Category Archives: Life Lessons

Bible Study – THE RESPECT DARE

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How do you study your Bible? Do you do a topical study, such as ‘Fruits of the Spirit”; study a particular book, ie. Romans; or do you read a passage of scripture and then dissect it? Do you study alone, with your family, or in a group. Do you lead a Bible study, or simply participate, completing your reading and any assignments as you are instructed?
I have tried all three methods and have found each to have some great advantages, as well as some pretty good disadvantages as well. I have found good and bad aspects to studying alone or with others, and I have definitely found some significant differences in either leading a study or following along and participating.
Let me just tell you about my current and recent studies. First, I have toyed with the idea of leading a ladies Bible study for some time now and at the beginning of the year, I finally listened to God, and took the leap. Our group is small, only 3 of us, but that is perfect for us and the subject matter we are studying.
Our study guide is called, “The Respect Dare”. It started eating our lunch right from the get-go! The premise of this study is based on “The Love Dare” which is based on the movie, “Fireproof”, starring Kirk Cameron. The movie was a very good, clean, Christian movie, safe for all family members to watch. Because of some of the subject matter, and the fact that, though the movie is about a fireman, there is very little firefighting that goes on, or at least not the kind of firefighting where you see actual flames!! “The Love Dare” is a series of dares a husband is to complete for his wife, without her knowing he is doing so! Basically, he is expressing his love for her, while seeking nothing in return. He is learning to love unconditionally, as Christ loves us! This goes for 40 days, and when the dares are complete, the idea is that the wife will have fallen more deeply in love with him than she ever was because of the significant, loving changes she has witnessed in her husband! I’m not going to tell you any details about the film. No spoiler alerts here!!
Well, “The Respect Dare” is very similar to that, except it is written to wives, with dares to be completed to help the wife learn to RESPECT her husband as we are instructed to do in Ephesians 5:33, ‘Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence (respect) her husband.’
Do you have any idea how difficult it can be to respect your husband when you are having to pick up his dirty socks or underwear from the floor, RIGHT NEXT TO THE HAMPER! Or how about when you try to have a conversation with him, but the discussion ends up being one-sided!! Or when he says something to you that is extremely hurtful, yet he doesn’t notice that he has hurt you. His lack of noticing makes us think he just doesn’t care that he has hurt our feelings, AGAIN!
I have learned a great deal in this study. First and foremost, I have learned that, though my husband has faults and he may drive me crazy at times, the majority of the problem lies with me! If I can change my ways, change my attitude, adjust my reactions to things he does or says, I can virtually eliminate any arguing or fighting between us! Also, by my making these changes, I’ve noticed that he is slowly starting to change in some of these areas as well! But my focus is not on creating change in him. That’s just a perk! My focus is on changing myself, changing and improving upon my relationship with the Lord.
One of the main changes I have made? (Well, still working on it, but I’m getting better) I am trying very hard not to tell my husband how I think things should be done! Talk about a toughie!! But, I had to realize that if he wants my opinion on how something should be completed or handled, he will ask. If he asks, I simply offer my thoughts, (just the facts) without being condescending.
Another change is not letting myself get upset over unimportant things. Should we paint the bathroom cream or ivory? Aren’t they kind of the same? So, WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE???
Basically, we wives should be calm, considerate, CHRIST-LIKE, non-aggressive or cranky, always showing our love for our Father in Heaven, as well as for our husbands. We do that by cooking his dinner without complaining that we are having to stand over a hot stove after a really tough day corralling the kids! We do that by doing his laundry for him because we know that it would be really nice if he could sit and relax for a while rather than be standing up an additional hour or so, ironing his clothes to wear the next day! We respect our husbands when we refuse to speak negatively about him, to anyone…period! We should always be boosting our husband up, not tearing him down. Remember, if he goes tumbling down, chances are you will as well!
Take an opportunity, or several, to let your husband know how wonderful, talented, smart, creative, helpful, LOVED, he is. He is going to enjoy hearing that, or reading it if you send a text or a card, and he is going to love hearing it every single time that you tell him! So tell him often.
If he is doing or saying something that you know there is just no way you will ever agree with him on, ask him if you can discuss it. Then do so completely calm! Give him a chance to express his viewpoint without any interruption from you! Maybe parrot some of the things he says in order to give him confirmation that you did, indeed, hear what he was saying. Wait until he is finished, or until he asks, and then calmly express JUST THE FACTS!! Never tell your husband that “you always” or “you never”. Because no he doesn’t, and yes he does…in that order.
For example, “You never take out the trash any more and I have to do it!” “You always look at me like I’ve lost my mind when I mention trying that new restaurant.” Well, he probably doesn’t take the trash out because either you are nagging him about it and he is being defiant, (that would be me actually!!); he truly forgets to take it out; or he is usually in such a rush to get out the door that he just doesn’t get the trash taken out for fear of being late to work! Then comes the conversation between you two. Next, he probably doesn’t even realize that he is giving you the face he uses at work. Again, stick to the facts. Tell him that you like the way his face lights up when he smiles but if he really wants to play the silly face game, you will! Then give him a REALLY silly face in return. If he looks totally confused at this, explain that you thought by his expression that he wanted to play a silly face game! Drop the subject of the new restaurant. Trust me when I tell you that he will bring it back up. It may not be tonight, or next week, but he will do it!!
Always, in every situation, every conversation, find the positive and focus on that, unless your husband specifically asks you to do otherwise.
This is really proving to be a very good study and I do recommend it to all women, whether married 45 years, or 45 minutes, even those engaged young ladies should give this book a read. There are tons of valuable lessons to be learned, if you just pay attention and allow the Holy Spirit to teach you what He wants you to know!
I will have more on this subject at a later date. If you haven’t read it and you get a chance, be sure to read, “The Respect Dare – 40 Days to a Deeper Connection with God and Your Husband”. And if you are doing a Bible study with this book, forget finishing it in 40 days. There is a lot of wonderful material in this book and I don’t think it would do the lesson justice if you attempted to cram the lessons into 40 days. We have been on it since February 10, 2014 and are just now about to discuss Dare 9! So don’t get discouraged. Some people just need to concentrate a little harder on certain areas. Be attentive to that as well and stick to that lesson or goal until she fully understands it. Believe me when I say, none of you, nor your husbands, will ever forget this lesson, and neither will ever regret the either!!
God bless and have a great night, and days to follow. I pray spring has sprung, or is at least very close, in your neck of the woods! It certainly has here!! I’ve started getting visits from my hummingbirds!

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ALL MY BLOGS

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THIS POST ORIGINATED ON ONE OF MY OTHER BLOGS, HTTP://POSITIVELY-PINK-DAISIES.BLOGSPOT.COM/ , AND I WANTED TO SHARE IT WITH ALL POSSIBLE READERS. I HOPE YOU ENJOY!!
ALL MY BLOGS……

I have more than just this blog that I SHOULD be writing on. I always have good intentions of keeping my writing up and then something happens and I just let it go. I am going to attempt to be much better at keeping at least this one up this year! With that in mind, I am going to provide a link to my other blogs, both in this post as well as a more permanent location on one of my sidebars!
I have so many different things that I like to talk about that I easily confuse myself! With that in mind, I think I will attempt to keep each blog going, and have each one with a certain topic ‘focus’. For example, this one would be more about the aspect of my life related to any kind of work or job.
Now, since I am presently unemployed, I will have to be creative with this. I won’t be including only discussion about a job in which I am being paid! (Although, if that does occur, I will most certainly be telling you all about it!) I have a couple of things in the works so hopefully you will be seeing, and enjoying, more written works from me in the very near future!
In the mean time, I invite you to take a look at my other blogs as well! Please, feel free to like or follow each one! I can certainly use all the followers I can get!! Isn’t that one of the reasons that bloggers write in the first place? So people can read their words?? I know it is for me. I do hope you enjoy them and will provide me with some feedback through the comments!!

I will be sharing stories of my family life on https://fghallfamily.wordpress.com/ . Please, check us out and, yes, you can go ahead and tell me just how crazy you think my family truly is!! Trust me. I already know this!!

My walk of faith and belief in Jesus Christ will be documented (for the most part) here: http://simplewordsofachristianmom.wordpress.com/ . I am most certainly not a Biblical scholar, in fact I consider myself a mere infant when it comes to Biblical knowledge, but I do have bits and pieces that I have learned that I like to share. I am also typically very anxious to share when I learn something new! So, beware!! LOL I am always excited to read other people’s opinions or interpretations of God’s word. However, I will NEVER tolerate anyone bashing my Christian beliefs. While I do believe in religious freedom, to me that means that if you do not believe in Jesus Christ, you are free to express that fact elsewhere other than on MY blog! Thank you very much!!

One of my hobbies is scrapbooking. I love to document special moments and occasions through the decorated pages that hold my precious photos! I also love to share those pages and ideas. Of course, I am also always looking for new ideas! So feel free to let me know what you think about what I am presently working on, as well as to share your ideas on http://msjsscrappin.wordpress.com/ . If you visit this blog today, you will notice that it is in dire need of work! In fact, it is in need of more than just a title!! Please check back, or subscribe, so that you will know as soon as I get some stuff posted there!!

You may be asking what is going to happen to this blog, other than to be a relay site for my others. Well, this blog will be my ‘everything else’ blog. I have always wanted to write, (and preferably be paid for it!), so hopefully something that I write about, or say here will be noticed by someone in the publishing world, or even just a small paper or magazine! Who knows? It sure doesn’t hurt to dream now does it? Please leave words of encouragement, advice, or just share bits of your dreams here. I truly don’t mind. But know that if you get selected to be published through my blog, I will expect an autographed copy of whatever you have published!!

So, with all that being said, I look forward to staying busy with these various blogs in different aspects of my life. Will all these blogs have new posts each day, or week? I honestly don’t know! That depends on what I have to say, and how busy I am in other areas of my life. Just know that if I haven’t posted on your favorite recently, you are welcome to respond on my most recent post on one of the others and let me know that you miss me!! Trust me. You won’t hurt my feelings telling me that!!

God bless and have a beautifully blessed day!!

New lessons learned every day, if you pay attention!!

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I love the chance to learn something new. I enjoy finally understanding something that I have been reading or studying, yet there are times that I am studying my Bible and no matter how many times I read it and reread it, search through any study helps that I have, and yet I still fail to understand how that particular passage pertains to me,  right now?! That is why I am so thankful for the teachers of God‘s word I have around me.

This month is Clergy Appreciation Month!! Be sure to let your Pastor, Sunday school teacher, Music Minister, or anyone in your church that you learn things from, know just how much you appreciate them! I know without my Pastor, Sunday school teacher, and all of my brothers and sisters at Peachtree Baptist Church, have certainly taught me a lot! Many times, they don’t even have to say anything, just let me notice their behavior towards fellow members, or guests to our church. Just a couple of the people at PBC that I am truly thankful for are: Jared Hollier – my Pastor; Craig Foster – our youth Pastor; Their wives! Heaven help them as they live day to day with these crazy, silly men! There truly can’t be too many dull moments around either household! These two guys, are just like two little boys playing sometimes! But, at the same time, they are SO inspirational! Our music Minister, Waylon Balusek, has a beautiful voice! I really appreciate the fact that Waylon brings some contemporary gospel songs to our congregational singing as well as some of the old favorites! And, my Sunday school teacher, Cindy Downs. I love Cindy dearly. She is truly a woman God is using to teach and train His children! Just because we are adults, most of us in our class are grandparents!, doesn’t mean we can relax our studying and learning of the lessons God has for us in His Word!

It really is an amazing thing when your Sunday school lesson applys directly to you, and then you go in for your worship service, and I’ll be dog-goned if he isn’t speaking directly to me during the entire sermon!! I love the fact that all of my teachers at PBC teach the Word of God in such a way that I can easily see myself in whatever passage we are studying!! I can see how it applys to my life! I know some people are probably thinking, “yeah, right, whatever!” But it is so very true for me! Everytime I am at PBC, I learn something about God’s word and how it applies directly to me and some situation or something that I am in right then and there!! I know that is one of God’s ways of getting through to me, and I am truly thankful that God is still willing to work on me like that!

He has never given up on me even though I have walked away from Him several times! Isn’t that a great thought! No matter what, God is always willing to take us back! It is my fervent prayer now that God help me to avoid anything that might cause me to decide to walk away again! I pray that God keeps Satan away from me during my personal study time. I pray that God move Satan out of my house and not allow him to be disruptive to my family. I am so grateful for all of the many, many, many times that God has forgiven me and taken me right back in His arms and He lets me know that He still loves me! No matter how bad I have messed up, God still loves me!! Isn’t that just the most amazing thing? I think so. I will never be alone because God loves me and will always be right by my side! Thank you Lord, for loving me like that, for being so gracious and forgiving, and for never turning your back on me.

For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Hebrews 4:12

Life’s Interruptions

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Anything that happens unexpectedly is an interruption. Someone becomes ill, it’s an interruption. Your child is getting married, is an interruption. You are being blessed with a new grandchild, that is an interruption. A death in the family is an interruption. A change in your job is an interruption. Life is full of interruptions, some good, some bad, all controlled by God.

Whether you choose to admit or accept it, God is in control of everything that happens, even the things that we look at as bad interruptions. These interruptions, in some cases, I believe can be a test from God of our faithfulness, or our trust in Him.  God is not going to tempt us and try to make us do something that goes AGAINST what His word tells us. No, that is what satan does.  God gives us periodic tests to see where we stand.  God wants us to succeed.

I personally believe that God tests us to see if we are prepared to take the next step that He has planned for us.  If He sees that we are not ready, then He will give us obstacles that we must climb, learning lessons along the way, until we are prepared for the next step along the path God is sending us on.  Sometimes these paths and obstacles, or interruptions, are simple things and we never even realize that it has happened. Then there are the times when the obstacles in front of us seem so large and impenetrable that we begin to lose hope, lose our faith. These are the times that we must stop and thank God for what He has given us, and thank Him for the obstacles He has placed in our paths so that we may learn our lessons He wants us to learn and become better Christians. God wants us to be happy, healthy, and full of love. He wants us to share that love, with anyone and everyone that we come into contact with, even the ones that we don’t see eye to eye with, especially them, “Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.” Matthew 5:44

So many times these obstacles or interruptions in our lives can totally consume us and cause us to forget about what is really important! Is that job really that important? Well, yes, it is important in today’s society to have a job and be able to meet your financial obligations. But, if God decides that is not the job for you, He is going to make sure that you are not put in that position. However, if God wants you in that position, but feels that maybe we need to learn a few lessons first, then we start on the obstacle course that will lead to that position or job that God wants us in.  When we set out on that path, it often seems like the hurdles are just too difficult, but that is when God is teaching us the best lessons and showing us the most love. Once we clear each hurdle, we are a little closer to the goal that God has set for us. If we maintain the course, listen to God, read and study His word, we will make it through that course. However, if we become arrogant or selfish, God is going to continue to put obstacles in our path until we finally realize the error of our ways. That is a concept that I’m afraid some people are just not able to grasp. These people end up living lives of misery and discontent.

Currently my family is on one of these obstacle courses that God has set out for us. My husband was bypassed for a job that we both felt he greatly deserved. He had worked long and hard to be properly prepared for that position, but God said no at that time. Now we have come upon our second hurdle. My husband has been “reassigned” (demoted) from the position he was serving in as Captain of the police department, to the position of Detective, a position he held 10 years ago.  We know God is allowing this to happen to give us a lesson, show us the right path to take. It is up to us to pray, read, and study, as well as listen to God, for guidance.  As we do that, we learn new lessons, things about our lives that maybe did not represent God or Jesus Christ like we should have. So God is taking this time to help us become more like Jesus every day.  We will never be like Jesus, but we can live our lives in a Christ-like manner, and in the way that God has instructed us to do.

I would like to ask for prayers for our family as we travel this obstacle course God has given us. Pray that we hear God’s loving words quickly and understand them easily. Pray that we become the representatives for Jesus that God wants us to be, that we see the path He is leading us on clearly. We intend to lead our lives for Jesus,  and if that means we stay put and dig in for the long haul, then so be it. We will stand strong and tall with our heads held high because we have Jesus in our corner.

I thank everyone for their support, prayers, messages, hugs. We have discovered what the difference is between extended family and friends over the past few days. Your extended family you can count on at any time for any thing. Your friends may decide they are your friend to your face today, but to your back tomorrow they are holding a knife, only because they believe it is going to give them something they want. Well, I’m sorry, but I believe if you have to take it sneakily, and by knife point, then you probably shouldn’t be in that position. Maybe you need to drop to your knees and pray to God for mercy and forgiveness.

“As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord”  Joshua 24:15

God’s patient lessons

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Even though we had a very small group at church last night, we had a good study of a portion of the book of Mark.  Chapter 8,verses 22-26, Jesus heals a blind man.  For me, the interesting part is the fact that Jesus heals the blind man, but He doesn’t do it all at once.  He does it in steps. First he places his hands on the mans eyes and partially heals him, the mans vision is blurry. When Jesus places His hands over the mans eyes a second time, the man is able to see!  He sees everything very clearly!  Jesus tells the man to go home and tell no one.

We all know that Jesus was in the business of performing miracles and this was one of them.  But this is one time when Jesus did not perform the entire miracle in one single touch. His first touch gave the man blurry vision. It was Jesus’ second touch that cleared the mans vision totally.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I can relate this to my own life very well. For several months now I have felt God asking me to do something for Him. I know this because I can feel God calling me, but I have not been able to figure out what it is He wants me to do. I ask someone how I can figure it out and they usually tell me to read my Bible, “Look in His word and you will find your answer”. OK, but….where do I look? The Bible is a pretty long book, and while I do plan to read all of it eventually, I surely hope that I don’t have to read the entire book to figure out what it is that God wants me to do!

Well, after reading and discussing this short passage last night at church, actually it was a few days ago, but I finally realized something about what God was telling me. He is leading me to what I am to do, one step at a time, not in one single touch! Just like with the restoration of the blind mans vision, my calling was not going to come to me in one simple step. But God was going to be in control all the way, and He is in control.,

Over the past several weeks, I have heard some sermons that really stomped on my toes. I mean, the sermons have been just for me it seems!! Each has taught me a lesson about myself and my relationship with God that I probably would not have learned, or figured out for myself, for a pretty good while! So, God has been using the sermons I am hearing, and bless my pastor’s heart for teaching these lessons so well! I thank God for Brother Jared all the time. He is an absolutely wonderful pastor!

And then there are the Sunday school lessons that also seem like they have been written just for me. In each lesson, God reveals a little more of what I need to know. God is teaching me how to be more like Jesus, one step at a time.  God knows what books I need to be lead to read and He leads me to them. He knows what lessons I need and what setting I need to receive these lessons in.

God is preparing me for something. I don’t know what God’s plans for me are, but I do know that at this time He is teaching me and showing me things that I need to do or change about myself. He is showing me where I need to make improvements in my life in order to be more Christ-like.  God is showing me how a simple improvement or change, such as stopping and thinking something through before just diving off into it, can bring me closer to Him and to Jesus.

When I finally realized that God was not going to pull me into some big project right off the bat, but is preparing me very patiently for whatever task it is He has for me, I was very relieved. I know God is not going to ask me to do something unless He knows I am capable of doing it. Being capable and being willing are two different things though, and I have to be both.  I have been willing for a while now, but I wasn’t stopping long enough to hear what God was trying to tell me. So, He took charge and made sure that I am hearing the right things from the pulpit of my church, and in my Sunday school class. God is helping me to improve my character, to be a better person, more Christ-like. I am so thankful that God is patient with me, because He knows how easily I can get frustrated and typically that leads to my deciding to take a different path. So God has been teaching me in just the right way for me, slowly and with great patience.

Isn’t that just the most amazing thing in the world? That God knows exactly what I need to hear, when and how. It is very amazing, but not surprising. He is GOD!! He knows all! He already knows how my story is going to end. He is just working with me right now, preparing me for something much more than my everyday life. It may be something as simple as teaching someone something, or who knows. With God, there is no limit to what kind of gifts and opportunities He can give me, if He chooses.

Well, I am going to read my Sunday school lesson for next Sunday and see how it applies to me, and I am 110% positive that it will definitely apply to me! Thank you God, for being so patient with me.