Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Hebrews: Chapter 4 on REST

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

To catch up...the assignment for today was to read chapter 4, vs. 1 - 13, and ponder REST.

I have been here before; it was one of the topics I considered during the Jubilee Year, and one truth I discovered early on was that 'real rest is a discipline'.

And what struck me as I read through today's verses was the author's repeated warnings that we, like the ancient Israelites, can hear the good news of God's promises and still not receive them.

From last week, we see that they failed to enter God's rest because of unbelief (3:19)
Today's passage shows that they did not benefit from the message because they did not unite it w/faith (4:2) and they failed to enter God's rest because of disobedience (4:6)

The ancients who fell in the desert did so because they did not believe God would give them victory against intimidating foes,  they did not listen to those who declared that God was able, and they refused to act on God's direct instructions.

We are warned 'if you hear the message, do not harden your hearts.' (4:7)

In verse 10, we read that whoever has entered God's rest has also rested from his works.

God's rest means that I believe, have faith, and obey.

But that ain't easy.

Notice the author says that we must strive to enter that rest (v. 11).  We have to purposely choose to trust God, when situations say He doesn't make sense.  We have to believe what He tells us, even if everything around us appears to be contrary.  We have to do what He says, especially when he tells us to do something that is beyond our ability.

Because He takes it at that point and does for us that which could not have been done otherwise.  And we rest from our own efforts and work.

Yes, real rest is a discipline...of belief, faith and obedience.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Hebrews Chapter 3 Discussion

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

As I read through (late, overdue, but still...) the Hebrews 3 assignment, a kind of broken sentence formed itself:

Therefore...consider Jesus...who was worthy of more glory than Moses...and take care we do not harden our hearts as those led by Moses and were unable to enter God's rest...

Another place in scripture where the chapter breaks not only a section but a thought.  The first word in chapter 3 is 'Therefore'.

Which, of course, means that one must carefully consider what comes after that word in light of what went before it.

In this case, the previous chapter ended with a discussion of how Jesus had become like us in order to help us.

And, therefore, we are to consider Him...look at Him, ponder Him, see how He walked out His destiny.

Consider Christ, in comparison to the lawgiver Moses:  Moses was the House; Christ the Builder.  Moses was the Servant; Christ the Heir.

We are His, so we are to be careful that we do not fall into the same traps that those who followed Moses fell into.

The traps are all summed up in one: an evil, unbelieving heart.

One that accuses instead of confesses.  One that provokes instead of petitions.  One that rebels instead of reverences.

The followers of Moses who did those things fell in the desert and never saw the culmination of their dreams and journeys.  They never saw God's rest.

If that evil, unbelieving heart is the block to God's rest, then one who follows the instruction to be on guard against that would have easy access to the rest of God.

A heart that believes and seeks God's good is a heart that has the ability to rest.

Because a heart at rest is a heart that has truly learned to trust God in all things.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Hebrews, Chapter 2 Discussion

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi the craziness that has been October, somehow I missed the post on Hebrews 2 on the 16th.  And the chapter 3 post was up last week...I did see that one, but didn't have time to comment, since I was in full out sleepover prep.  So...I'll hit chapter 2 today and try to get chapter 3 in on Wednesday, just in time for chapter 4...

The theme Suzanne found in chapter 2 is 'He is able'. The phrase that hit me as I read through it was 'Great Salvation', from 2:3-4:

how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation?  It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.   ( ESV)

Look at that was

1) Declared by the Lord
2) Attested by eyewitnesses
3) validated by signs, wonders and gifts of the Spirit.

As we read on, we find more details about this salvation...

- by God's grace, Christ tasted death for everyone (vs.9)
- he who sanctifies and those who are sanctified are all brothers (v. 11)
- through death, he destroyed the one who has the power of death (v. 14) and delivered all those who were slaves because of the fear of death (v. 15)
- He is able to help those who are tempted (v. 18)

The Great Salvation is not just a ticket punch for the ride to heaven, it is an ongoing, growing, reciprocal relationship.

And it is not surpassed by anything.  Not to jump ahead, but here is the groundwork laid for a later argument.  The author is already trying to get the reader to consider...if I neglect this relationship, overlook this truth, reject this opportunity for redemption...what is left?  What will replace it?  What will do its work?

 If one goes in search of  a superior can that person escape?

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Snapshots 10/26/13

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

Last night was the annual Girls Ministry sleepover; as we have done for a number of years now, the teen girls (grades 6-12) split from the younger girls.

Some years we just split for part of the evening, but this year we basically had a whole separate event at the same time.

We started the evening by attending a local concert featuring Casting Crowns.


Then we went back to church; I did the devo portion first, since we had a girl who had to leave early and I wanted to make sure she got the 'lesson' of the evening, too.

It all worked out to talk about the lies the enemy tells us.

Then they watched a movie...and I hid treasure hunt clues around the church (had to wait for other ministries happening to finish and get cleared out).

Then the girls did a flashlight treasure hunt.

Wasn't going to do it this year, but I had a flash of inspiration about having them look for jewels to put on crowns on which they'd written the truth to counter the lie of the enemy...anyway, we did it again.

And I messed up again.  I gotta get some help doing this, if only to have a second pair of eyes looking at stuff to catch oversights.

After everyone found their jems and I doled out the 'prize' candy,  we watched the Official Every Year Movie, Princess Bride.

That movie finished up about 5:30.  The girls all dozed off; the other teen chaperone and I wandered out into the lobby and watched the sun come up.

I failed utterly to take pictures of the evening, only getting a couple of pics at the concert.

I wanted one of all the girls with their crowns. Forgot.

In the process of planning and preparing, involving, among other things, wrestling a bench seat back into our minivan and hunching over a table cutting rectangles out of poster board to run through the die cutter and turn into crowns, I have done pretty much every bad thing in the book to my back.

Ice pack 20 on/20 off.  Repeat till the ice packs are tepid slush.

Thinking really hard about seeing if I can use some of my comp time for recovery time next week.  I could use a couple of days to just breath.

And visit the chiropractor. ;-)

Friday, October 18, 2013

Lies the Enemy Tells Me - # 3: 'You are Disappointing'

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

There were several similar lies that all generated around the same time in my life; I struggled with how to articulate them until I realized that they weren't just similar, they were all different ways of expressing the same thought.

But 'You are Disappointing' is not the same as 'You are Flawed'.  Lie #2 deals with a misconception about who I am, Lie #3 is about what I do.

I would put this in late childhood.  I was a reader and a dreamer...and my farm family relatives were practical, hard workers.  'Book smarts' were nothing compared to 'common sense'.   Good grades were not valued over hard work.

And I was not good at seeing things that needed doing, let alone doing them.  I'd much rather read a book than pick strawberries.

Lazy.  Won't amount to a hill of beans.  Not pulling your weight.

I heard all of that at one time or another and I didn't know how to refute it.  Especially if I got caught reading while everyone else was working.


Consequently, I eventually trained myself to work extra hard when the critics were around.  Cousins would go off and socialize, but I would stay with the aunts, washing dishes, cleaning up...I felt like I had to do more work just to be thought equal, because I had to overcome the negative expectations everyone seemed to have.

They didn't, of course.  That was the lie.  Oh, we had our cross wise moments, but the enemy took those negative opinions and turned them into a curse.

And the curse caused me to become a people turned me from Mary into Martha, trying to earn approval by what I did.

It almost always backfired.  I remember one day, somewhere around grade 7 - 9ish,  when we were doing yardwork.  I tackled a job that was really too big for me. I wanted to achieve something that would bring approval.  But that task was so big I couldn't even make a dent in it.  I labored at it and labored at it but got nowhere...and then I got into trouble for my obvious attempt to get out of doing any work by pretending to work away at something I couldn't move.

I was devastated and went crying into the house.  That time, I did eventually tell my side and got heard and believed and actually got an apology...something that I don't ever remember happening at any other time...but, as I'm sure everyone knows,  no apology completely heals the wound.  There was still the knowledge that I had been perceived as being lazy and unproductive and calculating.  And that still hurt.

That lie still influences me.  I still fear disappointing; being thought  a slacker, a bad return on the investment, untrustworthy,  a sham, out of place, judged and found wanting.  When I am out of my own space, I still push myself to DO when others are wiping their hands and heading off to fellowship.  I feel awkward if I don't know what I can do.

I don't want to disappoint...people.

And that, my friend, is exactly where the enemy wants us.  Worrying about what people think instead of what God has meant for us. Because there's always something someone said that he can then repeat to us with a sinister twist, to make sure we interpret it in the worst possible way and then take it to heart.

Because that's not all I  heard, you understand.  There were awards I won, things I achieved, words of affirmation...some from the very people who had expressed their disappointment in me at other times.  But because of the lie, I overlooked or dismissed those things, frequently believing I really didn't deserve them.

Because of the lie.

Am I now trying to win the approval of men, of of God?  Or am I trying to please men?  If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ. - Gal 1:10


But here is the familiar truth...

For you created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother's womb; I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.  All your works are wonderful, I know that full well - Ps. 139: 13-14

I wasn't looking for this, but there was another promise that on the same page:

The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me;  - Ps. 138:8a

The 5th day in Rita's study guide spoke of battles; the battles that are God's battles that we try to fight  in our own strength.  As I studied this out, I suddenly realized that striving to please people, to be found worthy and acceptable to people is an indication that I am fighting in my own strength.   Because

When a man's ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him. - Prov 16:7

If my focus is truly pleasing God, HE will handle my relationships with those around me.  That is a battle that I do not have to fight.

That is one battle, one lie, that I am releasing. 

Here are a couple of other verses that I found on my journey, because you never know what verse will speak to whom:

"...I am pleased with you and I know you by name." - Ex. 33 17b

"For the sake of his great name the LORD will not reject his people, because the LORD  was pleased to make you his own." - 1 Sam 12:22

And, even though I've already referenced this verse in this series, I'm going to list it again, because it speaks against this lie, too:

For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.  - Eph. 2:10

It's easy to forget that I have specific things I'm to do...and if I try to please others, I really am, perhaps, getting in the way of someone else who's trying to do the task that God meant for them.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

SSMT Verse 20 - John 15:16

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

It's funny how some things all kind of dovetail together.

I had posted the first two posts in  the series on 'Lies the Enemy Tells Me'; then days 3 and 4 of the first week of the Finding Eve study guide instructed me to take a long look at... the lies the enemy told me.    On the Facebook page, Rita encouraged us to take as much time as we needed on this part; not to hurry.

There are at least two more posts coming on that series; but when I read "When you were told your first lie it was a direct hit against God's truth about you." I had to go back and look at the first lie.

And I was suddenly confronted with the idea that it wasn't a random attack; that that particular lie was told to me for a reason. What if...that lie was told to me because the Enemy was trying to drive me as far away from the truth as he could?  What if...that lie wasn't just a lie, but was the opposite of the truth?

As I pondered that, I found that a few lines down the page, she challenged us to pray, "Lord, I choose now to believe the opposite of those lies. I commit to you today that I am willing to believe in your purpose for my life. I choose the opposite of what all these lies have spoken."

What is the opposite of a jinx?

I was reeling.  This was new, uncharted territory.

There's a big difference between deciding something is simply not true and deciding that it is the exact opposite of the truth.

How would my prayer life be different if I really believed that the enemy told me I was a jinx because the opposite of it was true?

I looked at that verse I put on that post to counter the jinx lie; I'd used the ESV because that was what was handy at that moment, so I looked it up in NIV, thinking I'd use it for my next SSMT verse.  But somehow, it seemed a little less powerful in the NIV:

You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit-- fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.

That reads as a linear thought -- you do this, then the Father will do that.  But when I read the ESV, it didn't seem quite so linear.  So I dug out my Greek/KJV interlinear and read:

Not ye me chose, but I chose you, and appointed you that ye should go and fruit should bear and the fruit of you should remain, that whatever ye may ask the Father in the name of me he may give you.

As convoluted and backward as that seems, it also appears that these are parallel thoughts, not linear.

For a better explanation, I pulled out the Amplified:

You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you - I have appointed you, I have planted you - that you might go and bear fruit and keep on bearing; that your fruit may be lasting (that it may remain, abide); so that whatever you ask the Father in My name [as presenting all that I AM] He may give it to you.

That breaks it down even more, with the semi colons, the thought becomes very clear:

I have chosen you  so that 1) you might bear fruit 2) that fruit will remain and 3) whatever you ask the Father in my name, He will give you.

The promise of whatever you ask is not dependent upon the first two phrases, it is parallel to them.  It is part of the reason Christ chose us ...chose me.

Notice, though, the implications of  asking something in Christ's name.  This is not just tacking on a formulaic, 'In Jesus' name I pray, Amen' on to the end of a prayer...this is standing in the place of Jesus in a situation, representing Christ in that situation and asking for what Jesus asks for.  That's a responsibility; that's relationship.

So I am breaking my little self imposed rule that I would memorize everything in NIV.  For this verse, I'm using the ESV:

You have not chosen me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.  John 15:16 ESV

Monday, October 7, 2013

Lies the Enemy Tells Me - # 2: 'You are Flawed'

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

This one may come across differently than I mean it to; I don't mean to imply that it is a lie that I am not perfect.

Of course I'm not perfect.  But this lie goes a lot deeper than that.

The implication here is that I have something wrong with my character that makes me less valuable as a person.

This is a lie that started in elementary school.  Of course, then that lie was worded as 'You have cooties'....

Who knows how the social order is established in a classroom...but in my little rural school, with about twelve classmates, I quickly became one of those on the bottom rung.  Was it because I had not interacted with kids in classroom settings much?  No kindergarten, very little Sunday first real exposure to my peers was first grade.  I didn't know how to behave in a classroom setting...I'd never had to sit still and be quiet much at all.  I talked all the time.  I spent a lot of time in 'time out' ...sitting in a chair in the hallway outside the door (One of my older cousins started the rumor in the family that he saw me with my leg tied to the chair, but that never happened.  I don't know if he assumed that I was tied to the chair or if he saw something that made him think that or if he was just being ornery).  I remember the teacher actually taping my mouth shut with Scotch tape once...but I felt so silly that I giggled it off.

It is a fact that she retired after teaching that year.

It may have been because I was a huge story teller.  I made up crazy stories and tried to pass them off as truth.  I don't know attempt to earn favor, somehow, maybe, but that sure backfired.  It really didn't stop until I was nearly in middle school and got called out by someone whose good opinion mattered to me.  The disgust in his voice at my story telling was the revelation that I needed in order to get a clue about being truthful.  I honestly don't recall that I ever did that again after that point...but the damage was done.

There were probably other social gaffes in my behavior that I did not recognize then or now.  But by the time I was in 3rd grade it was pretty clear that I was not on the same level as the others.

One incident in particular stands out from third grade...we had typical mid-1960's playground equipment; stuff that would be considered too dangerous for a schoolyard now.  Swings and monkey bars and teeter totters and a merry go round and a maypole type thing from which you could hang by your hands and swing round and round, feet off the ground.  I remember one recess, playing on the maypole by myself, when I noticed that my fellow 3rd graders were all on the merry go round, pushing it and pumping the bars to make it go pretty fast.  It looked like fun, so I went over and got on.

Every one of the other kids got off.  Immediately.  Then, they began to complain that I was contaminating the merry go round and I needed to get off so they could get on again.  Of course, it wasn't much fun to make it go 'round by myself, so I pretty quickly got off and went back to the maypole.

The others had the merry go round going at full speed in short order, and I went over again and tried to get on.  Once more they all got off and began to tell me to get off so they could get back on.  The merry go round slowed down to a crawl again, and I got off and went back to the maypole.

This incredible scenario repeated itself a third time, but after I got off the third time the first grade teacher, who had playground duty that day, went over to the merry go round and made all the third graders get off.  I don't know what she told them but those kids came over to me on the maypole and yelled at me for getting them into trouble.

'Peer rejection', the psychologists call it.

It changed shape a bit over the remainder of my school years, but it never went away.

And I swallowed the lie that there was something wrong with me, something bound up in my character that kept me from being likeable, respectable, credible.  Something that made me believe I was in the way, annoying, a bother.

And it got in deep.  So deep that it still, to this day, influences my behavior and my expectations.  It keeps me from offering ideas and suggestions.  Not always, but in places where I am not absolutely sure of my reception.  I rather sub-consciously expect to be dismissed, overlooked, not taken seriously.

But it still hurts when it happens.

This may be the most difficult lie to disengage...because rejection in one way or another is a common human experience.  There is nothing that is unusual or remarkable about it; it doesn't happen in my life any more than it happens in any other, even though that while I typed those words, the enemy threw up recent rejections, recent examples of not being taken seriously, recent scathing and belittling comments from those who are close to me to try and prove that  my statement was wrong.  

See how hard he resists the truth?

If you, like me, struggle with a vague undefined feeling that somehow you are not quite up to the standard of those around you, that you have been assessed by those whose opinions somehow matter and found wanting, here is what is true:

For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do (Eph.2:10)

If God created us, for specific tasks that He has already prepared for us, how can we believe that we are flawed to the point of being useless and ineffective?

I am not flawed...I am God's own creation, and I have things to accomplish for Him.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Lies the Enemy Tells Me - #1: 'You're a Jinx'

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

As I did my study this morning, I was instructed to list lies that I had believed...lies the Enemy told me about myself.

I was amazed at what came out when I was writing in my journal; I thought I would share some of those, just in case someone else out there has heard the same sinister whispers and believed them.

I may have even blogged about some of these before...some, I know, will be seeing print for the first time, as I didn't want to face them.

But I'm going to start with the first lie.  I don't even think I'd started school yet when I heard this one.  But I remember it very well.

It was Christmas Eve.  We were just returning home from the annual dinner/gift exchange at Grandma's and someone had turned on the little black and white tv...a basketball game.

I do not have a clue who was playing...on the screen, all I could discern were white uniforms and dark uniforms.  For some reason, I decided I wanted one of the teams (and I don't remember which one) to win.

Suddenly, I thought that I needed to pretend, even in my thoughts, that I wanted the other team to win.

Because I knew, in one moment, that if I wanted one team to win, that would guarantee their loss.

In my child's mind, I thought ... if 'THEY' know who I want to win, 'THEY' will make sure the other team wins.

Stupid.  Incredible.  But I was convinced.

In my mind, I was a jinx.

I don't know where that came from, but that 'jinx' concept stuck.

It stuck through elementary school, where I was the last person picked to be on a team...usually with  groans.

It stuck through high school, where my school spirit posters mysteriously disappeared from the contest display.

It stuck in my prayer life... even as an adult, I had a nagging insecurity that said I should not name  anything specific, because that would insure it would not happen. And, of course, the Enemy would remind me over and over again of the prayers I prayed that apparently were not heard or answered as I wished.

But I am here to tell you, that is a lie.

Because God HAS answered my prayers.  He HAS blessed me abundantly.  He HAS done more than I could ask or imagine in so many ways.

But because I believed the lie, I couldn't see what He had done.

As I prayed over the lies today, the one thing that impressed me is that I was targeted.  The lies were the flaming arrows... the weapons of the enemy...that lodged and stuck.

And he fires those arrows at children.  Because if he can convince the child, he has silenced the adult.

But, for me and anyone else who has swallowed that lie, here is what Jesus said:

You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you - John 15:16, ESV

Friday, October 4, 2013

First Thoughts on Eve

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

One of the first questions Rita asked as an introduction to the study of Finding Eve was to list 3 characteristics that I've  kind of associated with Eve, just based on my own opinion.

I've always thought of Eve in the context of what happened, the narrative as a whole, so it was kind of interesting to take a look at my own opinions of her specifically.  To be honest, I think my opinions are maybe a hair off from the norm, but that may be because I am such a Genesis fan and I have done a lot of study and reflection on that book (I may have mentioned that Genesis was my favorite BSF study...). 

So when I first think of Eve, I think of her innocence.  It is an innocence that we can't begin to imagine; she wasn't naive or simple, she was pure.  I've  wondered if she was aware that it was even possible to speak something that was not true.  So of course the serpent confused her. 

The next thing that occurs to me about Eve is that she was the very definition of beautiful.  No surgery, Botox, dyes, make up, spandex, special lighting or airbrushing were needed.  Yahweh made her to be His absolute expression of beauty.  I wonder what she really looked like...and how far our concept of 'beautiful' has strayed from the real thing.

Finally, when I think of Eve, I think of the devastating loss she sustained, and the guilt that she carried for the rest of her life.  I've wondered how she managed to bear that load did she cope?  Where did she get the strength to get up each day and go through the toil of survival, remembering what it had been like in the Garden? 

I think that is what I need to learn most from Eve...I mess up, put my foot in my mouth, do/say stupid stuff that should NOT have been said or done...and then, when I am wiser, I must own the mistakes, do my best to make restitution, but continue on following God, knowing full well that I have ruined things and hurt people beyond my ability to restore or repair and that I am going to have to live with the consequences and rely on His grace to do what I cannot. case you missed yesterday's post... I'm giving away a copy of the book, Finding Eve, by Rita Springer, to someone who leaves a comment on that post before Sunday Evening.  :-)

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Jumping in Again...and a Give Away...

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

I've mentioned before that I was in Bible Study Fellowship for seven years.  It was an amazing journey, and I really, really encourage anyone who has the opportunity to do a BSF study to take advantage of it.

One of the neatest aspects of BSF is the weekly group discussion.  15 (ladies, in my case, as this was a women's only group) discussed in depth questions pertaining to the scripture portion for the week.  We were not allowed to bring in outside sources...quotes from books or commentaries...but were totally to get into the Scripture and discover things for ourselves first; then, after the discussion, we could check other sources.

What awesome discussions we had.

I miss that.  I mean, I really, really miss that.

Part of the reason I started Beer Lahai Roi was to hopefully have some similar discussions but, well, turns out the Internet may not be such a great place to do that, as it's so public.

But a couple of women whom I greatly admire both started online studies within the last couple of weeks.  You've already seen my responses to Suzanne's study of Hebrews; let me introduce you to the second study that I've jumped on board with....

Rita Springer has been a friend of our church for, well, ever since the beginning, I think.  We had not been attending the church very long when Rita and two other ladies, Dawn Sweigart and Terri Gladstone (now Terri Furr), led the women's conference that year, which totally wrecked me and left me with great affection for all three of those ladies.

That team has ended up doing a total of, I think 4 of our women's conferences, and Rita has been a guest for other events as well...sometimes she's just been there on a Sunday to be a guest worship leader (in fact, she will be leading worship at our Madison, AL Campus this coming Sunday).

Well, Rita has written a book, Finding Eve, and  I snagged a copy from the church bookstore not long after it was released.  Took it home, put it on the bookshelf and, so consumed I have been by the data base migration, promptly forgot all about it.

Then, at this year's women's conference, Pastor Leisa said that she would be doing a read-along and challenged the ladies to pick up a 3-book bundle and read along with her this year.

One of the books in the bundle was Finding Eve.  Suddenly I remembered...didn't I buy that book?? What happened to it??

Well, I got the bundle, figuring I could do something with the extra copy should I find that I had, indeed, bought it and managed to find it. 

I was dumbfounded to find that it was sitting on the bookshelf, exactly where it should be. I shook my head at my absentminded self and put the second book on the shelf next to the first one.

Last week, Rita announced on Facebook that she was going to do an on-line,  approximately 12 week, devotional study of the book and invited anyone who was interested to read and follow along.

I really thought it would be a study the likes of which I've been doing here...a blog post with some thoughts and a couple open-ended, thought provoking questions.  So I read the first chapter of the book in anticipation.

Then, yesterday, she posted the link to the first part of the study.  This ain't no little blog post to think about.   This is a serious study guide, and the questions in the introduction (I haven't even gotten to the discussion of the first chapter yet!) have really hit home.  This is meant to be worked through in a week, not quick answered in a day.

Way more than I expected....

Anyway,  as you have no doubt realized, since I have a second copy of the book I decided give it away to one of you lovely folks who are reading my blog.   If  you would like to be entered in a drawing to win my extra copy, just leave a comment on today's post.  I'll be drawing Sunday evening after my Girls Ministry class to see who will receive the book.  I'll mail it free to anyone in the US; I'm afraid international shipping wouldn't get the book out of the country in a timely fashion, so my apologies to anyone from out of the States who happens by here. 

I want to do it fairly quickly, so whoever gets it has time to catch up, because the catch is that if you  win, you need to participate in Rita's study along with me.

The link is up on the Finding Eve Facebook page, but if you are not on Facebook and you want to participate you can send your email address to  Findingeves at gmail dotcom and Rita  will email the link to you each week.

Between Eve and Hebrews,  I should be challenged...this will be good. 

Who wants to come along?

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

SSMT Verse 19 - Hebrews 2:1

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

I knew last week what today's Siesta Scripture Memory Verse Team verse was going to be.

The moment I read the second chapter of Hebrews for Suzanne's Online Study, verse one jumped right off the page at me.

It was another verse on the theme of being individually responsible for knowing God's truth and being intentional about sticking with it:

We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away.

If American Christianity has become an hour a week of First, Second and Last verse and a pastoral exhortation that just makes folks feel good about themselves, how can we be surprised that so many are drifting away?

We aren't paying attention, period, let alone paying careful attention.

Paying careful attention, it is implied, will protect us from wandering off into error...into that place where we do not know who among the religious leaders of our day are telling us truly what God wants us to hear...and who are telling us what they want God to be saying.

So.  Yeah.  Verse 19.  Because I need to be reminded to pay careful attention.