{Rooted} “Restless” Study – Chapters 12, 13, & 14: Threads of Gifts, Suffering & Places

Hello Rooted Ladies,

Happy Ash Wednesday! It is fitting that we are discussing “Restless” on the first day of Lent!

I hope you all are enjoying this study as much as I am. I am finding that the questions Allen gives us for our journal is really making me engage with the material in a whole new way. The questions are helping me go deeper and become closer to God.  This week we are discussing Chapters 12, 13, and 14. Can you believe we are halfway through? Let’s jump in. Continue reading

{Rooted} “Greater” Study – Week 8: Trust Fund Baby

Hello Rooted Ladies,

I hope you all had a fantastic Easter holiday. We have now entered Week 8 (wow!) of our “Greater” study. Time is flying by. I cannot believe it is now April.

Chapter 8: Trust Fund Baby

This chapter really had me pondering the idea of faith and prayers. I must admit that I’m not sure how I feel about the idea of God having a trust fund for us (and that our prayers are going in our trust fund for later use). And the idea that God is applying prayers for one thing to something else. I don’t know… It just seemed too mechanical and figured out. And maybe we don’t have the same thinking as God and know His plan.  I am not sure I can figure it out because I’m not God. I just finally resolved myself to think that God’s ways are higher than my ways and his thoughts are higher than his thoughts – remembering Isaiah 55:8-9). And I ultimately have to trust in God.

And in thinking about Easter and Jesus on the cross, Jesus had the ultimate faith in God.  He didn’t know everything that was going to happen but he trusted God completely – trust fund or no trust fund. We ultimately must have trust in God to see us through . . . what may look like unanswered prayers.

Furtick states that “in God’s economy, our greatest setbacks in life can be the greatest setups to seeing God’s glory in places we didn’t even know to look.”

1. Furtick puts forward the provocative idea that God has a trust fund for each of us in which He deposits our faith for payouts to come later in ways we do not anticipate. Thus, our faith is never really wasted. What is your reaction to this idea?

2. What effect does this concept of the trust fund have on your attitude toward the setbacks and tragedies – all the seemingly unanswered prayers – you’ve had along the way?

3. What have been some of the most memorable times you’ve experienced God’s blessing or goodness in ways you never expected?

4. Right now, what disappointing situation in your life seems dead and has you feeling defeated? How much trust do you have that Jesus can bring life out of it anyway, just as He brought the Sunammite woman’s son back to life?

5. Furtick says the key to having faith while we are waiting for God to act is to draw near to Him and focus on His faithfulness. How are you doing this? (It could be by worshiping God, memorizing Scripture, praying with a friend, praising God, or something else.)

We can’t wait to hear how God is moving in your life this week.

Many blessings,

Hope (& Karina)

tabbed bible

My Resurrection Sunday

tabbed bible

tabbed bible

For some reason, I’m up at the wee hours on Resurrection Sunday (“Easter”) putting tabs on the chapters in my relatively new bible. In all of my thirty something years on this earth, I’ve never bought a bible and I’ve definitely never tabbed one. In the past 30 days, I’ve bought two bibles, various devotionals, signed up for online bible study courses, re-committed myself to my friend’s women’s fellowship & bible study, reading The Purpose Driven Life, researched churches to attend, contacted a small group for fellowship, and committed to a daily fellowship (relationship-building) with God.

I’ve also, in no small way, re-committed my life to Jesus Christ via a video on Pastor Rick Warren’s site. And I also recommitted myself to Jesus Christ by saying the prayer in my Purpose Driven Life book.

I haven’t tried to get to know Jesus this much since I was a young teenager, maybe 12 years old or so, living in Aurora, Colorado. I can remember my best friend and I going to church together. Her family was so kind to include me in their spiritual lives – for these early actions I am so thankful. I remember going with my best friend, J, to see Billy Graham, and I was so happy to hear his words.

I think there is a thirst in my life and my heart for Jesus Christ. I think there is something deep but natural about this yearning that I have to learn more about Christ. I often hear his words and my heart feels completely overwhelmed – like overcome with love, acceptance, and peace. I often cry when I hear the Good Word. I know what it is.. what it feels like to be moved by the word. And in the past few weeks, I’ve been getting messages directly made for me.

I’m not sure what to make of all this emotion, passion, interest, zeal, and re-commitment. I just know that it feels good and it feels right. And I don’t want to stop…. in fact, quite the opposite. I want this feeling and fellowship with God to continue and deepen.

And I’m already beginning to see that my relationship with God is making me a better person. It’s preparing me for the wife that I want to be and the mother I want to become.

Dear Lord, please resurrect me. I love you and want to be close to you. It is so amazing to be loved by you Lord. For you, I must rise and become the soul you designed me to be. Oh Lord, please help me and guide me to grow in my faith and devotion to you. Dear Lord, I am grateful to be here on this early Easter morning communing with you and feeling your presence. Thank you Lord. Amen.

wishing you God’s hope, peace, and joy,

-Hope