Monday, October 20, 2008

Session Two

Holding Onto Hope

It was great to see everyone after skipping a week! We started out with breakfast (as usual!). We had some kolaches, donuts and a yummy fruit and cheese platter (thanks Theresa!). Then on to our 15 minute craft session.....

As you can see, we are a fun group of girlies! ha ha

We made masks of all sorts and personalities :-) Aren't they lovely??!!

Of course mine had bright neon pink feathers and glitter! :-)

After our craft, we talked about our masks and why we wear them, where we wear them, and who we wear them for. And we posed the question, does our mask better represent who we really are, or the person we'd like to be? Sometimes its easier wearing a mask so that we don't have to be honest about our feelings. Sometimes we even prefer others to wear their masks so we don't have to hear about their problems. Larry Crabb warns against this attitude: "Church is too often a place of pretense and therefore a place without hope. When brokenness is disdained, where the real story is never told, the power of God is not felt. Where brokenness is invited and received with grace, the gospel comes alive with hope."

2 Corinthians 4:16-18 says "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."

Life can be a mess sometimes! And things aren't always perfect or the way we planned them. But according to this scripture we don't have to lose heart even in the midst of our difficulities! And there is usually a greater purpose and larger perspective to whatever it is that we are going through that God is trying to show us. Not that He causes our suffering, but for some reason, He allows us to go through it at times.

Two "Principles for Living" found in Session 2 were really good this week!......

~Often in the midst of suffering or struggles, God sets a fork in the road. Your choices at these critical crossroads will set the course for your future.

(Often we try to avoid things that send us reeling into difficulty and stress, but we do get to choose how to respond to them! p.22)

~Your life can send a powerful message of the amazing relationship a person can have with God. Even when you're spiritually and emotionally weak, God can use you to redeem the lives of those around you.

(So your ministry doesn't stop just because you are having some difficulties in your life! We can minister through our pain and hurts to help set others free and receive healing!)

At the end of our meeting, each lady was given a gift to remind her of the harvest waiting for her, just as Naomi, too, will receive a harvest in our story.

This Friday Session 3 is Signs of Hope. Hope to see you there!! :-)

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