Women in the Word

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7/18/2016 8:32 am  #51

Re: Ecclesiastes

Ecclesiastes 10:10-20

10:10 If the iron is blunt, and one does not sharpen the edge, he must use more strength, but wisdom helps one to succeed.
Discussion Question: What happens when an ax is not sharp and how does wisdom help? Do you have something in your life where you need to work smarter not harder?
When I try to do things in my own strength instead of prioritizing God, I work harder, not smarter. I think I am getting things done, but end up with stress and anxiety. And that takes so much more emotional energy. When I focus first on God and prioritize Him, I have peace and calm and can better tackle my work, or I realize that my activity is not as much of a priority as I originally thought.
10:17 Happy are you, O land, when your king is the son of the nobility, and your princes feast at the proper time, for strength, and not for drunkenness!
A wise leader eats and drinks with moderation and not to lose themselves in intoxication.
Likewise, we should also eat for strength and health, for our enjoyment as well, but not to medicate ourselves from boredom or stress or unhappiness.


7/19/2016 9:27 am  #52

Re: Ecclesiastes

Ecclesiastes 11:1-5

11:4 He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.

2 Corinthians 9:6 The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.

You cannot even hope to reap if you don't at least sow. If you always put off and second guess you will never fulfill God's purposes.

I kind of feel like this is the situation my husband and I have gotten into with the foster/adopting. We put if off for so many years, things are too hectic, and other excuses. Now, it seems like the window of opportunity may have passed.

GMG Discussion Question:
What kind of excuses do we often make for not serving the Lord, for not sowing and trusting God for the harvest?

Well, I know that I worked at an agency that tried to transition homeless off the streets and I saw many, not all, but most, who really did not want to get their lives together because they had substance abuse issues and did not want to stop. I also had a good friend whose family repeatedly tried to get their brother into treatment and off the streets but he did not want to. He loved the substance more than he liked the idea of living a responsible life and working etc.

So, I was never into homeless ministries because I figured, why bother. It does not make a difference and they are not really interested in getting help anyway they just want a free meal to enable their lifestyle.

But my thinking did change and I realized that I am just responsible for sharing the gospel and God's love and if they reject it, they reject it. But if in all the years I serve, if only one person ever came to know Christ because of this, would not that one soul have been worth the time invested? Because Christ spent many years pursuing me, should I spend any less pursuing others in the name of Christ?

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7/20/2016 7:33 am  #53

Re: Ecclesiastes

Ecclesiastes 11:6-10
11:8 So if a person lives many years, let him rejoice in them all; but let him remember that the days of darkness will be many. All that comes is vanity.
Rejoice in life and enjoy it but know, but know there will be difficult times but keep them in proper perspective because our ultimate purpose is not in this life.
11:9 Rejoice, O young man, in your youth, and let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth. Walk in the ways of your heart and the sight of your eyes. But know that for all these things God will bring you into judgment.
Follow your dreams and your heart, but do so with integrity because you will have to answer to the Lord.

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7/21/2016 7:46 am  #54

Re: Ecclesiastes

Ecclesiastes 12:1-8

12:1 Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near of which you will say, "I have no pleasure in them";
Before difficult times come we should be established in our faith and strong in the Lord to guide our life, established in joy and peace to carry us through the journey of challenges.
12:7 and the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.
I love this imagery. We do not die. We go into eternity. Our bodies return to dust and our spirit returns to God. We go home.
From the Workbook: A life lived under the sun without God is meaningless, a vapor, here today and gone tomorrow.

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