Faith

Chapter 7 Cast your care, not your responsibility

I struggle not living with guilt and condemnation. I am just one of those people who doesn’t like to follow rules, love pushing my limits, and living life on the edge. It’s just who I am, ok! ๐Ÿค— The only problem with that is that everyone else has a problem with it. Over the years people love to point out my mistakes and tell me who and how I should be. Which then makes me feel guilty and causes me to overthink everything.

In this Chapter Meyer talks about casting our care upon Him. She explains that casting is a violent word which means to throw, hurl, arise, send, and drive out. So we need to get spiritually violent. Some of that violence is expressed in our ‘absolute refusal to live any longer under guilt and condemnation, which can actually be worry about past mistakes.’

Some of us want to change people by making them feel guilty for their mistakes or choices. Here is what Meyer has to say about that…

‘People can NOT change people. Only God can change people.

‘It’s the Holy Spirits job to bring conviction to sinners

It’s not my job and it’s not your job to make people feel guilty. So let’s stop trying to change people and let God do His work in us and in others.

We spend too much time worrying over situations in our lives and not enough time praying for God’s will to be done in our life. What we want or how we think the situation should go isn’t always what God wants for us. I know when I worry and have all these life problems thrown at me I become a monster. I just have to fix it and I drive myself crazy over all the different ways I can try to get it worked out. I know personally I need to do a better job at resting in God’s word and completely handing it over to Him. I need to praise Him in the good and bad times. I have three girls who are watching the way I handle hard times. I know I need to set the example of how I trust in Him during the storms of life.

‘Biggest problem for most Christians is their inability to distinguish between God’s will and personal ambition.’

‘ The Bible teaches we are not to give in to such “evil tendencies” (James4:6), but rather to continue to bear fruit, giving thanks and praise to God even in the midst of negative circumstances.’

‘It’s our responsibility to cast our care upon the Lord, trusting Him, praying without worrying, continue in obedience, bear good fruit, and offering Him the sacrifice of praise.’

๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿป

-Erin

Faith

Chapter 6- He Careth for You

In this chapter Meyer is looking again at Psalm 91:1,2. She explains that there are three aspects that determine our ability to receive God’s richest blessings. First we must dwell in Him, second we must dwell in the secret place, and third we must remain under the shadow of the Almighty.

1- Dwell means to remain; to settle

John 15:4 Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you.

2- Dwell in the secret place of the Most High meaning a place of protection. Kept safe from our enemies. (Haters is the word I use ๐Ÿ˜‚)

3- Remain under the shadow of the Almighty. Meaning we must make the Lord our Refuge and our Fortress.

*Leaning and relying on Him

*Confidently trusting in Him

She goes on to talk about prayer how it produces peace, rest, patience and hope.

Do not worry and be anxious over anything, but in everything by prayer and petition. And God’s peace will guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6,7)

‘If we are truly believing God and trusting the Lord, we have entered into his rest. We have prayed and cast our care upon Him and are now abiding in the perfect peace of His holy presence.’

Romans 5:2-4 And we boast in hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our suffering , because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.

The last part really spoke to me because she explains the importance of suffering in silence. It’s really hard not to want to run to your best friend or close friends to talk about your trials. It’s like we want help to figure out how to handle these problems or build an army against these problems. But Meyer tells us ‘stop running to people and start turning to God. To pray to Him and cast my care upon Him- in secret. There is a time to share what we are going through, and a there is a time to keep things between us and God.’

We tend to spend so much time talking and worrying about our problems that the work never gets accomplished. When we keep things to ourselves and pray about it, God will work things out for the good. ‘But we serve a God Who is so good He can take a bad thing and actually work good in us from it.’ ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿป

With all the social media out there we really need to work on this my friends. We tend to want to air all our dirty laundry out there for the internet world to see. Once it’s out there, it’s out there forever. People don’t need to know your trails, these same people that see it could also be your haters. Then good really won’t come out of your trials.

‘As a body of Christ, we are supposed to seek God, not the answers to our problems. If we will seek Him and His righteousness, He has promised to provide all the answers we need’

So let’s stop sharing all our life problems and let’s start praying. Then you can one day share the amazing things God has worked out in your life.

-Erin

Faith

Chapter 4- The Arm of the Lord

In this Chapter the author explains the arm of the Lord is based on the covenant of grace, which depends upon faith. She believes that in order to be filled with His Spirit and be pleasing to Him, we must be willing, yielded and empty. Willing for God to use us as he sees fit. Willing to follow his plan rather than our own. We must be empty of ourselves.

Here are our Highlights and take away’s:

“If you and I are going to enjoy the fullness of God in our lives, we must go through periods in which we have to stand alone. Sometimes that is good for us because we get too caught up with people. Sometimes we must be left with nobody so we will learn to depend solely upon the Lord.”

*It’s good to know that through loneliness, you can grow in your relationship with Him.

“God does not want us to be a clone of somebody else. He wants us to be unique and creative. He wants us to operate by His Spirit.”

*We shouldn’t become like anyone else. This is a good reminder for me to be careful who I surround myself with. Your closest friends should hold the same beliefs and values as you.

I love how she uses the example of birds. That most birds fly in flocks, but eagles fly alone. “If we want to be an eagle, we must learn to fly alone.”

Romans 8:31 If God is for us, who can be against us?

“Whatever may have happened to us in the past, it does not have to dictate our future.”

*People live, learn, and grow from their past. God can use anyone no matter how bad their past was.

Proverbs 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.

“We need to learn to live one day at a time, being content where we are and with what we have until the Lord leads us to something better.”

Philippians 1:6 He who began a good work in you will continue until the day of Jesus Christ, developing and perfecting and bringing it to full completion in you.

“It remains to be seen what God can do through man or woman who will give Him all the glory.”

*In all we do and accomplish, give God the glory!

“Rather than looking at our past failures, our present fallacies, or our future fears, we should be looking to the Lord and trusting in His wisdom, strength, and power.”

“People will disappoint us, and we will end up devastated, but God will never fail us or forsake us.”

“We should love people, but trust God.”

I have been through this a lot and I know others have. We have groups of friends or a friend and feelings get hurt, people change, or with time you’ll grow apart. As hard as it is to go through, you’ll find yourself in the better for going through it. Not everyone that comes into your life will be good for you and you won’t always be good for them. Its healthy to have periods in your life where you are alone so you can examine yourself and see what areas you need to work on in your life.
For me personally I need someone who likes me for me, that knows who they are as an individual and isn’t trying to compete with me. It’s not healthy for you or the other person when you’re constantly trying to one up each other and make everything a competition. I don’t have time that for that mess. lol
I have made a lot of mistakes in my past. I haven’t always been the best wife, friend, mother, sister, or daughter. Because of my actions I have gained myself quite the reputation. But I can’t let what others think of me bother me because I know that my past doesn’t define me.
Elena and I didn’t like each other at all at first. If we hadn’t given each other a second chance we would have missed out on this beautiful friendship that has formed. Have I disappointed her? YES. Has she disappointed me? YES. Are we worried about starting this new adventure together? YES. But does it paralyze us? NO. This chapter helped us to see that no matter what happens that God is in control and he will work every detail out. Our hope and trust is in Him.

It is what it is, right Elena?!

-Erin

Faith

Chapter 3- The Arm of the Flesh

I am not going to even lie to y’all this was a tough Chapter for Elena and I both. We met this morning to go through this chapter and she highly disagree’s with most of it, to say the least. I honestly agreed with her but I like to play devils advocate and boy was I ruffling her feathers. Lol.
The author talks a lot about waiting on God and listening for God to work things out in your life. That we really waste too much time worrying and forcing things to happen. “We must be willing to follow his plans rather than our own. To be pleasing to God, we must give up all our human efforts to build ourselves, our ministries, and our careers and allow the Lord to build them for us according to His will and plan for us.”
Elena made a very valid point by saying you won’t get anywhere in life without hard work and applying yourself. As much as the chapter sounds that way, I honestly don’t think that’s how she meant it. So the best way for me personally to understand it is by breaking it down to simply praying for everything and trusting he will work every detail out through the work we put forth. Recognizing that God has given us the talents and treasures we have.
Proverbs 16:3 Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.

Take away’s from Chapter 3

John 3:6 What is born of the flesh is flesh: and what is born of the Spirit is spirit.

John 6:63 It is the Spirit Who gives life; the flesh conveys not benefit whatever.

“We are justified not by our works or our righteousness, but by our faith and confidence in Christ.”

Ephesians 2:8 Just as we are saved by grace through faith, and not by works of the flesh.

So bottom line I am praying for my future, trusting in God, and have faith He will bless me beyond measure. It might not be the exact way that I had planned or hoped for but it will be perfect because of Him.

Next week in Chapter 4 (The Arm of the Lord) we will be learning about Grace.

-Erin

Faith

Bible Study- Chapter 2: It’s okay to Lighten up!

After reading this chapter I quickly realized that Elena might not be the only one who needs to lighten up! Anyone who knows me, knows that I can be very laid back. But the one’s who really know me also know I can lose my cool in two seconds flat. I say that I am a passionate person while others think I have an attitude problem.
I notice myself losing my joy when I am trying to get myself and three girls ready in the morning to get them to school on time (which happens once in a blue moon). It doesn’t matter what time we get up to get ready one of those girls canโ€™t find something they haven’t even really looked for as we are walking out the door! UGH!
Or when I have plans with someone and they cancel last minute because they forgot they had a meeting. The nerve of people, I mean really! lol
And I can’t even tell you the anxiety that comes when I have to have a conversation with someone that I’ve hurt or overstepped and said too much with. My stomach is in knots for days. So maybe, just maybe I’ve learned something from this chapter.

So here are my Chapter 2 take away’s-

1) God likes a peaceful spirit that is not anxious or wrought up.
(1 Peter 3:4)

*Wrought up- agitated,tense,stressed,and edgy
Anxious- worried,disquieted,and distracted

2) This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
(Psalm 118:24)

“Learning to enjoy life even in the midst of trying circumstances is one way we develop spiritual maturity”

3) God wants us to learn to be “now people.” (Hebrews 4:7-9)

Matthew 6:34 do not worry or be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will have worries and anxieties of its own.

So Elena the next time we have all six of our kids out shopping and they are running around acting crazy remember to lighten up my friend!! Just relax and find that joy!

-Erin

Faith

Up Next

Sometime last fall we decided we were both really interested in doing a womenโ€™s Bible Study…but at the same time neither of us is really into big group settings. On top of that we are both pretty anxious about sharing and talking in front of people. So we had this bright idea (well I did ๐Ÿ˜œ) that we start our own Bible Study. We went to the Christian bookstore and decided on a Women of Faith Friendship Study and it was a success!! We had so much fun with it and really enjoyed growing in our friendship. We also discovered some ways we can be better friends to others and learned to appreciate other friends who have been there for us.

So we finished that study and were ready to dig into another ….we headed over to Barnes & Noble this time. The lady assisting us had no idea what a Bible Study was and kept directing us to the actual Bibles, lol. With coffee in hand and one impatient 5 year old we finally found the book on our own.

Be Anxious for Nothing by Joyce Meyer is what we chose. We look forward to starting it next week and hope you will pick up a copy to follow along.

This book is laid out different from the last study. Each chapter has an accompanying study guide section in the back. We will try to stick with one chapter a week. Grab some friends or just yourself and weโ€™ll all try to get over our anxiety together!

~Elena

Faith

Bible Study

Finishing up our first 12 week Bible Study on Friendship by Women of Faith. Great minds think alike….we even underline the same things! We will keep you posted on our next book choice and maybe you can join us. If you have any suggestions or comments along the way feel free to let us know!