Change Me as I Walk in Faith

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As I work on leaving my fears behind in my Walk in Faith study, I tried out some skills our bible study leaders have taught:  using a parallel Bible and verse mapping.

I started simple and chose Proverbs 3:5-6, since the main theme of Proverbs is wisdom and I need all that I can get.  I also love that the first word in this verse is trust, as that is something I have to work on to conquer my fear and Walk in Faith.

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I used the parallel Bible feature within Bible Gateway to compare translations on just 2 lines within these verses:

Lean not (NIV) /
do not depend on your own understanding
(NLT) /
don’t try to figure out everything on your own
(MSG) – so guilty of that one

Submit to him (NIV) /
seek his will
(NLT) /
listen for God’s voice
(MSG) – gotta learn to slow down so I can hear Him

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Stop trying to figure out everything on my own (ie. stop hiding).  Listen for God’s voice (ie. start seeking).  Change my heart, God, I pray.

In Proverbs, Solomon gives us practical ways to live out what we have learned.  Oh, God has been speaking to my heart on this very subject for quite a while now.  I’m an avid reader, love to learn, but actually living God’s Word is something I need to work on.  Change my heart, God, I pray.

My NIV Life Application Study Bible gives us the “formula” for effective living.  I matched that up to Proverbs 3:5-6.

  • begins with God’s Wisdom – respect and appreciate who God is
  • requires moral application – Trust in the Lord with all your heart
  • requires practical application – Seek His will in all you do
  • results in effective living – and He will show you which path to take

I was surprised how much more there was to learn from this verse I’ve heard time and time again.  Thanks OBS Sisters for inspiring me to dig deeper into God’s Word!

If you want to learn more about verse mapping, check out Sarah’s post on the OBS blog.

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Linking up this week:

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A Brave Walk in Faith

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How do I take a broken life and allow God to use it for His glory?”  That’s what Lysa TerKeurst used to wonder.

And I wonder that too as I walk in faith towards my dream of writing a book.

Last week, with Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies, I studied phase one of Lysa’s book:  Leaving.

“You may or may not have to change physical locations,
but you will have to change your mind-set and your spiritual perspectives.”
~ Lysa TerKeurst

I also practiced the bible study skill of the week:  Journaling.

Journaling is something I struggle with doing consistently. Well, let’s be real, even spending time with God is something I struggle with doing consistently.

Now, I’m an early riser.  I love getting up before the rest of my family and having my “quiet time”.   You know, to check my email, and see if anything earth shattering happened overnight on Twitter.  Or to re-pin a ton of your ideas on Pinterest that I’ll never take the time to do.  Sometimes I drag myself to the gym.  Sometimes I’ll sit and read through an inspirational book as fast as I can hoping for that quick fix.

That early morning hour is the best of my day.  How about you?

But the other night I felt a nudge to wake up and journal. I sat in the dark with my little book light and started writing my words to God.   I felt I had so much on my mind I was going to explode.

I truly felt God waking me up saying “Kim, if you’re not going to give Me that best hour, I’ll just start waking you up earlier and earlier until you do”.

Ok, God, game on.

Time to get moving on that first phase of my walk in faith, Leaving.

“I’m afraid to pull back the curtain and allow others to see the real me”.

“I’m afraid to finally cry out the words I have been so scared to say before.”

Looking back on my journal, it was clear what I needed to leave behind.  Yep, my fears.

I need to be brave and leave those fears with God.  If He has called me to write, He will show me the way.

“The real treasure {of writing a book} was walking with God through the project.
Being reminded firsthand that God does indeed have a plan.”
~ Lysa TerKeurst

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God certainly had the perfect plan to use Lysa’s past for His glory.  And I will walk in faith believing He will use mine too.

Are you with me?  No matter what dream you are pursuing with God, let’s be brave and walk in faith together.

 

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Bloom with a Walk in Faith

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“What is the dream God has given you?” That’s a question Lysa TerKeurst asks in What Happens When Women Walk in Faith.

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The problem is, I am afraid to dream.

A while back, my husband and I were on a long overdue date night.  A night where I actually get “cleaned up” for dinner.  A night where we actually enjoy waiting for a table.  A night of intimate conversation with no teenager interruptions.  A night to finally pour out all that had been bottled up inside my heart.

Did I mention it was long overdue?

He knew I was feeling kind of lost in a new season of life.  I shared with him I wanted to do “something” in ministry.  I was thinking of leading a bible study, serving special needs, something.  He of course being the amazing husband he is, encouraged me to go for it.

I cried out “How can I lead others to God’s Word, when I can’t understand it myself”…”How can I serve a special needs ministry, when I struggle with my own son with special needs?”…”What would others think when I open up and they see the ‘messy’ stuff I’ve been hiding?”

When I shared my insecurities and fears, he encouraged me again, reminding me that I do have something to offer. Oh how I love this man!  All the while I was thinking (and crying), ‘why can’t I have the confidence in myself like he does’?

A lack of confidence in myself is a lack of faith in God.

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Confidence.  Reward.  Endurance.  Promised.

After reading Lysa’s book, I put into practice Hebrews 10:35-36.  I learned to Walk in Faith.  I started a Bible study. I started serving. I started sharing. And one of my sweet friends shared how much I had blossomed in her eyes.

Now God has laid a new dream on my heart, to write a book. And here I am again afraid to dream.

In Lysa’s book she writes “The little seed of a dream to write books that would help others has sprouted and bloomed.” And because she and the other P31 authors took their Walk in Faith, their books are changing lives, including mine.

So I’m re-reading Lysa’s book and starting the journey once again.  What Happens When Women (are confident enough to) Walk in Faith? I can’t wait to find out!

Now it’s your turn:  What is the dream God has given you?   I’d love for you to join me for Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies with Lysa’s book.  We just kicked off Week 1 so it’s not too late to join.

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Linking up with Suzie Eller for #livefreeThursday. Won’t you join us and be encouraged to “bloom” this week?

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No Excuses

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Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Be alert and of sober mind.
Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion
looking for someone to devour.
1 Peter 5:7-8 (NIV)

I’m Made to Crave’s Biggest Loser.

No, you won’t find this girl on the stage celebrating her weight loss.  Year after year, I read Lysa’s book and watch her study video.  Year after year, I’m determined to stop making excuses and finally satisfy my deepest desires with God, not food.

But year after year, as struggles arise, I think “It’s okay, I’ve got this”.

And year after year, I lose.  Not the weight I want, but the determination.

The dictionary defines determination as “a quality that makes you continue trying to do or achieve something that is difficult”.   No excuses.  Keep trying.  But as struggles in my life weigh me down, I turn to food to lift me up.  Silly me.  Quickly my thoughts turn to “No, you don’t have this.  You’re such a loser”.

My disappointment is Stinkin’ Satan’s invitation to start the party.  He fires up his favorite song “Another One Bites the Dust”.  Not only the dust, but also the whole bag of Easter candy.  You know, the candy I bought for my boys’ Easter baskets.  Whoops, think they’ll notice?

God notices.  I’m sure he’s shaking his head again, as he sees Satan up to his old tricks.  He’s wondering “when will she ever learn that it’s okay, I’ve got this?”

I am encouraged by Peter’s words to us struggling believers.  Casting all our anxieties on Him sounds like a lot to ask for.  But it is what God asks for.  He too has determination.

Yes, we will keep “trying”.  Yes, it will be “difficult”.  But God loves us and wants us to trust him with our struggles.  For me, that includes my food struggles.  For you, it may be something different.  If we can learn to “cast all” our worries on God, then our minds will be free to be “self-controlled and alert” watching for Satan’s attacks.

No Excuses!  Are you with me?  Let’s stand strong together.  Let’s Crave God, not food.  Remember, girls, God’s got this!

Now it’s your turn:  What area of your life you are saying “No excuses” to.  “I’m determined to Crave God, not ____”.

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