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Friday, August 15, 2014

What I've Learned

Happy Friday, friends! This is a post that gets a little deep with some of my feelings--this Bible Study has made me think about a lot of things in a different light and I want to share that with you today! 


I am utterly shocked that our Bible Study is already over. I feel like it was just yesterday when I was fretting over making a vlog to kick it off. It’s been a challenging yet wonderful 6 weeks with Lord I Want to Know You. When thinking of how to wrap up all that I’ve learned, I’m almost stumped at where to start. 

Nicole and I were chatting a few days ago about the last section of the study, and I had to be perfectly honest with her. I told her that I felt that the last few chapters were a little over my head at times—and other times, I just felt as if I was reading it to finish it. I was flipping pages, waiting for it to end. 

My heart just wasn’t in it, whether it was because of some things going on in my life or just that God didn’t have much to teach me in those moments. I was struggling with not having something to take away from it, and she just said, “Not every study is going to impact every person in the same way.”

And she’s so right. I prayed at the beginning for God to open my eyes, open my heart to what He wanted me to know, and I think He did just that. There were so many sections of this book that just overwhelmed me in the best way and I know the Lord was pouring His wisdom over me, yet there were others where I felt confused and a little overwhelmed in a bad way. Even though that’s discouraging, I realized that it’s okay too. Every study I read isn’t going to change my life. 

God doesn’t intend for every passage, every verse, or every quote to speak to me, and that’s how it should be. Because when He does speak, it’s so good and so precious. And those things that He IS teaching me are so important. Sometimes it's hard for me to hear His voice in the midst of the chaos of life, but I'm learning slowly to appreciate the silence--to know that He's still there, just waiting to reveal Himself to me.

So I’ve learned to cherish those times when I feel like God is jumping off the page at me, but keep pushing through the other times, too. There will be ups and downs with my Bible reading and devotionals—it’s not always going to be an emotional experience. I’m prone to needing to “feel” something to think I’ve learned something, when that’s not the case. This study has opened my eyes to so much about the Bible that I didn’t know before, and I think it’s genuinely just a starting point to what the Lord is revealing to me. He’s just starting to teach me about His names and what they mean. He’s not finished with me yet!

Another thing that’s become clear to me is a “virtual” Bible study doesn’t work for me. Don't get me wrong--I've loved every bit of sharing this with those who have participated; but still, it was just different. I’m a tangible learner; I need to be surrounded by people to discuss things, maybe not every week, but at least a few times throughout a study, for me to really “get” things. Sure, I have an understanding of most things, but God made us all differently; Nicole may read a passage and gather one thing out of it, and I may get something totally different. 

That doesn’t mean either is better, just means that God is teaching us in different ways, and maybe even different things. I thrive on discussion; I love getting to hold hands to pray, laugh out loud with other believers, talk about the parts we didn’t like or understand, and dive further into His Word together. 

God made the Body of Christ so that we could fellowship together and truly create a community, not just be faces behind computer screens. I think the word community is misconstrued so often with the blog world—a community is so much more than just a group of people brought together by a common thread. A community is a family, people who know each other deep down, past the superficial things. A group of people who long to serve each other and others, who thrive on doing good around them, away from a computer, sometimes. A community is tangible and loving and heartfelt. And I longed for that so much with this study. Nicole and I discussed it a bunch, and I’ve talked to a few others about it too, but it just wasn’t the same. And I think that all along, God was teaching me how much I need the Body of Christ to learn and grow.

But, back to our study. There have been so many days, instances, and situations in the past 6 weeks when my mind has immediately gone to the name of God that pertained to what was going on. I’ve prayed for El Shaddai to cover me, for El Roi to know the situation surrounding me and for Him to do His will, and I've prayed Jehovah-rapha, over friends, myself, and strangers on a prayer request list.

I’ve seen faces of God that I never knew before, and I’m so grateful for that. It’s been a huge blessing in my life, and although every page wasn’t a huge revelation, I know He’s made Himself known in my heart and has planted that seed for me to keep learning about who He is. 

Friends, I'm so glad you journeyed along this with me. If you've participated, what have you learned? Has God revealed anything to you during this study? How I long to be able to just sit with you and revel over how good the Lord is in our lives! One day, friends, one day! Happy weekend to you. Xoxo

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