Strong Women

Where I share what I'm learning from God's Word and how I'm growing in Biblical Womanhood

Quotable Wednesday-May 23, 2012 May 23, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — caperry5 @ 3:24 pm

I’ve been reading Rescuing Ambition by Dave Harvey. It’s  SO good. Here’s a few thoughts that have stuck with me this past week:

Sometimes God brings our dreams to life; sometimes he doesn’t. But how we respond to his work becomes an important intersection for change in our lives. As we cooperate with him, we discover that it’s not ultimately about nailing the promotion, or raising well-behaved kids, or winning the Daytona 500–as good as all those things may be. It’s about something much bigger; how I become like Christ while I pursue those dreams.

Do you understand your relationship with God that way? He doesn’t need us to get things done, but he delights to use us, so he must shape us for his service. That’s exactly what creates godly ambition–the activity of God in us and around us to ultimately work through us. (pg. 70)

This has stuck with me. It’s not about the WHAT that I do, but rather the WHO I am becoming. God will use me in His timing. I just need to daily be faithful.

How we live when ambitions are delayed significantly shapes who we become. God uses the wait to teach us to walk in a manner worthy of our calling.  (pg. 71)

What a great reminder. I feel like we’ve been in a waiting pattern for several years now watching our friends doing what we wanted to do but not being ready for it ourselves yet. Hard to explain. We’re willing and God hasn’t taken us there yet. I hope that through our waiting God is teaching us to walk in a manner worthy of our calling.

We find no peace in life until we’re conviced our path is his way and our place is his choice. That’s so important it’s worth repeating: your place is his choice. Fences and all. (pg. 79)

My place is HIS choice… even if I feel like I’m living inside of a small fenced in yard. That alone brings such comfort and is a great reminder!

If our understanding of doctrine creates passivity toward God’s empowering presence or cools the hot embers of our ambition, we’ve misunderstood God’s sovereignty. When we rightly understand God’s caring control over all things, that knowledge should ignite robust faith toward him and bold desire to act in our hearts. We see God more clearly so our ambition can reach further. (pg. 85)

I want my strong faith in God’s sovereignty to cause me to be very ambitions for His glory.

John Piper emphasizes that inherent in who God reveals himself to be is what God promises to do: “God is real. God is a rewarder.” A significant part of faith is the confidence that god responds to faith. (pg. 93).

God rewards faith. I pray my faith would get bigger.

Today ambitionless Larry is ambassador Larry. But to get there, he faithfully served where he was, trusted God with his amtion… and patiently waited.

Selfish ambition would insist, “I have a right to do this. I need it. This fulfills me.” Ambition rooted in God says, “I don’t need it; instead I’ll serve wherever and however I can. This glorifies God.” (Pg. 95)

This guy’s story was great. He has some unfilled longings and desires. But instead of selfishly seeking after them he was faithful where God put him. And God, in his kindness, let Larry enjoy some of those desires later on in life. This encourages me to keep pressing on faithfully where God has placed me in our circumstances and to  give everything I have to the tasks He’s put in front of me, whether or not other desires ever get fulfilled.

 

This has been a great read so far. I highly recommend it!

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Quotable Wednesday – May 16, 2012 May 16, 2012

Filed under: Quotable Wednesday,Uncategorized — caperry5 @ 4:33 pm
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I’m going to start a new little Strong Women Study tradition…. Wednesdays will be quote day! I’ll share things that have stuck out to me from my reading from the previous week. Enjoy!

From The Excellent Wife Day by Day by Karen Eiler (pg. 4):

If you’re going to receive reproof, correction and instruction from your husband, you must be humble. If your heart is proud and you think “more highly” of yourelf than you “ought to think” (Romans 12:3), you will resist reproof from your husband. Why should you receive correction if you’re already fairly perfect? [Emphasis mine]

 Does that make anyone else say ‘ouch!’?

From The Excellent Wife Day by Day by Karen Eiler (pg. 5):

In case you’re wondering if your husband is your neighbor, think about this: who is closer to you than your husband, your closest “neighbor”? In the parallel passage in Matthew 22 Jesus says, “the second [command] is like [the first]” (Matthew 22:39). Meaning, the command to love your husband is a corresponding command to loving God. You are to love your husband with your whole heart (emotionally and passionately), soul (the very core of who you are), mind (every thought), and strength (every action). You are commanded to be “all in.”

All in…. Love my husband with all my emotion and passion, at the very core of who I am, with every thought and every action. This is a big task to live up to straight from Matthew and cuts at the very core of my selfishness.

From Rescuing Ambition by Dave Harvey (pg. 67):

Before this section he had done a brief walking through of Ephesians (which we’ve been going through at church) and he got right to the beginning of chapter 4 (which is where we were last Sunday) and he makes this comment:

If you’re anything like me, when you think about your calling as a Christian, your thoughts probably go to What am I going to do for God? Jake feels called to serve the poor; Maggie’s called to nursing; Leroy’s called to the mission field; Juanita’s called to raise her children, sometimes even her husband. We often view activity and calling as synonymous.

This is a common misunderstanding of God’s calling by the way…..

But here’s a truth we don’t always think about: God’s glorious agenda for our amtiion, like his glorious gospel, begins not with what we achieve but with who we are.

Walking in a manner worthy of the calling to which we’ve been called means I have a new ambition. Instead of gunning for my own glory or comfort, I’m ambitions for a changed life.

This was the main thing the Lord was opening my eyes to during last weeks’ sermon….. not necessarily new information for me, but it hit me where I am right now. God is doing a magnificent work in me…. bigger than anything I can even imagine for myself. He is changing me into the image of Christ and doing a gospel work on me from the inside, at the very core of my being.

From Rachel Chan’s song Still Singing:

I’m gonna show the world the love that you gave this little girl before that I knew that I could even talk to you and that you’d always want me to…..

I don’t know what I’d do without you. I’m grateful to be with you and I never have to worry because tomorrow brings everything you’ve planned for me

Father in heaven your Son died for me and soon I’ll be free from any danger and Jesus my savior will light up my life eternally.

When darkness tries to hide me from you your Holy Spirit guides me to the truth that you are always with in front of me no matter what my eyes don’t see and so my soul is still singing

Father in heaven your Son died for me and soon I’ll be free from any danger and Jesus my savior will light up my life eternally

I love you, I love you, I love you….

I’m gonna show the world the love that you gave this little girl before that I knew that I could even talk to you and that you’d always want me to…..

Been loving this song lately and the theology it brings to my mind.

-God loved us before we were ever aware of it and his draws us to himself.

-Then there’s His hand in our days… ‘tomorrow brings everything you’ve planned for me.’

-And the love I can show back to my savior and to the world because of what he’s done for me.

Great reminder.

From The Excellent Wife Day by Day by Karen Eiler (pg. 9):

The truth is that, when it comes to their wives, guys have love and respect so inextricably linked in their minds, there is no real difference. If they separate the two concepts, they’ll almost always choose respect over love. Yes, it’s that important! Most men would rather be respected than loved by their wives. In fact, if your husband thinks you don’t respect him, he is going to feel you don’t love him…. I’m assuming you love your husband and, because you love him, you want to do him “good and not evil all the days of [your] life” (Proverbs 31:12). If that is the case, then you need to understand that the best thing you can do for him is to respect him. That is the how of love; loving your guy the way he wants to be loved means making sure he knows, beyond all doubt, that you respect him. [Emphasis mine]

We’ll talk about this more in another post. Respect is so important to men. I have observed this in my own marriage and found this to be very true.

Hope this will be enjoyable for you and maybe cause you to read some books/blogs you’ve not read before!

 

You are mine May 12, 2012

Filed under: Marriage,The Gospel — caperry5 @ 6:14 pm

My husband always has the perfect words for me. He’s really quite the romantic and has always gotten me to the core of my being with his words. It’s part of what made me fall in love with him back in 2003… I had gone on a date with a mutual friend. He was a nice guy, but much better as a friend (he still is a mutual friend!). However, our date had been pleasant and after the fact I was sitting in Cheddar’s next to my someday husband and he was asking me about it. He then proceeded to tell me how he had coached our mutual friend. He told him where to take me (a funky downtown restaurant), what to talk about, how to act, how to act after the date, etc. And the thing was…. he was spot on. It was in that instant that I realized that no one ever had, and no one probably ever would, get me quite like Chris Perry does. And I pretty much fell in love on the spot. It was within a few weeks that he realized that I had changed my mind about him and he asked me out and I’ll tell the rest of the story another day….

 

Fall 2010

Since then, he has written me letters, sweet notes on our mirror, texts, and just used his words to my face. Sometimes I feel silly, because I just can’t form such beautiful words back, not without a  lot of thought at least, but his words…. they lift me to the clouds and make me feel… well like a chosen, beautiful princess for lack of a better term. Last night was one of those nights. We’ve had a mutual struggle lately that has been very frustrating for both of us. And as kind as he is in trying to share the responsibility for the mess, in reality we both know that it’s mostly my fault. A few nights ago we watched I Bought a Zoo. What a lovely, sad story…. Afterwards we were lying in bed and started talking about when we fell in love with each other and how in love with each other we still are, but honestly the thought that kept running through my mind was ‘how could he still love me when I’ve created this mess?’ I think I cried myself to sleep on that thought, while he had no idea. I didn’t want to ruin his beautiful moment. Horrible, I know. It’s not all as bad as I make it seem, but sometimes it really feels that way. I can’t wait to be on the other side of this.

 

Then last night we got started talking about this situation and I was languishing in my guilt for it when all of a sudden he grabbed my face and said ‘You are mine.’ We joke sometimes about how he fell in love with me first and it took me awhile, but I finally came around. The truth is he picked me and pursued me. I think that’s the way it should work. He was persistent over the course of a few years and finally… I saw it. He loved me so deeply long before we were ever sitting there at Cheddar’s. It took me awhile to realize how deep his love was, but I saw a glimpse of it at Cheddar’s and I saw a much clearer picture of it last night, 9 years later. Even with our current situation he wanted me to know that he picked me, that I’m his girl, and he’s not ever regretted it. True love.

 

It’s often reminded me of the gospel. I’ve never done anything to deserve Christ’s love, yet he has chosen me to be his bride. Marred as I am by sin, he will make me more and more beautiful, more and more like himself, so that someday He can completely glorify me in his presence. Now my DH isn’t perfect… but in our marriage he represents Christ (Ephesians 5) and just as Christ chose me, Chris chose me as well and has pursued me with his love. It’s a wonderful love story that I get to live out, both with my husband and ultimately with my savior Jesus Christ. Because they both say ‘You are Mine’ and nothing thrills my heart more.

 

 

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.
In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

(Ephesians 1:3-14 ESV)

 

 
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