Hey, friends! Time for Terkeurst Tuesdays again! This week we are discussing Chapters eight and nine of Lysa Terkeurst’s book: What Happens When Women Walk in Faith.
Chapter eight: Refusing To Get Bogged Down in Bitterness
Is that a million dollar title?
It’s easy to say, but letting go of anger and bitterness is not an easy task. Especially, it seems, when our anger is directed at God. Lysa uses the action-packed story of Joseph to beautifully illustrate a life that chooses to honor God in the midst of circumstances that many would respond in anger to.
On page 79, Lysa says, “Notice also that God didn’t immediately pluck him from the situation but rather honored him in the situation.”
I have prayed many times to be delivered from a situation, only to discover that God had different plans. When I look back on my life, I realize that it was the difficult and trying times that God used to build my faith, make me a stronger person, and draw me close to Him. If He had delivered me every time I asked, my character would sorely be lacking.
When I look at Joseph, I see how a pampered and spoiled young man became one of great faith and character.
Friends, God knows what He is doing. When will we ever learn to trust Him?
Perhaps the most moving element of the story of Joseph is the presence of numerous scriptures affirming the fact that God was with him throughout his troubles.
He never leaves us, Dear Ones.
Chapter nine: A Most Unlikely Path
This chapter is about obedience.
One page 90, Lysa says, “Make right choices to honor God, and your feelings will eventually catch up.”
This is sound advice. Sometimes we have to go against our own feelings, desires, fears, expectations…to follow in the path that we know God wants for us. When we make a right choice, we will never regret it.
This is something I have tried desperately to instill in my children. To make decisions based on what God wants, not what we want, is a way of living that takes discipline. There’s a great book that I used to read to the boys (and their schoolmates, much to their chagrin) called, Always Wear Clean Underwear and other things your parents have told you. This book takes a funny approach at teaching children that what people don’t see about you is just as important as what they do see. Why? Because when we make poor choices, even if know one else sees, not only does God see, but we carry that knowledge inside of us. It defines who we are.
Making the right choice is always the right choice.
But sometimes we don’t know what the right choice is, do we?
I’m in one of those situations right now. As Jeff and I consider leaving our old church, we have been wrought with insecurity and indecision. We have discovered the daily provision of God in this famine season. Each day He helps us make right choices. One day (I hope and pray) He will reveal His plan for us, but for right now, He requires we obey in faith.
On page 89, Lysa says, “The longer we walk with God, the more easily we hear His voice and trust His instructions.”
This is so true. But I have found that when I am in this famine place, it is much easier for me to attend to my needs than allow God to. This is something I have to be very deliberate about. When I am hurting, inevitably, I notice my intimate time with God suffers. I have to make a concerted effort to spend time with Him. Even if it means merely sitting before Him with nothing to say. Just being with Him has helped me through many a difficult time.
This path that He has laid out before each one of us may not be the one we would have chosen. It may indeed be “A Most Unlikely Path”. But He will never leave our side as we walk it.
I don’t know about you, Dear One, but I need to know this. I need to know that He plans my steps and will guide me when I mess up. Yes, I too, like Lysa, “wish I could hear God’s voice as loud as thunder so I would know for sure” that I am following His will.
But sometimes He whispers. Like manna from heaven, sometimes we are meant to move from day to day, trusting in Him to provide.
Lean on Him.
He is strong.