Thursday, July 26, 2007

Bible Study, Lesson 4

(click on the picture to go to today's full lesson)

1. I am going to present to you a little acrostic to begin our discussion today. What is your latest NLIP? (Not Like I Planned?) Well, this time of Hubby's deployment is not at all going like I planned. I was sure I was going to fly through this with no struggles (well, very few, anyway) and things would be fine. I would not be like all the others.
2. How did you react to your NLIP? Are you still upset about it? Happy about it? Baffled by it? Explain. Well, I was disappointed with myself and confused at first, scared too, because this was NOT the way things were supposed to go. But I've come to realize that the sadness, loneliness and struggles are okay. This is something I need to experience. God never asked me to go through this time with no feelings, and as a matter of fact, I really believe that God has heightened my feelings. I never before realized that you could love and miss someone so much that it actually sometimes physically hurts! God wants me to feel this feelings, to be alive. My heart, truly, is being resuscitated!
3. Have you ever attempted to step into an area of ministry and found your desire rejected? Did this cause you to question God and yourself? Perhaps distrust what you perceived to be your calling? There have been times I really thought I had found something that I needed to do, a ministry I needed to step into or set up or what have you. Many times God uses my hubby to let me know that is not something that I should be doing. And yes, I question hubby and question God, sure that this must be something I need to do. It also makes me question whether I'm doing my own thing or God's things. I have learned to simply take things step by step.
4. Do you harbor any bitterness towards any individual or situation which you believe waylaid your best laid plans? I don't think that I do any more. Someone once told me that nothing you do or people you've known have been a waste...and I have discovered that God can use anything and anybody in my life, so when things don't work out as I thought, I know I can trust God.
5. Have you had a life experience or trial that left you with a shaken faith because it ended in an NLIP? Please share if you feel free. Hmmmm....don't know that it was my own experience or trial, but I vividly remember the day I cried out to God about my faith. In church that day the pastor had shared stories of the persecuted church. My heart was pricked because I really didn't think that I would stand up for God no matter what. That really bothered me. As we were driving home, I tried to talk to dh about it, but just couldn't work it out, so I started praying and ended up praying to God for that kind of faith. It was several years later that I realized that God had indeed answered that prayer and that I had been given the gift of faith.
6. Based on Moses' response of faith to his own rejection, how will you re-evaluate your own experiences or look at future ones differently if a NLIP presents itself? I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that God can and will use anything in my life for His glory! That helps me to walk through rejection and struggles and bumps in life!!
Wow! I am looking closer at Moses' life, and God clearly has a purpose for every moment of his life!! God's fingerprints are all over it. I think because we're looking back on a specific period, it's easy to see how God worked it all out, but in the midst of our own life, it can be hard to see the bigger picture sometimes. That is where trust is vital. Praising God that He will be glorified in and through me!!!!!

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