Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Recapping Section 1 & 2

Hi Everyone

We started book club again on Wednesday after a long break, so we thought we’d recap the chapters we’d already read to refresh our memories. Here’s a few of the things we discussed.

Elizabeth’s Challenge: Did you do the ‘assignment’ from page 39? “For one week keep a journal of your trials. Then evaluate them from God’s perspective, choose to count them as all joy, and record the positive results that come from making this godly choice. Choose to follow God’s beautiful and practical path through your tials! He has carefully laid out the stepping-stones fro you, the first one being a joyful attitude.”

Most of us didn’t literally keep a journal but we did take mental notes. We realized that it’s the little everyday trials that we failed to count as Joy. Not the big ones. It’s the little troubles that shape our character. It was a good exercise to do and we realized that if we are not learning from the little trials it’s a scary thought that God my need to use big ones to get through to us!

I actually didn’t do the ‘assignment’ when we originally read it. However recently I spent the night in hospital with both my boys, and a dear ‘book club’ friend told me over the phone to ‘remember to count it as joy’. It was a great encouragement and as I lay on the very uncomfortable trundle bed in between my boys, I was meditating on James 1:2 ‘My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials.’, and it really helped me to put the whole episode into perspective. And in a way I was able to count it joy. I could see that the Lord was teaching me about myself, my attitudes my emotions, impatience. I’m very grateful for the reminder and remembering that it is all part of Gods purposes really encouraged me.

We discussed tiredness: On page 80, Elizabeth says “Tiredness is never an excuse. In fact, it’s a test. If tiredness is our excuse, we have failed the test, and we’ll have to go right back into the Refiner’s fire (Zechariah 13:9). We must deal with this weakness. We must purge it from our lives. Stable women don’t give into tiredness. Instead they fight it. They remain constant and keep on keeping on… no matter what.” The context of this was in relation to our commitments and responsibilities.

How do you feel about that statement? It seemed rather strong, however we though that there were many lessons to learn. If we are too tired, maybe we have committed ourselves to too many things and need to re examine our priorities. If we’re too tired to be effective wives and mothers then maybe we need to commit ourselves to less.

Giants of the faith: We thought it was good to remember “Gods Hall of faith” in Hebrews 11, which Elizabeth discusses on page 96.

I thought I’d leave you with these thoughts from page 97:

“What can you trust Jesus for today? Right this minute, what challenge is standing in your path? Are the little ones driving you crazy? Do you feel trapped? Useless? Remember, you walk with the giants of the faith.

Are you nursing your heal… or a broken heart… or a loved one with cancer? Are you suffering unjustly because of slander of gossip? Are you going without a home, sufficient finances, a husband, or children? Remember, you walk with the giants of the faith.

Realise that just as God was honoured by the faith and fortitude of those incredible saints of old, He will be honored as you trust Him when you suffer.

No matter what God is asking of you, no matter what the size of it, ask Him to give you the grace to take even a small step of trusting obedience in whatever He requires of you. That one small step will put you on God’s path through your trials There you will experience His gracious help and provision, enabling you to stand alongside His giants of genuine faith in your times of testing.”