Friday, March 10, 2006

Lesson #1 from the Lord

My church recently started a ladies' Bible study. The first meeting was this past Tuesday. We're reading Loving God With All Your Mind and doing a study book as well. I know already that this will be an excellent endeavor for me. I've read only the first chapter, which challenged me to think on things that are true, or real (Philippians 4:8). Mostly this translates into fear or worry. I've never really thought of myself as fearful--I don't keep myself awake at night biting my nails, I don't nag Nate about money or work or the baby, I don't have ulcers...none of that. But the Lord has shown and is showing me other little areas in my life where I do dwell on "what if"s.

For example, I used to think that it was healthy and proper to try to "prepare myself" for the pregnancy horror stories I've heard all about. The only way to do this--at least the only way I could think of--would be to try to imagine how that would feel, how I would tell people, how I'd pray, the list was endless, and my imagination raced through it all. But God showed me that that's unnecessary. Are the possibilities real? Yes. But that's as far as I need to let my imagination go. What is true, real? God's Word is! And He promises that nothing can happen to me TODAY that I can't handle with His grace. The truth--the reality--of the matter is that "His way is perfect," whether that means a healthy baby, no baby, sick baby, whatever. And besides, no amount of mental exercise could truly "prepare" me for those situations anyway. Furthermore, God helped me to realize my motivation for all this thinking: fear! I was not trying to be "prepared." I was trying to remain in control! I knew I couldn't control the outcome of the pregnancy, but I was doing my best to control my feelings and my disappointment.

Anyway. That's just the beginning of Lesson #1 from the Bible study. It's a hard one! But God is so good to me, ALL THE TIME. He never spanks without reassuring His love and grace and help. I'm excited to keep reading and growing.

11 comments:

Shyla said...

I LOOOOOVE THIS BOOK KAREN!!
I read it throughout college. Sometimes i felt as though i couldn't go onto the next chapter until I mastered the one I was one.

I actually just started scouting around in my basement last week to try to find it again. If I find it, i will let you know.

I am curretnly reading "created to be his helpmeet" I'll let you know how that goes. I am only on chapter 3 - but it's good so far!:)

See ya girl!

OK!!! SINCE THIS THING WON'T LET ME POST, I WILL LEAVE AN AMEDMENT TO MY LAST COMMENT. I CAN NEVER TYPE THE LETTERS RIGHT THE FIRST TIME. I AM NOT KIDDING YOU. IT DOESN'T MATTER HOW CAREFULLY I LOOK AT THE LETTERS AND MY FINGERS ON THE KEYS, I ALWAYS HAVE TO TYPE IT TWICE. phew! I feel better now! :)

pamela s said...

Who wrote this book? It sounds great. It's very easy to try to take the reins of your life, so you do what you want. PTL we have the Lord to help us through anything big or small.

Karen said...

It's written by Elizabeth George. I love "A Woman After God's Own Heart," too, written by her as well.

Alicia said...

I read this book in college also and it was transforming in the matter of thoughts. That's where the battle lies everyday! Usually I think I'm too busy to worry about what I'm thinking about. Thanks for the reminder to think on things that are true. You'll be fine - God will get you through delivery AND the rough first days of momhood. Being a mom has brought me to the end of myself thirsting for the power and grace of God.

p.s. Shyla, I do the same thing with those crazy word verification letters! Sometimes I even mess up my own password .. . .

Heather said...

I too love that book!!!

I know I read it sometime in college, but I re-read it and finished it about 2 months ago.

Now I am reading, "the power of a praying wife" It has been so great to read and has excellent reminders in it!!!

Have a great Bible Study.

TwoMuths said...

This book is SO great. I got it "by accident" from a church we traveled through one summer w/NBBC. They told us we could all pick something from their bookstore, and I picked up that book.

What a great "accidental pick" that turned out to be. A God-ordained one! I've read it at LEAST once a year since then, and every time I read it, learn more about God and how He wants us to think. It's about time to read it again...

Thanks for being so transparent about your struggle through those thoughts. I definitely am encouraged through what God is teaching you! By God's grace, Satan will not have the victory over our thoughts!!!

Alicia said...

Karen,

I wanted to tell you that two nights ago I woke in the middle of the night from a scary nightmare. That may sound childish but I have realistic nightmares often and I wake up paralyzed with fear. Sometimes I have to read the Bible for a while before I have the courage to fall asleep again. Anyways, two nights ago I woke up and God brought back your post to my mind. I promptly thought, "Whatsoever things are true . . . " and went right back to sleep! God is awesome. I love that He cares about the little things in life.

Shannon said...

I ditto the 'great book' lines. I have read it a couple times actually, because I didn't get it the first time!

I too remember the fears when being pregnant. I remember foolishly saying to Katie when she was pregnant with Luke and voicing her fears and I told her he was in the safest place he'll ever be. It wasn't til I was in the same position that I could understand all those fears. I think it's the thing of you can't 'see' the baby and so that makes you more worried. Now, I realize that there will always be something to worry about!

(p.s. Stephen says hi, and we do both remember you. :)

Kelli said...

Hi Karen-
I came across your blog and thought I would say hello! Congratulations are in order! I am excited for you guys!

That sounds like an awesome book; I will have to read that. I used to love reading, but alas, all the reading I had to do in college kind of dampened by love for reading! It is slowly coming back, though! Congratulations again and keep us updated!
Kelli (Clingerman) Frey

Shyla said...

come back karen!

Karen said...

Hi, Kelli! And thanks, ladies, for all the encouraging words.