Thursday, April 24, 2008

When Life and Beliefs Collide

I just finished reading this book called When Life and Beliefs Collide:How Knowing God Makes a Difference. I started this book back in October when I was going through a difficult time. It doesn't normally take this long for me to read a book (in fact, I read about 4 other books before I finished this one). But I have no doubt that this was all a part of God's timing...I was suppose to read the parts that I read during this exact time in my life.

The basic idea of the book is that as women believe in God, we need to know our theology. We need to really know God. There will be times when we will be ezers (help meets) to friends or to our spouse, and they will need our theology to help get them through the tough times. The biblical illustration is Mary of Bethany (and Martha for that matter too). The author talks about Mary's three encounters with Jesus.

I strongly recommend the book to everyone (even men). There will be times in your life when your reality and your theology are not going to match up, and how well you know Him really will make all the difference.

At the end of the book, she gives reading suggestions for different topics as well as a section on studying the Bible.

When I do my quiet time, there is not one set way that I do it. If I am not going through a book of the Bible, I will often as God to lead me to whatever scripture He wants me to read, and most of the time the passage either relates to something going on in my life immediately, something to help me encourage a fellow believer, or it is a recurring theme He is trying to help me understand, to know Him in a deeper way.

The author suggests asking three questions when reading scripture...1) What does this tell me about God? 2)What does this tell me about myself? 3) What difference does it make for me to know this?

I have loved using these three questions this past week. Instead of reading scripture, journaling, praying, and then going on my way, I have to stop and really think about it. I have to read the passage several times, and ask God to reveal these things to me. God usually speaks to me during the time that I spend with Him, but this past week, the scripture and what I have learned has really stuck with me. I am letting the Word penetrate into my heart, and that is one step that I am glad to make to know my God better.

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