23 August 2014

deep{er} #4: reflections

Hello, friends:)

***Warning- long post, but a good one:) And there's a cute photo of Olsen at the end! 

I hope you've had a great week, and I hope and pray that you've been thinking about some of the things I've been reflecting on: 
  • digging deep
  • going ALL in- being on the offense with God, not letting Satan scare me with his lies
  • never retiring (spiritually- LOL!)
So last week, I said I would reflect this week on Chapter 5 of When Life Is Hard because we are on vacation again. 

REFLECTION: Before I get into my reflection... I'm really excited about our vacation... kind of... being without internet freaks me out, but I know it will be good for me! LOL :) #1 We are headed to the woods... for some quiet and alone time (with each other and with God) and #2 I get to start on my prayer studies that I've been hearing on the radio! HOOOORAY! Maybe next week I will share my prayer book and thoughts on how I want to change my prayer life :) 

Ok--- back to my reflection, I finished Chapter 5 of When Life Is Hard on the plane to California, and I want to share my thoughts: 
  • This chapter was filled with so much- it hit me right on the forehead and makes complete sense for what Trav and I are going through. 
  • Job 23:10 says that "But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold."--- before the chapter there is a "glimpse of gold" and James MacDonald focused on what I've underlined in that verse. He said that this trial isn't for God to find out what I need.. but for ME to find that out! OH MY! I've always read that God disciplines us, and I never thought it would be through this kind of a trial. It makes sense! I need to grow and I need to change so that I be what God wants me to be! This trial will get me there! Now... do I want to go through this trial... NO! But if I have to in order to see what He wants... then that is what I will do. This will mature me as a Christian. That's what I want!!!!!! So I guess... this is the road I must take! LOL!
  • (Chapter 5 first page or two) Trials = splinter of soul! That's profound! And sooooooo true! And the pain is disproportionate to the size of the splinter--- again, TRUE! This trial has literally been a splinter I couldn't get out of my foot. It's there.... it hurts... I can't seem to get it out...it's painful and I will do whatever it takes to pluck that splinter out. So I guess that means I will go down this road because that is what is needed for me to grow, mature, and glorify God. At the end of this road--- the splinter will come out (fingers crossed! LOL!)! 
  • 2 Cor. 12 Paul had a thorn (splinter/trial/etc). This entire scripture about Paul's thorn is so interesting-- I've never thought about it this way... but James MacDonald basically states the following: 
    • Satan was the messenger of Paul's thorn v. 7
    • Satan's goal is to paralyze me with fear and focus only on the "thorn"
    • But if God's goal wasn't to use this "thorn" for good, He wouldn't have allowed it. 
    • God allows it to "keep us from being conceited" v. 7 and 1 Cor. 10:12
    • MacDonald explains that Paul did what Jesus did in the Garden, asking the Lord to take this cup from him three times. Jesus prayed and asked, and he ended up submitting to God's plan. Paul does the same thing. 
    • Verse 9 should be stated "Sufficient for you is the grace of Me"- God's grace is completed in our weakness.... which means the grace of Jesus is NOT fully seen until weakness is fully experienced. 
  • Last thought---I need to be like the donkey Jesus rode into Jerusalem--- even the donkey knew that everything (the parade, the leaves, the blankets) were for JESUS! ***Taken from a message by Erwin Lutzer. I need to keep my focus on Jesus and God's plan!
WOW! This chapter is a good read--- I really should go through it again! It ends with answering the question: How do you live with the "thorn"?
  • I need to boast in the "thorn" to experience Christ's power- I'm not happy about this trial--- TRUST ME! I'm not! But if I embrace this trial, I can rejoice that God is doing work and has a plan... and I will see that there is GOOD coming from this trial.
  • I need to be content in my "thorn" to experience Christ's purpose- v. 10. Period. If I accept this trial and submit to God and embrace it.... even though that is hard... I will have God's grace and will be STRONG! I've felt so weak and alone for so long that it's about time that I stand up and use God's strength! I need to stand on God's promise in Romans 8:28- things will work out for the GOOD! 
I hope this makes sense! I also hope that you will get this book! I pray that you are not going through a trail, but if you are... this book will definitely help:) And if you are not in a trial... you will be soon (I've heard that in several sermons! LOL!). 

My goals for this week (this week's are the same as last weeks-- we are on vacation so my goals are simple):
  1. To finish When Life Is Hard
  2. Continue to pray/read my devotions daily  
  3. Start my "prayer" studies/podcasts/etc. Hopefully I will be able to do a recording for next week's reflection to share my prayer book/etc.
    I pray that this post has blessed you ❤️. 

    Remember, if you need prayer, please contact me {savannahland2 at comcast dot net}. 

    THANKS so much for stopping by today! Be blessed:}

    ps... sorry this post is sooooooooooo long! I really want to keep these post short! Plus, I always want to share a fun photo of my week and studies. This week's photo is of Olsen. He is sooooooo cute:) Trav and I were studying in our new study room the other day and caught Olsen laying down on the bible! I guess he wanted to do some studying too! Although.... the bible is upside down and he can't read! LOL! 


    Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

    Love this and Olsen is adorable!!!!

    Kerilyn H. said...

    Hi Sav, I'm not much of a blogger, but was visiting a couple this afternoon when I came to yours. I'm so sorry to glean from this post that you must be going through a really difficult time.

    I wanted to share a book with you that has been enormously helpful to me over the past 2 years. The Cup and the Glory. It isn't light, or fluffy, or even very long. But it is weighty and measured and very solid.

    Praying that you find encouragement!