December 11, 2012

Living So That: Lesson Five

Give So That

We have reached the final week of our study! Writing this study has been both rewarding and challenging. When I sat down to write, I wondered how it would ever come together…so many topics, so many verses, so many truths. But God was faithful.  He took every prayer whispered, every hour researched, and every Scripture studied and faithfully supplied the words needed to create Living “So That.”   Thank you from the depths of my heart for the time you have invested with me these past weeks.

This is always a sad time for me as I will miss our weekly God appointment here on Living Truth. But it is also a time of celebration as I look back over the weeks and see what amazing things God has done through our time together. Your comments each week have blessed me beyond measure.  We have learned from each other, prayed with each other and gone deeper still in our walk with Jesus.  I will miss you, so please stop by when you have time and let me know how you are and what God is doing in your life.

Don’t forget about our new group called Wendy’s Street Team.  I would love for you to team up with me for the publication of our “Living So That” project and future Bible study projects.  To become a member, e-mail me at deuteronomysix@aol.com and put “Wendy’s Street Team” in the subject heading and include your name, e-mail address, cell phone, city and state.  My dear friend and assistant, Lisa Sheltra, will be helping me coordinate this effort.  We will have many fun ways for the Street Team to participate and help promote new projects, including sneak peaks at new studies and special perks as the time for publication draws near.  

I changed my mind on what we will study this week.  Instead of forgiveness and humility, we will study giving and humility.  Not sure why, but that is the direction the Lord led my heart, so that is what we will do.  I trust Him fully!!!

Before we begin, I have some fun news to share.  Christmas is my favorite time of year, and I LOVE to give gifts.  So this week, please share your favorite verse (any verse…not just memory verse) from this study or your favorite verse in general.  Please share WHY it is your favorite too.  I will choose five names to win a $20 Target gift card or a $15 gift credit to Proverbs 31 Ministries to go toward a purchase of your choice and pay for the shipping. You let me know which gift you would like to receive.

Join me next week for a closing message for our study and the announcement of our winners!

Video Lesson

This Week’s Memory verse

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty right hand, that he may life you up in due time. 1 Peter 5:6

This Week’s Prayer

Father, thank You for this precious time in Your Word.  Thank You for all You have taught me these past five weeks through Your living and active Word. Help me not to forget a single “so that” or a single “call to action.”  Keep them tucked away in my heart, ready to recall at anytime.  As I move forward from this day, I pray the following…

for a humble, submissive and obedient heart that seeks to please You and do Your will in all things

for a deep reverence for You and Your Word

for willingness and strength to endure trials, watching and listening for Your Word and Your work in the midst, trusting that You will work all things together for good because I love You and am called according to Your purpose

for a heart that seeks to do good, and expects nothing in return

for a heart willing to sacrifice whatever it is you may ask of me

for a contentedness with my circumstances, trusting you will provide for my every need

for a heart of prayer

for wisdom and discernment to be aware of the evil one and his tactics and to know and understand Truth so that I can take every lie captive to the obedience of Christ

for a desire to live my life every day SO THAT I can shine Your Light into Your broken and hurting world

I ask all this in Jesus’ most precious and powerful name.  AMEN

Homework Questions

One of the Old Testament (Hebrew) names of God is Yahweh Yireh  (Jehovah Jireh).  In the Hebrew it means “Jehovah will see (to it).”

The Hebrew word raah (RA-ah, from which yireh is derived) means “to see, to observe, to perceive.” When raah is used as part of God’s name, it is translated “provide.” Since God is omniscient (all knowing) and able to see the future as well as the past and the present, He is able to anticipate and provide for what is needed. Interestingly, the English Word “provision” is made up of two Latin words that mean “to see beforehand.” What God tells us in His name, Jehovah Jireh, is that when we pray to Him, we are praying to our God Who sees our situation beforehand, knows exactly what we need, and will provide.

A. In what ways has Jehovah Jireh provided for you?

 

Genesis 22 contains one of the most well-known Jehovah-Jireh stories in Scripture.

B. Read Genesis 22:1-19

God had promised Abraham a son at the age of one hundred years of age. Listen to God’s words to Abraham before his son was born.

Look up at the heavens and count the stars – if indeed you can count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be. Genesis 5:5

I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; all the peoples on earth will be blessed through you. Genesis 12:1-2

…your wife Sarah will bear you a son, and you will call him Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him. Genesis 17:19

After Isaac was born, God came to Abraham again. This time He commanded Abraham to take his son, the son God had promised him at one hundred years of age, and go up on a mountain and sacrifice him.

1. What do you think Abraham was thinking as he traveled up the mountain?

My first question would have been: I love this child so much; how can I possibly take my own son’s life? But a more pressing and confusing question would have been, Why would You ask me to sacrifice the very child through whom You promised to give me many descendants?

If Abraham killed Isaac, how would God’s promise be fulfilled?

Make no mistake about it, this was a test. Scripture plainly says in Genesis 22:1 “Some time later, God tested Abraham.” It was a very real test designed to prove Abraham’s faith. God asked him what seemed illogical and impossible  to give his son, Isaac, back to God.

Yes, Abraham had another son, Ishmael. But God had asked him to send Ishmael away because Isaac was the son of the promise. Now God was asking him to sacrifice his only remaining son. This was a true test of whether Abraham trusted God’s promise and whether that trust was enough to cause him to obey.

2. What would you have done? Explain.

Thinking about my own sweet blonde hair, blue-eyed, tenderhearted boy, I don’t think I would have passed that test. I am certain I would have clung to my son for dear life and run the other way.

Don’t think God did not know what He was asking. God knew how special Isaac was to Abraham. Listen to God’s words:

Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering. Genesis 22:2 (emphasis mine)

Abraham, light your son on fire and watch him burn. That is what God was asking of Abraham. Knowing this makes Abraham’s response staggering, unimaginable even, to most parents. He exhibited immediate and unquestioning obedience.

3. Read Abraham’s response in verses 3-9.

How could Abraham make such a choice so quickly? It is called faith, my friend. Our level of faith determines our response to God when He asks something of us. How we respond is overwhelming evidence of how strong our faith really is. Abraham’s story is a powerful message of faith. It reveals the kind of faith that pleases God the kind of faith He blesses mightily.

4. Read Hebrews 11:17-19.  How did Abraham reconcile God’s command to sacrifice Isaac in his heart?

Abraham resolved in his heart long before that day to trust God. So when God spoke that day, Abraham did what he had learned to do – trust God to honor His promises. God made a covenant with Abraham, and Isaac was the fulfillment of that Covenant. Abraham reasoned that if God took Isaac, He would provide another way for that promise to be fulfilled.

Imagine being present for this conversation between father and son in Genesis 22:

Isaac asked, “Father, where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” (v. 7)

He responded, “God himself will provide the lamb…my son.”  He believed God would provide. (v.8)

They continued their walk together. Still no provision.

The next few passages are unbearable to read.

Abraham “bound his son Isaac.” Still no provision. (v. 9)

He “laid him on the altar, on top of the wood.” Still no provision. (v. 9)

Then he reached out his hand and took the knife “to slay his son.” Still no provision. (v. 10)

5. What are you feeling right now?

 

Finally, an angel of the Lord called out to Abraham from heaven, “Abraham, Abraham, do not lay a hand on the boy. Do not do anything to him.” (v. 11)

Still no provision, but a Word from the Lord.

6. What were the next words of the angel of the Lord? (v.12)

 

Yes, this was a test. The angel of the Lord said, “Now I know that you fear God because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son.” (v. 12)

Abraham then looked up and saw a ram in the thicket. God had finally provided.

The reason we are studying this story comes in the next passage:

He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. Abraham called this place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided. (v. 13-14)

God began a covenant relationship that day with Abraham, a relationship that extends to us today. He promised that He would provide whatever it is we need. Not what we want, but what we need.

The life of faith to which God calls us is not an easy one, friend. Like Noah, Abraham, David, Steven, and Paul, we may be called to make some heartrending decisions, to walk a path we would rather not walk. The question for us at that point is on what or on whom will we fix our confidence? These men all fixed it securely on God. Stories like Abraham’s teach us that faith does not require an explanation. Faith rests on God’s promises.

7.  What is one of the most difficult sacrifices the Lord has asked of you?  How did you respond?  How did He provide?

 

God ended His visit with Abraham on Mount Moriah, confirming His covenant with Abraham:

I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the
seashore. Genesis 22:16-17a

God showered blessings upon Abraham for his obedience. God gave him great favor (v.12); God gave him back his son (v. 13); Abraham learned a new name for God, and he received new assurances from God (v. 16-18). That is how our God works. He promises that blessings follow obedience.

8. Fill in the blank and memorize it:  ________________________ follow ____________________________________.

 

B. Read the following verses and share the truths and/or promises you find.

1. 2 Corinthians 9:8

2. 2 Corinthians 9:11

3. 1 Timothy 6:18-19

4. 2 Corinthians 8:9.  What are the first three words of this verse?

 

“For you know.”  Friend, this should be our starting point every time we take a step of faith.  There is nothing God will ask of us that He will not, in turn, provide.  He provides because He not only wants to build our faith but also wants to ensure that we have everything we need to accomplish His purposes and do His Kingdom work.

***** If you want to go deeper, read Job 42:2, Jeremiah 32:17, Matthew 19:26, Luke 1:37, and 2 Timothy 1:12.  How do they encourage you in our discussion today? *****

C.  Is there a place in your life God is asking you to give (time, gifts, finances) and you are hesitating?  Why are you hesitating? Spend some time with the stories, promises and truths we have studied this week and see what you hear from God.  Journal it and share it.

 

We will end our time together talking about humility.

D.  Define humility.

 

Jeremy Taylor, a 17th century ordained priest and prolific writer, gives this insight  about humility:

“Humility begins as a gift from God, but it is increased as a habit as we develop it.”

Paul taught us in an earlier lesson that God’s power operates most powerfully and effectively in our weakness.

1. What do the following stories teach you about the kind of person God uses to do His Kingdom work?

a. Moses – Exodus 3:1-15, 4:1-17

b. Gideon – Judges 6

c. David – 1 Samuel 16:1-13

 

E. Read 1 Corinthians 1:26-29 and 1 Peter 5:5b-6.

1. Who does the Lord choose (1 Cor. 1:27-28)

2. God does this “so that…?” (1 Cor. 1: 29)

3. Write 1 Peter 5:5b-6 below.

 

“Clothe” is from the Greek word egkomboomai and means “to gird oneself with a thing, to be clothed with.”  “Gird” means “to encircle or bind with a belt or band; to surround; enclose; hem in.”

We see this same word in John 13:4 when Jesus washed the feet of his disciples: “He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself.” John 13:4 (KJV) Jesus performed a task normally reserved for the role of a servant, washing feet. Before He began, He removed His outer garments and wrapped a towel around His waist. He modeled servanthood for His disciples.

Peter used the word “gird” here to teach us that just as Jesus laid aside His outer garments and put on a towel to become a servant, so each of us should “put on” a servant’s attitude and minister to each other. Jesus modeled for us that humility is not demeaning ourselves; it is simply not thinking of ourselves at all!

“Humility” is from the Greek word tapeinophrosune, defined as “a virtue, a fruit of the gospel, that exists when a person through most genuine self-evaluation deems himself worthless.” It stresses not so much our sinfulness but our possessing nothing being absolutely dependent on God.

F. Read Philippians 2:1-11.  What is the biblical definition of humility given here.  

 

Humility will never be a reality in our lives until we first humble ourselves before God. We must fully submit every area to Him, holding back nothing. The willingness to submit comes when we realize that we are the recipients of God’s undeserved gift of grace. Without grace, we have no hope beyond eternal damnation. We are sinners, condemned to a life of eternal separation from God. It is God’s grace that saves us from the fiery pit of hell.

1. Think of a few people in your life who live a life exemplified by humility and write their names below.

 

2.  What evidence of humility do you see in their lives?

 

3. At the beginning of this discussion, Jeremy Taylor told us that humility is a habit to be developed.  What are some ways you can develop this habit in your own life?

 

4. Prayerfully look over your list.  Is there an area in which you need to work?  Ask God to help you develop this godly virtue in your life.

 

G.  Read 1 Peter 5:6. What is the great “so that” when we do walk in humility?

 

“Exalt” means “to elevate, lift up.”

The key phrase in this promise is found in the words “in due time.” God will not exalt us until we are ready. Sometimes waiting precedes the “lifting up.” We see examples of this throughout Scripture. Jesus endured years of rejection, persecution and the cross before He sat down at the right hand of God. Moses endured times of isolation, persecution and trials before God used him to deliver the Jews. Joseph suffered persecution, wrongful imprisonment and separation from family and friends before God elevated him to the throne. David waited decades, enduring numerous trials and tribulations, including attempts on his life, before God crowned him King of Judah.

Humility requires patience. But in the end, our patience will be well rewarded. We find this promise in Jesus’ own words in John 13:15-17:

I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

My Final Call to Action

We have learned much. Please don’t let your time in the Word end here. Stay in God’s Word. Continue your search for more “so that’s.” And most importantly, follow through with your “Calls to Action.”

God specially designed each one of us to do Kingdom work. We have God-given gifts and talents, assigned to us before time began, to enable us to do that work. (Ephesians 2:10) Living according to the “so that” verses is God’s way of guiding us toward those plans. He will use these verses to point us in the direction He is leading.

Heather, believe I saved you so that…

Charlotte, believe my Word so that…

Noelle, pray so that…

Peggy, trust me in this trial so that…

Jill, live out my Word on this earth so that…

Susan, give so that…

Melissa, serve so that…

Cheri, obey so that…

Eloisa, teach so that…

Our “so that’s” will vary, but the way He works them in our lives is the same. He starts with commands that require small steps of obedience. And when we are faithful with these, He will ask more of us. Each step calls us out of our comfort zones to go deeper still with him whether it be trusting in Him for salvation, trusting in Him to honor His Word, trusting Him in prayer, trusting Him in a trial, or trusting Him to live our faith out loud for all to see. And with each step God promises rewards and blessings. (Hebrews 11:6)

After spending the last five weeks with God and the call to “Living So That…,” what is your final call to action?  Choose one GIANT step of obedience you want to take for God.

Meet you back here next week for a final message and to announce our Christmas gift winners.  I will be praying for you throughout the week.  Stop by and share your comments!

Blessings,

Comments

  1. This is such a great study…really delving into the scriptures.

    I have several favorite Bible verses….Phil 4:13 and Ecc. 3:1-8…These were a great comfort to me when I discovered my daughter had been abused by her father….She is a strong teen and faithful Christian now and I just repeated these verses to myself as she healed through counseling and I keep them taped to my computer screen even now…There is a reason for everything we may not understand it but only leaning on God can make us whole and strong enough to persevere.

    • forgot to say that if chosen…the Target card would be appreciated but I would be grateful for either.

    • Sherri, isn’t it amazing how God so sweetly speaks to us through His Word to meet us in our times of greatest need. Such a horrible experience you and your daughter had to go through, but God met you in His Word. And I just love to hear that she is strong and lives a godly life. God is so faithful!!! Thank you for sharing.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  2. Peggy, trust me in this trial SO THAT…

    …what the enemy may have intended to turn to ashes in your life (by means of that fire will be used to GLORIFY Jesus Christ as the only way to our Heavenly Father for eternity

    …out of the ashes, a crown of beauty, not just for you, but for others that God is pursuing, will be bestowed and God’s favor will anoint you to flow with His riches

    …you will learn that I am the Refiner, the Consuming Fire that desires to purify your heart, your lips, your words, your actions to line up with my Word that you have studied earnestly but need to apply all you have learned and experienced. I am not done, nor are you, in moving from your heart, your mind, your soul, all of you by my Holy Spirit, not by might, nor by your own power but because you lean on Me, I will flow through you to others in their trial or time of need to bring my Kingdom and Glory into their lives and produce fruit in you

    shall I go on? By now you know that I could…

    Father, Thank You for the trials that You have given me, it is in those trials that my weakness is made strong in You. Thank You for earthly treasures that You have given me so that I may give to others, and when they are gone, that I will remember that You are my Provider, on You I will depend, I trust in You and Your plan for me. Help me to learn to wait on You as I lean on You and learn to listen for Your voice whispering to me, changing me, molding me, pouring Your spirit into me so that I might see a harvest of fruit in me and for others for Your Kingdom’s sake. I adore You! I praise You in the ‘fire’ (storm) because You are Emmanuel, God with us … what You did for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and for me, You will and can do for any who call upon the precious Name of Jesus, as Lord and Savior. Bring salvation and deliverance. Remove and empty anything in me, that is not of You so that You may be glorified and I will receive a crown of beauty for the ashes. I love You! I thank You for Wendy and this excellent teaching but mostly in who she is IN YOU and how she shares You and ministers to so many
    in Jesus Name. Continue to anoint her with fresh oil of Your Spirit and pour forth many blessings. I also thank You for my sister in Christ Noelle, because of her “giving” heart and beautiful spirit of transformation and service in Your Name, she is a precious example of a giver and a prayer warrior! She has blessed me double fold with Wendy’s wonderful Hidden Joy and her own Transformation by Truth which will reap many personal benefits and complete the work You have started.
    Meet both of my sister’s needs as they have abundantly GIVEN to me. Pour back into them the many blessings they give to others. Enrich their lives and their families and each of our online Bible Study sisters in Christ… in Jesus Name.

    Both Wendy and Noelle are true examples of Jesus’ Truth being lived out before us especially as GIVERS!

    Thank you Wendy! You truly hear(d) from the Lord. But as you may notice “giving” is in the word “forgiving” so as we give, we live a life of daily forgiving. As we forgive, we learn to give more freely. May our hearts be open to receive all God is speaking through your teachings. I am so blessed by your giving to Robin. This beautiful example of God’s timing is so awesome and such a confirmation. My heart was so touched and moved to tears by your humble and excitement in giving. I enjoyed seeing your beautiful Christmas decorations from the other side of your kitchen. Praise God for your tender heart! I love you! You are a gift to us.
    Such true words about giving and receiving! (enough for now)…

    BIG HUGS as we learn to give,
    Peggy

    • Ohhh and I did not share my favorite verse (because I am EXEMPT from the drawing) but I do have one or many! Here’s one (ok, maybe two):

      “You are the light of the world…let your light shine before men, [so] that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16

      Cuz that’s not only a memory verse but My One Word Bible verse along with John 8:12

      and for the above TRIALS, I learning to persevere with:

      “Consider it pure joy, my brothers(and sisters), whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”James 1:2-4

      I think the whys are obvious from above and my recent trial sharing and comments throughout your studies.

      No Targets here (I use to work for them)! but I would love P31 one to be given back to someone in USA if I was chosen.

      • A verse that popped into my view first this morning goes along with my James 1 verse above (I did not look for it for it is highlighted and personalized to “I” instead of we…) “Therefore, since I have been justified through faith, I have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom I have gained access by faith into this grace in which I now stand. And I rejoice in the HOPE of the glory of God, Not only so I can rejoice in my sufferings, because we know suffering produces PERSEVERANCE; perseverance,CHARACTER; and character, HOPE!” (emphasis and punctuation added by me as well as using I instead of “we”, paraphrased)…
        Dear sisters in Christ,
        “And hope does not disappoint us because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us. You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good (wo)man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

        I’m sure that you have shared this verse somewhere along this study.

        Wendy, I was wondering how you came up with so many “so that” verses because I have tried searching “so that” and I do not get verses like you have shared and given us. Invaluable research! Your church study that spurred this could not have given you all these and the wonderful themes. Thank you. Although I did not sign up for your street team, since I’m walking the streets right now of a different country and mission, you know that you can count on me to share your studies, book, successes and gems of wisdom on any of my blogs. Your words and teachings are pertinent to my life and others and well worth sharing!

        Thanks if you can let me know! Many blessings to all on this 12-12-12. There is a special call to global day of worship on this day (not related to the rapture hype or end times scare) Asking EVERYONE you know to worship Jesus at 7 p.m. your local time on 12.12.12 http://www.globaldayofworship.com/about.php

        • Thanks Wendy! I guess I found my own answer to what I asked you. And trust me, it’s late here but not the time that prints when I post. (lol) :0)

          I usually use Bible Gateway when I do word search, sometimes the NET and Blue Bible (I think that’s what it is called) and another Bible tools but tonight I came across another one that did give me a list of 254 SO THAT verses but their Bible translation choices are more limited than Bible Gateway so that was with American Standard rather than my NIV that I read or study from…

          Now to weed through these…

          • Peggy, I too use several sources for the “so that” study. That part took a lot of time, but I LOVED it!!! And then digging into the Greek made it all the more interesting and intriguing. This is why I so enjoy teaching Scripture. It allows me to take my legal training and use it for Kingdom work! God is so gooooooood!!!

            So thankful for you and all your hard work and investigation,

            Wendy

    • Actually all of your prayer for this week but especially this part would have been all I needed:

      Peggy, trust me in this trial so that… I will have the

      “… willingness and strength to endure trials, watching and listening for Your Word and Your work in the midst, trusting that You will work all things together for good because I love You and am called according to Your purpose”

    • Peggy, thank you for sharing this beautiful “so that!” I have so enjoyed how you have shared so faithfully each and every week. And thank you for the beautiful prayers. I am sad to see this study end. You have been a true blessing to us all.

      W

  3. Thank you so much for preparing these Bible lessons! My favorite Bible verse is Psalm 37:4 because it reminds me to delight in God and by doing so He will align the desires of my heart to what He wants me to desire.

  4. Oh Wendy this lesson is so full of so much that touches my life from beginning to the end. I have to share a story (hopefully briefly) from many years ago (like 30) when we had adopted our son and daughter (and I was bringing them to a new church alone that had a great Children’s Ministry all year long because I wanted them to know Jesus and have a Pastor as their spiritual guidance and headship). It’s still my home church (back in MN) for the last 22 yrs. Anyways, I thought I was going there for them until I was asked to teach a VBS, to free up the Pastor so he could do all the rest without the responsibility of this group. I was honored to volunteer. And the lesson was this one on Abraham (and here I was with this Kindergarten group wanted to get across the lesson, I chose to act it out and use my daughter as Isaac). You are so right, unless you have looked at Abraham’s obedience through thinking about whether you could do this with one of your own, you do not realize what God was asking and Abraham was willing to do. Well, I could not do it! I could not even complete the story. My emotions overtook me and the tears truly flowed. It took some prayer and a wee bit of time to regain my composure, as I quickly shifted into their art activity, but I will never forget the impact it had on me and dare I say, on the rest of these wee little ones. When I
    was able to continue with the lesson, as we worked on our art project, I asked them, “why do you think I cried?” and their little hearts were stilled as I told them as simple as I could , “I love God and I want to obey God, but I love my child that He has just given me, and I could not sacrifice that gift, that child, that life.” And one of them replied “but God stopped Abraham too”! Yet then I reminded them that God, Our Heavenly Father was more than willing to sacrifice His own Son, Jesus. That drove it home for me.

    • Peggy I appreciate the wisdom you often share with us…I know it takes time to come back and do that, so thank you! I also see here you mention MN…I’m in NE Iowa, where are you located?

      The story you share here reminds me of 3 years ago…I was Mary in our church’s Sunday School play and my newborn son was Jesus. Acting is not my thing, but God used this to teach me much. I remember sitting there, holding my little boy while costumed children encircled me singing “Silent Night.” In that moment God brought John 3:16 to life – the Son He sent was a sweet little baby just like mine and He loved Him, but He also loved me enough to sacrifice that boy when He became a man. I shared more thoughts on my blog back then…thanks for triggering this memory and leading me back to what God said back then! http://titus24u.blogspot.com/2010/01/me-mary.html

      Blessings to you!

      • Hi Jill, My house that burned was in Stillwater, MN, I was born in St. Paul. Lived there my entire life until I came to where I currently am…Mexico for quite awhile now! Thank you for sharing that beautiful precious story. I’ll try to visit your link to your blog soon.Thanks Mary for that silent night! When I go back I do come through Iowa but not the NE corner, I go straight up 35 and by then I’m completely worn out! Thanks for letting me know where you’re from… Bless you Jill! and that newborn son (now 3, huh?) My, how time goes so quickly!

    • Wow, Peggy, what a powerful story. I feel the same way. I cannot imagine being asked to do it and even more, I cannot imagine obeying. God puts these stories in His Word to show us what we can do IN FAITH WHEN WE TRUST AND BELIEVE in Him and His promises!!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  5. Wendy:
    What an awesome CHRISTmas gift you are giving away. I love CHRISTmas too, I love to give.
    My favorite verse is Romans 12:1-2. Why? It was the verse that was universal in me turning my life over to God. I did not know God and I heard someone share this verse at a food pantry I was at. The verse pricked my heart. So much so the next church service that was available I was at and I found Jesus Christ my Lord and Savior.

    I would choose the Target gift card if I won, but I would give it away. I lead a Bible Study at the local nursing home in our town. I am leading your study right now with a few of the residents and I would re-gift the card to one of them and then I would go to Target and buy what they needed.
    M. Waters

  6. Jennifer Brackin says:

    Phillipians 4: 4-7 Has been my focus verse for the past several months. “rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplicaiton with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understand, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

    A wise person I have sought counsel from lately suggested this be my focal verse. I’m frustrated with the complacancy of my church. And in talking to this wise person, they encouraged me to follow this verse. 1. Don’t loose your joy in the Lord! 2. Tak to God first – before talking to anyone else! 3. And speak, in love, about the things you wish to see changed in your church. 4. Let the changes you would like to see in the heart of your church, be seen first in you!

    I have a tendancy to just start talking about my frustrations (about anything) before ever praying about them. This verse has helped me focus on talking to God first!

    Jennifer

    • Jennifer Brackin says:

      I also forgot to say which gift I would prefer – either would be great! Thanks Jennifer

    • I love that you quoted your verse because I think so many of us know Philippians 4:6-7, but you gave us 4 and 5 as well. It starts out with “Rejoice, again I say rejoice!” I totally forgot that.

      It’s wonderful that you have a mentor to feed you such wise words of wisdom. We all need people like that pouring into our lives, pointing us to truth and away from sin and error.

      Blessings to you,

      Wendy

  7. My favorite CHAPTER is Psalm 139 – favorite verse is 9, 10 – “If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.”

    This passage was being preached on October 16, 2005 – my son was returning home that night from work while we were at church. He was in a near-fatal accident (life flight, jaws of life), had a severe spinal cord injury…and this began a long journey for him. His HS sports career was over, struggled in school – but God has been faithful. Why are these my favorite verses? I remember sitting in the ER room with my husband and pastor – not knowing if I was going to lose my son. I told my pastor that I believed in God, but how could I wrap my mind around the uncertainty that was going on? He simply told me that he always holds on to the fact that GOD KNEW this was going to happen and that my son, Phillip, was in the palm of His hand. I knew this, but I definitely needed to hear it. And these verses really speak to that – plus they were being preached by a missionary that evening. No coincidence – God directed.

    We have been blessed by having our son remain in our lives. He is actually now in his 5th year of college – taking a final exam tonight! – and his life has been directed towards serving God as a result of this tragic accident.

    If I win the gift card – I’ll pray about what to do with it!

    • Jackie,

      Thank you for sharing this story about your son and how God intervened in the midst of such tragedy to bring you peace and hope. Yet another story of the faithfulness of our God to meet us and speak to us through His Word…especially in times of great need.

      I stand with you praising God for Romans 8:28 coming alive in the life of your family!!!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  8. My favorite verse lately is Jeremiah 29:11.
    It helps me during these years of monetary sacrificing so that I can stay home and raise our three children. Also gives me strength while caring for our diabetic son who is 8 years old.

    • Sorry…ha ha! I would like to win either gift! They would both be a blessing!

    • One of my favorite verses as well!! God is so pleased with your decision to sacrifice and stay at home with your children. May He bless you and the work of your hands…may He provide for the needs of your family in very real and personal ways through these child rearing years!!

      If I had not quit being a full time lawyer to stay at home with my kids, I would not be doing these on-line studies today!!!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  9. Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
    For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

    In believing the best for my adult child and myself.

    If I win the card I think I would like something from Proverbs 31 Ministries.

  10. Vonnie Kronk says:

    Wow! My favorite verse is Also Jeremiah 29:11-For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. I even had this on a poster made for our church parade I was able to walk in when doctors didn’t think I would live OR ever walk again! If I win I think I want a Target giftcard since one is real close to me & then I could get something for someone else besides myself.

  11. Tracy Smith says:

    My favorite verse is Philippians 1:6
    And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.
    The reason it’s my favorite is because it reminds me that GOD began a good work within me and HE will finish it! I didn’t begin the work and I don’t have to finish it!
    If you choose my entry, I’d like a Target gift card rather than the P31M gift card. Thanks so much! I’m so enjoying this study…even though I’m a week behind! Blessings on your ministry, Wendy! Enjoy your family time over Christmas with your daughter home from college for her break! My baby will be home from college too!

    • Tracy, this is such a wonderful promise. He began the work, and He WILL be faithful to complete it. Along the way, we need to be available, listen and obey what we hear. He does the rest!!!

      ENJOY your baby being home. Lauren and I spent almost the whole day together and it was WONDERFUL!!!

      W

  12. My favorite verse is Proverbs 17:17 “A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity.”
    This was the first Bible verse I ever learned. It was in Sunday School when I was in the second grade living in Fairbanks Alaska, because my Dad was stationed there for the military. My parents didn’t take me to church, but a bus would come by and pick me up. I still have the bookmark that I made with that verse on it. It is a verse I have strived to do – be a good friend. And it became even more special to me when I gave my heart to Jesus when I was 14 and learned that He was and is the Greatest friend of all. Either gift would be appreciated.

    • Such a sweet story to show us that sharing God’s Word with our kids when they are young is so important and can be life-changing!!! Thank you for sharing this precious story.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  13. Sheila Payne says:

    I love Jeremiah 29:11-14 because it says I will find the Lord if I seek Him with all my heart. I want to know that I will find Him– not, might find Him. I also love 1Peter 3:10-12, because it tells you how to see good days in this life.

    Great example for us Wendy in your Robin story. I loved that. I had not heard it before. Thank you so much for leading us through these weeks of study.

    • You are so welcome, Sheila. It is a true blessing to write and lead these studies. And the extra special blessings that come are meeting women like you. Meeting you and your son a few weeks ago when you drove down to visit my church was such a special treat!!

      I look forward to lots more studies together!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  14. My favorite verses are 2 Corinthians 4:16-18: “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” I love these verses because they remind me that one day I will be free from my wheelchair and will have a perfected body. I can’t wait!!

    PS If you choose me, I’d like the Target card.

    • Dale, this is such an encouraging verse when we walk through difficult times, especially physically.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  15. Charlotte Askew says:

    Wendy, thank you for sharing your knowledge of the word and for sharing yourself with all of us. As you know, so much has happened to me during this study. Studying with you these past 2 years has grown me so much. You have challenged me to dig deeper into God’s word and learn to listen to His voice.

    God does have a call for all of us, even though at times we do not hear or feel that call. I want to encourage everyone particiipating in this study, that yes, God has a call on your life too. I was 68 years old before my call came. We are never too old to do God’s work.

    Charlotte, believe my Word so that…when I call you, I will also equip you to do my work. You never have to worry or fear because I will walk every step with you.

    And, yes He is faithful and He did equip me and show me much favor.

    My favorite Bible verse is John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

    To me, this verse says it all. I have always visualized myself as being a branch attached to my Savior. Knowing that as I long as I remained attached, His life blood flowed into me. Feeding me, nourishing me and providing for me. I knew that if I ever became distached from Him, I would dry up and die. I realize that apart from Him, there would be no life and I could not do anything. My life will only bear fruit as long as I remain in Him. This verse is my life verse.

    I am sad to see the study come to an end. Will look forward to the next one with you Wendy. May God continue to richly bless you and your work for His kingdom.

    • What a beautiful visual, Charlotte. Thank you for sharing this picture. Oh, that we can all stay so connected to the VINE.

      Love,

      Wendy

  16. Hi everyone! My life verse is 1 Cor. 10:31. It reads, “So whether you eat or drink or WHATEVER YOU DO, DO IT ALL FOR THE GLORY OF GOD.” I started my own business about 8 months ago, an art studio/gallery and learning center. Even though I knew this was the direction that God was leading me, I still felt unsure of how I could use my God given talent to really bless others. A couple of months after I opened my doors, a small, rural congregation came to me and asked me to do the art ministry for their VBS. I was thrilled and this was the verse the Holy Spirit gave me to share with the children that week. While the Lord was showing me how to use my gifts to glorify Him, he was also using me to show the children that you can honor God everyday, all day. This puts meaning behind our actions, instead of just going through the motions of life. I am amazed everyday at how God continues to open doors for me to share the love of Christ and pour into the community through my business. I will continue to give Him ALL the glory with whatever I do!

    • Mrs. Wendy, how can I get one of the mother’s study bibles that your friend wrote?

      • Hi Amber, there is a link to where to buy the Bible at the end of the post the day I interviewed Bobbie. You should be able to click on that link and it will take you to where to buy the Bible. If you have any trouble, let me know.

        W

  17. So glad I could be part of this Bible Study. Digging deeper with the homework questions has blessed me so much. My favorite verse is psalm 37:23:
    The steps of the Godly are directed by the LORD. He delights in every detail of their lives.
    God is a personal God who delights in me!
    IF chosen I would like either gift.

    • This reminds me of the verse in Zephaniah that tells us that He delights over us with singing!!! What a great verse to share with us. Thank you!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  18. I have been blessed with this study. Thanks Wendy for being such an obedient servant SO THAT
    others :may hear Him speak. I would like to share the following verse from Psalms 26:14.
    The Lord confides in those who fear Him; he makes His covenant known to them.

    • What a great verse to share…it is not one of the verses we read and hear often. So for me, Mattie, this was a fresh Word! Thank you for sharing it with us today.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  19. Hi, I would like to share my mother’s favorite bible verse…she went to be with the Lord this last April. It is also one of my favorites and is the best “so that” of all time. John 3:16; For God so loved the world that He gave his only son, that (or, so that) whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life! PS, My mother’s name was Lorna, and she was the kindest, gentlest and giving woman I have ever known; and she had a child like heart that was truly beautiful. Merry Christmas sisters! Cheri

    • Cheri, thank you for introducing us to your mother, Lorna. What a blessing to be raised by such a godly mother…a true gift from the Lord. You have a rich heritage to pass on to your family.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  20. Wendy…you are quite right, there are SO many truths to hold close to our hearts in this lesson and the previous ones. I find myself in an unusual circumstance this Christmas that has brought tremendous trial to my family and at the same time a beautiful opportunity “so that ” I value what is important and how blessed I am.

    Trust, humility and obedience have been hammered home to me through this trial. I have valued having the Word to guide me all the way. Two verses have jumped out to me that I had not really noticed before. 1 John 2:6, “he who says he abides in HIM ought himself also walk just as HE walked” and Luke 9:23, “take up His cross daily and follow ME”.

    AS I look at Christmas and remember how blessed we are that Christ was provided for us, I am challenged to find a way to spread His love. I have learned that there are ways to touch lives when you have nothing material to give and it ALL comes from the heart. This dose of humility has shown me ways to be obedient that I would never have thought of before.

    This will be a very different Christmas at my house this year, not one gift to share under the tree, but much love and many gifts of service from the heart. Keeping THE MANGER in my heart all the way will make this the BEST CHRISTMAS EVER!!!!

    • Jane, thank you for sharing how this trial in your life has shown you more of God. I especially love what you said, “I am challenged to find a way to spread His love. I have learned that there are ways to touch lives when you have nothing material to give and it ALL comes from the heart.” Giving from our heart is the most powerful way to give because it not only changes the one gifted but it also changes the giver!!!

      I pray the Lord meets you in the midst of your trial and shows up in very real and personal ways!!! I pray He will provide for your every need and bless your beautiful heart…returning tenfold all you give.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  21. Melinda Albarado says:

    Dear Wendy – Thank you so much for your on line Bible Studies! Your Study was the first one I have done on line and it was such a blessing! I am looking forward to your next one!
    GOD IS SO AWESOME! And just in time for your “GIVE SO THAT…” lesson is the opportunity for us to give a Bible to a fellow brother or sister in Christ that DOES NOT HAVE ONE! Yesterday I learned of the website, http://www.bibledonate.org . I encourage all of you to please visit this website and GIVE THE GIFT OF GOD’S WORD! In Christ, Melinda

    • Great website Melinda! And what better GIFT to GIVE to someone who may need God’s Word! Thanks for sharing this great suggestion! Have a blessed and merry Christmas Melinda o Feliz Navidad from Mexico!

      • Melinda Albarado says:

        Dear Peggy – Just saw that you are in Mexico – are you in need of Spanish Bibles? Go to that website, http://www.bibledonate.org and request some! And if I find any at the thrift store, I would be glad to mail them to you! Have a Blessed Christmas Peggy – In Christ, Melinda

        • Thank you so much! I love to give away Bibles in Spanish? I’m just about out. And only have a few pocket size NT left. Have not been in USA for awhile to bring back more. I’m thankful for this website and bookmarked it and its blog, but I don’t generally request Bibles from organizations that I’m sure already are very extended. I give ones (even my own once) when I see a need or minister to someone who does not have one. There are Gideons here and some churches that give away, but they are very expensive to buy. I just gave a large print (and that seems to be a need) to someone for a special occasion as a new Christian! That gives me great delight. Thank you so much for this! Mailing books to here really costs alot. Even one. I use to get Book Sneeze to review and they will no longer send here, so sometimes I have asked books to go to my MN address and have them send them here (just one usually) and it costs more than the book. Plus it takes almost a month by regular mail and no assurance/guarantee that they’ll arrive once they leave USA. Package services are way to expensive.
          You heart is precious and I appreciate it. Have a blessed Christmas also,
          peace, joy and love in Christ abundantly, Peggy

          • Melinda Albarado says:

            Dear Peggy – You don’t know me very well so you don’t know that I don’t give up that easy! Where is Mexico do you live?
            I can contact all the local Churches and see if they are planning any “mission trips” in your area. Each person could put one Bible in their suitcase for you! Will that work?
            I live in a small town in Alabama, but there are lots of Churches here!
            How much does a large print or even small Bibles cost where you live? I could try to raise some money to send you to buy some Bibles.
            After only one cup of coffee these are the only ideas I’ve come up with to get you some Bibles! But let’s see what happens after the 2nd cup!
            In Christ, Melinda

    • So excited to know you have enjoyed your first on-line study!!! Looking forward to the next one too.

      Thank you for sharing this link. I have never heard of that ministry before. What a great idea!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  22. I have enjoyed this study so much. My favorite verse is Jeramiah 29:11..Because of God’s promise of giving us a hope and a future. I have clung to this verse for the last several years, because I have a chronic illness, but know that God has a plan to prosper me, even in this trial. Thank you for all that you do, to help us grow in our relationship with God.

    • Kim, praying God’s healing touch upon your body as you struggle with this chronic illness. May He place His healing balm on every area that suffers and bring peace and freedom from suffering.

      Sweet Blessings to you,

      Wendy

  23. At the moment Acts 17:28 is my verse. : For in HIM we live and move and have our being.” I need to focus on God, not on the situations in my life. My strength comes from GOD, not me!
    Thank you again for these studies. I have truly enjoyed them.

    • I love the verses that come just before this as well that say He appointed the times and places we would live. This is such a great passage of Scripture to show that He ordains every day of our lives and lives in us to guide, move, and direct our every relationship and every step!!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  24. We love because He first loved us. 1 John 4:19

    This is my heart’s desire to love the “unlovable” and to push through when I’m uncomfortable because I am commanded by my Holy Father that I am to love just as He loved.

    If I win, a Target gift card would be appreciated so I can re-gift to a friend in need.

    Thank you so much Wendy for all you do for His kingdom!

    Karen – cent. OR

    • How wonderful to make this your heart’s desire. Since this is God’s will for us all, I know He will grant this desire of your heart and use it in a mighty way.

      W

  25. Danielle B says:

    I have so many favorite verses these studies have brought up. Most recently Joshua 1:8-9. These reminded me once again the importance of hiding Gods Word in my heart and that HE is ALWAYS with me!
    BUT the thing that has stuck with me the most is the picture that has been in my head since I learned what praying “in JESUS name” really means. Now when I pray I picture me kneeling before the throne of grace and Jesus is literally covering me with His body. That is the image that came to mind that morning and it has stayed with me since. I wish I was an artist and could draw/paint it out! 🙂
    Thank you sooooo much for these studies and for sharing your heart. It has been a wonderful eye-opening blessing to participate!

  26. Looking forward to digging into this week’s lesson! But as I print off the homework, I thought I’d share my verses –

    My favorite “So that” verse – Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, SO THAT no one will malign the word of God. Titus 2:4-5
    Spiritual mentoring has had a huge impact on my life and I have a desire to encourage others in the Titus 2 relationships…seeing the SO THAT in this verse really opened my eyes to why this needs to happen. Thank you Wendy for being a Titus 2 woman for all of us!!

    As far as favorite verses in general, I’ve narrowed it to two –
    Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
    in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
    As one who likes to figure things out and get the right answer (I used to be a math teacher!), these words remind me I don’t need to understand everything…I need to trust!! I also tend to be a list maker and planner so this verse reminds I need to lay it ALL down and give it to Him – as I trust and follow He will lead me where He needs me to go!

    “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
    “Alas, Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.”
    But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord. Jeremiah 1:5-8

    God used these words to call me out of my comfort zone, remind me my identity is found in Him and assure me He is always present!

    It’s been a joy reading all the favorites, but I have one question – Wendy, what’s yours?

    • Jill, I too cling to these verses you shared at the end that tell us God will give us what we need when called to minister for Him. We need not fear when called outside our comfort zone. He is always with us…always present and ready to provide for our every need.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  27. Thank you, Wendy, for this wonderful bible study. I have learned so much. And thank you to everyone who has posted comments throughout the bible study. You have each added to my learning experience.

    One of my favorite bible verses is Judges 6:14: “The Lord turned to him and said, ‘Go in the strength you have . . . Am I not sending you?'” I love this verse because I can say it to myself each time I feel scared, insecure, or just plain shy about whatever task God has before me. It’s a lovely reminder that I don’t have to be anything more than what I am.

    God bless you all!

    • P.S. As to my above comment, I have no clue what “Your comment is awaiting moderation” means. Don’t know where that came from. LOL!

      • Kristine, usually if you are leaving a comment for the first time, it will not post immediately and waits for me to approve it. This is to ensure that spam does not post automatically. I can delete things that are inappropriate or hurtful. Thankfully, I don’t have to do it very often. But every now and again I have to trash certain comments.

        W

  28. Hi! I just wrote a comment and tried to post it only to get an error message and have my message wiped out. 🙁

    Thank you, Wendy for asking this question. I look forward to all of the verses folks list here!

    Two verses I like:

    Isaiah 43:2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.

    As I am working through some horrific childhood abuse, I have often wondered how “I” made it through that time. After reading and meditating on that I realize that “we” made it through!

    Another simple but very powerful verse that calms me is Phillipians 7:4 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.

    I don’t remember exactly how I was introduced to Proverbs 31 but I thank God every day! If I am selected, a GC to Proverbs 31 would be great!

    • Wendy, I am so sorry for the abuse you suffered as a child, but I celebrate that with the help of Jesus and His Word, you have been freed from the captivity in which so many victims are held.

      Your words about Proverbs 31 means so much! I love to hear how our ministry has touched and helped heal the lives of others. It shows how God is answering the prayers we pray as a ministry each and every day.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  29. Caroline McGinnis says:

    I have come up with two favorite verses:
    1. Isaiah 40:31 Those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. they will soar on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. they will walk and not faint.
    I love this verse because it reminds me to soar ubove trial like the eagles do, they soar high on the drifts of wind that God provides for them. This is what God wants us to do, soar ubove trials on the wings of the eagle. Every child of God has a set of wings; faith, He lifts and gives energy and we fly soaring above all of what troubles us. God wants us to soar, not sit idle. (NLT)

    2. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a (NiV) Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always persevers. Love never fails.
    I love this passage because I like to refer to it as God’s check list for my daily life and if you change love to God it gives you a good picture of who God is.

    Christmas is also my favorite holiday as well, Wendy. May God bless you and your family this holiday season as well as all of the sisters doing this study.

    • Oh Caroline, the one from Isaiah 40 is very special to me also! Thanks for sharing that one! Have a blessed and merry Christmas!

    • Caroline, thank you for sharing you verses and WHY you love them. Your first verse from Isaiah was my Grandmother’s favorite verse. Even in the worst days of her Alzheimers before she passed away to be with the Lord, she would recite this verse. Such a testimony to the power of God’s Word and how it imprints itself on our hearts and minds!!! Nothing can ever steal it away.

      Christmas Blessing to you!

      Wendy

  30. OK! I’m up to the part on defining HUMILITY! which I could attempt to do in my meager way but I came to share something about this characteristic rather than define it. As far as I’m concerned, the Mexican people exemplify this quality in general, especially the women the most. They depend on God and even their language and existence is all God based. I came to MX, with a servant’s heart as a teacher with hopes that some of this “humility” and meekness would be what I would learn and take home with me. I do not think humility means is at all the weakness, I use to think and that people allow others to walk all over them because they are humble… it’s not that at all. It’s a down to earth attitude, dependent for the basics on the Almighty God! I am learning this through some hard lessons. Did you know the origin of the word “humble” (humilidad in Spanish) comes from the root word “humus” ?… no pun intended with root… (it’s probably not the right term anyways)… but the Latin word “humilis” means low, humble. To be low, you must bow. To bow especially to Our Lord, it means “knees to the earth”. Migrants to the USA from Mexico know this all too well. Hard working people here in Mexico know this also. Mothers in their homes know this the best in whatever country. On their knees for their kids, reaching down to their level to communicate, praying, even cleaning floors. So as you know ‘humus’ is earth … humility is a fruit, but it grows from the earth, from the ground up, by the watering (of the Living Word) living it out, nourished and flourishing through the power of the Holy Spirit! God enables us to learn humility.
    Now, don’t get me wrong, many Mexicans males, (which may sound sexist), are very arrogant. So like many countries, it’s a virtue we all need more of … the song
    “Knees to the earth” comes to mind. By the way, I happen to love languages, if you couldn’t tell…

    ohh and I have to write this cuz it’s been on my mind and bothering me.
    Wendy and now Jill and anyone else, I know you meant this as a compliment but I have to ask you to not call me wise or refer to my wisdom; because what I share I hope comes from God, and it is not my wisdom but how He leads me. I speak from many years of experience but I have sought and asked for God’s wisdom instead of my educated knowledge, for I have had a difficult time with discernment
    and also with other people’s pride (the opposite of humility) and prideful ways. I’m so sorry if I have come across trying to sound wise, for I am learning from you (all). I thought I may let it go and feared I was commenting or hogging the comments too much (I tend to do that in a study, sorry) but that is how I learn by sharing, sometimes right, sometimes wrong, sometimes neither. I hope you understand and I do realize that you had good intentions! Sorry, I had to get that off my chest! (whew, sigh) I considered not commenting but than the enemy wins. It’d be nice if I could be brief. Pray for me to be more specific instead of all over the board! Thanks!

    Love and peace in Christ,
    Peggy

    • Read the some about Jeremy Taylor and “Acts of Humility” from Holy Living. WOW! I knew it was a high calling to ask to learn to be humble. Now I really know. (sigh) I’ll keep working at it and prayerfully working on my list.

    • Melinda Albarado says:

      Dear Peggy – PLEASE DO NOT STOP SHARING AND COMMENTING! AND “ALL OVER THE BOARD” IS WONDERFUL! And BEING BRIEF would NOT BE NICE!
      You may not realize that God is using you to help “baby and “not as mature” Christians understand God’s Word and God’s ways. I am 61 years old but consider myself a “growing baby” Christian, as it has only been 4 years since I gave my life to our Lord Jesus.
      Your comments, and many others, have been so helpful to me that a few days after the end of each lesson I print out ALL of the comments from my Sisters in Christ. I have found that the “comments” themselves are like “mini Bible lessons”!
      I want to thank all of you that “comment” and “share” – you have no idea how you are blessing everyone!
      In Christ, Melinda

    • Peggy, we all LOVE your sharing and we know from where your Wisdom comes…it comes directly from the Lord as you sit at His feet, asking, studying and listening.

      Thank you for sharing this GREAT lesson on humility. You created a wonderful word picture as you spoke of the migrant workers.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  31. Oh, how I love seeing more of you sharing this time and reading what you share!!! I love reading all your favorite verses, too! This is great!

    I noticed that TRICIA must have scrolled down too far like I did and ended up sharing her favorite verse in last’s weeks Lesson 4.

  32. WOW Wendy!!! What a rich, wonderful and amazing lesson on HUMILITY and GRACE! As I worked my way further through the lesson than my previous comment, I learned so much more and my eyes were opened as my spirit I pray as I read Philippians 1 carefully and studied each previous example in Scripture. But I really love when you digest a word such as “clothe”, gird, “humility” and give us the Greek (NT) or Hebrew(OT)! I have learned so much from you! You will never realize how deep you have enriched and blessed me through your teachings and your book. It is an honor to sit at this keyboard and learn from you. I have treasured this “Living So that…” very much! I will greatly miss the weekly lessons and you, but I’ll be stopping in and looking forward to if you continue with more of this or a new study. I know you have more to share on LIVING SO THAT
    and I can’t wait to see what your plans are for your “Street Team” and after the holidays. I’m so glad that you and Lauren enjoyed a great day and with many days still to come as she and Bo and your dear hubby enjoy your time together and this very special Christmas season! May your home be truly blessed with the merriest and most special outpouring of God’s magnificent Love for each of you! May the joy, peace and abundant love of Jesus Christ reign as you share Christmas with friends and family!!! Love you so much and thanks for your encouragement and seeing me through this ‘trial’ time with keeping my eyes on Jesus and in His Word!
    (((hugs)))
    Peggy

  33. Judy Redden says:

    My “life verse” is Proverbs 3:5,6…..Trust in the Lord with All your heart and lean not on Your own understanding; in All your ways ackowledge him, and he will make Your paths straight.
    Many times over the years I have had to bring this verse to mind. It is the one that shows up through almost any situation I am in. I have shared it many times with my family when they are in struggling situations. Even now as my step-daughter and her 2 yr old have moved into my garage apt, I know that if I trust in the Lord he will guide me to where he wants me to be in their lives. She is juggling a child, school and work. I believe my position in this is to help her anyway I can with my time. I struggle with this sometimes because I am a busy active person and want to do my own thing and be held back with a baby in tow. That sounds cruel but it is the truth. I say it out loud because I know there is more the Lord wants me to do and I am searching daily for how he wants me to respond and not do my own thing.
    So, God bless you Wendy for the obedience you portray through this Bible Study. It has been a blessing to me these past few weeks.
    I would like the Proverbs 31 gift if I am chosen.
    Merry Christmas to all
    Judy

    • Judy, what you are doing helping your step-daughter will be rewarded by the Lord. And don’t feel bad sharing how you feel sometimes. The Lord wants us to share those feelings to that we can pray for ourselves and have others pray for us as we walk through them. He will meet you in those feelings and provide for your every need. He promises that when you seek Him with all your heart, you will find Him. I know you will find Him as you seek His will and plans for you in this situation. She is so blessed to have you, and I pray she will see Christ in you and learn more about Christ from you.

      W

  34. My one challenge this week is to give God more – I try to pay my tithes regularly but hesitate to give God more than that, I am challenging myself to do more and more for God this coming months.

    This study has been a huge step in my walk with God and it couldn’t have come at a more precise time. I have been particularly challenged in the area of prayer and dealing with trials, I am sure to read it over from time to time.

    My fav. Bible verse from this study has to be
    Genesis 50:20  “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” God is a God of purpose, there is no situation or circumstance that He can’t turn around for good, while at the time it may be unpleasant once we put our faith in Him and decide on a daily basis to choose joy above all else, He will accomplish His great plan for our lives which is good and will bring us to a glorious end.

    I will most definitely miss studying with you Wendy, you know how much I love you. Please God speak to Wendy again quickly SO THAT we can fellowship again together very soon. Amen! {long distance hugs}.

    • Love your verse from Genesis about Joseph. One of my favorites too!!! Gives us such hope in the midst of a trial…a beautiful promise to claim.

      W

  35. I am confused on Question 8, the “fillin the blank and memorize it” I looked ahead to the next section, which is labeled B. Is there an A section that I missed? I’m wondering if someone else has figured this out and can share their response. Thanks.

    • I have the same question. I hope someone can clue us in soon.

      Thanks,

      • I believe Wendy is wanting us to write what she wrote – BLESSINGS follow OBEDIENCE. Definitely a truth we see time and time again in God’s Word and a quick little statement we can use to remind ourselves to walk in obedience.

    • So sorry I was not clear in my instructions. 🙂

      Jill was correct “Blessings follow Obedience.” Just repeating the line from the sentence above.

      W

  36. My favorite verse right now is Jeremiah 33:3, Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know. The way I found this verse: the numbers 333 would come across my path, in various ways, on the clock, on a receipt, etc., so often that I went to the Word and looked up various chapters and verses, you know like 3:33 or 33:3, and the Jeremiah verse really stuck with me. So now when I see 333 across my path, I call out to my God! I have had alot of fun with this.

    • What a great story!! Reminds me of the modern movie remake of the Noah’s Ark story where his alarm clock kept going off at the same time everyday. God will use all sorts of ways to speak to us!! He is such a creative God.

      thank you for sharing.

      W

  37. Oh, Wendy, I am sad to see this study ending, but I have learned so much from you (and everyone who leaves comments each week!). I think I may be one of the people who needed this revised lesson on “giving” — in fact, I’m sure of it. Eight years ago the Lord spoke to me that I needed to stay at home with my two small children. So my husband and I prayed about it, and there was such peace in this decision that we knew it was the right thing to do. But, oh, how I worried about what my family and friends would think! And there were some who thought what I was doing was a huge mistake, but fortunately I listened to what God was calling me to do and tried to ignore the naysayers. I assumed that when it was time for my youngest to start school that I would go back to teaching (which had been my occupation before the kids came along). But the Lord called me to stay at home and teach my children, so I became a homeschooling mom.

    All of this backstory to make this point: giving is so very hard when you have one income, and that income barely covers the bills most months. I want to give, and I want to bless people, but it’s so hard when I think about the need we have for that money. I freely give of my time and talents, but the financial part is oh so difficult.

    But I realized something as I was thinking about the story of Abraham and Isaac. And somehow I’ve always missed it because all I can think of when I read that story is how difficult it would be to sacrifice my child! But this is what I saw in that story today: Abraham trusted that God would provide. He tells Isaac that God will provide a sacrifice, and then trusts that that will happen (all the way up to the point where he has the knife in his hand). Trusting that God will provide exactly what you need means giving of the money that you have (that came from God in the first place, which is important to remember!), trusting that He will take care of the rest. Absolute trust. And I want to have that! The Voice Bible has one of my favorite translations of James 2:23, “That’s what Scripture means when it says, “Abraham entrusted himself to God, and God credited him with righteousness.” And living a faithful life earned Abraham the title of “God’s friend.” I love that translation, because I want very much to be called “God’s friend”. And how can He be my friend if I don’t trust him completely?

    My children and I have been studying “The Lord will provide” as one of our lessons this past week. And the hymn that I put with our lesson really drove the point home for me. God led me to one of my favorite songs from the years I spent teaching at a Catholic school. It’s simple, but simply beautiful as well. It’s by Christopher Walker and it’s called “Like a Child Rests”. The chorus says: “like a child rests in its mother’s arms, so will I rest in you”. Like our children rely on us completely for all that they need, not worrying about getting their diaper changed or where their next meal is going to come from, we should rely on God in the same way. Trusting that He will provide all that we need exactly when we need it. So when I find myself wondering how we’re going to make it this month when the paycheck just doesn’t seem to cover everything, then I hum that song to myself and I trust.

    Wow, that was really long, but it feels good to say what’s on my heart. Thank you Wendy, and all you sweet ladies who leave comments, because I have learned more from you than you will ever know. God bless you all! Merry Christmas!

    • Oh Sabrina! I have a similar story! I did not go back to work after my 2nd child was born so I could be a stay at home mom and homeschool my girls. It is important to me that my girls have Bible lessons and prayer in their learning. We also have a difficult time making ends meet. Within the last year I signed up to sell Thirty-One (a direct sales business) and it has been a little easier but the struggles are always there or the extra expenses that pop up (repairs on house or vehicle, etc) seem never ending. I also feel as you do about giving. I try to give of my time to the Lord but I want to be able to give financially as well. I always feel I give so little financially. I enjoyed reading your new perspective on Abraham! Thank you for sharing that!
      I also looked up that beautiful hymn..thank you!
      Wendy,
      I have been holding onto Romans 12:12 for months now. “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” It is wonderful instructions from the Lord for anytime in my life, any event. No matter what happens in this world this verse reminds me to look to the Lord and always be joyful in Him! I love these studies and have shared them with others in my life. I would love either gift if selected. Thank you Sabrina, Wendy, and all the ladies that have shared a verse and their stories. You all are wonderful!
      God bless you all! Merry Christmas!

    • Sabrina, your words and story bring my heart such delight. God had me change my teaching for you!!! I am so thankful He led my heart that direction so He could bless and encourage you where you are as a wife, mom and teacher. I so admire you staying at home to teach your children. I pray He will bless the work of your hands. And I pray too for opportunities to give for your family SO THAT God will show you and your children how He WILL PROVIDE in your giving.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  38. I just realized I didn’t leave a memory verse! The two I’m really focusing on right now are James 2:15-16: “It would be like seeing a brother or sister without any clothes out in the cold and begging for food, and saying, “Shalom, friend, you should get inside where it’s warm and eat something,” bt doing nothing about his needs — leaving him cold and alone on the street. What good would your words alone do?”

    And James 1:27: “Real, true religion from God the Father’s perspective is about caring for the orphans and widows who suffer needlessly and resisting the evil influence of the world.”

  39. I’m a little bit behind, still working on last week’s assignments {BB doesn’t like me getting up at 6:30am…I’m sure that’ll change dramatically once s/he arrives!}.

    My all time favorite verse is Psalm 46:1-3. It’s been my verse for almost 20yrs now. Psalm, reminds me that no matter what goes on in my life or around me, He is still in control. That has brought me immense comfort through difficult times.

    I can’t wait to finish last week’s study and catch up with all the comments so I can jump in this week!!

    <3 Heather
    Target

  40. sandy carpenter says:

    Favorite verse Jeremiah 29:11. Know that no matter what was in the past God was watching out for me and knew His plans for me were better than where was. Thanks for all the times of shining God’s light for me to see a better way. Loved the study.

  41. My favorite verse right now is 1 Corinthians 10:13:
    There hath no temptation take you but such as is common to man, but God is faithful who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able, but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

  42. Hi! My life verses are Proverbs 3:5-6, which states: “Trust in The LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all yours ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths!” I SO love these verses, especially the part about NOT leaning on my own understanding about things that happen in my life! We may not understand everything, but God know what He is doing, has the perfect plan and I can trust Him always, knowing He will direct my path and make it straight!! AMEN!! Thank you for your ministry! God Bless! Julie

    • AMEN!!! Thanks for sharing, Julie. I had my children memorize this verse. Powerful truths to remember when things just don’t seem to be going our way!

      W

  43. Wendy-
    I have so loved the so that series. I loved how this particular section opened with how has God been your Jehovah Jireh. Wow. I cannot even say enough about that. I got big old tears in my eyes just thinking on that and reflecting on that. The Lord has been soo faithful to provide for me as I have stepped out to serve Him. He is soo good! Overwhelmingly good!
    So many verses come to mind.. but I think the BIG one the Lord is teaching me right now is Ephesians 3:20 that He can do far more then i could ever think or imagine. I love that. i tend to have a pretty big adventure loving imagination.. and to think that behind the scenes (and sometimes not behind the scenes) he is doing more then I can ask or imagine.. that just makes me want to shout glory!
    love you Wendy and am so blessed by you!

    • Jenn, so thankful you had time to be a part of our study this time. And I know that you do know the providing hand of God. You do so much for Him, and He has been faithful to bless and provide for you in return. I have no doubt you will see MUCH MUCH Ephesians 3:20 work in your life!!!!

      Love you,

      Wendy

  44. Gloria Spurlock says:

    Isaiah 40:31, KJV
    But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

  45. I am loving the study and have enjoyed all of the posts so far. I read your book about 6 months ago and it truly changed my life. I had lived with fear, anxiety and even agoraphobia most of my life.

    My favorite scriptures are probably kind of unusual for most people, but to me they are the verses I know God gave me personally for me to find freedom from fear and agoraphobia.

    I love Isaiah 44:20, which is kind of unusual. I have read this verse many times but about 6 months ago. The verse says, ” Isaiah 44:20 He feeds on ashes; A deceived heart has turned him aside; and he cannot delver his soul, Nor say, “is there not a lie in my right hand?” I know God spoke to me about holding on to my fear, anxiety and agoraphobia which was a lie, yet I was continuing to give it power to control me. I was making this fear, my idol. This verse spoke more to me in that one day and continued day, than any other verse. I am finally free from my fears and anxiety but that was after releasing control of my life totally to God.

    • What a wonderful verse, and thank you for sharing how He has used it in your life. I am praising the Lord that you are FREE, and He has set you free!!! And thank you for sharing that Hidden Joy spoke into your life and circumstances. Your words bless me so!

      W

  46. Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. I cling to this promise!

  47. Wendy, I am going to be so sad to have this study end, it has certainly been one of my favourites!

    Just getting through the first few questions about Abraham and Isaac and when I get to Heaven I am making a beeline right to these two. I am sure Abraham must have been in constant prayer begging God to take this cup away from him the whole way up that mountain and I want to hear what was on his mind!

    I love reading all of the above favourite verses, what a great collection of special messages. There are two verses I have had near me over the last few months, especially while my daughter was in the hospital. Proverbs 3:5-6 took on special meaning and I meditated on it day and night. Because the issue is my daughter’s heart God actually showed it to me as “Trust in The Lord with Lola’s heart and lean not on your own understanding (or the doctor’s or other human opinions), in all your ways acknowledge/worship God and He will make the path smooth”. Reminded me that her heart was in his hands and although the doctor’s were wonderful, God was really the one in control.

    The other one that I find gives me good perspective is 2 Corinthians 4: 17- 18 “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen but what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary but what is unseen is eternal.” I love this verse not just because it refers to our trial but also the little things I may worry about every day – gives me perspective that these little things really don’t matter and won’t matter in eternity.

    Have a wonderful Christmas Wendy! We will be having our first with our new little girl and it will certainly be a special one, Lori

    • Two great verses and powerful verses to carry with us and stand on when we walk through trials.

      ENJOY your Christmas with your sweet girl!!! May He bless richly bless your family time.

      Blessings,

      wendy

  48. Dear Wendy,

    Thank you for this study.
    Haven’t been able to comment. I’ve been very busy.

    A favorite verse this week for me is I Can do All things through Christ who strengthens me.

    The reason:
    Last night I was able to walk into the hospital room of the man who raped me when I was eight years old and then later abused me when I was around 12. I gave him a light up candle that on one side reads,”I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” and the other side is a cross and I brought him the movie Courageous. I sat and watched it with him.

    I had forgiven him many years ago.

    He is very sick. I cry hard for God to save him. He was abused very badly as a child in torturous ways.
    As a result of what he did to me (when I told) he hasn’t seen or had a relationship with his son in about 25 years and has used drugs ever since.

    He has Vascular Dementia is on Kidney Dialysis and has a heart of a 90 year old which is performing at 1/3 of what it should.

    Would you pray? I want God to save him and break all spiritual strongholds.

    Thank you

    P.S. Another favorite verse will always be 1 Corinthians 13:8 I had agoraphobia very bad and PTSD.
    in 1997 I decided I was going to walk to this little store. I was determined. prescribed so much heavy medication at the time, I was surprised I could walk. I walked to the store. Once inside, I picked up a ceramic Magnet that read, “Love Never Fails.” Then I walked back home. 🙂

      • Melinda Albarado says:

        Thank you for the link to the beautiful Christmas music on youtube!
        Wishing you and your loved ones a BLESSED CHRISTMAS.
        In Christ, Melinda

    • Melinda Albarado says:

      Dear Sister, I am so sorry about what happened to you, but am so inspired by your forgiveness and love for this person that caused you such pain.
      Thank you for sharing with us and for being an inspiration to those who may have experienced this same thing in their lives.
      What a “living testimony” of God’s promise – “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”. Tears flow thinking of how you were able to forgive him with all your heart and even ask for prayer for him. God has given you the gift of forgiveness and compassion – even to the person that caused such great pain in your life!
      I will certainly pray for him and ask God to be loving and merciful to his hurting, sick spirit and body, and to reveal Himself in love. And pray that he be reunited with his son after so many years.
      I will also pray for you, Sister, that you will be blessed to “overflowing” for being such an awesome witness for our LORD JESUS!
      Thank you again for sharing your experience – which God is using to bless and encourage others who are struggling with the same pain.
      In Christ, Melinda
      In Christ, Melinda

    • Standing with you asking God to break any strongholds in his life and bring salvation and healing. And may God bless you for your forgiving and loving heart as you love him with the love of Christ.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  49. Hi Girls,

    I have been working on this study, not been commenting much.
    Much has been going on in my life, my praying sisters know. But I read the call to share your life verse and I wanted to share with you because off all what has been going on.
    My all time favorite verse is proverbs 3:5-9 5

    Trust in Yahweh with all your heart,
    And don’t lean on your own understanding.
    6 In all your ways acknowledge him,
    And he will direct your paths.
    7 Don’t be wise in your own eyes.
    Fear Yahweh, and depart from evil.
    8 It will be health to your body,
    And nourishment to your bones.
    9 Honor Yahweh with your substance,
    With the first fruits of all your increase:

    It has been my favorite verse for most of life but most of the time just because it was something to hold on to. But just now, even this week I have been seeing it unfold before my own eyes.

    God has been asking me to do something that with human understanding one should be nuts to do so. But He made it quite clear. So with fear and trembling I did… my call to action trough trial… so that.. and with it He and only He made one of the most unstraight paths in mine and someone elses life straigth! (thats another translation to direct your path).

    God has taken my life verse and applied it in my life and I can only stand and be amazed about His healing power, only He was able to work that miracle. Glory for His name.

    Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding…

    xxx wendelijn

    • Thank you, Wen. I can see how powerfully this verse has played out in your life!!! I stand amazed with you at the activity of our Good and Faithful God in your life.

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  50. Colleen G. says:

    Merry Christmas Wendy.
    Thank you for this amazing Bible Study. It has truly come at an amazing time, and has helped my heart & mind grow.
    My favorite verse would be from Lesson 3 – 2 Corinthians 12:9 – My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.
    Last month, and for the first time in my life I had a health scare.
    A visit to the ER, follow ups with doctors (Neuro), and tests had left me a litle uncertain. The timing of your Bible Study, more importantly Lesson 3 was a “God Thing”. Trials Come “so that”…
    And they do.
    The scriptures throughout Lesson 3 encouraged me and gave me strength in my weakness. I knew in my reading that the Lord was speaking to my heart. It was His strength that has gotten me through it all.
    I am very pleased to say that the results form the test have all been ok. And I Praise God for that. However, no matter what the doctor told me I knew I had God on my side. And Lesson 3 confirmed that over and over again – especially through my trials.
    Thank you Wendy for your words.
    May God Bless you – Colleen G.

    • Colleen, it means so much to hear how God used the perfect timing of this study to minister to you during this difficult time in your health. Thank you for sharing with us. I praise Him for leading me to write exactly what you needed during this time.

      blessings,

      Wendy

  51. Wendy,

    So sad to see the study end, so excited that there is much more “exciting” happenings in the works. You and your gift of God’s Word is such an inspiration and blessing to me. Thank you!

    “Let your roots grow down into Him, and let your lives be built on Him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:7
    Daily I am trying to plant God’s Word deep in my heart and soul as I grovel to find joy and peace and self-worth after several years of toxic existence in our “newly blended family” dynamics. Every day I derive hope and peace from so many wonderful sisters in Christ here and through Proverbs 31 ministries. There is comfort in knowing that God is here, God is acutely aware of our situation our trials so that……

    Another verse that resonates with me right now is….
    “Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold on to the hope that lies before us. This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls.”
    Hebrews 6: 18bc

    Through the trials as our emotion and feels flap in the raging wind, God has it all under control, if we put our hope in Him we are anchored and moored through the storm!

    Blessings to you Wendy, to you FIG’s, Peggy thank you again for reaching out to me several weeks ago.
    Merry, Merry Christmas to all!
    Karen G.
    Would love P31 gift card

    • Many blessings Karen G. It was indeed a pleasure to reply to you! I have continued to pray and you are most welcome! If you ever need prayer, please feel free to come to my regular blog or our team blog for prayer (you can be anonymous if you’d like) Lighthouse of Prayer .

      YOU ALL ARE WELCOME TO COME PRAY or LEAVE REQUESTS for yourself or others near and dear. It is my honor to go to the throne of God on anyone’s behalf. Love to you all and a very merry, blessed Christmas!
      Peggy

    • Karen, thank you for sharing one of the most powerful verse in Hebrews…this idea that God is our anchor. I love to picture this huge anchor up inside the clouds, and we are connected to it…nothing and no one can ever separate us from that anchor. He holds us tight and will never ever let us go!

      W

  52. Dear Wendy,
    I don’t want this study to end! Wow, your words of wisdom through these weeks have proven to be prophetic in my life. God tenderly lit my path through this study and allowed me to walk some exciting roads as well as some very difficult roads. I cannot thank you enough for being so obedient to your calling. Your efforts are creating a ripple effect because I’m taking what I’ve learned and I’m sharing it with others- the first and foremost is with my husband. God has encouraged us immensely through God’s truths uncovered in the “So That’s.”

    God laid it on my heart to study Exodus this past week and WOW did I find a lot of “So That’s” which I would have read over in the past without hesitation. But, I slowed down to see God’s promises and why some things are the way they are. How do you thank someone who has imparted THIS kind of wisdom?

    I love you. You are a treasure. May God open the floodgates of blessings on you and your family this Christmas and always. Love, me

    • Love you, back, sweet Noelle. And thank you for sharing what we learn here with others. It blesses me to know God takes the truths we learn here to encourage and take others deeper still with him. My desire is that we all become teachers as we learn together!!

      W

  53. And girlfriends… your wisdom and encouragement have been INCREDIBLE. Thank you for walking these roads with me and allowing me to join you on your journeys 🙂 xoxo

  54. Lynette Paulson says:

    Hi Wendy,
    Thank you so much for all the love and faithfulness you put into the bible study I have learned and enjoyed tremulously. My favorite verse is Hebrews 4:16 Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. I learned this verse through your Hebrews study but it came to life to me as I need the know I could go into the presence of my Creator with confidence and lay EVERYTHING down to him and He would get me through it. This verse changed my prayer life.
    Merry Christmas to all the ladies in my bible study. I pray you all know and accept the HOPE of the Season Jesus Christ.

  55. Katja Boehme says:

    Wendy, thank you for this study. I was not able to comment due to my work schedule, but I made sure I printed out all of the materials. Due to what happened in CT today, Phil 4:7 comes to mind: that the peace of God will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. We need this today.

    Blessings,

  56. Jeremiah 29:11-14 For I know well the plans I have in mind for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare, not for woe! plans to give you a future full of hope. When you call me, when you go to pray to me, I will listen to you. When you look for me, you will find me, Yes, when you seek me with all your heart, you will find me with you, says the Lord, and I will change your lot.

    At a time when my heart was heavy and I found your ministry, you quoted this scripture, and I immediately claimed it as my life verse, It gave me hope not only for my daughter who is stuggling to pass her Physical Therapy Boards, but in our spiritual life as well. You will never know what a blessing you have been to me, and my spiritual journey.
    Please remember my daughter Katy as she prepares to retake her boards on 1/27/13.

    • Thank you for sharing your verse and story. Katy is so blessed to have such a prayerful mother. Praying God will give her perfect recall of all she needs as she takes her test. May He bless her hard work and faithfulness!!

      Blessings,

      wendy

  57. Polly Schneider says:

    Thanks, Wendy for this study. It has been eye opening for me. I never realized how many “so that’s ” are in the Bible. I will be more aware of them in the future that’s for sure.
    One of my favorite verses in the Bible is Rom 12:1,2. I have made it my life’s verse. This verse reminds me that if I renew my mind I will be able to know God’s will for my life. I am still working ln that and I will be as long as I live.
    Ps 103 is another passage I love. It reminds me of all God has tone for me and I know He will continue to be with me the rest of my life. Praise the LORD!

    • Polly, Romans 12:1-2 is especially good in The Message. Have you read it? I am copying it below. It will bless you!

      So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

      Christmas Blessings,

      Wendy

  58. Melinda Albarado says:

    Dear Sisters – Many have commented that they are SAD this Study is coming to an end. But for many of us, it was the BEGINNING of a closer relationship with our LORD JESUS CHRIST – and a closer walk with Him – and a better understanding of the WORD OF GOD!
    To me, this Study will never end because what I have learned will live on in my mind, heart, and spirit forever!
    In fact, I intend to do this Bible Study again, on my own, and take as much time as needed for God’s word to “go deeper still” in my mind, heart, and spirit. I am thinking of even spending several weeks on each lesson, as each is so filled with GOD’S TRUTH!
    Thank you Wendy for your devotion to your Sisters in Christ – Please know that God is using you to bless so many women with your teachings.
    In Christ, Melinda

    • Well said Melinda! I couldn’t agree more!

      [Separate Note:I linked this one to my blog and I think if you comment on my blog and your email is attached, I am able to respond from my email. Anytime, sister in Christ. My previous comments to you were not linked so that’s why I’m sharing it and this on this one.] God bless you!

      • Melinda Albarado says:

        Dear Peggy – This will crack you up! What is a blog? I did “click” on your name (in blue) and that took me somewhere that was beautiful, but I didn’t know what to do to “comment” on your blog. Sorry – would you please tell me what to do? I know, you’re still laughing! In Christ, Melinda

        • Hi Melinda,
          If it said “aMazing Grace: Mazes, Messes, Miracles and was blue- that is my blog, like this is Wendy’s Blog or website. I have 3 different ones. Each day, week or whenever, I (and other people called bloggers write on what interests them, there’s quite a variety, but I mostly read other Christian women’s blogs… like a journal of their thoughts or what they’re doing, reading, bla, bla, bla made public now and forever, cuz once it’s published, it’s open to anyone). The problem with mine is that I do not usually allow comments except sometimes.

          Here’s how the online dictionary defines “blog” as a noun and a verb:
          Noun
          A Web site on which an individual or group of users record opinions, information, etc. on a regular basis.
          Verb
          Add new material to or regularly update a blog.

          To comment, you read or skim(scroll) to the bottom, like you did here to where it says comments. Click on it and find the square and write. Just like you do here.

          And I promise, I’m not laughing. Hope you come back and read this!
          Love ya’… Peggy

          • Melinda Albarado says:

            Dear Peggy – Thank you for teaching me what a “blog” is! I guess that really shows my age! I have been to your BEAUTIFUL BLOG and left a “comment”. WOW – I could spend days and days on it! And I do plan to do just that! Thanks again! In Christ, Melinda

        • My dear sister in Christ Melinda,

          YEAH!!!! I saw that you found my blog twice! and I tried to do what I thought I could do and write back to your email but it was not connected to your email so I just replied to your comments.

          This was a God connection! (when you went to my Book page review and ended up on a book for both of us, I wish I could send it to you, now that I’ve read it). Thank you so much for sharing such a double tragic story! I am deeply sorry for such a heavy loss! I don’t know if you’ve shared this here so please come back to my blog and read what I wrote (though I truly wanted to send you an email) and bless you for such great perseverance and learning a new online access! You’d be amazed! Your age does not show at all, only God’s love and grace! Thanks so much! I do hope to see more of you! Be happy to teach you about the blogging world. I don’t share my email publicly like Wendy has but if you write her, she has mine and I give her permission to give it to you!

          Many blessings,
          Peggy

          • Melinda Albarado says:

            Dear Peggy – WOW – OUR GOD IS SO AWESOME! I have been so blessed by Wendy’s Bible Study PLUS, through it, connecting with someone who knows the deep pit of sorrow that never ends.
            The book that you reviewed is one that I have been meaning to read – I have heard other people talk about it. I will check with my library and see if they have it.
            Thank you so much for your prayers and encouragement!
            Gotta tell you something that you won’t believe (or maybe you will). My husband and I are old and retired and take a nap almost every afternoon. This afternoon I couldn’t go to sleep, kept thinking about how I could “talk” to you through some other way besides the “blog”. An idea came to me that maybe I could email Wendy and ask her to give you my email address. With my mind at ease, I took a very long nap!
            And just now, when I read the last sentence of your post, I just smiled and said “GOD, YOU ARE SO AWESOME!”
            THANK YOU PEGGY for your prayers and encouragement!
            Will end for now – want to email Wendy!
            In Christ, Melinda

    • Amen!! Love your words that this is not an ending but a BEGINNING!!!

      Blessings,

      Wendy

  59. Melinda Albarado says:

    Dear Sisters – I have to confess that I “cheated” on the “define humility” question. It came from the “Nelson’s Illustrated Dictionary of the Bible” – and is so beautiful that I wanted to share it with you. HUMILITY is a freedom from arrogance that grows out of the recognition that all we have and are comes from God. Jesus is the supreme example of humility, and He is completely adequate and of infinite dignity and worth. Biblical humility is not a belittling of oneself, but an exalting or praising of others, especially God and Christ. A humble person, then, focuses more on God and others than on himself. Biblical humility is also a recognition that by ourselves we are inadequate, without dignity and worthless. Yet, because we are created in God’s image and because believers are in Christ, we have infinite worth and dignity. True humility does not produce pride but gratitude. Since God is both our Creator and Redeemer, our existence and righteousness depend on Him.

    • Melinda, so grateful for you and Peggy who have expanded and taught us more about humility. Thank you for taking the time to do research and share it with us!

      Blessings,

      wendy

  60. Melinda Albarado says:

    Dear Wendy – When I first began to search my heart for my “favorite verse” in the Bible, I thought it would be impossible to narrow it down to ONE VERSE.
    Then I remembered how I treasure the 23rd Psalm, which I memorized when I first became a Christian. I pray this Psalm every day, especially right before I go to sleep at night.

    Oftentimes when trials and tribulations are overwhelming me, I will pray the first verse of this Psalm; “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want”.
    This verse is only 9 words, but what power, encouragement and comfort are contained in this short verse! To me, it really says it all “in a nutshell”.

    “The LORD is my shepherd” means to me that THE LORD, THE CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE, ALMIGHTY GOD, is my SHEPHERD – He loves me, cares for me, provides for me, protects me and guides me. And if THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD, then I, like a sheep , will follow HIM in complete confidence that HE will take care of me, and be completely dependent on HIM for all my needs.

    “I shall not want” means to me that if THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD, I already possess everything I need in this life and LACK FOR NOTHING!
    Quoting from the “Matthew Henry Study Bible”: “More is implied than is expressed; not only “I shall not want”, but, “I shall be supplied with whatever I need and if I have not everything I desire, I may conclude it is either not fit for me or not good for me, or I shall have it in due time”.

    And let us not forget that HE is OUR GOOD SHEPHERD!
    In Christ, Melinda

  61. I finally finished my homework and have appreciated the lesson on humility. Andrew Murray has a wonderful book on this very topic…one that really opened my eyes up and God used to help me understand what humility is and what it is not. I was grateful this segment of the lesson took me back to truths I’ve learned but needed to revisit. For years I think I viewed my insecurity as humility, but being humble does not mean being quiet, timid or being fearful of what others think. I also struggled with embracing confidence as I thought that was not being humble but thankfully God’s beginning to open my eyes and helping me understand my confidence is in Him. Susie Larson writes about being humbly dependent with holy confidence…believe I need to pray for that to be true in my life daily. Because sometimes I still find it difficult to balance the two…

    Yesterday my little Joy was Mary in the Sunday school program and I was reminded of her humility – what a picture for all of us! He is mindful of our humble spirit so that our soul glorifies Him and our spirit may rejoice. Pray we all walk in humility as we enjoy Christmas and celebrate the One who is a picture of humility!!

    Thanks to all of you for sharing…it’s been a wonderful conversation!

  62. A Blessed and Merry Christmas to YOU ALL!!!

    I have a YouTube Channel with far too many playlists but I have included 8 JUST for Christmas at the end of my Featured Playlists. I even have a Spanish list. Here is my channel and you can choose any to listen!

    http://www.youtube.com/user/mazmagi54?feature=mhee

    Just a small gift to all of you! I know that you probably have so much Christmas music around you but I needed to have some in English and I wanted some JOY so I’m doing Christmas Caroling on my blog from now until Christmas. I loved doing this last year so it’s now an annual event. Come and join!

    Wishing you ALL Christ’s PRESENCE more fully SO THAT we can LIVE for Jesus every day according to all His Truths from His Word and because of Wendy’s love, time, devotion, teaching, etc. we have a CALL to ACTION! Thanks Wendy once again… until tomorrow! Hasta mañana!

    Vaya con Dios
    Peggy

  63. I know I haven’t been faithful to comment much but I have been faithful in doing the homework and really digging into the word of God. This study has been a real blessing. 🙂

    As for my favorite verses, just for the sake of conversation, not trying to get into the giveaway at this late time, would be

    Jeremiah 29:11 and Proverbs 3:5-6
    For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

    Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

    Both have helped me as I struggled with depression, in the past.

  64. When I was reading through the Bible this past year, I found a verse in Psalms that went along well with a song that I have often sung in church. This has become my new favorite verse.

    “I desire to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart.”
    ~Psalm 40:8

    This is the one thing I desire and I am ever so thankful for God’s guidance through prayer and His word to accomplish whatever His will is for my life.

    As for a time that I felt called to give. It was probably about 5 years ago when my husband and I were out doing our Christmas shopping. We were in Starbucks and a gentleman had come in who had been ringing the Salvation Army bell when we entered the mall. He had come in for a “free” cup of coffee, which I suppose was a kindness that Starbucks was showing to those who ring the bell. This particular gentleman must have drank his limit of “free” coffee this particular day and was told “this is the last one”. I always wonder WHY does God allow me, softy that I am, to see these things. My husband and I had our coffee and went about our business, but I had this terrible nagging in my heart and could not get this man’s face out of my mind. That is when I walked into Starbucks and bought a $10 gift card and went in search of this man. When I found him he was in the library (yes, this mall had a library) and was just getting warmed up. When I gave him the card I said “Merry Christmas sir. Jesus loves you” and I left the rest to the one who had called me to do this.. I will never know whether that small gift made an eternal change in that man’s life or not, but I do know that my desire was to do God’s will that day and I know that He can take that small gift and multiply it to further His kingdom. . . one soul at a time!

    • What a lovely story!! I just love how you LISTENED to the Lord and OBEYED. Thank you for sharing this today. May each of use keep our ears, eyes and hearts open for ways to serve others this season and always.

      W

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