{Rooted} “Greater” Study – Week 7: Wasted Faith

Hello Rooted Ladies,

I hope everyone is well and feeling ready for Easter. “Greater” continues to challenge us as we move into Week 7. My co-leader, Karina Allen, has written this week’s post.

Chapter 7- Wasted Faith

This chapter hit home with me and hard. I appreciate Furtick’s phrasing of ‘wasted faith’. It truly felt like what I have felt in every time that I have experienced a setback or suffering.

I love this quote!  “[O]ur questions and doubts can actually serve as some of God’s greatest tools to strengthen our stakes and increase our faith.” Thank God!!!!!!!!! This makes me want to do a Holy Ghost dance!!!!!!!!! This means that whether or not our situations get better, our faith can get better. It is our choice though, to let God change our perspectives when we are let down or going through a trial.

The Lord gave me this a few months ago. Now, whenever I suffer or have some type of disappointment, I try to intentionally remember these 4 truths:

1. God is good and does good

2. His ways are higher

3. The joy of the Lord is my Strength

4. He loves me deeply

I pray that all of you will cling to these and never feel as though your faith is wasted. Our God is a God of purpose!!!!!!!

  1.  In your pursuit of greater (now) or sometime in the past, how have you encountered setbacks, tragedy, or even the death of hopes and dreams?
  2. What were you feelings when this happened? How did you react?
  3. Did you sense the presence of God grieving alongside of you? If so, can you describe this presence and what it meant to you.
  4. What kinds of faith struggles and questions do you have when things go terribly wrong in the midst of pursuing what you think God wants you to do?
  5. If you have ever felt that your faith was wasted, tell us about that.

Love in Christ,

Karina (& Hope)

{Rooted} “Greater” Study – Week 6: A Little Oil

White Roses

Hello Rooted Ladies,

I hope you are enjoying this “Greater” study as much as the rest of us. I can’t even believe that we are already in Week 6. So, let’s dive in!

This chapter had me thinking about mission and what is my life purpose. Has this book made you ponder yours? And I loved the fact that the husband of Lysa TerKeurst‘s (who is a powerhouse (!) woman minister) is flipping chicken but really serving God! And this chapter really made me realize that your mission could be part of doing what you’re currently doing but only better  – greater. Or maybe, you and I may not understand how what we are working on at the moment is coming together for the greater good – for God’s bigger purpose.

A Little Oil

Furtick tells us to stop waiting for what you want, and start working what you’ve got. Your greatest limitation is God’s greatest opportunity.

1. Furtick says the greater life doesn’t always mean making heroic sacrifices or doing something that impresses others. He says it might mean setting out for mission fields or it might mean staying right where we are. Whatever God calls us to is greater for us. What’s your reaction to this way of looking at it?

2. Have you been wasting time thinking that if you only had _______, you could serve God better? If so, what’s the _______ you’ve been dwelling on?

3. What do you think it will take for you to give up that kind of fruitless thinking?

4. What is your “widow’s oil”? In other words, what are some things you have (gifts, skills, relationships, knowledge, whatever) that God can use in a greater way?

5. How can you put these things to work now for God’s greater purposes?

We’d love to hear how God is moving in your lives,

Hope (& Karina)

{Rooted} “Greater” Study – Week 5: Digging Ditches

Hello Rooted Ladies,

We are running, no we are “springing forward” into Week 5! I hope everyone has adjusted to the time change and that reading “Greater”  is bringing joy, courage, and closeness with God to your lives. This week, my co-leader Karina Allen, gratiously agreed to write this post. Woo hoo! She’s the woman!

Digging Ditches

Okay, so I definitely teared up during this whole chapter! This was a good one! If we took an honest look at our lives, we would see how true this chapter is in our lives. We don’t think big enough and we don’t start small enough. Because of that, we settle for less than, for just enough.

Lysa’s story was SO inspiring! I just love how she was sensitive with God’s Spirit to hear Him and then step out in faith and obey even though she didn’t know what lay on the other side of her obedience. Opposition, feelings of inadequacy or insignificance and frustration are often mixed in with the preparation needed for us to step into the greater that He has for us. Lysa didn’t let that stop her. She pressed in. She worked. She took small steps. Then, there was a big reward. That reward strengthened her faith and brought glory to God!

My biggest takeaway from this chapter was Furtick’s quote that said, “Show me your faith, and then I’ll show you my faithfulness.”

The Bible is filled with if /then statements. He doesn’t need our help to accomplish “greater” in our lives but He wants us to be a part of what He is doing. I pray that we would be willing to step out, trust and do a little work.

1. Which has been a bigger problem in preventing you from experiencing a greater life — not thinking big enough or not starting small enough?

2. What small steps and practical preparations is God asking you to make for the greater life He wants you to live? (Actions, prayers, words, even thoughts)

3. What do your actions or lack thereof in smarting small say about your faith in God?

4. The ditches are to make room for the rain God will send. What kind of new blessing do you think God wants you to make room for in your life?

Love in Christ,

Karina (& Hope)

Burning Match

{Rooted} “Greater” Study – Week 4: Burn the Plows

Burning Match

Hello Rooted Ladies!

Welcome to our fourth week of reading and discussing “Greater” by Steven Furtick. Weeks 1 through 3 have flown by. This week, I have a guest post by my co-leader, Karina Allen!

Burn The Plows

This is a hard chapter for anyone to get through! It is at times unbelievable that God would want us to burn our plows, to get rid those things that tie us to our old lives. We really are a sentimental people. We like to hang onto things in our lives, whether good or bad.  I did not have this super destructive life before Christ, so for me, those plows would be ‘good’ things that simply are not God’s best and not apart of the ‘greater’ things that He has for me. I think that can be even harder.

It all comes down to surrender. Are we willing to surrender the good, the bad and even the average to His greater purpose?

I loved when Pastor Furtick wrote,”God does not necessarily tell you how He will do it, only that He will do it.” And “Just because God doesn’t show you the details doesn’t mean He doesn’t know them.” It is definitely easier said than done. But the reward of that type of surrender is SO worth it! He will, indeed, bestow a double portion.

Resolve in your heart to be obedient to whatever God is calling you lay down. Resolve to step into the greater life that He is calling you to. Count the cost and decide that He is worth it!

1. What plow is God calling you to burn?

2. What are your fears about burning your plows? What does it make you wonder about the future?

3. What do you see as the plus side of going on a trust journey with God, learning just enough today to take a faith step toward where He wants you to be tomorrow?

4. What might you lose if you don’t burn your plows? What might you gain if you do?

Let’s ponder these questions this week as we continue our study of Greater.

And click here to watch author & pastor Steven Furtick’s sermon on Burn the Plows.

Love in Christ,

Karina (& Hope)