Monday, April 19, 2010

The Life of Christ In Us # 7

In continuing on our Bible Study lesson on "Beautiful Things Happen When A Woman Trusts God by Shelia Walsh, we pick up our lesson number 7 with, The Life of Christ in Us.

The fact that Tabitha is the only woman in the New Testament to be given the title, "disciple" is arresting to me. When you think of the word, disciple, what comes to mind? When I think of the twelve men that Christ chose to share his three years of earthly ministry, it's clear that they saw so much. They witnessed miracle after miracle. They sat with Jesus as he shared things with them that the crowds did not get to hear. They were there when Lazarus stumbled back into his own skin and into daylight. They shared that last precious meal that Christ would eat on earth and watched as he was dragged away to a mockery of a trial. They lamented and hoped during his ultimate execution. They saw the resurrected Christ, heard his voice again. They looked into those eyes of blazing love again.

Peter, who had once denied even knowing Christ, at his own crucifixion declared he was unworthy to die in the same manner as his Savior. He asked, instead, to be crucified upside down. But what of Tabitha? She didn't see any of that but she was called, "disciple." She was called disciple because she "got it." She understood that whether you are in a crowd that witnessed the spectacular or in a quiet room making clothes for the destitute, every single thing you do matters when it is motivated by a heart of love for Christ.

FIND ~ Now there was in Joppa a disciple named Tabitha...She was full of good works and acts of charity. In those days she became ill and died and when they had washed her, they laid her in an upper room...All the widow stood...weeping and showing tunics and other garments that (Tabitha) made while she was with them. But Peter put them all outside, and knelt down and prayed; and turning to the body he said, "Tabitha, arise." And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up. And he gave her his hand and raised her up. Then calling the saints and widows, he presented her alive. ~ Acts 9:36-41 ESV

Tabitha was a follower of Christ and her death saddened those who knew her. She was known for her faithfulness. If your life ended right now, for what would you be remembered?

I would say it would be for being a great mom, wife and friend to anyone who knew me.

Read Psalm 16:1-11

1 Keep me safe, O God,
for in you I take refuge.

2 I said to the LORD, "You are my Lord;
apart from you I have no good thing."

3 As for the saints who are in the land,
they are the glorious ones in whom is all my delight. b]">[b]

4 The sorrows of those will increase
who run after other gods.
I will not pour out their libations of blood
or take up their names on my lips.

5 LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup;
you have made my lot secure.

6 The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
surely I have a delightful inheritance.

7 I will praise the LORD, who counsels me;
even at night my heart instructs me.

8 I have set the LORD always before me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.

9 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure,

10 because you will not abandon me to the grave, c]">[c]
nor will you let your Holy One d]">[d] see decay.

11 You have made e]">[e] known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

How would you characterize the mood of the psalmist as he wrote these words?

I would have to say hopeful and full of expection of something better to come.

On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the maximum, rate the psalmist's trust in God - 10!

Using the same scale, rate your trust in God, 10!

Explain any differences between the two ratings.

There technically shouldn't believe, if we really trust God like we say we do, however I don't think we think or act like it most of the time, especially when doubt comes creeping in when things don't go the way we would like. God never said it would be our way, but His way in our lives. Once we accept that, it really does change your outlook but it must be something looked at everyday in our lives, in our hearts and in our minds.

Review verses 9-11, and rewrite them as your expression of your trust in God. Be completely honest as you express your trust.

9 God may might heart be filled with gladness and my words reflect those feelings; then will my body and mind rest in the confidence of your promises for me.

10 You will not leave me in the grave to die but will be reunited with you in a new spiritual body so I can stand in your presence, holy and pure.

11 By your promises of believing in You, I have eternal life, and I will rejoice in that promise and the hope to come that my salvation is assured and I will never again be separated from you or the ones I love.

FEEL ~ Think about your most recent experience with the death of a loved one or friend. What emotions did you experience as you lived through this experience?

I was sad that we would no longer be with that person here on Earth any longer, but joyful in knowing that she was going to be reunited with our Lord and Savior and receive her eternal reward in heaven. I know I will see her again.

How did that experience affect your trust in God? Explain your response.

It is what God has always promised, the simple belief in Him and in knowing what all He had to do to assure us that our relationship was restored once more with God the Father. I just need to stand on those promises more when doubt comes in to my thoughts.

Tabitha was well loved and those who loved her were not ready to say goodbye. Yet, she died. Why do you think the people sent for Peter?

I believe it was to bless her and not necessarily heal her but to give comfort to those who had lost her presence in their lives.

Peter had faith in God's ability to raise Tabitha because he had seen Jesus raise Jairus' daughter. What have you seen Jesus do that gives you assurance of his ability to intervene in your life in the future?

He answers prayers. Sometimes it takes a year, 6 months or just a day but He does answer them and He will never ever leave you in the midst of your struggle. He is simply waiting for you to reach out to Him for help!

FOLLOW ~ The raising of Tabitha from the dead caused many people to put their faith in Jesus. What is Jesus doing in and through your life that would draw other people to have faith in Him?

I would hope that those that have read through my blogs each and every day and personally read my struggles and see the truimph that comes from my faith, will in turn realize that it is available to everyone who believes in God. I have nothing special just a love for my God and Savior, Jesus Christ!

When we have had an encounter with the risen Christ, and he transforms our lives, he changes our hearts too. We want to serve, love and show mercy - these things are evidence of a maturing faith, especially when the things that move the Son of God move our hearts too! To what extent does your lifestyle reflect Christ's transformational power? Do you want to serve, love and show mercy? Why or why not?

How can we not after witnessing ourselves what God is capable of doing in our lives. It's remembering those times long after they are gone that keep that belief and love alive in our hearts. The enemy loves to remind us of our short comings but staying close to God at all times and not just when the going gets rough, helps us stay on the right path of serving Him.

Summarize the instructions of Psalm 16:1-11, by completing the following statement:

Because the psalmist said, trust in God no matter what,

I will do just that and stand on those promises of hope.

Now write a prayer expressing your desire to trust God even when the circumstances seem impossible. Use this prayer as part of your daily time with God and as an expression of your desire to follow him even when the path is uncertain.

Abba Father,

You alone make everything in this world and beyond possible just by the single word you speak or a thought you have. In the midst of circumstances that seem out of control, I need to remember that nothing that happens does not pass first through your hands and with your knowledge. Help me to stand with you despite the uncertain path ahead and trust that with You, whatever Your will is, I will stand united with you and You will bring me through it all. In Jesus, Mighty Name ~ AMEN


Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this Kat. You have blessed my life so much due to your continuous support and to your wonderful, uplifting posts on your blog.

God Bless you!

(PS How are you feeling now?)

Amy said...

Thank you for this post. We too can witness the miracles of God today if we have our eyes fixed on Him. Miss you! Happy Monday! ~Amy

Aine Willis said...

This was a great post, Kat. Thank you for giving me these things to think about today. God Bless, Aine :)

Grace on the Narrow Path said...

Thank you for sharing this inspiring and thought provoking post today. When I go home (Heaven) I believe my family/friends will say, Bren was a child of God. She loved her family and she loved to tell others about Christ. That is my hope.
God bless you, Kat.

Andrea said...

I am not sure how others would think of me when I am gone...I pray they would find some good in the things I have tried to do with my kids, grandbaby and in others lives.

Miracles abound all around us..sometimes we are just too busy to see them. I pray GOD always gives me eyes to see.
Hugs, andrea

Darcie said...

Lately the one word that has been coming to me over and over again is trust...I need so much more trust and faith in God. Thanks for sharing this motivating post with us Kat.

Mich said...

To be remembered as a woman who loved Christ.

That is my goal.

hope you are having a beautiful day.

Denise said...

Bless you sis for this.

Angel said...

Thank you for another wonderful post. Oh to be a Tabitha. To be called His disciple!!! What a wonderful thing. Love you, Angel

Beth Herring said...

I just have to get this book - it sounds like something that I would really love!

Sandra said...

What a great post Kat, I loved this, definitely thought provoking :)

Hope you're doing well.


Beth E. said...

Wonderful post, Kat! My son's girlfriend is named Tabitha. Praying that she will develop the same passion for the Lord as the original Tabitha! :-)

Kelly L said...

I love this quote - He answers prayers. Sometimes it takes a year, 6 months or just a day but He does answer them and He will never ever leave you in the midst of your struggle. He is simply waiting for you to reach out to Him for help!

Thank you, Kat - this is what I needed to hear today.
Love to you.

christy rose said...

I really enjoyed reading this Kat! I have been so preoccupied lately, I have not had much time for posting or visiting my wonderful blogging friends. I am trying to visit today and I am being so blessed by so many different things going on in their lives. I needed to hear and see the great things God is showing everyone. It is such a blessing to me to feel like I am a small part of so many people in the body of Christ all over the world. I love having you as a blogging friend. :) Hope you are feeling great and having a wonderful day!!!