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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Week 2: YES to GOD Tuesday study

Hello My Sweet Sisters in Christ!

Okay, let's get this thing going....sorry I'm late.
Welcome to the blog Bible study of the book

"What Happens When Women Say Yes to God" By Lysa TerKeurst

Please join us anytime!

Chapter 2: Hearing God's Voice


Oh, I loved this chapter!!


Pg. 26: Lysa tell us that "Every day, God speaks to us. Sometimes He invites us to draw close and listen...Other times He calls us to participate in His purposes."



I know that with me, sometimes I get in God's way of what He's doing. I love how Lysa reminded us that sometimes He'll ask us to just sit tight and listen...sometimes He calls for action from us and we need to learn to listen to His voice. So as Lysa asked us..."How do I know if God is speaking to me? How do I discern whether it is His voice speaking or just my own idea? What if I feel like God is telling me to do something that doesn't seem to make sense?" Do you struggle with this too sisters? I have. I do. In the next paragraph Lysa tells us that the way we recognize its from God is "by knowing Him." AMEN!



My husband has been in my life for 17 years now and in all these years this man has remained faithful to his Dallas Cowboys. But what if in all these years we didn't get to know each other. What if I never spent time with him, never talked to him? If we didn't have the communication we do it would be hard to know what he likes. I know my husband. I recognize his voice when he tells me that Dallas has a game on Sunday night "so get ready". If I didn't know him or talk with him on a daily basis, I'd be coming up with all sorts of things. Like perhaps just knowing the basics...knowing he likes football but not sure what team. Same thing with God...to know Him comes from talking with Him, to Him, about Him, reading His Word and also listening to Him. We need to spend time with Him so that when He talks to us we'll recognize His voice.



Lysa's 5 Key Questions to help determine if what we're hearing is from God or not:


1.)Does what I'm hearing line up with Scripture?


pg. 27: God will not speak to us or tell us to do something that is contrary to His Word.


*We have to know Scripture so we can discern the consistency of what we're hearing.



2.)Is it consistent with God's character?


*Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.


pg 29: "The longer we know Him and the more we experience Him personally, the more we learn about His character."


So true...I know much of my husband's character because I know him and spend time with him.


3.) Is what I'm hearing being confirmed through other messages?


pg 29: "When God is speaking to me about a particular issue, I cannot escape it.


Isn't that nothing but the truth??? Seems like when there is something God wants Lelia to get I hear it EVERY where! Car, church, blogs, sermons. Not too long ago Holly posted on Lysa's blog about Random Acts of Kindness...happened to be on the morning when I wasn't so kind to my husband. Every blog I visited that day had something about love and kindness to your spouse. God wanted me to get a message that day and fortunately I recognized that...didn't like it, but recognized God was tapping me on my shoulder.


4) Is what I'm hearing beyond me?

I loved what Lysa said here: "The beauty of doing things beyond ourselves is that we will know it was by God's doing and His alone."


I love/hate when God asks me to do something that I have no right even attempting. Love it because I know that only through His strength is how the task will get done, so any accomplishments this incapable girl makes just points to Him.


Beth Moore said this: "We don't understand that the pressures we face getting to our places of full-throttle effectiveness in Christ are crucial for developing the muscle to sustain ministry there. He's developing the character the calling requires."

I know, read it again.

At the end of this section Lysa gently reminds us girls not to look at our inabilities and do not dwell in our insecurities, instead...

LOOK AT THE ALMIGHTY GOD!


5.) Would what I'm hearing please God?

Oh my goodness...Lysa really spoke to my heart when she said "we'll pretty much use any excuse to convince ourselves it's not His voice so we don't need to act."

Owie...is all I can say.

I'm sure I confuse the heck out of my church family as sometimes I'm so willing to say yes to do what's asked of me, then other times...many times my answer is:

Let me pray about that and I'll get back to you.


I do that especially when I don't want to do something that God has been working on my heart to do. Don't get me wrong here, I think praying before saying yes to an already busy life is extremely important, but when it's your "excuse" because you just don't want to say yes...well you know what I'm talking about.


The end of the chapter after Lysa shared about obedience to God in her own life she says:

"You know what we discovered? Sheer joy. Not in the circumstances that we faced necessarily, but in the absolute assurance that we were being obedient to God an walking in the very center of His will."

When I was in high school there was this guy a few grades ahead of me. He thought he was God's gift to high school girls. The one thing I can still remember is his love for his green bottle of Ralph Lauren Polo Cologne. John reeked of this cologne; especially when he mixed it with his body sweat after track practice. He sprayed so much of that stuff on that you could actually taste it.


That's what I want in my life...to reek of obedience to God. I want His name to be known because of how I choose to live my life...saying YES when I want to say NO.


When I saw John strutting down the hallway, I knew I'd soon be tasting Polo.


I want others to taste Jesus when they see me because I choose to say "YES GOD!"


In the Bible study:


Lysa asked us to list any areas you currently honor God in and list any areas you sense you may need to sacrifice or change? Share these if you'd like to along with anything else that struck your heart.

Oh, God has great things in store for us friends and we're only on chapter 2!!!


If you have more to say on your own blog...sign up below so we can visit you.

Leave a comment here too for we LOVE reading what God is doing in your lives!

If you didn't see Monday's post, please click here...it's a Blog Baby Shower for my daughter!

Also~I just want to apologize to you all. I haven't been able to visit other blogs like I love doing. Been so busy helping Alyssa get her nursery ready & make sure my house is clean for the company that we know will be coming for both Gene & Alyssa. So...being on the computer hasn't been an option for me as of late. I miss you all so much & really learn a lot from each of your lives. Love you! Lelia
Many Blessings,
Lelia


18 comments:

Jenny said...

Leila,
I am praying for you! You have so much going on this month, thank you for still taking time to encourage us!

Jen

MrsJoeB said...

Lelia-it is a good chapter. I love it when what I am reading in my Bible studies coincides with sermon messages, radio programs, converstions. I still struggle with hearing and knowing God's voice in everything. Though I am closer to Him then I ever have been, I still am not close enough!! I need to honor God more with scripture memorization and more time in prayer. My husband and I get on our knees each morning to pray together but privately with my God, I tend to talk to Him in short request or praise moments t/o the day. I need to give Him more devoted prayer time. I honor Him in my consistent quiet times and loving Him with all my heart. I say that humbly. Wish I could be perfect for Him!

I will leave more on my blog ladies. I hope you stop by!!

In His Graces~Pamela

Lizerd said...

In my walk with God, some things are somewhat easy to discern and other times, I struggle back and forth with what He really intends for me. Recently, I have struggled with one particular friendship...not knowing what God REALLY intends, but knowing He desires a change. I love the 5 Key Questions and even though I know them, it is such a wonderful reminder to lay them out before the Lord when I feel He is leading me in a particular direction.
My desire is to please Him. Lelia, I love the illustration you used, about your High School classmate, John, and his Polo Cologne. I want people to taste Jesus when they are in my presence too...and I know that I don't always allow that to happen. So, I will continue to put my struggles to the test of these 5 questions...again. And act according to what He says. Dear Bloggy Friends, if you have read any of my blog posts, it is clear that there has been betrayal and bitterness in my past. All I want is to say YES to God. I know that He has the very best in store for me and I continue to look forward to what He will reveal by doing this study. I covet your prayers and love the testimonies of each of you. Thank you for sharing what God is doing in your life.

Samantha said...

I'm going to echo Jenny, and send you some prayers. And thanks for taking time out for the group :D

I really am strapped for time right now, but tomorrow night I'll definitely put up a post. I loved the chapter...

Julie said...

Lelia,
A dear sweet missionary friend of mine who went to be with the Lord a few years back shared a precious picture in her testimony. She had been interned in a Japanese prison during World War II due to being in a place during the war with missions. They took all the Americans captive.

She would often say in the midst of her testimony, "And my Lord said to me, my child....." When she was finally set free and returned to the states the first phone call she made was to her mother. When her mother picked up the phone she knew immediately it was her voice. She said that through the years as she has shared her testimony people have asked her how she knew when her Lord was speaking to her. She would say, "Just as I knew my mother's voice when she picked up the phone, I knew when my Lord was speaking to me."

The first time I heard her say that was in 1981. I've never forgotten it.

Thanks for sharing.
Love,
Julie

tiggerdaisy said...

Hey Ladies!!!

I love the subtitle to this chapter... "God wants us to live in expectation of hearing from Him." WOW! WOW! WOW! Did I say WOW?!

There was so many things in this chapter that was amazing. A part of it that really touched me, however, is found on page 32 at the bottom. It's the quote by Rick Warren about God having a history of calling people to do things beyond themselves. He mentions that if God can use those misfits, surely He can use any of us! I immediately thanked Jesus for using me no matter who or what "I think" I am...He can still use me. Whoo~Hoo!

On pages 34-35, Lysa talks about God wooing her and loving her, then once she surrendered to Him, He redefined her identity. Yes, yes, yes! We are a new creation in Christ. I know it's hard to believe that God can love us in spite of ourselves, but He does. My former pastor always said "God doesn't make junk!" I guess that means that we are God's masterpiece and we are made to serve a purpose. More times than not, our purpose is way beyond our ability, but God provides what we lack! Glory Hallelujah!

That's all I have for now. Prayers and Blessings!

Rebecca

Amy said...

Lelia, what an amazing post!

God really got hold of me last night concerning what I posted this morning.

I was almost too scared to post it.
I know who gives the spirit of fear, and it is not God. Still, it was a struggle. But I said yes to God and no to my fear.

Thank you for sharing what you are learning from this book.

God used your blog this morning to tap on my shoulder.

Thank you for your obedience.
God Bless!
Amy:)

Joyful said...

Again really good solid teaching in this chapter. I loved what Lysa wrote on pg.33, "If what you are doing pleases God, then even if what you thought you heard from Him wasn't His voice, you still please Him. We should always seek to err on the side of pleasing God."

It's a win/win situation. God honours a heart's desire to obey even when we may be a little off base in our interpretation.

We have to expect to hear from God. Charles Price writes, "Our experience rarely exceeds our expectancy."

Concerning recognizing God's voice, Priscilla Shirer writes, "The enemy will never ask you to step outside your comfort zone because he doesn't want you to experience the fullness of God's power. Your own ego will never ask you to do anything that many cause you embarrassment or a blow to your self-image." Great advice to help discern who's voice you're hearing.

God doesn't just speak to be heard - He speaks to be obeyed. John 2:5 says, "Whatever He says to you, do it." Sometimes we prefer listening to one of God's servants - a close friend, a Pastor - because then we feel our obedience is optional not imperative. God will ask us to do things beyond ourselves. "Have you ever heard the Master say something very difficult to you? If you haven't, I question whether you have ever heard Him say anything at all." Oswald Chambers

Of course, a prerequisite to hearing from God is having a relationship with God. Unconfessed sin will also keep us from hearing from God.

I loved the quote that was included on page 32 by Pastor Rick Warren. I can't look at my own inabilities and insecurities. Look at the Almighty God.

Keeping my eyes fixed on Him,
Joy

Laura said...

Lelia,
I loved reading your insights on this chapter! When I finally get to read this book I will definitely revisit your thoughts. I will pray for you during this very busy time! How exciting to be putting together a nursery,etc. What a blessed baby to have such a sweet grandma!
Laura

A God Chaser said...

Thanks Pamela for sharing this site with me. I too struggle if I am hearing from God or is it me. I am thankful for the reminders/questions I can ask myself to ensure I am hearing God's voice. And Pricilla Shrivers comments about the enemy that is so true. Hope to be able to join you ladies again. Please check out my blog- the 4/1 post.

Michelle said...

I am just joining the study this week. I love this book and reading everyone's insights. I found it comforting to read that listening for God's voice and communicating with Him did not always come naturally to Lysa. One of my favorite parts of the chapter is her statement, "When you ask for these things boldly and live in expectation of hearing from God, you will."

Lelia, thanks for thinking of us during this busy time for you. My mom had surgery in June 2007 similar to what Gene is having. It went very well and relieved the pain. She was even going down giant inflatable slides with her grandchildren this weekend. I pray Gene's surgery goes well tomorrow and Alyssa does not have the baby until he gets home. Hang in there! Blessings!

tiggerdaisy said...

Am praying for you and your family today!

Yolanda said...

Currently honoring God:

Simply more and more each day. One is by getting way out of my comfort zone, by participating in the "leadership" of our COMMUNITY Women's Bible Study. I have been asked to help with the Beth Moore, Retreat in a box, LOVING WELL. We start tonight.

Sensing a need to change or possibly improve:

To be more light with those that are my family, outside of my home. This also includes our employee's.

Lelia:

I loved the concept of John and his Polo cologne. I too, want to reak of Jesus Christ!

Lovingly,
Yolanda

PS: Headed for Kansas from Maui on Tuesday....so just now getting a few minutes to get on-line and answer.

Heather@Mommymonk said...

Listening for God's voice is so subjective and complicated sometimes. This is something I've been contemplating for quite a while now.

By the way, I've linked to an older post because I started the study in January and posted in response to reading the chapters then. I hope that's ok.

valerie said...

Lelia....I got my book today!
A quick funny story since the title is "What Happens When Women Say Yes to God."... Two of my sisters sing at church and do it very well and don't ever get nervous.... and I can sing but am always TOO scared so I never do it. One of my sisters is here at our church for two days, her husband preaching and she's singing. Today since she was at the mall she picked my book up for me. When she gave it to me she asked (and was half teasing) me if I would sing with her tonight and she pulled the book out of the sack as I was saying "no!" :)
Maybe I'll learn to say "yes" after reading this.
I can't wait to get started reading it and catching up with where y'all are.
Hope everyone is doing ok in your family.
Love,
Val

Amy L Brooke said...

I keep popping in hoping to hear if little princess has arrived yet.... No news. I guess she is taking her time....

tiggerdaisy said...

I keep checking in, too! I am still praying for you, Alyssa, and Gene!

Rebecca

kmom3 said...

I got my package today! Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you! You are so tremendously sweet! What a beautiful poem! You are so talented!
Still praying for you guys!!!!
Lots of love,
Kimberly