A few weeks ago on a lark I joined a group to read through the Bible with a Good Morning Girls
facebook group, all brought together through Women Living Well. I joined an international group and they were needing a leader. We got one, but then she had to drop out last minute. So I stepped up with another lady to be co-leaders... the night before it started. So truly I am figuring it out as I go. I've never done a study with GMG before, but blessedly my co-leader has...
Last week a link-up was announced on Fridays. I had no idea that was coming. Ha. I thought about writing it when it was announced by last Friday Dreamer was anything but cooperative with me sitting and writing a blog post, so it didn't happen. So this week is my first blog on the subject and I'm going to talk about the first two weeks.
We have already finished our first book! We started with Esther. It's one of only two (along with Ruth) books in the Bible to be named after a woman.
Here are a few of the things that struck me in Esther. Esther was wise in taking advice. She took advise both from Mordecai and the eunuch, which helped her rise to power. She also turned to prayer and fasting before she acted.
I noticed Haman was a contrast to our God. That is verse 3:6 "But he disdained to lay hands upon Mordecai alone. So, as they had made known to him the people of Mordecai, Haman sought to destroy all the Jews, the people of Mordecai, throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus." I was struck at the evil of Haman that he couldn't be content to strike at his solo "enemy" Mordecai but instead wanted to introduce vengeance on a genocidal level. He wanted to attack not only him but anyone connected to him. This makes me think of two things: one is how sometimes our enemy will try to hurt us through our loved ones and sadly, thinking of Isis killing the poor children of Christians right now in Iraq. Secondly, it makes me think of God. Not in Haman's eviliness, but in His goodness contrasting it. I had recently read the verse elsewhere that says God visits love upon a thousand generations of those who love Him. (Exodus 20:6) This contrast just highlights our Lord's goodness and loving mercy.
And a last point that jumped out at me was part of verse 8:17 " And many from the peoples of the country declared themselves Jews, for fear of the Jews had fallen on them." Now I'm not sure about fear as a motivation but for God's people to go from marginalized and persecuted even to annihilation to people wanting to join them seemed a huge leap.
After Esther we have moved on to 1 Peter.
Both of Peter's epistles are just wonderful and so deep. We've read chapters 1, 2, and 3 so far. There's so much I could pick to highlight, but I don't want this post to be too long so I'll pick a verse from each chapter thus far:
1 Peter 1:25 "'but the word of the Lord remains forever.'
And this word is the good news that was preached to you."
Forever! What wonderful news, forever. The transformative, life giving gospel remains with us forever.
1 Peter 2:2-3 " "
I definitely picked this verse because I'm currently breastfeeding an infant myself. You know I never realized that when people would say "taste and see that the Lord is good" it was referring to spiritual milk? This was not the only passage that jumped out at me in this chapter, it's truly a meaty one, despite talking about milk!
1 Peter 3:3-5 " "
Certainly not a very "politically correct" passage, but of course it's Truth. I'm still very much a new wife, Ryan and I have only been married a year and a half. A tumultuous year and a half with in-law difficulties, two moves, and a new baby. Add in the inter-cultural differences for good measure. We are still reeling from all the change.
This, which is the description of Biblical modesty, has been on my mind for a while. It has nothing directly to do with hemlines or necklines at all, does it? So many, even Christians, seem to buy the world's definition of modesty as a sexual thing. But the Biblical definition of modesty is a heart thing, a spiritual thing. It's saying do NOT get concerned with external dressings-- be they skimpy or nearly burqas. Instead work on cultivating gentleness and quietness and yes, even submission.