It’s the first week of Fall 2014. WOOHOO! What a great week, and what a great study this week as we finished up Chapters 4-6 in “The Best Yes” by Lysa TerKeurst. So where do I start on all I’ve learned this week.
First was our memory verse – “A wise woman called from the city, ‘Listen! Listen!’” 2 Samuel 20:16 NIV. I never really studied about this wise woman for whom we do not have a name, but we learned so much from her this week.
As I pondered over that verse and watched Lysa’s video and read the story in 2 Samuel, I thought about how the people listened and wondered am I wise enough that people really listen to me. I recounted the first time I ever got up at church on the podium and spoke after a retreat. I won’t ever forget that evening, and how after church a deacon came up to me and said he really listened to me talk because he knew my heart was in it, and I would be speaking wise words because I had never gotten up before the church to speak. Listen, Listen, can you hear me NOW! I believe they did that night.
I shared how 1 Corinthians 13 had touched my heart about love, and how I had learned to insert my name in it. I read aloud that chapter with my name. Still brings tears to my eyes. Listen, listen I could hear my God that night.
As we studied this week about wisdom and I began to look at verses, this one spoke to me and fits so well with what we are learning. I added my name in there and have been praying that verse over me today.
How do I gain this wisdom I’ve been studying about this week? How do I apply it every single day in every small or big task I am working on? Have you had those aha moments this week? I have to admit I have, and it seemed like every page I was turning to that something was jumping out at me, so I am going to attempt to pick out just some of my favorites. Here are some of the things I gleaned this week from our studies in the book and online at Proverbs31.Org. Listen, listen and I hope you can hear what’s on my heart now.
- “Wisdom makes decisions today, that will still be good tomorrow.” Lysa went on to say that “wisdom gathers at Bible study. Wisdom scatters at the bar. Wisdom gathers when you serve and invest in your local church. Wisdom scatters when you become disconnected from your church family. Wisdom gathers in conversations that are honoring. Wisdom scatters in conversations that are gossipy. Wisdom gathers when my mine is engaged with truth. Wisdom scatters when I watch hours of mindless TV-especially, ahem, the kind that leads me to fear that assassins are hiding in refrigerator boxes in my foyer.”
Wisdom makes decisions today, that will still be good tomorrow. Think about that and what she said about when wisdom is gathered and when it is scattered. I want to be a wise woman. I want to be one that gathers wisdom as I get more and more into the Word and spend more time with Him.
And then she went on to remind us of this:
- “That daily stuff – those responsibilities that seem more like distractions – those things we want to rush and just get through to get on with the better and bigger assignments of life – those things that are unnoticed places of service. They are the very experiences from which we unlock the riches of wisdom.”
So we were challenged this week to look at those mundane things, those ordinary things where we can learn in the midst of them to become wise. I thought of all those diaper changes, pipes leaking under the sink, the washer breaking, sleepless nights with babies or sleepless nights because of hormones or sleepless nights being called to the hospital with a parent very ill, carpools to school, taking care of elderly parents, things that did not get done at work because a customer called. What we think as mundane, I believe God is always there molding us, speaking to us when we learn to be the “one who sees the hand of God in everything.” “Whether we are facing everyday opportunities or epic obstacles, might we simply do just that. Look for God in it all.”
The messes of the everyday life. It’s hard. We come home from a hard’s day work and the house is dirty, the wash is piled high, the dishes need to be done, and then there is homework to help the kids with. That’s so not what we want. Don’t you want to be a mom with Godly wisdom? Don’t you want to be that wife a husband can’t wait to get home and hug? Do you feel imperfect? Lysa reminded us that all of the daily stuff, the mundane stuff, we need to embrace it. Listen, listen can you hear how important that mundane stuff is that you are about to do today – do it for Him – look for Him all day long.
Imperfect is a word Lysa talked about in one of the video sessions. Living out wisdom during the day at work, at home can be another story unless we see Him in all that is happening. We have to choose to apply the wisdom we are learning. We have to practice wisdom in those everyday decisions of life – how we react, how we respond, how we care, how we love, how we encourage.
- “”Whenever there is a conflict between what we feel we’re expected to do and what we feel we should do, it’s time to step back from the decision. And seek clarity from the only source free of the entanglements of misguided opinions and unrealistic expectations. God”
- This part so spoke to me that I just had to take a picture of the pages:
Listen, listen as He whispers to you.
Listen, listen – God’s WORD, God’s WAY, God’s WONDER is the path I need to go.
Can you see that everything Lysa is saying is reminding us that no matter what we are doing, that like that wise woman we are in the midst of a God mission? Can you see that loving and serving your husband, children or parents or our employers or our church are those moment by moment Godly assignments. Can you see God in the midst of that checker at the store, at that soliciter on the phone, at that angry driver behind you? God has us in these places, at this time in these assignments, and if we accept them as that rather than mundane, boring or of no importance, it is in these places that we gain wisdom.
In the midst of any chaos, our God is there. In the midst of the mundane, God is there.
One of my favorite quotes from this chapter was when Lysa shared 1 Corinthians 13. How could it not be. My husband reads this in every wedding he performs. She talked about this being “The Way Of Love”, and her quote “While a God-honoring approach requires the proper resources, a God-honoring attitude requires me to reflect God’s love.”
I talked about love above and 1 Corinthians 13. Go read that chapter and insert your name. When you do, it will shock you about how you are not loving. I would love to hear your comments of what you experience as you open your Bible and add your name. Go ahead.
And then these nuggets were shared:
- “When we slip at living OUT THE WORD OF GOD, we slip at living IN THE WILL OF GOD.”
If I am slipping it is because I am not in the Word. A day out of the Word is always different for me. I can really tell the difference and bet everyone else can to in our words, our actions, our thoughts, our deeds.
- “The Word of God addresses my APPROACH. The ways of God address my ATTITUDE. The wonder of God provides my ASSURANCE.” How is my approach, how is my attitude, how is my assurance when I am in the midst of decision making?
I really love how she broke down the 4 areas to make a decision: physically, financially, spiritually, and emotionally. Something we can all take to heart when we truly want to make wise decisions.
“Today’s choices become tomorrow’s circumstances.” I had to ponder on this one so it will penetrate – so I can come back to it. Do you feel today like you are wearing too many hats or that you have the weight of so many decisions, feeling like a ferris wheel turning and turning and turning, worn out, stretched thin, too many irons in that fire that you just can’t think? Listen, listen – today’s choices are going to make your tomorrows. Be wise. .”
“Our decisions point our lives in the direction we’re about to head.” That statement hit me. It didn’t when I read it last week not like it did this week. Just think every little decision with our kids, hubbies, friends, grandkids – every time we raise our voice, every time I used to get quiet when I was upset with my hubby, every time I grumble, every time I speak and how I speak, I don’t gossip but used to, every encouraging word, thought, deed. Oh MY I could go on and on as that sentence goes through my mind – every drink or pill someone chooses to abuse, every bite of unhealthy food I choose, every time I choose not to exercise, every time I don’t visit someone sick, every time I post on facebook negative or positive thoughts. We have choices/decisions every day. How are we showing or reflecting Jesus in every single thing and with every single life we touch each day?