We have been learning about marriage (Praise the Lord), living and giving, and other topics such as brokenness and grace. I am learning so much! Here are a few things that I felt powerful to me and convicted me.
"Brokennes is not an emotion. Brokenness is a humble and obedient response to the conviction of God's Spirit. When we are broke, the very life of god flows from us and affects those around us."
I know that if I was not "broken" I wouldn't need fixin'...I know that if I was not broken, I would not be able to open my heart with you on this blog and be transparent with the things that need fixin. "God wants to meet us and have mercy on us, but we need to voluntarily fall on the rock and acknoweldge that we need Him! This is first evidenced in our lives through openness" (James 5:16). It is through Him, that I am able to lay down my pride and throw it all down on paper for the world to see. I screw up and you like to read about it! :) And that's okay, I want you to read about it...it helps me be accountable and maybe someone can learn from my dumb mistakes!
On the topic of grace we discussed what it means to be obedient:
"Doing Exactly what God says...When He says to do it...With a right heart attitude. Not doing it part of the way, or before he says...or kicking my feet...and with a bad attitude. The leader gave some perfect examples of these and I know that I have personally fallen under the category of each of these.
I think the thing that convicted me the most was the part of the session that I had to miss. Due to a power outage and screaming kids in the nursery (because there were no lights), we had to jet out early. But God made sure that I received a copy of "The Heart God Revives" book mark and notes from the session. I will share it below. Read through them each slowly...I know that I have been all the characteristics in the left column at one point in my life and even currently struggle some of these. With God's help I am striving to be all the characteristics in the right column. This was so eye opening...I had no idea!!
The Heart God Revives
Nancy Leigh DeMoss contrasts characteristics of proud, unbroken people who are resistant to the call of God on their lives with the qualities of broken, humble people who have experienced God's revival. Read each item on the list as you ask God to reveal which characteristics of a proud spirit He finds in your life. Confess these to Him, then ask Him to restore the corresponding quality of a broken, humble spirit in you.
"The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise" Psalm 51:17
*I had this all typed out in columns and it looked perfect as a draft, but then when I published it, the columns were all off. The blog doesn't allow you to copy from word, make column, or even use "tab"...so I resorted to just scanning my copy of the book mark. Click on the picture to see the print larger or go here to see the pdf*
Wow...I know that a lot of you are sitting there agreeing that I have lived a lot of my life on the left side...that is true, but maybe you should re-read it! :) (See points 1-3 on left side). I know I sort of set myself up when writing about my failures on a public blog, but please don't be too hard on me. I've made mistakes and am trying to become all God wants to me. Not to mention that God is the ultimate judge and I don't think he needs help :) Of course I am open to to recieving criticism with a humble open spirit (see #18 on right side)! There were some on here that just broke my heart...how long I have lived life that way! And others I felt relieved that I was doing at least something right! Again, we will all continue becoming and it's sources like this one that keep us in check. I know I sure need it!
Some of you may have read my facebook status this morning asking how I could give grace to my child who was refusing to sleep longer this morning (when he really needs it). Even though I cried out to God, "please put him back to sleep, we have such a long day". He had a different plan for my day. He knew if he got up early that I could put him down for a nap this morning. He's been alseep since 9am (it's now 10:46) and that has allowed me to share on the blog! It will also refresh him for a few hours at church while I attend the Ladies lunch...otherwise he would have been a mess for those poor workers. Thank you God for your BETTER plan for my day! You really do know what you are doing and I am sorry I question you and try to do things my way...which FAIL me everytime. Only in YOU can I succeed...extend grace, be broken...be REVIVED! Amen to that!