Saturday, April 18, 2009

Chapter 3: Fashioned for Faith---Not Fear

For more insights on this chapter, visit Lelia's page.
Well, I'm WAY behind in posting (!!)but hopefully better late than never... We'll see... :) As some others have mentioned in their posts, there is so much valuable information that one could easily quote each and every word as something pertinent and valuable. Micca broke down chapter 3 into various sections and I will do the same in my response to her writings. Quotes from the book are noted in blue. Scripture is noted in red.


UNDER GOD’S SHELTERING WINGS
  • Micca mentioned that one false method in our attempts to overcome fear was to place our confidence in ourselves, and how we, as believers, must base on our identity on who we are in and because of Christ.

  • Psalm 118:8 “It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man.”

  • God, alone, is our safety, our protection, our help, our refuge, our strength, our peace our rest and only in Him may we find the freedom we long for.

  • I enjoyed her analogy about the umbrella in a storm: "...Livivg in God’s presence is like taking shelter under an umbrella in the midst of a storm. While we can’t stop the rain, we can keep from getting soaked with fear by taking shelter."

CASTING YOUR CARES

  • "God is willing to release us from our cares and take our concerns upon Himself…when you and I cast our cares on God, we are recognizing that it’s His responsibility to care for us---not ours…What you and I may think is harmful, God is using for our good---to bring us to completion in godly conduct and character…it’s His responsibility to give us what we need…"

  • I smiled at the idea that God has, willingly and lovingly, taken on the responsibility to give me what I need. Takes a lot of pressure off of me :).

  • The term "cast off" requires an action; a choice. This brought a youth-camp-memory to mind. I don't remember when or where but way back when...each person was to write down any concerns, worries, fears that were in their heart/mind and then one by one, we went up to the bonfire, stated out loud that these were being willingly given to God. As the flames consumed the paper, we were reminded that attempting to "grab these back" wouldn't be helpful and could lead to harm. Also, the rising smoke was analogous to being received in the heavens. One of those tear-jerking camp-y moments.

WHO’S IN CONTROL?

  • I could so relate when Micca’s wrote "…even though I continued going to church, I didn’t trust God anymore. He wasn’t the God I thought I knew…God never answered all my questions . Instead, He just showed me who He truly was---and He was enough…"

  • LIFE-GOAL # 2 from this book "…seeing things from God’s perspective instead of mine."

  • I, long ago, stopped trusting God, even though I 'walked the right walk and talked the right talk'. I felt that too much harm, too much hurt, too much pain, too many injustices had occurred to me and to many that I loved. I couldn't comprehend a loving God allowing some inexplicable events to occur.

  • It wasn't until I hit BOTTOM that I realized I don't have the answers, I don't have the strength, I don't have an all-knowing power behind the events and circumstances. No amount of study, no amount of service, no amount of attempting to fix, soothe, and repair were enough. I had the life philosophy that "if it were to be, it was up to me" and I began to realize how miserably I was failing.

  • THANKFULLY, God brought remembrances and relationships that showed me that He is loving. He is merciful. He is gracious. He is kind. He desires what is best for His children. He is un-changing. His UNCHANGING qualities are what have struck the deepest within my heart. No matter what has happened, no matter what I or others have done change the truths found within His Word.

HE’S GOT THE WHOLE WORLD IN HIS HANDS

  • The visual image of God measuring the span between His thumb and first finger based upon Isaiah 40:12, caused my heart to soar with delight! I am learning each day about who God REALLY is and I am continually being AMAZED!! Why should I hold onto ANY sort of fear/worry when I have a God who CAN hold the oceans within the palm of His hand?!?

GENUINE FAITH

  • The danger of misplaced faith brought about a moment of repentance in my heart. I have always "believed" in the existence of God but my "belief" was simply an acknowledgement not a life-altering truth. Reminded me of James 3:19: "Do you still think that it's enough to believe that there is one God? Well, even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror! Fool, When will you ever learn that faith that does not result in good deeds is useless."

  • I couldn't have possibly being loving the Lord with all of my heart, my mind, and my body. There are parts of my heart that I've yet to expose to anyone, including the Lord, but I am learning. My mind wasn't in submission--I always had MY own plan in mind. Loving with my body would mean I cared for it in such a way to not allow an eating disorder to ravage my system.

  • I am SO GRATEFUL that God doesn't change and that His loving pursuit of me perseveres.

LIVE LIKE YOU BELIEVE

  • The more I get to know God, the deeper my love for Him grows. The heartfelt appreciation for all He has done and continues to do increases as my doubts and fears decrease. The choice to believe what God says is true is mine to make.

  • 2 Peter 1:3-4: "As we know Jesus better, His divine power gives us everything we need for living a Godly life. He has called us to receive His same mighty power, He has given us all of His rich and wonderful promises. He has promised that you will escape the decadence all around you caused by evil desires and that you will share in His divine nature."

  • Who could ask for anything more than to 'share in His divine nature, to receive His same might power'? He has given me 'everything I need to lead a life that is worthy of Him.'

LIVING AWARE OF HIS PRESENCE

  • Abiding: to always be aware of His presence

  • LIFE GOAL #3 from this book: "...(be) quick to call to my heavenly Father for help. I need to run to God for comfort and reassurance...I want to become so aware of God's abiding presence in my life that I fall asleep in His arms at night and awake to His presence in the morning."

Whew...long post but I am LOVING THIS BOOK!!

3 comments:

  1. This is some awesome stuff my friend.

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  2. Yes! This is so good.

    I missed the past two weeks of posting on this precious book...although I've been reading! I feel a bit out of sorts, but hope to get back into posting soon.

    Love the way you break it down, and, yes, Micca's words bear repeating!

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  3. Wow Good stuff Stacy.

    I'm behind too. Dont' worry. This was awesome, your sharing of how you talked the talk but really didn't have full faith, was very powerful I've been there. So glad we are both learning that life with faith in God is so much better.

    Hugs my friend.
    Carol

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