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« Blogging | Main | Memory Monday: Lamentations 3:21-24 »

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Lisa notes...

1. My biggest “aha” moment: seeing mentoring from a different perspective – for the sole purpose of bringing glory to God.

2. A change in thought definitely comes first. I struggle to break free of being too easily being “irritated” by certain others. Telling myself to “be nice” just doesn’t cut it. I have to search deep into my own prideful thoughts of “I don’t deserve difficulties”, etc., so that Christ can change my heart.

And yes, I would definitely appreciate prayers for this. The Spirit is working on me, but I’m still not where I want to be.

3. I do believe that training younger women to be godly is critical to the direction of our nation. We’ve seen how detrimental it is when boys have no father figure in their lives, but it’s equally damaging when girls have no positive role models either.

4. Of the four traits, the “not slanderers” hits me the hardest. Not because I'm tempted to go around “slandering” people per se. But because I complain in general more than I should. I want to eliminate a critical spirit altogether and be more pleasing to the Lord with my tongue.

5. This was convicting. It removes excuses about why *I* should NOT be considered an “older woman.”

6. The “celebrate” section encouraged me that it is all worthwhile. Becoming a physical mother definitely brought out new traits in me; becoming a spiritual mother can do the same.

I posted a summary of Chapter 3 on my blog:

http://lisanotes.blogspot.com/2009/10/who-and-why-of-spiritual-mothering-ch-3.html

"The WHO and WHY of Spiritual Mothering"

Tammy

1. Honestly I'm enjoying everything about the book. My biggest a-ah moment has probably been my realization of how necessary mentoring is. It is not just a "new ministry idea" floating around out there, it is a command.

2. My thinking changed a lot when I realized my purpose in life was to glorify God. I was always looking around trying to find something to fill that purpose. Now that I know what my purpose is, I can do other things that do just that...glorify God.(Not sure I'm wording that correctly, hopefully it makes sense?!)

I still have lots of problems with my "I-can-do-it-myself" attitude. So often I still try to do it myself, and then when that doesn't work...I look to God for help, when I need to go to Him first. I would appreciate your prayers as I try to do better at this.

3. Loved the quote by Adams! And I think I could go on and on about this subject. I just know I didn't have any good influences from my female role models growing up and I have made a decision in my own life that I will do my best to be a godly example to my little one. We talk about what is right and wrong, about modesty and things like that. I think what we teach our girls makes a huge difference as to what our culture will look like in the future. And I think if more young girls are challenged to go beyond good and be great for God, our country would certainly benefit from it.

4. I need to work on my tongue. Making sure what comes out of my mouth is wise and not always critical and complaining.

5. Things that have held me back: I don't know enough, I'm too shy, I lack confidence, I never had a mentor so how could I be one. Should any of those reasons hold me back, no! But sometimes I still feel very unqualified.

6. Something I need to remember...
"Don't sell yourself short, and don't rob the kingdom of what you have to offer! If you are a Christian woman who is seeking to grow in the faith and to live obediently, then you are qualified for spiritual motherhood."

Thanks for doing this Bible study. I'm really enjoying it!

Joanne @ The Simple Wife

Oh Tammy, I so struggle with self-sufficiency too. And God so clearly revealed to me that it is pride. Plain and ugly pride. Yes, it's thinking that must change first!

(BTW, I blogged about it once upon a time here: http://thesimplewife.typepad.com/the_simple_wife/2007/10/the-big-pit-in-.html)

And, yes, that mentoring isn't just a neat ministry idea, a "you might want to try it" kind of a thing, but a command. That's huge. We are commanded to do this. And therefore equipped to do it. Because God equips us to do what he's called/commanded us to do!

Thanks for your thoughtful responses!

Joanne

Joanne @ The Simple Wife

You know, I get the main post done and then sorta forget that I never posted my answers! But the whole house is sleeping, the cat is purring in my lap, and I'm going to take a minute now!

1. My biggest a-ha? I think I'd have to agree with Tammy. This is a COMMAND. This is something I must do to obey God. At the same time, I don't need to force it. So I'll continue to pray for someone to approach me and for wisdom as to who I should approach.

Because God commands me to do this, I can trust him to work out the details.

What I'm telling others? Read this book! Though it's definitely a book on a particular topic, I feel like I'm learning so much about myself and being challenged to grow and step it up spiritually. This is as much about my relationship with God as it is about my relationships with other women.

2. Scripture is full of this idea--this TRUTH--that we must change our thinking for our behavior to change.

"Be transformed by the renewing of your mind," Paul writes in Romans. Over and over again, we are told to "set our minds"--that's when behavior changes.

This ties into another a-ha for me. The fact that Mary's whole identity was stated in "I am the Lord's servant" has been a huge eye opener for me. As I start each day, I'm telling God, "I am your servant" and asking him to transform my identity.

That's what I want my mindset to be--and as a servant, then I'll be quick and ready and willing and able to obey my Master. My behavior will be in line with what he commands if my identity, my mind is set on being his servant.

3. The idea of the URGENCY of this call got my attention. All too often, I think I'll get to things eventually, that there's time. But this made me see that we cannot wait (except on the Lord's timing, of course!), we cannot put off mentoring until we think we are ready, until we have some time, until...you fill in the blank.

Lives are at stake.

And the whole idea that the manners of women being the measurement of a nation's morality and virtue? Have to say that scares me. Because, in general, I think we're in trouble.

BUT, as Christian women rise up with excellence and purpose and willing to pour out their lives serving others--it will make a difference. It can be a revolution, turning it around as we teach other women what it means not just to be women, but ladies.

4. "Without control of the tongue, a woman cannot have a positive influence on a younger woman." Lord, give me wisdom and tame my tongue. Show me what to say, when to say it, how to say it. Set a guard over my lips. Take over my mouth and use it for your glory alone.

5. What's held me back from mentoring? Thinking I'm too busy. Thinking no one has asked. Thinking God hasn't pointed someone out.

And, yet, I think I do mentor. In fact, I can think of one friend in particular who I have this kind of relationship with. No, she never said, "Will you mentor me?" And it's not a formal, structured kind of a thing. But God is showing me that there's an element of mentoring in our relationship.

What's held me back from asking someone to mentor me? Putting it off. Fear. Pride. Uncertainty.

I am convicted that this needs to be a daily request before God: Who would you have me ask to mentor me? Make me available and open to the person who will ask me to mentor her.

6. From page 50: "It brings out the best in us because it requires laying self aside."

Deny yourself.
Pick up your cross daily.
Follow me.

Pam

Joanne - you're mentoring all the time just living your life, writing your books, sharing on your blogs...Memory Mondays, Frugal Fridays, sharing what you're doing, what you're studying, what you're learning, what you're reading...definitely mentoring.

My answers to this weeks questions -

1. My favorite thing about the book is that it keeps challenging me to live what I've learned, to "bloom where I'm planted", to be the best self I was created to be, all to glorify God. My "aha" moment was also realizing that this mentoring of other women was a COMMAND.

2. I've always found that real change has to come from the inside out. I loved the lines in the book "The only legitimate goodness is that which is produced by the Holy Spirit. Teaching what is good is impossible if I don't have the goodness of Christ because my badness will infiltrate my life and my teaching."

I've been asking God for help in not just controlling my tongue (not criticizing, not complaining, not gossiping), but in changing my thinking so that those thoughts don't even enter my mind.

3. I definitely agree that focusing our energy on and investing in mentoring relationships is a pivotal issue in our culture and is the way to combat the deterioration of our society. I love the John Adams quote and it's a warning for us to heed.

4. Each of the characteristics of the command stood out to me. Again, what I'm working on and praying about is to not even think about complaining, criticizing or gossiping.

5. There is nothing holding me back from mentoring others. I've always thought that God will use us right where we are.

Pam

Lisa, Joanne & Tammy -

Sounds like we're all working on the same characteristic - struggling with our thoughts and our words. I'm praying for you. Please pray for me too...

Pam

Jamie

I'm finally getting around to posting this week (hubby and I went away for two days to celebrate our anniversary).

I love what y'all are writing. It makes me re-think what I've written but I will keep it there because it was my first reaction. Just know that while reading all your answers I'm sitting here nodding my head saying "me too, i agree".

My prayer is for you to live to glorify God today in all you do and say!

http://jamespurejoy.blogspot.com/2009/10/spiritual-mothering-chapter-3.html

Jamie

Hey ladies, you've inspired me to create some simple little "mini posters" is what I call them. They have some of the main thoughts written on them and I plan on printing them and hanging them around my house. If you'd like me to email you the file let me know! Some of the statements are taken from you (Joanne and Tammy) all and I hope you don't mind. Check them out here:
http://jamespurejoy.blogspot.com/2009/10/bad-memory.html

Lisa notes...

Jamie: your mini posters are so adorable and inspiring. I'll send you my e-mail address so I can get the files from you. Thanks!

Pam: I love your answer to # 5: "There is nothing holding me back from mentoring others. I've always thought that God will use us right where we are."

I *want* to be there, but instead I find myself believing lies like "I just don't have time right now" or "who want MY help?" etc. So thanks for sharing your confidence in what GOD wants to do. It's about him and his power anyway, not us and our power.

jenny

Sorry I am so behind.I have been busy with 2 sick kids. So I will take a quick minute and try to be on time this week.

1. My biggest aha moment is that mentoring is a command not just a ministry and I must do so to be obiediant to God.
I am enjoying everything about this book.

2 .For change to last it has to start with inside with our hearts. It is way to easy to act like we have it together when we are a mess on the inside. For me I struggle with my thoughts, words. I too like Lisa get irritated with people very easily. I pray everyday for a change of heart and I struggle so bad with this and I know it is wrong to be this way.

3. I do believe that training young women is very important . Girls need a positive role models. I feel that sometimes we forget to focus on the girls. It is just as important as a father/son relationship if not more. Women need more support in raising children, running a household etc.

4. For me it is not to be slanders. I don't slander but I tend to be a little loose and careless with my words. I sometimes speak before I think about how it will sound or come across. I also have a tone to my voice that can be hurtful and I don't realize that I have that.

5. There is a lot that I feel is holding me back. I feel that I don't know enough, too busy, lack of confidence.

Aurora @ Under Transformation

I'm part of the Behind Group, too! My answers for Chapter 3 are here -- http://wp.me/pqFt7-1z. Hope to get caught up this week -- will see if my work schedule cooperates!

Looking forward to reading everyone elses thoughts and insights!

Aurora

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