90 Days Update

It’s about time I updated again on reading the Bible in 90 days.  In my last update, I mentioned that I was a little bit ahead.  I am glad that I did that or I would definitely be behind this week.  Life has a way of throwing curve balls at you and I have had a lot of days this week that didn’t go as planned.  While I was able to fit some reading in, it wasn’t a whole daily portion according to the schedule.

I have heard people say that reading the Bible in this way reads like a novel.  I understand why they would say that.  I am seeing the connection to so many things in the Bible that I haven’t even come to in my reading yet.  For example, as I read about King Uzziah in 2 Chronicles, the phrase, “In the year that King Uzziah died….” from Isaiah 6 came to my mind.  It gave me a whole new perspective on that chapter.  I know that I will never read it the same again.

Reading through Esther as a whole was so exciting, even though I already knew the outcome.  This is so easy to do since it is only 10 chapters.  And today I start with the book of Job.  I have been studying and teaching through this, but I am looking forward to reading it straight through.  I know it will help me as I prepare for my next lesson.

I am still a few days ahead which is an encouragement.  I know someone who is trying to catch up and I am thankful that is not me.  I think I would give up.  Maybe not…at this point, by the grace of God, I have read too far to quit.  If you would like to join me, it is not too late.  A lady in our church started 2 weeks ago.  Grab a schedule here, and start counting your 90 days from today.  Be sure to leave a comment below so I can pray for you and we can encourage one another.

Worth the Read

IMG_2544When the Straight & Narrow Isn’t-“God deals in dimensions we know nothing about. And I believe he will sometimes lead us along paths that look wrong, that look out of alignment, that, get this, require faith.  If God leads you “off target” or out of alignment, will you follow Him?”

Scripture Memory as a Way of Life“Even if it takes you one verse, and it takes you a whole year to memorize it, that’s one more verse than you had last year—and you have no clue how God will use it.”

Two Methods of Bible Study, what it means to study the Bible by plow & by trowel-“As you agonize over a passage of Scripture and pray for God to give you understanding, all of it will come together. The “aha” moment will come. And I have to confess it is rather addictive. You will never forget the truth you have labored hard to understand! You will love the truth and you will feel it deeply, and you will want more of it! You will glow with the glory God has shown you.”

Humble Roots Book Review-I am almost finished reading this book and it is a good one!  I am not a book reviewer.  I knew the author when she was a child.  Her mother was my Sunday School teacher way back in the day.  Tim Challies has written a great review here.  I hope you will check it out.  “Humble Roots is well-written. Anderson is a skilled writer and her book is a joy to read. It is a great length in an era in which far too many books are just a little too long and it is beautifully integrated with her own life and experiences. This gives it an enjoyable authenticity and a ‘rootsy’ feel. Each chapter is structured around something she has experienced in the natural world and this serves as a helpful and interesting ‘hook’ to hold the book together.”

The Bible in 90 Days

Reading the Bible in 90 days?  Is this something you have done?  I know some have and I have toyed with the idea, but I always stop short of committing.  There are many reasons for this.  What if I get sick and I can’t finish in 90 days?  What if I am so busy, that I just can’t take the time for a few days and I get behind?  What if I fail?  What if…??? The ‘what ifs’ in life can drive you crazy!  Can you really fail at reading the Bible, even if you don’t finish in 90 days?

This year, my husband is offering different reading plans to our church family for reading the Bible.  The 90 day plan is one of them.  I keep trying to put it out of my mind, but I’m thinking the Lord keeps popping it back in.  My husband said that you can do it any 90 days, but I know that after April 1st, my life will be extremely busy over the summer and into the fall.  I think now is the time.

I hesitated to post this, because I didn’t want to attract attention to myself.  I am posting as a form of commitment and accountability.  I hope to post my progress or something I am learning as I go through this journey.  Have you ever read the Bible in 90 days?  Are you starting now?  If so, please share in the comments below and let’s encourage one another.  You can click on the photo below for a schedule.  Will you join me?

90days

Culture Shock and the Fruits of the Spirit

Dealing with cultural issues…If you are living in a country that is not your own, you will deal with these from time to time.  These issues can be very irritating. I describe them as pebbles in your shoe: small, but terribly annoying, even painful.

Let me give you a little background information. This is our second term in this country. We spent 3 years in another city, 3 years stateside and we are finishing our 4th year in this city. There are some things that contribute to the irritations that I face. One is my age. No matter how willing I am, I find that change becomes more difficult the older that I become. A second factor is that I am the “new kid on the block.” My husband’s parents and brother’s family are nearby. My hubby is a missionary kid from this country. It is his home. My husband’s parents have been here over 35 years. His brother’s family has been here over 20 years. They are all very comfortable here, but I am in the adjustment period. I struggle with this very difficult language. I can sit in a meeting for 2 hours and understand very little. Each city in this country is different. Each has some unique twists in the culture and even has its own slang language. I’m not saying this to make you feel sorry for me, just to help you know where I am coming from.

Last Tuesday, we had the ladies Bible study. My hubby teaches it. I was quite clueless for most of it, so had my own little study. The Lord has ministered to my culture shocked soul in the past from the fruits of the Spirit. That day, He did it again. I have a study Bible that I love. The notes are thorough and often instruct me. Such was the case that day.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”~Galatians 5:2-23

Joy-“…the sense of well being experienced by one who knows all is well between himself and the Lord (I Pet. 1:8). Joy is not the result of favorable circumstances, and even occurs when those circumstances are the most painful and severe (John 16:20-22). Joy is a gift from God, and as such, believers are not to manufacture it but to delight in the blessing they already possess (Rom. 14:17; Phil. 4:4).”

Peace-“The inner calm that results from confidence in one’s saving relationship with Christ. The verb form denotes binding together and is reflected in the expression ‘having it all together.’ Like joy, peace is not related to one’s circumstances.”

Longsuffering-“…the willingness to accept irritating or painful situations (Eph. 4:2; Col. 3:12; I Tim. 1:15-16).”

Gentleness(meekness)-“It is a humble and gentle attitude that is patiently submissive in every offense, while having no desire for revenge or retribution.” Three necessary attitudes are mentioned: submission to the will of God (Col. 3:12), teachability (James 1:21), and consideration of others (Eph. 4:2).

These fruits are something we acquire as we grow in our knowledge of God (2 Pet. 1:2). I am so thankful that I don’t have to conjure up these fruits. All I have to do is continue in God’s Word and He will give me these fruits.

I will close with something that a friend wrote in a farewell card to me over 10 years ago.

“From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”
~Psalm 61:2

“He who communes with God is always at home.” ~C.H. Spurgeon

~Notes are taken from the MacArthur Study Bible

~Repost

Let the Memorization Begin

Memorizing-Matthew-6This is the week to begin Matthew 6 if you are memorizing with Do Not Depart.  If you want to join in, you can sign up here.  You can get some tools to help you with this chapter here.  I loved this link about journaling.  I think the ideas here will be very helpful with memory retention.  If you are interested in a KJV journal page, you can find one here.   If you decide to join in, let me know in the comments.  I’d love to keep in touch with you through the process.

Worth the Read as the New Year Approaches

I’ve read some worthy articles online that have me thinking about goals for 2016.  Thought I would share.

The Renewing of the Mind Project*

Writing Out Scripture Can Be Good for the Soul

Sweet Blessings posts Scripture Writing Plans

7 Benefits of Systematic Long-term Scripture Memory

Pray About Memorizing Scripture in 2016

Introducing the Book of Job**

*I highly recommend this book.  It’s free right now for kindle.  I will be talking more about it in the year to come.

**I don’t buy the journal, but the other tools are helpful with daily Bible reading.  I like using the SOAK method.

The SOAK Bible Study Method

S – The S stands for Scripture

O – The O stands for Observation

A – The A stands for Application

K – The K stands for Kneeling in Prayer