process of teaching and writing this study.

If you read the comments and see that someone has already asked your question, tell me that you wanted to ask the same one. That will make it stand out in my selection. I’d love to be able to mention your first name and the city you call home when I share your question and my response if that’s okay but, if you’d rather I pose the question anonymously in the series, just say so and I’ll gladly do that.

Sound like something you’d like to take part in? I’d be so grateful! I want to serve. NOT JUST TALK. I want to know what you’d find most helpful from a woman of my sort, whatever that weird sort may be. This blog community proved absolutely invaluable in the Esther series (The Red Book!) and in So Long Insecurity through the surveys I offered to fit those themes. Your input would be solid gold in this one.

I’m so grateful for your help! Honored to serve you. Please pray for me as I prepare for next week’s taping! Bless you today!







588 Responses to “Want to Chime in with Questions to Work into 2nd Timothy Series?”

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  1. 251
    Martha McElhaney says:

    Hi Beth, your ministry is such an encouragement to me. I live in Ooltewah, TN, married 47 years, 3 children and 6 grandchildren. My husband and I minister to a senior adult Sunday School and are blessed by them. However, I know it is so important to mentor and be mentored by various age groups. Any suggestions for doing this within and outside the church?

  2. 252
    Deb says:

    Hi Beth –

    I’m 41 years old and have three kids ranging from middle school to age 2. It seems often as moms when our kids are young we are encouraged about how important our role is, that we are “molding and shaping” the next generation, etc. So many of us put so much into our kids and try so hard…but what do we do when they are older and begin to make their own choices – particularly if they are ones we don’t agree with? How do we reconcile the fact that we DO play a very important part in their lives, but that eventually they will become adults who make their own choices? I feel a lot of pressure to make sure I “train my kids up in the way they should go.” It seems so easy to want to blame myself if things go astray. How desperately I WANT them to follow God. How do I lead them to follow Him, but then in some respects learn how to “let them go?”

  3. 253
    Gayle says:

    I am a 49 year old women from New Jersey and am leading a Bible study with mostly younger women. I have the same question as some of the above. How do you keep it about God and not yourself. God has gifted me in leading and I don’t want to take the credit.

  4. 254
    Cris says:

    What is the best way to deal with friends who take opposing views on spiritual gifts , that caused a church to shatter into various fragments after pastors were asked to leave, because of their views on the gifts ? Friends who use to stand side by side in the choir or at various ministry projects won’t even talk to each other any more. On the senior pastors last day he spoke about Paul and Banabus splitting ways after a sharp disagreement.

  5. 255
    Stacy says:

    Stacy from Northern Virginia here. I have poured myself into mentoring teenage girls the past ten years, but now find myself with a mom in the beginning stages of dementia and cancer. I feel guilty for not having time to serve as actively in my church, but feel like I need to be there for my mom. How do you balance something like this? It may only be for a season, only God knows. Cool thing, when I was cleaning out her house I found every study you have ever written

  6. 256
    Katie says:

    Hi Beth I am 39 I have 3 Daughters and 5 Step children. I just want to say how much I love and admire you. I look forward to your Bible Studies and so glad you are doing another one.. I read the Bible all the way through last year and was so excited that I did it “only by the grace of God”. I realized that I get more out of the Bible by taking one book at a time to truly understand its meaning. My question is this how can we be more like Paul in today times.. There are so many lost out there to be reached. Not just in other country’s but in our own land?

  7. 257
    Cheryl says:

    Hi Beth
    I so worry about my teens ( age 18, 16) . How do I get them to stay connected and rooted in the word so they make right decisions and strive past obstacles and fears ? How did you help guide your children through their late teens and 20’s?

  8. 258
    Beth says:

    I’m a 45 year old mom in D/Fw. You and I have similar background & personalities. What are the key things you taught your girls about how to walk in freedom & not be caught in the generational bondage that enslaved you?

  9. 259
    Debe says:

    Did you ever feel alone? Not without Jesus but alone while sitting in church? What did you do specifically to help your children during their teenage years in their faith? Oh I am praying and I am sure you did too..anything else? These probably sound dumb but you said what was in our hearts over coffee 🙂

  10. 260

    Hi- I’m a 39 year old home schooling, business owning, husband loving mom of three girls. Years ago my pastor told me he believed I had the gift of teaching…more than just homeschooling but conveying the word to others. I brushed it off, but others began telling me this, too. I am always overwhelmed and have been careful about taking on too much. I started blogging instead because I could do it on my own time. It has blessed me immensely had has begun to catch on. Here’s my question:

    How do I know when God is prompting me to do more when it comes to teaching and sharing? I want to guard against being prideful and thinking I have something to offer – I want it all to be God. What things did you experience as His way of growing your teaching ministry?

  11. 261
    Debbie says:

    Hi Beth,
    I am 59 have been a Christian for 15 years and it seems like the joy of serving has been replaced by fear of failure, doubts of what can I accomplish for God, through the experiences of my faith journey so far. I really need a Paul in my life urging me to be loyal to the faith. And then as I write this, I am reminded that I have Paul, he is there in all those New Testament pages. So why do I look for a person? That’s my question, why isn’t the Bible enough to speak into my life? Restoring my passion like when I first got saved.
    Grateful for His GRACE… in Illinois.

  12. 262
    Heidi says:

    Ah, for an hour of coffee with you…. I so appreciate your teaching and example as a woman in Christian leadership- Thank you!

    I’m the wife of a Pastor, and the Director of Family Ministries at our church. I have 4 children (8, 6, 4 and 2, three girls and a boy) and one of my biggest concerns is to continue to have relationship with them as they grow up and that they too would fall in love with Jesus and that our “ministry lives” wouldn’t be a hindrance to their love of Jesus and the church but cultivate it.

    It seems that you have a wonderful relationship with your girls, and they have made decisions of their own to be die hard for Jesus. You are also “all in” with Jesus and ministry. I wonder if there are specific things you did that you believe helped keep your relationship with your girls strong and didn’t turn them off from ministry life.

    luv you loads!

  13. 263
    Judy says:

    Beth. Thank you for your studies. I have been studying with your help for years and do not feel I have made as much headway as I should have spiritually. I would ask you about that over coffee if I drank coffee. I would ask you how to encourage my son who has been hurt by church splits. He is 29. I am divorced and my desire as a child was to have a wonderful marriage like my parents. I wonder how I got to this place 10 years after a divorce. I am not disappointed very much, but a little. My husband took half of my retirement and I am concerned about my future. Thank you for letting us share our thoughts. Of course what we should do is turn these questions to our Father. If I ever saw you at the airport I would hug you and tell others you are my friend. God bless you.

  14. 264
    Joanna Refvem says:

    Beth, what are your thoughts on inspiring other women my age (61) to reach out to younger women to lead, mentor and encourage them? I am passionate about younger women – especially since I have four daughters of my own!

    Florence, SC

  15. 265
    Julie says:

    Mrs Beth, I love you and will be lifting you up in prayer. I am 41, from Louisiana. Another lady and I started a ministry 13 months ago in our church based on 2 Timothy so the older ladies could share with the younger ladies. We have about 100 people in our church. It’s not going like we thought. So my question is, Is there a way to get this connection moving in the direction of scripture? A process or way you have found that gets the older women wanting to share?
    Thank you.
    Julie Williams
    Franklinton Louisiana

  16. 266
    Janice Pitchford says:

    I am a 66 year old and have been a Christian most of my adult life. My daughter-in-law that I love dearly was reared in a non Christian faith. Although she does not embrace the faith of her family she is very skeptical about the Christian faith. She knows clearly where we stand on Jesus and I have shared the Gospel with her. How do I best minister to her soul without alienating her or making her feel I am condemning her family? I would like for my question to be anonymous.

    Prayers and blessings as you undertake this work.

    • 266.1
      Jeanne says:

      I have much the same issues. My DIL was not raised in the same church as our son was and her faith isn’t as stronger or as grounded as ours is. I don’t know where she stands with Christ. I’m so afraid to ask her because I don’t want to push her away and yet this relationship with Jesus is the most important one she can have. I want to know how to approach her other than “in love”. I want more specific answers.

  17. 267
    Connie says:

    Weirdest thing… I had a dream last night that you and I had an opportunity to talk over coffee and woke this morning thinking about what I would ask you. Then I saw your post.
    I am a 54 year old mess redeemed by grace alone. My heart aches to see women walk in freedom and I have been told I have a gift for teaching. I LOVE to be in the Word and share what I learn there. My trouble is I don’t do relationships well. I have no seeming ability for small talk and I feel like I’m intruding if I might call or stop by…my issue I’m sure but…I feel so hypocritical teaching without being involved personally. Suggestions? Insight?
    Thank you, Beth. Praying for you.

    Greene IA

  18. 268
    Jill Johnson says:

    Hi my name is Jill Johnson and I am in Long Beach,Ca. My questions for you as a leader and a mom how did you find the balance in your personal life, family life, kingdom building, financial, and overall service in ministry? My calling is unique but similar. I am a single mother, parenting alone. No family ( most have passed this world) and I struggle with finding that key balance or fine line of spilling over work time into family time. To balance my personal care with investment in my daughter’s life for all those ” iconic moments.” She is my first ministry but I am raising a leader that I want to teach to serve right along with me. The financial struggle is tough and often a faith walk praying in every $20.
    I am now in a season of building a community based cause to reach the unchurched, the ones that never step foot into church and never will. I feel very connected to knowing my city’s officials, leaders, etc. I am also searching for leaders that might want to go on a spiritual faith walk/ journey that doesn’t incorporate an actual building called “church.” More of a model of church on the streets.

    I have learned to really live in the present of the day and not become overwhelmed but to continue this journey Daily.

    What practices do you incorporate to keep yourself centered, grounded and connected to Him?

    Also what practices do you use when strong personalities rise against you? Meaning human spirits or the evil one trying to knock you off your path?

    Also I feel as a female leader the strong resistance of male dominance in leadership circles come into play. How do you deal with those strong presences of resistance and feelings projected on you by some believers that don’t support women in leadership

    You have blessed me so much in my faith waits. I have studied so many of your series. I do have to say that my absolute favorite has been studying The book of John. The 90 days with you and Him really transformed my life into where I am today! Thank you for all you do! You are amazing and a light in this world! Much Love !

  19. 269
    Sherry says:

    I am a Women’s Ministry leader and here is the question that I ponder: Why do women, who want so very much to have close relationships with other women, not trust other women, which prevents them from having those close relationships with other women?

  20. 270
    Jeanne says:

    Dear sweet, Beth,
    My world was totally shattered almost five years ago. There are days even now that I struggle. I feel empty and dead. I’ve loved the Lord since forever, I’m 65 and I find my heart broken. My self esteem doesn’t exist, my passion is gone. I want those things back and I desire to love the Lord audaciously again and not to live like I’m just holding on. How do I let God love me back to life again? I want to serve Him alive. But, then, maybe He’s called me to live in this season for His purpose just right now. I just need to know how to find me again.
    Love you, Miss Beth for all you do for the Lord for His women. Thank you for your service.

    • 270.1
      Mindy says:

      I’m praying for you Jeanne! I’ve struggled with the same “flat-line” feeling. Ask God to restore your joy. Watch “I am Second” youtube videos to hear how God works in the lives of others. Listen to beautiful music that makes you happy. Take walks outside so God can speak to you through nature. Give yourself grace and know, KNOW, regardless of how you feel that God does love you. Then ask Him to show you in His word that he loves you and LOOK for Him to speak.

  21. 271
    Bonnie says:

    First, I love you! I am a 60 year old woman and last year I faced a giant in my life with the help of the Holy Spirit! I feel like God wants to use me in a post-abortion ministry. I have completed a study with my local organization and basically said to them, “Here I am! Use me in any way you see fit.” (Praying that same to God) But what do you do when you’re sure of a calling but then hear nothing but crickets? Was I wrong? Did I not hear God’s calling correctly? Am I too old to relate? Thank you for any help!

  22. 272
    Judi says:

    Beth, I have read the previous comments and I don’t see my particular question addressed. I am nearly 70 years old. I have been in ministry all my life and have enjoyed the areas God has called me to serve in. We moved to McDonough, Georgia 5 years ago and I lost my support group. Soon after I moved here I had a mastectomy, hysterectomy and then was diagnosed with Pulmonary Fibrosis. I am on oxygen 24 hours a day. My dilemma has been in feeling like I no longer have a place to serve. I have been sending cards out every couple of weeks to church members who are sick or discouraged or shut in’s or have lost loved ones. I send out about 20 each time. I used to have ladies luncheons and was involved in entertaining and using those gifts to bring ladies and couples together. Beth, I want to know if you have any ideas for opportunities for me to serve the Lord. I feel like I am accomplishing very little for the kingdom and Satan uses that to discourage me and make me feel abandon. Your Bible studies have been a huge source of encouragement to me to keep on keeping on. God has given me lots of time to pray and I do spend a lot of time in prayer including you and your family and your ministry. Thanks Beth for all you do.

    • 272.1
      Susan says:

      Maybe, in this season, you already have found a place to serve: ministering to the sick and hurting through your cards and words of encouragement! Blessings, Susan

  23. 273

    Good morn, I was a faithful “commentor” of the So Long Insecurity community. I know God used that time to build my inner man so I was STRONG and knew my identity as the weekend AFTER that simulcast – May 1, 2010 — I got a phone call from the husband of the other woman. VERY long story short – after a separation of 9 months, a Divine Encounter with God for me, and another 18 months of counsel and HARD HARD therapy – we celebrated our 28th anniversary this past August. It took almost 3 years to go from that deep hurt to being able to LAUGH about it now and God is USING it – for HIS glory as we both are in a ministry within our local church. I am 50 in 17 days…YUCK… believing the 2nd 1/2 of our marriage…my life…is going to be SO glorious.

    My question – “what makes you tick?”… I mean, when in ministry and you are just at a point….where you say, “Lord, come now…..”…….. What gets you beyond that point?

    For me, I just beg him to do something supernatural for me and HE does every time….and I could share a lot, but WHAT DOES GOD do for YOU…? Or what prayer do you ask…? That just keeps you going?

    Michelle Pritchard
    Okeechobee, Florida

  24. 274
    Joy Marsh says:

    Hi Beth. I am a 66 year old wife, mother and grandmother. My question may seem irrelevant but I would like to know how you know what spiritual gift(s)that God has given to you? I really do not feel I do anything really well. I have prayed about this for such a long time. If I ask my family or friends, they all say I am compassionate, caring and encouraging. Others say I am always willing to help which I am. I just do not think any of this is special it is just how I was raised. Am I overlooking something?

  25. 275
    Tanya Smith says:

    Tanya from Kenosha Wisconsin (you can use my name if you address this question in your book)

    First I’d be so honored to have a chance to coffee with you I’d probably lose words or they’d come out all weird. But that is what it is.

    You have raised daughters and retain a good and working relationship with them (I mean Melissa is even writing WITH you–how great is that?!?) so any pointers? Most people I know have a weirdly strained relationship with their mother and or their mother in law if they have relationship with these women at all. And I desperately (DESPERATELY) want my daughter to LIKE me when she is grown and would be amazed if I could see God do something like He did for you and yours–where you attend the church of one of your daughters and your other writes bible studies with you.

    Thank you.

  26. 276
    Tensie says:

    I am 61 years old. I wrote long and erased it twice.
    Due to circumstances beyond my control we left our church of 17 years. God has graciously given us a new church, but i struggle with connecting. It’s like God has set me in a chair. So much going on in our adult children’s lives, in the lives of the younger women who also left that church. How can I be a “Paul” when everything in life is upside down? I am too old to be a Timothy. All parents have gone on to be wt Jesus. I just feel stuck. How have you dealt with this? I am amazed at how many different stories there are in so many lives. I feel like i am grieving constantly.

  27. 277
    Deborah Mott says:

    To help me get to my question, here is a quote from BSF notes: “The lens through which you view your world and God greatly affects the way you think, live and face the future.” Given that truth, I realize I have been looking through a severely broken lens of abuse, blame, shame, lies, conditional love, performance, feeling valueless (due to extreme abuses of early childhood through teen years) which has propelled me into trying to prove to myself and others that I have value. I have tried to find my value in seeking God but sadly have been hindered by “religion”. I have found Galatians religion is a sham inside Christianity and I am trying to begin living Real Christianity as Paul did after realizing “the Law” by itself caused him to miss Messiah! Like #6, #6.1, # 52, #60: I have similar feelings/experience of giving my whole heart and still am not valued. I have struggled greatly with shame and guilt even years after of living in true repentance by a pure life IN CHRIST. Like # 62 I struggled to see that God worked. For me it was because I thought God was pleased with my performance instead of seeing He is pleased with me believing IN CHRIST’s Finished work. I now see how steeped I have been in a Galatians gospel and it surely did not work! Like in #71I have been worked with the broken…but for me, after having been so broken that I have felt utterly hopeless at times and only God has kept me alive. I have felt that since God is the One who truly has absolute authority and sovereign control and has allowed such evil to befall me at such a young age, I have questioned how safe I am now and what He wants me to do with all of this. I know He has a purpose in it all and has limited my suffering and protected me from death over and over.

    So my question is:

    How do I live truly authentically, giving testimony of my life to show what Christ has done for me in a humble, GOD honoring, God glorifying way while heralding the True Gospel to the self righteous, the unrighteous, the broken, the multitudes of post abortive, the homosexuals, the addicts, the world at large? Because there is great need for others to hear how much God loves them, that Christ did everything to offer them forgiveness and bring them MERCY and not judgment, I feel compelled to be honest with my story. Yet have not been received or valued. Maybe I am like Paul? He was not well received either but He got the REAL GOSPEL after all and did change the world! Yet, how do I do this? In other words, how do I surrender all to allow God to make my life count to herald His true Gospel (Jesus came to save us from our sins and not condemn us) and advance His Kingdom?

  28. 278
    Debbie from Atascocita, Texas says:

    I am 55 years old and am a leader in the Women’s Ministry and I feel I get to be a Paul to many women but I really need a Paul for myself. How do you find one? I am also a mom of 4 adult daughters in which 3 are married but all four are moms and I need help from time to time how to navigate through the mother/daughter relations with adult daughters. I am a tell it like it is kinda of person and sometimes that is the not the best way to handle things. I feel when I minister to other young women they listen but trying to minister to my own daughters sometimes is a huge challenge.

  29. 279
    Cecilia says:

    I’m so excited about this new study and can’t wait to dive in! My question would be A how do you keep the flames burning through the dry times? I’m 54 and find myself struggling to stay connected. It seems like every time God gets close, I pull back. I want to quit doing that. Help!

  30. 280
    Beth Andrews says:

    Paul talks in 2 Timothy 3:6-7 about “weak-willed women who are always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth.” I’ve been a Bible teacher for more than 15 years and I’ve seen so many women attend the classes, never actually do the homework, come and sit through the sessions with no actual desire to learn. Then they question God when the “Christian thing” doesn’t work for them. As a teacher/leader, how can I help theses women move from being lack-luster about the Bible to becoming passionate about knowing God’s Word and studying for life change?
    Beth Andrews
    Tuscaloosa, Alabama

  31. 281
    Deb Mott says:

    I guess an easier way to ask the above question is How do I live and herald the Gospel in Spirit and in Truth consistently from the LENS OF THE TRUE GOSPEL. You are welcome to use my name, I am from Bradenton, Florida.

  32. 282
    Denise Ciofani says:

    Hi Beth,

    I love this idea, and my question over a Starbucks would be this? How do you pray for your husband? I’m a 38 year old wife and mother of one 8 year old daughter, and the circumstances of our last 3 years have been challenging. My husband’s reaction to those circumstances have challenged me and drawn me closer to God (which I’m eternally grateful for!!). But I struggle with when to speak and when to just pray.

    Thanks so much!

  33. 283
    Mona says:

    Beth – thank you. I’m almost fifty – just a few more months with a daughter graduating college and a son graduating high school. Single mom status and anticipating much change this year. My question is this – how do I let go of worrying that my kids have the right relationships with God? I know they believe but I also know that they struggle and my worry is that they don’t long for Him and will fall away as they get older and form their own families.

  34. 284
    Amber says:

    Hi Beth,

    My question over coffee –

    If you were mentoring someone who loved God very much and wanted her life to keep becoming a journey with Him, what would you tell her? What advice from your own experience would you give?

    (Possible examples – knowing when you are hearing God’s voice (Is it God warning me about something or do I just not want to do it? is one example of this)
    -most important things to avoid or to hold tight to, from your experience
    -what generally lies on the road ahead
    -anything else God puts on your heart)

    Love you,

  35. 285
    Linda Olathe KS says:

    Thought you might find humorous that my 25 year old soldier son has 2 Tim 2:3 tattooed on his arm…. I really didn’t think it was so funny when he first did it:) But now it’s a reminder to ME that suffering is involved in following Christ. He has other verses tattooed as well…I tease him that when I told him to write Gods Word on his heart I didn’t mean it literally! I would love to hear you address the challenge of living the Word out in truth and authentcity in front of family and friends that draws them to the Lord…not a religion. So excited for Entrusted!!

  36. 286
    Julie Elrod says:

    Thank you for asking! I am a 40 year old mother of three. I having been battling strongholds related to food for years. God is doing amazing things in this area right now. I have an accountability partner, but I kind of always wonder…”are we doing it right?”. That would be my question. What does true godly accountability look like.

    Much love to you!! Had a blast with you in Houston at SSMT!!

  37. 287
    Jenifer says:

    When does eating become sinful?

    The bible talks about enjoying food and lands flowing with milk and honey. But there comes a point when it is sinful. How do you know when you’ve crossed the line? It seems to be a big gray area for me.

    Thanks so much for your time!

  38. 288
    Beth says:

    I am 53 years old and from Chicago. The Lord has graciously walked with me through MANY trials. I desire to share my experiences and lessons learned with women. However, I don’t want to self promote. Are there things I should be doing that will equip me for if/when God opens the door for this opportunity?

  39. 289
    Alicia Payne says:

    I’m 34 years old, and I’ve been married for 13 years. My husband and I are both Christians, and my question is about a marriage issue. As kind and upstanding as my husband is, he will not take the leadership role in our home. This is friustrating for me, and I have to lead to keep things in order. We have 2 children, boys, and I pray that they will have better leadership skills when they are older. Any advice? I pray about this and try my best not to nag. Thanks Beth!

  40. 290
    Ruth says:

    I’m a 47 year old & been a Christian for several years. I have a passion for the Word & love to teach children at my local church. In the hopes of this not sounding “too churchy” I’ll say this…I struggle with my husband not being the spiritual leader of our home. He’s put his faith in Christ & was also babtized in 2000. He goes to church & is very generous in his financial giving. Don’t get me wrong..I see this as a gift. It just seems when it comes to making important spiritual decisions I’m the one usually to do it. Besides attending church a few times a month he seems to have no desire at all to want to go beyond this after many years now. I’ve stepped back many times, studied all the scriptures I could find on this topic, & prayed a lot about it. I’m thankful for the few times he’ll take the lead to pray over dinner & all The Lord is doing but struggle with deep discouragement over this.

  41. 291
    Heather says:

    Hi Beth –
    I am a mostly stay-at-home mom of two children, 11 and 9. As I try to teach my children to live and love like Jesus, it seems we are bombarded everywhere with the sights and sounds (and sometimes LOUD sounds) of “Christians” who do not seem to live and love that way. They espouse exclusion and judgement of those who they deem to be outside the lines. They limit what they deem to be acceptable creativity and expression. The Bible absolutely draws clear lines between right and wrong in many ways, but it also shows us through Jesus and the way He lived that we are to LOVE first. Finding that balance as a follower of Jesus can be so muddy and unclear for school age children as they are establishing their faith (it’s hard enough for adults to find the balance as it is). What would you offer to mothers who are trying to cut through the noise (specifically the “Christian” noise that sometimes doesn’t seem to be like Christ) to help our children learn the heart of the matter and be able to discern as they get older how to do their best to live and love like Jesus.

    Not as succinct as I hoped, but on my mind and heart a lot these days. Thank you for all you do!!

  42. 292
    Lynn Ashley says:

    Been married to an unbeliever for 39 years now. Our two adult children walked away from God after age 18. I am a quiet believer (I let my walk be my talk). My family knows where I stand and what I believe in. I’m beginning to feel as if my “fruit” has dried up and it no longer matters. Where/how do you get a “fruit freshner?”

  43. 293
    Angie says:

    How can we be like Paul or Timothy in our modern culture? I am 43 years old. I have four children, one who has left home and is a prodigal and three teenagers at home. I’m struggling with how to help my kids serve and love in a church environment that lacks community and rewards conformity. I feel like serving God doesn’t always look the same and I worry that I will lose another child to the world if I don’t figure out how to help them. I search scripture looking to find examples to share. I want each of my kids to know her their purpose is unique, and it’s ok if they aren’t just like everyone else. How would you help your kids, Beth, if you were in this circumstance? Where in scripture would you look to help them find encouragement?

  44. 294

    God Be with you Beth and us all, Amen. To live content on SSI with $$ bills adding up( no extras e.g, cable, outings), my bills exceed my cost of living/income and I am getting help monthly by family/friend. I stay thanking God for Jesus Christ daily. I’ve written “can top the chart Christian lyrics for song publishing” and want to hustle for the Lord. Is this proud or destructive? 4yrs searching, 6yrs writing, alifetime of experience. Lead me Guide me, Amen.

  45. 295
    Maaike says:

    Hi Beth,
    I’m a Dutch missionary working in Portugal. Mother of 3 kids under ten and married. Working on my 3rd study from you. Of which two of them have been In Dutch. My non English speaking friends love your work too.
    My question is: how do you manage to live in the glass house of Christian ministry. The judgement from other Christians is so harsh at times. How did/do you handle it?

    Many blessings
    Maaike( say Micah)

  46. 296
    Ruth says:

    Hello Beth,

    God bless you in this time of study I so look forward to learning from it in the future!!! I have been leading worship along with my husband for 15 years at our church and I am wondering if you have gone through seasons in ministry where you felt not valued, opposed and it just seemed easier to quit to save some sanity, save yourself from conflict, etc.? What kept you going if so? How do you keep your spiritual glasses on to recognize the enemy through the hurtful things people do and say and keep endurance in a hard season of ministry when there is so much temptation to give up? Thank you so much!!!

    Ruth, Shawnee, KS

    • 296.1
      Ruth says:

      If you happen to publish this maybe just leave out the details of our ministry for a little more annonymity. Bless you Beth!!!

  47. 297
    Peggy-Scottsdale,AZ says:

    I absolutely LOVE all your studies and truly appreciate you following your heart and calling to be my (and so many others) spiritual mentor with these studies! I have been a christian my entire life and have seen myself grow as I mature..(I’m 59). My faith has carried me through and will continue to until I get to go “home”. My question I struggle with is, I have a difficult time finding the right way to share God’s love and forgiveness with people I come into contact with, neighbors etc. I really want to show them in my own gentle way just how awesome God is! I’m not very good at public speaking…although I’m awesome in putting thoughts together in my head, I really need help on the delivery part 🙂

  48. 298
    Nancy says:

    I am 54 now, but was in my late 40s when I was attending a church that I had been a part of since its beginning. (That was only about 6 or 7 years, but it was thriving and l loved being a part of it.) In their quest to stay current and relevant, the leadership decided to begin a service aimed at the younger generation that was set up in the adjoining gym – Same service time, but separate locations. It became a point of (mosty) unspoken discontent, as it seemed to divide us by our ages. We all wanted to be united in our support of the leadership and God’s leading, but felt a little lost. The sanctuary service was often called “old school,” and I suddenly felt like a dinosaur that had outlived her usefulness. So my question is this: What do you do if the message is fairly clear that you’re “old school” when you feel like you’re just getting a good start? Also, how do you accommodate the needs and wants of the younger generation without separating them from the older crowd? I wish we could have bridged the gap, but it felt very much like we created one.

  49. 299
    Delores McPherson says:

    Hello Beth,
    Thank you for this opportunity to ask a question of you. I appreciate so much your love for the Lord and unbridled desire to lead others to love Him as well. I am 61 years old and live in Mineral Wells, Texas. I was saved when I was 14 years old. I was blessed to have a Sunday School teacher who was also my sister-in-law mentor me and allowed me to teach the class once a quarter with her supervision. God has given me the gift of teaching and a love for His Word. My question and dilemma is that as I have aged my health is not as good as it used to be (I am diabetic) and unfortunately I have used that as an excuse to be lazy in my service to the Lord. He recently moved us from a small church to a larger church in our city. It has been 2 years and I still struggle with getting plugged in. I teach an adult Sunday School class and work with 3-4 graders on Wednesday night. I have a desire to work with the women in our church and have joined the Women’s ministry team. Still I do not feel like I am fitting in or maybe I am not where God wants me. Twice I have felt like God wanted me to write a book (Bible Study) and would start but then get interrupted and not return. At my old church I taught an in home Bible Study that grew from 6 to 22. We had taken a break when God led us away. Recently I was asked if I would again teach that in home study. I said I would but circumstances once again blocked the way. Much like Paul when he desired to go into Asia. So I guess my question is much like Patti Johnson’s; how do I know I am going in the right direction and avoid the interruptions or interpret them – are they God steering me along a different path or is it Satan trying to block what God is doing? Thank you again for your devotion to the Lord and those He has given you to serve.

  50. 300
    Vonda says:

    Hi Beth.
    What a gracious opportunity. Thank you!! So many times, when faced with a challenge, I’d ask myself, “I wonder how Beth would handle this?” My question correlates with Lainie (#75) and Nora (#76) above. How do I speak the truth in love to an increasing number of Christian friends who are divorcing their husbands, or at least considering it? I have a hard time maintaining a friendship after they, as I see it, give up on God and leave their husbands. It becomes harder yet when they (quickly) start dating! These same women are allowed leadership roles in women’s ministry in my church!
    Am I being legalistic/ungracious/unforgiving? (oops, that was 2 questions, sorry!)