Session 6 - Week 5 Dear Sisters in Christ…
There is so much I want to say. Have you discovered everything else falls into place when you Love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength and your neighbor as yourself?
Second, I want to apologize to any I have offended during our Beth Moore studies. If anything I have said has not pointed you to Jesus Christ (so we can grow up in Him [James 1:4, 1 Cor.2:6, Hebrews 5:14]), then it was foolishness and has no value. Please disregard it. You do not need me or Beth Moore or a Pastor or other leader as a guide to the Bible or Scripture study. Most who teach are grateful to do the leg work. Everyone needs the Holy Spirit.
My most sincere prayer for all of you is that you know ever increasingly that the all-supreme-being-above-anything-we-can-think-or-imagine-God has a loving, mercy-filled passion for you (singularly and quantitatively) that NEVER fails. With this I pray you hunger for Scripture so Scripture becomes guardian of your thoughts, feelings, actions, and words. (And I pray this for me as well!)
I send this because of verses I have read this morning that encouraged me once again to put everything in perspective… 1 Corinthians 10:31 “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God.” 1 Peter 2:10 “Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” Proverbs 14:15 “The gullible believe anything they're told; the prudent sift and weigh every word.” And Proverbs 22:3 “A prudent person sees trouble coming and ducks; a simpleton walks in blindly and is clobbered.” (Proverbs are out of The Message paraphrase/translation.) Maybe you do not see the connection with the study of James, but for me the points are glaring.
I wish in this last session that Beth Moore would have camped less on treating our fellow believers with respect or cynicism as a Spiritual malady (not as a personality trait) and more on this bullet point: it is appropriate to turn joy into gloom when we don’t take God seriously. This bullet point was her lead to James 4:5 (NRSA) “Or do you suppose that it is for nothing that the scripture says, "God yearns jealously for the spirit that he has made to dwell in us"?”
There is a great deal in the commentaries about the word “spirit” that God has made to dwell in us. Some who are doing homework hit on this in our study. The words that I appreciate from James are these “do you suppose that it is for nothing that the scripture says, “God yearns...”
What I am most guilty of in my everyday life is forgetting that God yearns for me. There are times that I have been dismissive and even brazen in disregarding Scripture, God, and my fellow believer; I do just exactly what I was not to do. When I live to myself and not for God’s glory and when I forget the wonder of God’s mercy, that is when for certain deep trouble comes to me and worse to people I love. But there have also been times when I have been very obedient, and still crap happened. My point is regardless of what I do or do not do, GOD YEARNS for me and whatever that spirit is God has made to dwell…
It starts with God and it ends with God. Another way to say this is that God is the Beginning and Completion of all. When I think too much of myself and my thoughts, when I glory in my works or intelligence, that’s when it is the right time to humble myself, admit God is God and I am not, and turn my joy into gloom. So with that I say again (to myself as much as anybody listening), first and foremost Love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength and your neighbor as yourself.