Wednesday, April 29, 2009

YES to GOD study: CH. 6: Learning to Trust Again

So glad you've come by for

I keep telling week Lelia, next week you will have your post up and running on Tuesday, hence the name YES to GOD TUESDAYS! But life and little people keep getting in my way of blogging time and even getting my chapter read on time. This week I blame Kelley though. She is coming for the weekend to help me teach a workshop at my church's Women's Conference Saturday morning, so I have been preparing my house for her stay.

If you have come by here before, then you know how we do things, usually on Tuesday's here. If this is your first visit and you're curious about what YES to GOD studies are, then on the sidebar you will find more info. Currently we are reading and discussing a chapter a week of the first book by author and speaker, Micca Campbell called,
Before we get started I must share.

There are things I tell my family not to do for their own safety.
For my 7 year old Alivia it would be things like:
Wear your helmet on your bike.

Look both ways, twice, before you cross the street.

Don't talk to strangers. Ever.

For Aaron, our son who's 14 and stands 6'1" on his size 14 feet, my safety precautions consist of:
Teenage girls have incurable cooties, so keep your distance.

Don't give me an attitude during the 3rd week of any month.

Don't talk to strangers. Teenage girls are strangers.

Then I have a few I have to tell my husband because I love him and I want to keep him safe.
Don't come home from Blockbuster with an action movie.

Don't give me an attitude during the 3rd week of any month.

AND most importantly

Don't hide flammable, edible items in the oven.
Yes, I typed "hide".

As a wife and mom, my job according to the Superwoman back in the day of Mary and Martha, or the Proverbs 31 Woman as we know her, is to watch over my household. So one of the ways I do this is to supply them with safety tips that when followed will keep them from harms way.

Sometimes they listen and sometimes they make their own potentially harmful choices.

Last night Gene didn't listen to safety tip #3 and this is what I came home to...

I was welcomed into my home by the gross smell of a Pyrex plastic lid melted into the leftover lemon cake that Gene was attempting to hide.
In the oven.
From his family.

A hiding place that escaped his mind when I called and asked him to pre-heat the oven for me.

So what has my sweet, but dessert loving husband taken away from this?

1.) When wife walks in and the house doesn't smell like her Glade plug-ins, pretend like you are asleep.

2.) When wife gives safety precautions...quickly insert your finger into the opposite ear her words entered so that her tips don't go in one ear and out the other.

3.) Never hide greed in an oven!

4.) Praise God this didn't happen during week 3!

I have to tell you, I'm so proud of me. Instead of releasing the pre-Jesus Lelia on my gift from God, I just looked...okay, glared at him as he avoided all eye contact, flipped open my cell phone, took a picture of my once favorite pot luck pan and thanked him for giving me more blog material. I tell ya, you never know what is going to happen in the Chealey household.

Let's get to our discussion of this awesome chapter...
CHAPTER 6: Learning to Trust Again
Anything in blue is a quote from the book.

Micca opens this chapter with the recollection of a sad phone call she received about her nephew. The events of that call would be the invitation for fear into this child's life. How many times in our own lives has someone done something to us that caused us to begin to live in a state of fear?Unknowingly at times fear becomes our roommate and overrides any good that God has for us.
God cares for you greatly.
We are His joy and delight.

But sometimes we can't see or feel that which Micca's response is that it doesn't always appear like it. That's because our perspective is limited by our circumstances.

From her own life experiences that include being a young widow, Micca tells us that I've found that when I'm overcome with fear, I'm not really looking for answers but for the assurance that God is near, that He's in control and that He cares about me and my circumstances. God does care.

The other day I sat in the bedroom talking with my husband about a TV show he had just finished watching. With tears in his eyes he said, "You know Lea, maybe this is why God has me laid up in this bed so I could see this." He had just told me about this Jesus lovin' family and he felt so inspired by the Dad and his stand for Christ.

So when I asked my husband if all the pain he is in while recovering from his back surgery is worth getting closer to Christ, his heart-felt answer was YES....YES!

While death, sickness, and abuse were not part of God's original plan, He may allow me to go through these things. It's not to cause me undue pain or fear, but rather it's to accomplish spiritual growth. Sometimes what God allows shakes us to the core, but He never intends to terrify us. It may not be pleasant for a while, but in the end we'll find it's worth every heartache and every worry if we trust Him.

I believe that if indeed God is trying to get Gene's attention on some things and is using this time of recovery to grab it then so be it. Perhaps Gene is right and God is using his health to make him lie down and focus on only Him. I honestly believe from listening to my husband share his own heart for Christ that all the pain...and it has been some excruciating 24/7 pain....all the physical pain he has endured over the 2 years will be etched into Gene's heart as one of, if not thee best times of his life. Why? Because of Who he is being drawn closer to.

The only way to see worth in our pain is to realize it has purpose. Though we despise suffering, it educates us, transforms us, allows us to share in the inheritance of Christ, and gives us a ministry of compassion for others who suffer. This is God's promise. He is faithful in using every situation for our good.

Toward the end of the chapter, Micca tells the story of Lazarus. Here's a Cliff Notes version of what happened:

Lazarus gets really sick.
His sisters Martha and Mary call on their BFF, Jesus, for help because they've seen with their own eyes how He was a Healer.
Instead of rushing to their side Jesus takes His sweet time to respond.
The sisters are not happy.
Brother Lazarus is dead.
Mary is crying.
Jesus sees Mary and asked to be taken to see the deceased Lazarus.
Jesus wept.
Martha boldly tells Jesus...if You would've come this wouldn't have happened.
Jesus tells Martha...if you would believe then you will see.
Martha believes.
Lazarus walks out of the grave. Alive and well for all who believed to see. me, one of the most precious verses penned in the Bible is
John 11:35
Jesus wept.

As a kid I remember participating in Bible-Quote-Downs where you took turns quoting verses and whoever had the most memorized won. John 11:35 was always the easy verse to remember since it's the shortest verse. Now as an adult, it takes on a whole new meaning. So much tenderness. Such a sign that He truly cares about me. About you. What you are going through. When you and I hurt, Jesus hurts. Our pain moves Him because He cares about us.

So when we are hurting, trust isn't always our first reaction.
What if Martha wouldn't have chosen to trust Jesus that day?
Would her brother had remained a dead man instead of a walking miracle?
God requires us to believe first, and then He moves on our behalf.

John 3:16 is another familiar passage that Micca gave me new meaning to when she pointed something so important out. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life"

She pointed out that God sent His Son to earth as a helpless baby to be cared for by sinful humans.

If God can trust you and me, then we can certainly trust Him.
That was such a "wow" moment for me. God trusted this common little girl to raise Jesus.

The One who would grow up with the power to command Lazarus to come out of his death.

The One who He Himself couldn't be kept down by what was thought to be His last breath.

He trusts us. Us as in you and me and our resume of faithfulness doesn't even compare to His. On His resume when asked for references and job history it says:
See Bible, specifically Genesis through Revelation .

At the end, Micca recognizes that if we are reading a book on how to conquer fear, then we probably have fear in our life and want nothing more than some freedom. She soothes us with the comfort that God wants that for us too, but just like with Martha, we have to choose to believe if we ever want to see. The beauty about God is that sometimes, often times, when we do see, it's so much better than what we had in our visually limited mind.

MC encourages us to
1.) Know that with pain comes gain, but pain that will be worth enduring.
2.) Give God permission to fill our empty places and wash away our doubts with His love.
3.) Remove what is hardening our heart because it is keeping us in a headlock.
4.) Then listen as you hear Jesus sweetly say..."Take off her grave clothes and let her go".
Just like He did with Lazarus so long ago.
And if you listen close'll probably hear His tears hit the floor of heaven.

I don't know about you, but I didn't even know about the Swine Flu until last week. I'm sure the cows are relaxing a little today as its usually Mad Cow Disease that makes the headlines.

Today no swine is safe in Moses' birthplace as officials in Egypt have ordered all pigs to be slaughtered.

Masks are covering the faces of panic.

Death is moving faster than a teenagers texting thumbs.

The kind of freedom Christ longs to provide covers more than the fear of loneliness, betrayal, and rejection. It also includes concerns we have about current world issues. We don't have to speculate about the worse-case scenario of our day and how it may affect our lives.

When Micca wrote out the words God gave her probably well over a year ago she had no idea that it would be so relational to the headlines of each newspaper in the nation.
God gave her over a year ago exactly words we would need to hear today.
He is so amazing as He is using Micca to tell in Me. I got this.
When you and I are secure in God's provision, there's no situation that can destroy us.

I am really loving this study and am blessed by the timing of it. Thank You, sweet Jesus.

If you have more to share on this chapter on your own blog, please sign up under Mr. Linky.

Please keep this sweet thing in your prayers.

This Grandma is having withdraw as little girl has been sick all week.

This is Amiyah in the ER Saturday night waiting on the doctor.

I her.

~Many Blessings~

Next week...chapter 7: What's the Worse That Could Happen?


Paula (SweetPea) said...

Love your thoughts here. Love your application stories AS ALWAYS. I just love hearing about your family, sweet and precious family. How wonderful to see growth in wonderful to see growth in you would've reacted pre-Jesus but nonchalantly reacted with thanking Gene for the blog material. I FEEL that's how I would be too. I desire the opportunity to have a restored marriage so I can show myself, God, beloved, that I too have changed and I would react much like you in a light hearted way to loosing my ever so favorite pan and my man making an ever so messy mess out of stomach greed. That more than anything is one of the reasons I want a restore show my show what God has transformed in me, to show I can do it His way in a marital relationship.

This chapter was good. So many good quotes that I too shared in my post.

FYI..Mister Linky isn't up and running. If it were a Mrs. Linky I bet she'd be working. :-)
Love you sweet thang,

Heather said...

Awesome post once again, Lelia!

And... I sympathize with you on the melted casserole lid ... although in our house, it was ME who melted ours. And i was very disappointed b/c it was also one of my favorites.
(i was hiding it in the oven b/c my sink was full!!!)

Rachel said...

Funny start to the post... then a good AHA moment. Wow. That God trusted us with his Son... yet we are so unwilling to trust the One who created us and gives us each breath. Thank you for the reminder.

Anonymous said...


I am so far behind on Miccas book but I am really enjoying your insight on each chapter.

"purpose in pain" and "it will be used for our good"...some great thoughts to think on.

said a prayer for Amiyah...and her "grandma" and thanking God that Gene has been drawn closer to HIM during his back surgery.

love ya,

Laura said...

Thank you once again, Lelia, for welcoming us into your life this way. Sharing your stories opens my eyes in so many ways.

As for being a little late...Preparing a women's conference???? You go, girl! How exciting! I will be praying for you and your ladies this weekend. Tell Kelley hi, and what a sweetie she is to help you.

enjoying this study too...

Michelle said...

Each week, I to strive to write my post earlier. Life just gets in the way sometimes. How inspiring to hear how you and Gene are viewing this difficult time. I hope Amiyah is feeling better. If you get a chance, check out my post about God using a dress to remind me to trust Him. :) Blessings, Michelle

Heather said...

Don't worry about your post coming late... as you can tell by the time I am writing this... I was way late too!

Finally got both chap. 5 and 6 up... both chapters were so good. I got a lot out of them, it just has been hard to process what with my concert last weekend, and last week being filled with rehearsals and such.

this was my first chance to sit down with the book and write. my last post was able to be put up, but I was meaning to do this one, and didn't have the book handy when I was out of town.
Praying for your conference! And for all of you. Thank you for sharing your life with us!
Love you,

Jeanies Heavenly Treasures said...


I so Love this Bible study! I just can't say it enough, thank you fo rlistening to God to hostessing this study! You Da Bomb Baby!
I love hearing about your life also. You have a gift of writing and speaking, Dear Sister!
May God Richly Bless You, Gene, and your family!

Amy L Brooke said...

Hey Lelia!

Oh, Amiyah is still so cute. I've forgotten, when is the 2nd grandbaby due?

I'm sorry I've been absent so long. I started running (ran my first race on Saturday) and I got a puppy. Both have been taking up lots of time!

Hope you are doing well.


HisPrincess said...

You always make me smile Lelia. Or cry. Or both.

And how that beautiful little grand daughter of yours has grown! Praying that she will be fully recovered soon.

And tell Aaron to take it from the mother of a teenage daughter...they definately have couties...lethal ones!

Carol said...

Oh Lelia,
You posts can make me laugh and cry all at the same time. I totally relate to being busy and overwhelmed. I read this chapter, but haven't done my post so I'm not going to read the next chaptet posts until I at leat read the chapter.

Gene and my hubs could hang out he loves sweets. Though he's never hidden them in the oven before.

I love what you shared about Gene saying all yhe pain is worth becoming closer to Jesus, it touched my heart deeply.

I never gave it much thought about how Micca wrote this book before all the recent events. God's timing is amazing, and yes we know He's got it covered.

Hugs Girlfriend.

Hope that grandbaby of yours is on the mend so grandma can give her some lovies.