The theme of the study is "It's Tough Being a Woman". I now realize just how true this is. For me, its tough because I make it tough. The world makes it tough. We make it tough on each other. All for the purpose of us searching out the God who created us just the way we are to accomplish for Him just what He desires to accomplish. Not that He needs us by any means. But that we are chosen to be a blessed part in what He is doing around us. Part of that blessing is that we, I, get to examine myself and measure myself up to the Word of God. NOT measure myself up to you. I'm learning to view myself more and more through God's eyes, not yours or even my own. Let truth set in. Let is take shape. Let it put to death what needs to die & bring to life what needs resurrecting. How sweet it is when you let God do this in your heart. No putting up a fight. No looking for loopholes. Just pure repentance followed by submission.
How many times have I wondered if God is really there. Those times when He's silent, when things aren't going as planned, or when hurt swallows me whole 10 times. I realize during those times how much of a condition I put on my trust in God. As long as He's following through I'll bring Him praise. As long as I'm taken care of as I think I should be I'll look Heavenward. This study has taken that secret little sinful theory of mine and flushed it. I love it when I realize super deep sin in my heart and in what seems like the same moment I realize it God swoops in and frees me from it. Has that ever happened to you? No time to dwell, to feel like crap, just let it go & move on to that next level of spiritual maturity in Christ.
How crazy is it that God is never once mentioned in the book of Esther. Hmmm...seems odd, seems man centered even. But He is ALL over that book. No doubt. You can barely get through 2 verses without being like "Look what He's doing! This ties to this and that refers back to that other book in the OT." Not to mention that the whole book of Esther is one big reversal of destiny (wink wink fellow study peeps) like the uh...BIBLE!!!! Love it.
Overwhelmed by it. Bathed in the truth of it. Freed by His grace.
I would go on and on but I know this probably isn't making sense as is so I'll spare you more confusion. If you've done the study you probably know what I'm talking about. Or maybe not. Ha!
Just know that my heart desires for you to study the Word, whether it be this study or another. Of course I think every woman should do this particular Beth Moore study. It will change your life if you let it. The book of Esther will show you why even though it's tough being a woman, our God gives us hope & deliverance from all things that war against us.
I leave you with a few other things I learned
- Faith is putting God in every fill in the blank.
- I cannot amputate my history from my destiny.
- God says to never forget what "I dragged you out of."
- Mean girls try to get other women's men's (is that right?) attention by dressing provocatively. Keep your breasts to yourself (and your husband if you have one).
- I have to learn to identify the threat when I start to feel something rise up in me that I know is not right.
- Destiny involves transparency. It was for them, so what good is it if they can't see it. How stinkin true is that.
- I want someone to take care of me. I want someone to love me.
- God often uses crisis to pivot our focus and change our destiny.
- "What if" really means, "What I Fear"
- I can protect myself right out of my calling.
- We'll never fulfill our destiny as long as we straddle the fence.
- To nurse a grudge towards someone holds us to that person-entangles us to bondage.
- Any kind of wait seems like an enormous inconvenience in this culture.
- You can't live your life as if no one is watching.
- The enemy makes us think we are the center of attention. Nothing drives Satan more than pride.
- There are people in our lives that we want so desperately to know Jesus-to be in the King's presence.
- Why do we say in regards to our fav sports team, "We are undefeated." and then change the "we" to "they" when we say, "They lost last night." We're such moochers!
- God will not give us strength to fight things that we have imagined. He wants us to be free from fears, not have strength to make things up!
- One reason we remain in bondage is b/c we keep our secrets to ourselves. Big battles are won by teams not individuals.
- Don't grow cold.
- Getting the credit is the wrong reason to do the right thing .
- When all history is written, the only tales left standing will be those He set.
And lastly, a Beth Moore quote (pg. 221 of Esther study guide)
"By faith alone, to her face she will fall...then to her feet she will rise, ready to do what deliverance demands. Then the Rabbi will quote her resolve: "And if I perish, I perish" and the crowd will stand and cheer! For what if she does perish? Is that the worst his world's wicked Haman can threaten? On the day that she does, this is what will happen: She will put on her royal robes and stand in the inner court of the palace, in front of the King's hall. The King will be sitting on his royal throne in the hall, facing the entrance. When he sees his queen standing in the court, he will be pleased with her and hold out to her the gold scepter that is in his hand (adaptation of Esth. 5: 1-2). And she will approach.
And cast her crown at His feet.