Thursday, January 28, 2010

Philippians

Update on baby: NOTHING HAPPENING YET. :)
If you want to know when I go into labor and follow us during the process, add me as a friend on facebook as Tim will be documenting the delivery. I would love for you to be praying while I am in labor.
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Last September, the Bible Study girls that meet on my back porch and I started studying the book of Philippians. We had just finished the book of Colossians. We had memorized a passage in Colossians while we studied it. This time, I told them to be looking for a passage in Philippians they wanted to memorize. Then, these joking words came out of my mouth, "Or, we could memorize the WHOLE book, ha ha ha". Jennifer's eyes lit up and said, "YES!! LET'S DO IT!!".
I said, (gulp) "OK. Let's do it". So, we learned 7 verses a week and then studied them after we memorized them. We did really great with the first 2 chapters and then the holidays started to come around and we began to get lazy. We were slacking off on the last 2 chapters when I knew I had to do something for motivation or we were not going to finish strong. So, I said, "Girls. We are going to have a verse off. Reciting the whole book in front of a local pastor who will grade us and award one of us the crown". That was all we needed. All 3 of us are competitive so we all picked up the pace and were ready to win.
(FYI:This Bible Study has had lots of girls in it. Not all of them are as insanely competitive as we are so they did not join in the verse-off.)
I have been studying and studying lately. Although, you would be shocked to know how little time it takes to memorize Scripture. I am sure I was on facebook 1,000 times longer than it took me to memorize the book of Philippians. It is HARD, no doubt about that but if I can do it, you can.
And, as I have said before, it will absolutely change your life and your walk with God.
Anyway, yesterday was THE DAY. The verse off. One of us would be crowned the new Miss Philippians, get $30, and the gold medal.
The pastor was ready in his office at 12:00 for the challenge. He was our righteous judge. One by one, (me first!!!) we all said the entire book of Philippians. Being docked every time we messed up on ANY word and being timed. It was so quiet you could hear a pin drop. The only thing you could hear was the pastor's pen grading you. I got to the end of chapter one and froze. I had to forfeit a point by raising my hand and asking for help. Then I got back in the groove and flew through the rest. I was sweating and shaking as the beautiful words of Philippians poured out of my mouth. After I finished, I realized I had left out a WHOLE verse in chapter 4 which means I would be docked for every word!
Then, Jennifer went and then Shannon.
We all cheered for the other and hugged when we completed the book.
Then we went out into the hall and waited on him to grade our scores.
He was done. We walked into the room and he told us how proud of us he had been. He then said that the scores were all close and that the winner won by 1 point!
I was so proud of us-- it didn't matter who won (even though I had been talking smack for the whole week prior).
And, the winner was ME!!!!!!!!!!!!
What an honor.
I was so excited. We had worked so hard. I remembered when sweet Jennifer had come up to me at Tim's office (she is a hygienist for him) and said, "I want to learn the Bible. Will you teach me?". That was about 2 years ago. Now, God has worked so much in her life that she may be the next Beth Moore. She is a leader and leading women's Bible Studies at her Church.
Since starting the Bible Study, Shannon who had been dealing with depression and on anti-depressants has grown so much and been set free of so much that she is off of anti-depressants for the first time in 15 years and thriving in freedom and love for Christ. She is also in leadership positions at her Church.
It has been AMAZING to watch the power of the Word of God in each of our lives. Strengthening us, empowering us, SETTING US FREE.
I am so thankful for these friendships. We are absolutely walking through life together and fighting one another's battles together. Bearing each other's burdens through prayer and encouragement.
If you do not have a group of girls or a Bible Study where God's Word is honored, FIND ONE!
If you live locally, you can come to ours. We are starting Psalm 119 next Wednesday. And, yes, we are memorizing it.
All 176 verses.
"I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength!" Philippians 4:13





Waiting on the results.








The righteous judge.





The suspense.





















I love these 2 girls!!!!!!!!!!!






Boys still anxiously awaiting their sister. They are in her room ALL the time.







Tim and I going out to celebrate our 8th anniversary. I LOVE HIM more everyday.
Stay tuned for baby!!

5 comments:

Erin said...

Hooray!!! Congratulations! And LOVE the tiara! :) All three of you are awesome! And gorgeous!

I want to move to TN to join your bible study! :)

ocean mommy said...

Congrats!!!! I had to laugh when I saw Troy W. He was on staff at Silverdale when we were there several years ago.

So proud of you three girls that I do not know! That is just awesome!!! I spent last year memorizing scripture with a bunch of Siesta's over at Beth Moore's blog and totally agree...it changes your life! I can honestly say that even after years of Bible study, 2009 was the year I "got" that the word of God is living and active.

IN 2010 God has me memorizing Psalm 145.

Blessings on your precious baby! Praying for a healthy delivery.

Stephanie

The Hawkinson Gang said...

I just looked over the book to see what you actually memorized. WOW! I don't think I could do it! Great Job!

HowryFamily said...

Your blog is such an encouragement to me!!! LOVE that you guys had a memory verse contest:)
I just added you as a friend on facebook... I want to be praying for you while you're having your sweet baby girl. So excited for you and your family! God is GOOD!!!

Rachel said...

Steph-
Yay! And I so can't wait for Hope to join you in "boydom."
I must also say that having known Shannon for quite some time it was quite a feat for her to have done this! As she may tell you sometime, the two of us were rarely able to focus on anything in our office at any great length. I am very proud of all of you gals for going forth and doing this together. We need each other to challenge us and encourage growth!
Love you gals! -Rach