What are the biggest peace-stealers in your life?
One of mine is surely my ability to make a list and to check it off.
Wait, Becky, really? List-making is stealing your peace?
Yep. And I'll tell you what. It's not because of how much laundry is sitting in piles on the floor or how many bags of Pirates' Booty I need to stock up on to keep small people's fists to themselves in the car.
Well, sometimes those lists weigh me down. But most of the time, the lists that are my problem are the ones that look great at a glance. Lists that I find when I read the Bible. Lists like:
...they keep going. And then, the pressure is on. Because I'm either doing the things on the list, or I'm not measuring up, right?
I often find myself writing out the lists I find in Scripture and determining myself to live by them. But here's the thing. When I do that, I'm missing the point. Because I'm trying to produce those things. But the reality is that when those things are described in God's Word, they're not listed as qualities we can attain on our own. They're described as fruit that comes from being rooted and grounded, not in self-determination, but in the authentic, draw-you-in, pull-you-closer love of God (see Ephesians 1 & 3). They're not things I can check off of a list.
Life as a follower of Christ is not about obedience to a list of rules and regulations.
But it can be so easy for me to fall into thinking it's about that without realizing it.
Maybe that's you, too. Maybe for you, it's the felt-obligation to read the Bible every day, but you're struggling to make it happen and if feels like one more thing to check off of a list. Maybe you feel like you don't pray enough...
God gave us His Word as a means to reach Jesus. It's a channel to Jesus. And when we come to Him, He fills us and changes us and draws us deeper into love. Love that cannot help but spill over into the world around us. His Word is alive. And from it comes the cry of His heart that we might come closer. That we might know the way of His love for us.
My list can't produce that. And no one else's can, either.
It is hearts drawn by love that allow us to see who God is and that allow His Spirit to produce those list-y things in us. It all comes down to love.
I love how my friend, Danielle Cevallos puts it:
"Ya’ll, I believe that if we could catch even the slightest glimpse of God’s character through the pages of scripture, we would find obedience far easier than we ever dreamed it would be, and our hearts would be filled with the deep affection for the God who authored every word on those pages."
That's why I would love to have you come along with me for a Bible study online this fall. It would be such a joy to get to walk with you through a fabulous resource: Katie Orr's Everyday Peace. You and me and a group of beautiful others, we can reach toward God's heart together, and encourage one another along the way.
My lovely friend Katie Orr is the creator of the Focused15 series. She has been a key player in my journey to lay down the lists of "I can do this on my own." Katie's FOCUS method helps to draw weary souls into the authentic love of Christ. Katie has a gift of making Spiritual truths and disciplines and digging into God's Word both accessible and attainable. And she always points us to what it's all about: love.
And if you've followed me long, you know that I love anything that reminds me how to cling to God's perfect peace. Katie Orr's Everyday Peace has helped me to pick up tools that were already RIGHT in front of me and to live in them in my every day. And I'm telling you--I've been walking some rocky roads, and this peace I'm learning about here--this peace from Christ that Katie Orr talks about--really does pass all understanding.
Want to join me? Here’s what you need to know:
- The group will start on September 12th, 2016 (September 12-October 7)
- We will be using Katie Orr’s Everyday Peace (4 week study, 15 minutes per day)
- You will be a part of a Facebook group alongside a community of other women.
- There will be low-pressure discussions throughout each week of the study on our FB group that you will be encouraged to join in as you have time in your day.
Amazon will be shipping books out by the end of August.
And, don't miss this part:
If you pre-order a copy before July 30th, you get some awesome freebies (pictured below) along with your order.
Once you’ve ordered your book, you can claim your freebies by filling out this form!
Then, sign up for my group below. When we get closer to the start date, I'll email you more details and a link to our Facebook page.
If you want more peace in your life, if you want to lean into God's heart, if you want the encouragement of a community of other women, this is group is for you!