It is hard to believe we are already on the last week’s of assigned readings. This week the reading’s include Chapter 10 In Time, and the Benediction.
My General Thoughts about these readings:
I am guilty of being convinced about the lies of over activity and busyness. I have difficulty sleeping in, and can’t sit still through a T.V show. Thus I found Truth 1: I find God when I live in and enjoy the present to be an important reminder. A quote I particularly like from this section is “The word of God calls us to be still, to cease striving, and find strength and rest in Him.” (Pg.209)
These few pages are a perfect a summery of what Jerusha means by holding every thought captive. Some of my favourite quotes from the benediction include:
“As you drink from His “river of delights” (Psalm 36:8), you will find less and less satisfaction in drinking the paltry, unsatisfying dregs of sinful thoughts. Whn your mind becomes captivated, there will be less room for faulty thinking. This is the first image the Lord gave me of a captivated mind – a mind intoxicated by “first love.” ” (pg. 227)
“Now I picture Jesus as my mind’s captor, with all my thoughts in willing captivity to Him.” (Pg. 227)
With that, I would like to thank everyone for joining me on this journey as we read though Every Thought Captive and discussed some of our own feelings and struggles. I will keep all you girls in my prayers!
Many of you may have heard of heard of Joyce Meyer, and some of you may have read one of her many books, but I just wanted to share an article she wrote about how to prevent slipping into depression. The article can be found here.
In addition there are a variety of inspirational talks by Joyce Meyer on Youtube about Understanding and Overcoming depression. There is a part 1, part 2, and part 3.
It is the second last week of readings, and this week the chapter Overwhelmed discusses depression. Although I can’t say I have particularly struggled with prolonged depression, I can say the truths Jerusha brings up in this chapter are great reminders for everyone.
Some General Thoughts:
Although I know God loves me, sometimes it is hard to feel God loves me. Being someone who struggles with self worth I find Truth 1: God loves me. God values me. God accepts me to be an incredible reminder and comfort.
I love Jerusha’s suggestion to Remember (pg. 199). Whether it be about depression or other past struggles, I feel remembering is a great way to remove shame from the issue. If you try to forget and sweep it under the rug it makes the issue seem like something to be ashamed of.
There is one more resource regarding this week’s reading that I would like to share, and that is a talk given by Lesli Ludy on Set Apart Femininity. Leslie is the author of several books, of which I have read two of: Authentic Beauty, and Sacred Singleness. Both books are incredible and encourage the reader to fully rely on God to delight and fulfill the longings of your soul, rather than relying on a guy.
I encourage you to download Leslie’s talk on Set Apart Femininity here, and be encouraged.
If you aren’t in the mood for listening and would prefer to read, you should check out her website which even has an online magazine!
This weeks readings cover both Chapter 6: Accepted, and Chapter 7: On Fire. I wish I could say that I purposely scheduled the longest reading on a long weekend, but it just happened by coincidence. The reason I scheduled Chapter 6 and Chapter 7 together is because I found they had a lot in common.
I have definitely found my self incredibly lonely in the past, and have found it difficult to accept myself in those times. I loved when Jerusha wrote on page 112 “Through loneliness however, we come to realize that only god can fill the void in our hearts for perfect companionship and love. Jesus knows are tendency is to trust too completely in the friendship of other humans , and he allows us to feel loneliness as a means of drawing us to Him.”
Before reading this chapter I was deceived as to the meaning of fellowship. I find it really difficult to open up to people in my relationships, which is not how Jerusha describes the risk of sharing in fellowship.
As I mentioned above, I have difficulty in opening up in relationships, thus I find it hard to talk about the subject matter of this chapter in a blog post. That said, I loved Jerusha’s reminder of the truth that the pleasures I can find in God outmatch everything else. It is important not to find out security in the pleasures of others when “only he pleasure found in God never fail, never fade. His love – He alone – is better than life” (pg. 146).
For the comments section:
Do you find it difficult to open up in relationships. Is there any part of Chapter 6 or 7 that stand out to you?
I just wanted to share another Eric Ludy sermon I found as a fantastic message on forgiveness. It provides an incredible metaphor to the process of forgiveness and encourages one to use hurt to show God’s grace. You can go here to download the audio version and PDF or you can watch it below:
This week’s readings from chapter 5 “offended” are on forgiveness. A very fundamental aspect to Christianity, yet one of the hardest things to truly do. It’s easy to say one thing, and do the other, and I believe when it comes to forgiveness many of us are in that boat.
I’ve heard a lot of sermons and read a lot of books that deal with forgiveness, yet there were still plenty of great thoughts that Jerusha wrote about in Chapter 5 that I had never considered before.
First of all, I am guilty of believing Lie #3 “I Forgive Because I Have to”. Of course, that’s not exactly the way my mind says it, my mind tried to dress it up and make me believe I am forgiving because I am genuinely letting go.
On Page 98 Jerusha points out that forgiveness is not the same as inviting the person who hurt you back into your life the same way they were before. I have been in a situation where I feel I had genuinely let go of the hurt someone had caused me. Only to be hurt by them again not long later. I am not saying I didn’t forgive them again, what I am saying is that I realized I had to protect myself from being continually hurt by keeping my distance afterwords.
One of the suggestions Jerusha gives in the “What Can I Do?” section is Recognize that The Hurt May Come Back. This isn’t something I have heard before, and I found it very comforting to know that it is natural for the pain of past hurt to come back.
For the Comments Section:
What are your general thoughts on Chapter 5? Did anything stand out to you?
The main theme of Chapter 4 focuses on all the lies of seeking fulfillment in that “one more thing”. It really got me wondering what it looks like to take a step back from the constant moving forward to *that* next thing that is supposed to satisfy me (whether accomplishing a goal, getting recognition for something, or attaining a feeling). To me it looks like waiting:
The above reading is from Streams in the Desert for Graduates by L.B.Cowman, an excellent daily reading with tonnes of inspirational quotes.
For the Comments Section:
What does it look like to you to not strive after that “one more thing”?