Week Eight — Comforted to Comfort Others

There's hope now and there's hope later.

Even when you find yourself neck deep in hard and trying times, there is hope. There is hope now because our God is a comforter and an ever-present help in time of need. There is hope later because when we have ourselves been comforted, we in turn become those who can comfort others. 

As we wrap up our study, here are our final discussion starters:

What is the most important thing that you have learned that you will both use and remember?

What worry have you decided to throw down once and for all?

I want to remind you that you can encourage and comfort others in this class by continuing to discuss and interact on the blog even when you have finished your study! My prayer is that you'll finish strong and encourage others to do the same!

September 22 will be here before we know it! Here's the link to sign up for the 1 Corinthians 13 study, Loving Like Jesus in a World that Hurts and Hates. 

Finally, if this study has ministered to you, I hope you'll join us in financially supporting the work of Precept Ministries International as we work together to help men, women, and children around the world learn to discover truth for themselves!

With much love,

pam :) 

 

 

Week Seven — God's Strategies for Worry-Free Living

It struck me this week that worry is akin to spiritual vertigo.

When I'm caught in the throes of worry, everything in my life seems to spin and the only thing that can stabilize my thinking is God's truth! Although it's a simple fix, I'd be lying if I said it was an easy one . . . but submission to God's Word and obedience is always worth it!

This week, we'd love for you to take some time to specifically testify to God's goodness . . . 

How has God met your needs when you least expected it?

What do you have to be thankful for today?

What are you learning in your study that you'd like to share with others?

We are praying that you will finish strong and that as you finish, you'll go back to the previous posts and encourage others who are running at a different pace!

Love,

pam 

 

Week Six — Presumption and the Path to Worry

It’s sweet to spend time with friends!

This week I’ve been in Chattanooga serving as a teacher for the Equip Boot Camp for teens at Precept Ministries International. Since Jan lives in the area, we had the opportunity to catch up with each other in person and to cut this week’s video together! 

I’m still on duty here at Boot Camp and the campers are going to be ready to roll again soon, so I’m going to get right to the discussion questions and the links we promised. 

Here are the discussion questions . . . 

Where has God-confidence versus self-confidence made a difference in your life? Where have you seen that work?

When is a time that you’ve acted in self-confidence alone and how did that work for you?

What passage of Scripture has God shown you that will keep you from self-confidence and focused on God-confidence?

What is the biggest way that God is changing how you think and act based on the truths that you’ve learned in this study?

Here are the links . . . 

The Savvy Conference — October 15 — Wheaton, IL

jansilvious.com

Equip Boot Camp Blog

Equip Boot Camp Info Page

Jan and I are hoping that you'll be joining us on the blog this week AND at the Savvy Conference this fall!

Love,

pam :) 

Week Five — But What About the Enemy?

This has been a strange week.

I'm in Chattanooga and Jan is currently in Texas. Next week we'll both be here in Tennessee and plan, Lord willing, to cut the Week Six video together! 

Right now, though, let's discuss what we studied in our Week Five lesson:

1. Write down how you believe the enemy has been involved in your life.

2. What has God shown you about that? What Scripture has God given you to counter the enemy?

3. What would you like for God to do to make things more secure so that you know that you are secure in Him because you have an Advocate with the Father?

We're both looking forward to hearing your voice on the blog this week—don't be shy!

Many blessings,

pam :) 

Week Four — Sovereign Over Everything

When tragedy rocks a country, its people have a choice:

they can either believe that chaos reigns and hope is futile or believe that while we may not have an answer to the question “Why?”—nonetheless, God is still on the throne. Nothing happens that He is not aware of, nothing happens that He does not allow.

This week you have a choice. I have a choice. Because we have been diligently studying God’s Word, I believe our choice is easier. Truth has a way of making our thinking more clear even during difficult times, perhaps especially during difficult times. Can you imagine trying to process the multiple events in Orlando this past week without knowing that a sovereign and good God sits on heaven’s throne? I can’t.

Make no mistake, in the hearts and minds of many today fear rules unchecked. We don’t have to live in fear. We mourn with those who mourn, we weep with those who weep, and we offer hope to a broken and staggering world—hope of a God who loves His creation enough to redeem and save it! 

With this in mind, let’s consider the following discussion questions. 

•  If you had to share with someone how faithful God has been to you, could you do it in two sentences? Give it a try! 

As we have been doing, write down your greatest worry this week and a Scripture that counteracts and dispels it. Different worries can creep into our lives at different times and from different angles. This will help us continue to practice using Scriptural truth to dispel worry’s lies. 

Thanks so much for bearing with us through our blogging trials. In order to keep the train moving smoothly, we’ve decided along with Precept to keep all of the discussion on this website for the duration of our class.

I hope like voters in Chicago you’ll jump in and participate early and often! ;)

Blessings,

pam

Week Three — It Only Works if God is Sovereign

If I told you I understand God’s sovereignty, I’d be lying to you.

My finite mind can’t explain how God can be sovereign and I can still have choice and responsibility, but the Bible teaches both are true so I accept it. I submit to it. But understand it? No. 

That said, I also don’t understand how to put a man on the moon. Is it possible? Yes. Did it happen? Of course. Can I explain the science and engineering behind it? Not in a million years. 

Do you see the point? Just because a truth exceeds the ability of my finite mind to understand or explain doesn’t mean that it isn’t true. All it means is that I don’t have enough capacity to understand, but I can still accept the truth and order my life around it.

I’m actually glad that God exceeds my ability to fully understand Him. Really, if we could totally explain Him, what kind of a God would He be?! I’m done fighting against His sovereignty and am finally enjoying the peace of submission! How about you?

Let talk about it with these questions from Jan . . .  

List your greatest worry, then write out how sovereign God is over the situation.
If you have doubts about God’s sovereignty over a situation, write them down.
What specific Scripture gives you comfort in regard to the particular problem that you have?
Are you choosing to believe God’s sovereignty? If you are, tell us!

Next week we’ll continue to look at God’s sovereignty as we study the following Scriptures: Isaiah 44–45, 1 Samuel 23:1-14, Psalm 139, 2 Kings 20:1-6, John 11:32-45.

We’re looking forward to hearing from you!

Blessings,

pam

Week Two — Choking the Word


When worry starts acting up, something’s almost certainly going to get choked.

Either the worry will choke the Word or you can use the Word to choke your worry! Will you do it perfectly every time? Of course not. It’s a broken and fallen world and we’re broken and fallen people. And yet, as followers of Christ who serve a sovereign God, we have the Holy Spirit living in us who helps us to understand God’s Word and to do what God says! There is not only hope, we have help!!

So let's spend some time discussing the questions Jan has for us (and I've added in one bonus question, too!):

• What is the worry that God cannot handle? or put another way Can God handle this problem I have?
• Will God handle this?
• Where in the Word does it say “God will accomplish what concerns me”? 

Here's my bonus question:
• What has been your biggest takeaway? How is God changing the way that you’re thinking and acting?

Remember, once you’ve shared your answers, go ahead and comment on some other folks’ posts to encourage them! 

Next week as we’ll be looking further into how the sovereignty of God underpins our ability to live worry-free as we study the truths of Matthew 6:25-34; Genesis 1, 2:1-7; Colossians 1:15-17; Deuteronomy 32:39; Daniel 4:28-37; and Hebrews 2:14-15.

Looking forward to talking with you all soon!

Many blessings,

pam :) 

Week One — The Sin We Excuse


I called it everything but what it was.

Attention. Smarts. Diligence. I probably even thought it was wisdom. For years, I treasured my worries, feeding and watering them regularly as though staying abreast of every possible threat in every imaginable scenario, would give me the power to avert tragedy and come out on top. What I thought was wisdom was worry; what I thought was smart living was blatant disobedience. We can talk ourselves into almost anything if we try hard enough, and I was masterful at rationalizing my sin of worry as something not only smart, but admirable!

I was masterful at it until the Master opened my eyes to His truth in Matthew 6. Jesus’ words: “Do not be worried” were not a passing suggestion. They were and are a command. My worry—regardless of the name I assigned it—was disobedience. I’m still amazed at how blind I was to this for so long, but am so grateful for God’s patience and healing!

• So what about you? What is the biggest fear or worry that you are carrying? As Jan said, go ahead and try to write it (or them!) down.

• Then, share with us what Scripture verse has God given you that has helped you with your worries.

Once you’ve shared your answers, go ahead and comment on something another person has shared to encourage them, okay? It’s a great way to help us get to know each other and to learn from one another as we study the Word together!

Next week we’ll be looking at how worry can choke the Word, so enjoy your time in Matthew 13:1-23, Mark 4:1-20, Luke 8:4-15, and Romans 5:1-11. 

Looking forward to hearing from you on the blog . . . so don’t be shy! And whatever you do, don't worry about what other people are going to think! ;) We're all in this together! 

Many blessings,

pam :)