Chronicling 40: Day 89 of 365

awakenReally excited to start off a new devotion, and to do this along with some other local ladies.

It’s been a while since I’ve led or participated this kind of a group, as I’ve been busy leading other projects.

We must feed our soul, nourish ourselves with the Word and in fellowship with other believers.

If you are a leader, you can sometimes forget to feed yourself.  Sometimes, as a leader, we need to be a part of a group instead of leading it.  It helps us remember what it is like to be a participate and gives us a glimpse of a perspective we may have lost over all the years of leading.  Sometimes it feels good to be just “one of the girls” instead of the lady in charge.

So, instead of leading an official study group, we’ve come together for “Conversations and Coffee” where we are going to share how the devotion is impacting us, how these words each day are driving us to a deeper relationship with the God who speaks.

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Motherhood is Missional, A Review

I received a copy of Missional Motherhood, The Bible Study from Lifeway for the purpose of reviewing.  I purchased the book that inspired the study, Missional Motherhood.  This is an honest review of the STUDY, and is in no way influenced by the gifted study.

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I have been a mother for over 17 years.  During that time I have not only been a part of Women’s Ministries that are full of moms, but also MOPS International groups.  One thing I have learned about being a mom, over all of these years, is that I still have room to learn more.  Another thing I have learned is that many of us mothers share a similar feeling, a desire to be more than “just a mom”.

There are some women who were born to be mothers, and what I mean by that is that these are women who desired nothing more than being a mom when they were of age.  They played house, always taking the role of mom.  They loved on other babies, and the news of becoming a big sister was something that excited them beyond measure.  They were babysitters and helped in the church nursery as soon as they were old enough.  In fact, at a very early age they probably knew how many babies they wanted to have and even what their names would be.

Then there are other women, who didn’t have motherhood on their radar as their ultimate calling.  It wasn’t something that they desired from a young age.  When they played with their dolls they took the role of teacher or doctor.  Their life goals were aimed at having a successful career, doing something significant in the world, or even serving as missionaries in a foreign country.  Children may or not have been included in those dreams and goals.

I was in the latter camp.  When I was pregnant with my first child the plan had been that I would return to work & my husband would stay  home those first few years.  At the time, I made more income than he did.  It just made fiscal sense.  Yet, once that tiny little body was place in my arms… the Lord changed my heart.  We decided that I would stay home and we would trust in the Lord’s provision.  He never failed us.

Yet, it was very difficult for me when I would be asked the question:  So, what do you do?

It wasn’t common in our area for women to stay home with their children.  Even members of my own family didn’t understand the decision.  Was I wasting my education, my skills, my talents, and my potential?   It was like I lost my identity and become someone’s wife… someone’s mom.   Over the years, as I have sat with other women … I hear those thoughts echoed.

We desire to be known, to be seen, to have purpose, and to have impact.  Somewhere along the line we lost the view of motherhood as a calling and instead it became something we just “do”.  Our value and worth began to reside in our accomplishments outside of the home, and when that was no longer an option… we felt lost.  Like we were doing nothing important, and yet the Lord had given us a very important calling.

Society’s focus on accomplishments have tainted our view’s of motherhood, and Gloria Furman does a great job at point out our need to reclaim this role.  Utilizing scriptures from the Old and New Testament, we examine how the role of Motherhood fits into God’s plan.   The Bible Study encompasses many of the bible study techniques that we may be familiar with in conjunction with our own personal reflections.  What I also appreciate is Gloria Furman not only talks about the mission of motherhood in regard to the typical American family but explores what this looks like in other cultures and how we interact with other cultures.

Throughout the study we begin to see how our role as mother is part of our Great Commission calling, for every woman.  For the mom who questions her purpose, this study helps her find her identity in Christ and the mission God has called her to fulfill in this season of her life.    We explore how our every day lives fall into the larger story of God’s redemptive plan.

From life giving creation to The Great Commission, our role as mothers is far beyond “just a mom”.  We are disciplers, mentors, teachers, leaders, guides, nurturers, providers, and so much more…. all in the confines of our own homes.  When our identity is rooted in Christ, then the gifts we have been given by the Holy Spirit are put to use in our homes.  This is our mission field, where we serve as a teacher to those in our charge and an example to the world watching us.  We are a family set apart, different… and we can find satisfaction in our purpose.

Whether you are a first time mom, a seasoned mother, or an empty-nester serving as a mentor mom… we all still have a thing or two to learn and share.  This would be a great study for a small group of mothers, MOPS group, or even as a gift to a mom to be.

Coloring Books! Scripture! I’m in!!!

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I was really excited when this coloring book set arrived from B&H Publishing for me to review.  Who doesn’t want to “review” a coloring book!!!!  So, I cracked open the first book and began coloring away.  The pages are super smooth, but they are not pure white.  If you want to have a brilliant white in your finished piece, you’ll want to use a white crayon, pencil, gel stick, or gel pen.  Other than that, I was really impressed with how smoothly my colored pencils glided on the page, which made controlling how dark or light the color went on much easier.  Even though the books are smaller than most coloring books, the details were not so fine that I couldn’t saturate the spaces.  Their size makes them super convenient for travel too.  In fact, I’m heading to a conference in a few weeks and I’ll be packing these for my plane ride.

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Some pages are images to color, others include scripture references (like the photo above), and there are also some that have prompts where you can journal your thoughts.  Almost every page has some white space that you can add your own personal thoughts to, albeit some have greater space than others.

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There are pages that contain single images, as well as some where it is one image that bridge across the page.  If you want to pull these pages out for framing, there is no perforation and the spine doesn’t open totally flat.  Therefore, it can be difficult to get into the very center.  If you intend to frame the images, then you may want to use a paper cutter to slice through the spine.  This will allow you to color all the way to the inside edge.

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After I walked through some of the pages in the first book of the SET… yes loves, it is a SET.  I realized that the second book is full of empty pages!!!!  Be still my heART!   Maybe you are not really artsy, the first book can be great inspiration to help you dive into the second book.  Perhaps you want to use the second book to record your thoughts as you work through the first book.  Or, let it be a blank canvas for releasing your own designs and thoughts.  I decided I wanted to use it as a prayer journal.  The pages are super thick, which allowed me to use a nice bold black marker without it bleeding through the page.

This set is a perfect “thinking of you” gift, hostess gift, birthday gift, stocking stuffer… or a “sorry your bored in the hospital here is something to do” gift.

Most places offer this book for under $12!

Definitely a set I would recommend, whether you consider yourself creative or not.

BOOK REVIEW: Gospel Centered Teaching by Trevin Wax

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I was given this book at a writers workshop at The Gospel Coalition’s Womens Conference.  I couldn’t think of better time to pick up a book like this, since our fall small groups are getting ready to start up at my home church.  The book’s first pages have  a lot of great accolades, from prominent teachers, that point toward this being a must read for anyone who is in a teaching position over other believers.   Pastors.  Small Group Leaders.  Ministry Leaders.  This book was written for you.  Not just for those who are currently teaching alone, but also for those who are considering answering the call to teach for the first time.

Regarding the Author:  Trevin Wax

When preparing a book that could be used by scholared teachers of the Word AND your every day small group lay leader, it is important to provide content that is easy to follow.  Trevin Wax has written a book that stays on track, moves from point to point with ease, utilizes famailiar verbiage, and condenses the information into a format that is not intimidating.  This book, if given to a small group leader, could easily be read within a short period.    The book is a comfortable read, and it is evident that Trevin Wax understands the audience that will be reading this book.

Regarding the Book:  Gospel Centered Teaching

When one steps up to teach a small group, for the first time, it can be a bit scary.  What do I teach?  How do I teach?  Will I be a good teacher?  When one has been teaching small groups, speaking in front of groups, or even presenting sermons for a long season; there are times where we can lose focus on what the point of it all is.  Perhaps we have gotten caught up in the bible stories themselves, over whom they point to.    It may even be a possibility that our every day lives have brought us to a place where we have a world view of things vs. a gospel view.   This can taint the perceptions of even the most seasoned teacher.  In some cases we may find ourselves teaching a great moral lesson and tacking a quick snippet about the gospel at the end, for good measure or because we feel the need to.  It becomes an after thought.

Gospel Centered Teaching is a great book for small group leaders and teachers of all seasons* because it helps bring us back into the heart of the scriptures.  We need to know the basics of the Gospel ourselves, we need to make sure that we can present the Gospel accurately, we need to understand WHY we need to keep our teaching Gospel centered, and finally we need to continually remind ourselves to keep the Gospel center to our teaching and presentations.  Trevin Wax’s practical explanations & easy to read format, make this a great book to give to your small group leaders and staff members.

From the Text:

“If we are not careful , the pursuit of knowledge is merely a sham to make ourselves feel intellectually superior to those around us. We start to view spiritual maturity in terms of knowledge rather than obedience.” (Trevin Wax, Gospel Centered Teaching)

“If we learn individual bible stories and never connect them to the big story; We put ourselves in the scene as if we are the main character.”  (Trevin Wax, Gospel Centered Teaching)

“Just because you know the Bible, doesn’t mean the Word will bear fruit in your life.”

 

Gospel Centered Teaching

Author: Trevin Wax

Publisher:  BH Publishing Group

ISBN:  978-1-4336-8172-1

Book Signing in Pensacola FL – Coach Bobby Bowden- “The Wisdom of Faith”

“Coach Bowden gives us insight into the role his strong faith in God has played in his life.  He continues to coach as he reveals his game plan for victorious living.”

—Sylvester Croom, NFL’s Tennessee Titans running backs coach, one of the first African-American athletes at University of Alabama

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Former Florida State University head coach Bobby Bowden, the winningest coach in NCAA Division 1 football history, is set to embark on a book and media tour for his new book, “The  Wisdom of Faith,” written with Steve Bowden, that releases nationwide on Sept. 1, 2014, with the B&H Publishing Group.

Bowden will begin the almost week long media portion of the tour on Aug. 26, 2014, in New York City with interviews including FOX News Channel’s FOX & Friends, FOX News Radio’s Kilmeade & Friends, NFL Network, SI Now (Sports Illustrated’s live 30-minute daily talk show), and SiriusXM College Sports Nation. The media tour will also include a full day of interviews at ESPN on Aug. 28, 2014, including Mike & Mike  and First Take, among several other television and radio interviews, in what industry insiders call a “full car wash.” A radio tour on Aug. 29, 2014 will include interviews with The Tim Brando Show, The Doug Gottlieb Show (CBS Sports Network), and multiple  local sports radio talk shows in markets including Miami, Tallahassee, Fla., Detroit, Atlanta and Charlotte, N.C.

Bowden will be in Florida for multiple book signings the week of Sept. 1, 2014. The signing dates and locations include:

Sept. 4, 2014
10 a.m. –12 p.m.
Family Christian Store
1520 Airport Blvd., Suite 2, Pensacola, FL 32504
(850) 474-9324

About Bobby Bowden:

Bobby Bowden is known as much for his affable charm as he is for his championship teams. Having coached young men for seven decades, he is the winningest coach in NCAA Division 1 football history. Bowden guided Florida State University to more than 300 victories, two national championships, 12 Atlantic Coast Conference titles, finishing in the top five in the country in 14 straight seasons, and he also led the FSU Seminoles to bowl games in 28 consecutive seasons during his 34-year tenure. The patriarch of college football’s most famous coaching family, Bowden remains heavily involved in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, annually awarding The National Bobby Bowden Award to a student athlete for achievement
on and off the field, including his conduct as a faith model in the community. Bowden was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2006. He and his wife of 65 years, Ann, live in Tallahassee, Fla. Bowden was recently in the national spotlight when former Florida State University alum and current NFL quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings, Christian Ponder, and his wife, Sam, had their first child, a baby girl, and named her Bowden.

About B&H Publishing:

B&H Publishing Group, a division of LifeWay Christian Resources, is a team of mission-minded people with a passion for taking God’s Word to the world. Because we believe Every
Word Matters® we seek to provide intentional, Bible-centered content that positively impacts the hearts and minds of people, inspiring them to build a lifelong relationship with Jesus Christ. Among our print and digital releases for the trade, church, and academic markets, titles include The New York Times No. 1 best-sellers The Love Dare and The Vow, #1 CBA best-seller I Am a Church Member as well as the award-winning HCSB Study Bible, which features the Holman Christian Standard Bible translation.  http://www.BHPublishingGroup.com. Follow us on Twitter at @BHPub and on Facebook.

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