My Takeaways

Greetings from Lakeside, Montana! I am at a conference for the North American School of Biblical Studies in Youth With A Mission. The gathering happens every two years; when I arrive, it doesn’t take long for me to realize I am with my people, Bible-lovin’ nerds every single one. Since I want to blog on a weekly basis, I thought I would share some of my takeaways from the week thus far.

Let me begin by saying the Bible has transformed my life. Yes, it’s been a bit like steering the Titanic but the transformation has happened (and continues to happen!) I wanted to read and understand the Bible because I knew there was something in it I needed, namely to come face to face with the grace of God. Thankfully, I studied the Bible with the Inductive Bible Study method which is a very balanced approach to studying the Bible. Instead of hearing what other people think the Bible says, I engaged the text myself to see what the Bible is actually saying. Here’s an example: would you rather have a beautiful flower described to you or see it in detail yourself? This is the goal of the Inductive Bible Study Method.

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My passion for teaching people in the Church to engage the Bible themselves has been renewed. And not just engage the text but to live it out wholeheartedly.  My admiration for the gospel continues. What is the gospel? From Genesis to Revelation, it’s the story of God’s incredible desire to dwell with man, even when man chose to forsake God. Undaunted, God chose to enter our humanity in order to make a way (forgiveness) for man to dwell with God. The beauty of this gospel is that as believers, we are to embody this for the world.

I go home encouraged, committed and ready to lead people into the Bible for the rest of my life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Truth Bomb

Grace isn’t just about salvation though that is very important. Grace also empowers us to live holy lives, to do the things that we cannot do in our own strength.

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I pride myself on being pretty accepting. Recently, Jesus revealed to my heart that I have trouble accepting people that take advantage, people that hurt me continually, and people that are generally needy and grasping. I react with condescension and coldness instead of recognizing the brokenness in them.

My man cub straight up confronted me the other day.

“Mom, do you realize how condescending you were to So-and-So? It was so obvious.”

Ouch. 

The true and ugly part is this: I cared more about my image than I did about dishonoring another person.  I grew embarrassed because of what others might think of me as the incident happened in public.  I just love truth bombs from my man cub.

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Grace smacked me upside the head with deep conviction. Jesus zeroed in on my lack of love and acceptance. I’d like to say I immediately repented and made things right but it took awhile because I didn’t see how I could change in my own strength. Truth is, I can’t.

Grace to the rescue. Jesus also showed me how grace can empower me to do the exact things I am helpless to do on my own. How, exactly? Grace is simply Jesus’ power in us to stand against sin. It’s a gift. I have access to this gift, each and every day. I did eventually repent and confess that in my own strength, I can’t love and accept people but because Jesus loves and accepts people, I can as well. I can’t explain it but something profound happened to me in the moment I realized this truth. Grace is truly amazing.