Some have noted I've begun "preaching" again on the blog. ::wink:: I had no clue so many noticed when I quit musing. Life got very busy and I had no time to write. I felt it more important to live life than write about it; to commune deeply with Jesus in the Word, than to write about it. If something has to go, it will be the writing-not the time spent in the Word. I am IN the Word most days, but simply don't always have time to write. I have a bit more time lately.
I didn't like the pressure I felt years back to "be profound" and "say something" every day, even if it wasn't REAL or authentic to what Jesus was saying to me at that moment. I didn't like how people began to assume I was writing about THEM when I shared what God was saying to ME. I didn't like when some began to judge me if I didn't share daily. In other words the pressure to be profound is hard for an extrovert. ::snort::
God has been doing a deep work in my heart. I have been doing battle, with Him by my side, dismantling past strongholds. I've felt like Nehemiah, "...I am doing a great work and I cannot come down..." (Neh 6:3). I've been dealing with my history....and honestly....I had to do this alone...letting only one or two into the process. It's been a big, beautiful mess! Michael is a man who has walked through much with the damaged bride he married. I went silent as my energy centered on following Jesus into the pain in order to come out the other side FREE and whole. This discipleship stuff is not for the weak at heart. Not only did I limit my "blog musing," but I also have not taught a Bible study for the past 1.5 years (previously I had taught 21 years without a break), I stepped aside from all leadership roles and I followed where He led. It's been an unexpected journey. I knew I was burned out. I knew I needed to rest. I knew I craved secrecy/solitude. I didn't know I was ready and God ordained it was time to deal deeper with my history. I wrote a bit about one aspect of this when I wrote about my battle with food addiction. There is much more I could write - but I'm not going to be that vulnerable here.
As I seem to have begun sharing more again -who knew my 50's would open the floodgate - let's clear a few things up. Musings are my musings. They are NOT polished teachings ready to be presented in a group setting. They are NOT my way of saying something to someone without saying something to them (did you follow that?). They are not self-promotion.
I never attempt to finger YOU. What you read is the result of the Holy Spirit fingering ME.
I love to teach a quick little method of devotional reading called "SOAP". Scripture, Observed, Applied, Prayed. You can see how Pastors have done this here. I love to meet with a group of women, read the same passages throughout a week, SOAP and share. It's fascinating how the Holy Spirit illumines different parts to each one of us. Life Groups are a bit different in that you spend 20 min. silently reading the Word, 20 min journaling and 20 min sharing. This sounds fun too, but I've never been part of a group which uses this format. Have you?
This year I am focusing on the New Testament in my reading. I usually read the OT once and the NT twice in a year. I will spend extra time lingering and soaking up the New Testament. I am also doing a PWOC Bible Study, am being mentored and doing some reading with that, am studying for family circle and sometimes just like to sit down and read the Old Testament for fun.
As I read through the Word - I SOAP...and as I have time or feel led to share - I will. I'm very mindful these days of the "secret life" God has called me to cultivate. BUT when I DO share....know that I am sharing what Holy Spirit lovingly points out I need to hear. We're all human - and often our weaknesses or need of encouragement will be the same. I don't set out to convict YOU, that's the job of Someone much holier than me.
This is a family journal. If I'm in the Word and feel like this may have benefit for family at some point now or 100 years from now - I'll share. If it blesses you, I'm humbled.
Living all of life before the face of God...