If this is your first time here, we are discussing the awesome work, "Behind Those Eyes" written by our dear friend Lisa Whittle. Chapter 5 is where we are, but please don't let that stop you from joining us at anytime.
Our newest friend is Sheena from Malaysia! I am so bad with geography, but I'm thinkin' she isn't close to me here in Nebraska. She doesn't have a blog, but e-mailed me and said, "I grew up loving God and I pray that I will be used by Him in whatever He wants me to do". So Sheena...welcome to YES to GOD Tuesdays, we are blessed to have you with us sister!
Okay...real quick. I am not trying to be rude by not visiting your blog. I do not have a computer right now and access to one is very limited. I miss visiting you all and hope everything is okay. Please e-mail me any prayer requests and as soon as possible I will start blog hopping. I love what you all have to say.
One more thing~next week we will be combining chapters 6 & 7. I know it means a little more reading and Bible study, but Lisa feels they go hand in hand. So let's trust this wonderful author and pray God gives us some extra time over the next week to read and spend some time gettin' real. Just based on the first 5 chapters of this book, we know it will we be worth it.
Let's get started...
Remember, anything in blue is a quote from the book.
Okay, I have to talk like my southern belle/friend Susan a.k.a. Runner Mom here...
I don't about y'all, but I love Lisa Whittle's writin'.
I've learned so much from her...haven't you? I haven't liked everything I've read or learned about me, but I still love the writing gift God has blessed her with!
I absolutely loved Ms. Spirituality's checklist on page 78. So embarrassed to actually be able to check some of those off. Some of the things Ms. Spirituality does are worthy causes and are certainly pleasing to God. The point is not that Ms. Spirituality does these things, rather, why she does these things. Remember, it's all in the performance, not in the act itself.
Ouch. Really made me think about the stuff I do in the name of Jesus. Am I doing them to please Him or trying to make Lelia look better? Thank God that He is the only One who can see into our hearts. Well, I don't know if that's a good thing or not because not only does He see our heart, He sees the condition of our heart.
Lisa talked of women in the Bible who displayed the fruit of the Spirit in their lives and how we do want to imitate their behaviors.
The problem comes when our performance of these characteristics takes precedence over the actual condition of our hearts.
Sooooo Lisa Whittle...what you're saying is that God actually cares about the condition of our heart? Our lip service means nothing to Him, but our motives mean everything? Oh.
Okay...so I think I've been overtaken by Ms. Spirituality whenever I blog or someone asks me how things are. It's the only explanation I can give when asked how things are and I smile and begin speaking in what Lisa calls "Christianese". I say all the things a really spiritual woman would say.
How are things with Gene's back and job?
Ms. S: Oh, we're just trusting God that He is bigger than all of this mess. God, not Pfizer is our Provider and He is going to heal Gene. Hallelujah...can I get an Amen?
In the privacy of my home...
Ms. Lelia: You know what Gene? I think we should separate. This is too much stress for me. How are we going to survive with no income from Pfizer from November until March? What if you're back never heals?
How are you doing with your teenage daughter being pregnant for the 2nd time in a year?
Ms. S: Oh, you know it's been tough, but this is no surprise to God. I trust Him with her completely and am just trying to shower her with grace everyday with God's help. It's going to be okay and I just believe that only God can pierce her hardened heart and teach her to make better choices. Let me quote Jeremiah 29:11 for you...
In the privacy of my own heart...
Ms. Lelia: I'm embarrassed. I'm mad. I don't even know the due date so don't ask. Will I love this baby as much as I love Amiyah...yes,, of course I will and do already, but how could Alyssa be so stinkin' selfish? Will I ever get through to this child? How will I get her to make better choices?
Lisa speaks some truth to us here:
When people are all dressed up on Sunday morning, none of us can see what is really going on inside their souls.
We get to church and Ms. Perfection walks us up to the house of God. Ms. Confidence greets everyone in the foyer and finds the perfect chair or pew to sit down in. During worship Ms. Happiness raises and praises while Ms. Spirituality takes notes and talks in her foreign language after service until she gets back to her car. So tiring sisters...just plain exhausting aren't we?
We go through the motions and leave the house of God with nobody knowing that inside of us we are just an absolute mess. If we can't be real in God's house where the heck can we face reality?
In the church there are a lot of people who are playing the role of super spiritual Christian who could possibly not even be one. Sounds harsh, I know, but the truth is that you can't tell the soul of a person by the shell she wears.
Oh Lisa girl. We'll just have to start callin' you "Tell it like it is Lisa".
The power of an honest Christian, struggling as he or she may be in life, can break down some of the emotional walls people construct out of fear of rejection by sharing their own personal truth.
I bet sometimes God just laughs at us on how much effort we put into trying to fine tune our walk with Him. I'm sure we over-complicate everything.
Though we seek it, our lack of spiritual perfection may be the best thing in the world for us since it reminds us that we are absolutely nothing like Christ.
I loved the quote Lisa shared with us from Ravi Zacharias...
"It is not about a ritual; it is about relationship...It is not about the times of the day; it is about the timelessness of His presence. It is not about appeasing God; it is about resting in His provision."
Oh girls...this chapter just really hit me.
It is about much, much more than the number of women's conferences attended per year. True spirituality is about the awesome power of God showing up in a person's life to the point that people around her notice a difference.
I hope God lets me live to be 127 years old like He did Abraham's wife Sarah...I think by then I'll be really genuinely spiritual.
Okay...if you have more to share on your own blog then sign up under Mr. Linky.
Have a great week ladies and let's continue learning how to be real! It's not easy, but anything to get us closer to Jesus is worth the pain; for He is quite the gain.
DON'T FORGET...next week read chapters 6 & 7!