I confess that I did all five lessons yesterday.
The thing is, I left last Thursday to attend Hearts at Home and the best part of all?
I stayed at the home of my sweet co-leader and heart sister, Cherie.
She lives a very short walk from the campus of Illinois State University where Hearts at Home is held each year and graciously offered up her college daughter’s empty room for this foreigner in her land.
The internet crossed our paths and I’m so thankful – she is a true sister of the heart.
During our visit together, Cherie said “Sometimes I feel like James just can’t even give us a moment to come up for air.”
Week Six was no exception.
Here are a few “can’t come up for air” comments that got me this week:
* So often, we find ourselves in tears over things that don’t come from Him. Feelings of inadequacy that stem from comparison. Self-doubt. Criticism towards others. Of course, these are lies the enemy would like us to believe but sometimes we’re in tears over sheer conviction – and this DOES come from Him. In love. Page 159 reads “Sometimes we feel badly and come to tears over conviction. That’s a gift from God meant to lead us to repentance and relief and, ultimately, to joy and blessing.” Yes.
* Loved the part about gorging and hysterically enough, I’ve been on a big purging kick around Casa de Snapp. During the Hearts at Home Conference, I discovered The Fly Lady who is a queen organizer and cleaner for those of us who aren’t born organized. She repeatedly said “Get rid of your stuff and bless others with your excess instead of letting it sit in your closets.” I love how God works because page 162 states just that – “hoarding means witholding what we don’t even use from others who’d treasure it.” I might need to cry those tears of conviction now.
* The Fly Lady also shared that when she gets something new then she must get rid of something old. So if she purchases a new pair of shoes, then she must go home and donate a pair of shoes – but only IF you are engorged with possessions. All of this from James 5:3 – “Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days.” The key word is hoarding – I must allow my excess to bless others!
* I’ve always been one with big plans – I want to go from point A to point Q in a month and yes, I get that it’s a patience thing. Like the old adage “you can’t hurry love”, you also can’t hurry the training process no matter how hard you try. (page 164) On the way to bearing much fruit, we must “develop our spiritual muscles” so that when (not IF) we are persecuted, we will be able to stay rooted in Him. “A person has hardly begun to have a real fight on her hands until she starts serving in her full-throttle giftedness and effectiveness. She who proves a threat earns an enemy you can bet will do everything he can to make her sorry” (page 164)
* The teaching on Job was powerful as well – we see that in Job 1:8, God suggests that Satan consider Job to be one to test since he’s blameless and upright snd because GOD KNOWS THE OUTCOME. Satan predicts that Job will denounce his faith after several trials but Job is steadfast. On page 166, Beth states that “The Lord does not put us to tests that He knows in advance we don’t have the wherewithall to pass. He boasts in His faithful followers then lets them prove Him right.” Powerful.
* Job’s reward for remaining faithful? A double portion instead of shame – more than He had in the first half of his life because he remained steadfast and rooted in Him.
* Let your “yes” mean “yes” and your “no” mean “no”…Enough said. (Matthew 5:34-37 and James 5:12)
* Lastly, Day Five hit me right where I personally have been. For some reason, I had it in my mind that our God is a serious one, one that demands reverence (He does but not in the way I was envisioning) and doesn’t have a sense of humor. Oh, have I been so wrong. He created us to desire worship – to sing and dance or whatever that looks like to you. Part of James 5:13 states “…Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise.” Sing and rejoice. Let the joy in.
So what about you, dear sisters? What hit you this week? Discuss here or in the Facebook group if you prefer but remember that others not doing our study can learn from you here in the comments! If you aren’t doing the study along with us, we would still love to hear from you !