Tuesday, August 5, 2008

I AM study: Lesson 10: Keeping it in the Family

Discussion Questions:
1. Have you ever experienced trials that were best dealt with "in the family" for either your reputation's sake or God's? You may still choose to leave them there, but you are welcome to share if you are comfortable.
Yes, and no. As a pastor's child, even if things were dealt with privately, sometimes others had to know about them. As an adult, I have had people ask me if decisions I made negatively affected my father's ministry. If they did, I never knew about it. I'm sure somebody somewhere didn't like the way we dealt with things, but at the time, I think those people who knew us well knew that God's hand was very actively healing our family from hurts and was preparing us for LIVING.

2. Have you ever found yourself in a bizarre circumstance and later were able to walk someone through the same/similar situation? Did you recognize the hand of God in it?
Oh, yes! And I truly believe that this is one reason why I am here on this Earth today, to share my testimony with others and hold them up when they don't feel like walking on their own!

3. I was in my late twenties before I ever let myself believe God was for me instead of waiting to smack me upside the head every time I made a mistake. Do you truly believe God is on your side?
Yes. God is definitely on my side! Even through the roughest times I have had, I knew that God was hurting with me, not causing the hurt. He is SO good to me!

4. If God has ever had you in the Holy Spirit Chokehold (and who hasn't He?), how have you reacted to God's chastisement? Were you bitter? Brokenhearted? Grateful?
Oh, definitely grateful. I am so grateful that He cares enough about me to reach out and grab me!

5. Write a brief prayer of Thanksgiving for God's longsuffering.
Heavenly Father, I am so thankful for your unconditional love. I know that my hard headedness must get frustrating at times, but I know that you love me anyway. Thank you for blessing me over and over, even when I don't acknowledge your many blessings as I should! I love you, Father!