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Mary of Bethany saw who Jesus was and understood He was going to die for her. The cross was not “beautiful,” it was rugged and cruel, like this picture. But Jesus, despite the turmoil we see in Him, at the close of John 12, was going to that cross for love. Mary, alone among the disciples, realized it, so SHE GAVE HER ALL. SHE SURRENDERED. SHE LET GO OF SECURITY, APPROVAL, AND CONTROL for THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE. She understood what Isaac Watts wrote in “When I Survey The Wondrous Cross:”

Were the whole realm of nature mine, that were a present far too small:

Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all.



Tim Keller ties this whole story together in a sermon called Following Jesus. I’ll give you the link, but also share some nuggets from it, as it costs 2.50.  It’s a tremendous sermon, so here’s the link:


Keller opens with a true story that was sadly witnessed by helpless onlookers. They watched a man go over a dam in a canoe, saw the canoe flip, and the man thrown and caught in the whirlpool that formed after the dam. He struggled to stay afloat but finally died of hypothermia, and his body sank. The moment his body sank, just a minute later, it popped up further down the river where it was calm. If he hadn’t fought the rapids, he would have been saved. The whirling water he thought would kill him actually would have carried him to safety. Keller’s point is that the Christian life is counter-intuitive. We struggle to save our lives, to hold on to the stone idols that we think will rescue us, when they actually pull us down. If we would let go, and sink into the arms of Jesus, we would indeed experience victory. The victorious life is counter-intuitive.

The Christian life is a journey, and we will not be fully changed until we see Jesus face to face. But glory be — before Christ we were in a battle we could not win, now we are in a battle we cannot lose. One day He will complete us, and, as Hosea prophesied, take our bent for sinning away.

But for now, our stones can be chiseled down, even removed. We must, as Mary did, see Him as so beautiful, that we are willing to give all for this wondrous Savior.

1. Summarize what you have learned in this HEART OF FLESH journey. Write down some a few of your main take-a-ways as you look over the past five weeks.

2. What stone or stones were you asking God to remove? Have you seen progress? Give us a report.

3. When a Christian is defined as “someone who follows Jesus,” that is accurate — but often what is meant is following some of His teachings, such as being loving and caring. But read John 12:20-26.

A. What did Jesus tell those seeking Him in John 12:23-24. What did He mean?

B. According to the above, what does it mean to “follow Jesus?”

C. Memorize John 12:25 in the version that speaks best to your heart. As you are memorizing this week, keep sharing your meditations with us.

D. Think about your stone and why you want to hold onto it. It feels counter-intuitive to let it go. But why is it the wise thing to do? (This is an important question so you can speak to your soul in moments of temptation.)

4. Isaac Watts led the movement that gave freedom to sing not just Scripture, but lyrics the Scripture inspired. His point was that we don’t ask preachers to just read Scripture, to to say the words the Scripture inspires.  Share anything you learn about “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross,” any videos about it you like, any reflections you have on the lyrics.

5. What is your take-a-way this week?

On a personal note, I’ need you and your prayers for a big event in Jacksonville Tuesday. I need traveling mercies, quickening, and women with teachable hearts. I will, Lord willing, be speaking at noon Eastern time at an arena. Then I stay on with two of my dearest friends to have five days of Christian fellowship. We always seek each other’s wisdom and refreshment, so we need quickening for this too.

Love to each of you — eager to hear your ponderings.

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  1. Would you pray for Kina? She is in school and having a problem freezing with exams. Her work load is very heavy right now and this really complicates things for her.

      1. Thank you Dee. It is encouraging to hear that Anne was victorious also.

    1. praying for her too Anne! Oh how i do not miss exams! 😉

      1. ha ha! I hear you Elizabeth! It has been a very long time since I have taken a real exam. I don’t think I could do it now. I’m too forgetful.

  2. I’m praying for your trip Dee–for safety, broken, teachable hearts…and that He would be glorified!

  3. Where is the ‘like’ button when you need it! I wanted to ‘like’ the above four comments! will be praying for you Anne and Dee!! I love all of you and can’t wait to get started on this this week!! ♥

      1. Thanks for letting us know about the possible cold coming on. Will pray sister!

      2. im sure the sun will cure that cold:)

        1. Praying for all the above as well!! HUGS!

        2. Praying for you, Dee

  4. Jacksonville MI?? are you taking a snow plow:) have a wonderful time with good friends. What a blessing to have wonderful girlfriends!! one of these years my best friend and I are going to be able to spend time with each other…when the 11 children have grown up and we are not living in different states…heaven perhaps:) to everything there is a time and a season. right!!!???? I pray that the spirit goes before you and prepares hearts like He did in Toledo!! He was palpable here!!! you have such a gift for reading people and hearing His voice.

      1. Florida!!! i hate you….In christian love:) I will really have to work hard at not being jealous!!!

  5. A. What did Jesus tell those seeking Him in John 12:23-24. What did He mean?

    v. 23 He said the hour has come…the time for His death. The time when He would draw all men to Him and be glorified.
    v. 24 He also said that unless a grain dies, it is useless. But if we are willing to give up our life, as He would soon give His up for ALL, then much fruit will come.

    B. According to the above, what does it mean to “follow Jesus?”
    To die to Self. To release the claim to our own identity as a single grain, to be willing to be broken, hulled, used up. When we fall to the ground, and let ourselves disintegrate as a grain, our outer walls of defensiveness and self protection fall off. We are tender, useable, and able to bring forth fruit.

    C. “The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life” (NIV)
    In what ways do I love my own life? My hyper-protection of the family’s, and my own, schedule. I don’t want any interference or I fear being out of balance, out of CONTROL. Can I hate it? Can I let it go? Let God bring interruptions. When my husband says let’s keep the kids up later for a story or video, can I agree? Can I let him have the reigns? Can I let Him?

    D. I want to hold on to my stone because I fear being out of control. What will happen? Will I be too vulnerable, too exposed? Will I get hurt if I don’t stay composed and controlled? I like being organized, I like knowing what we are doing when, it feels safe. I hate the unknown, so I control my time and my family’s.
    Why is it wise to let it go? Because it is a protective wall around me. It is a hardened shell on my grain of a body, unable to be useable. When we were struggling with infertility, my husband was ready to adopt and I was ready to just be the 2 of us for ever. One day in my Oswald Chambers devotional, it said something to the gist of there were 2 paths a Christian could take—one was safe, but the other one would bring you to all the richness Christ had to offer. I woke the next morning and knew He had changed my heart and we pursued adoption (thankfully!)
    I am reminded—is Aslan safe? No, but He is good.

    1. These are great thoughts Elizabeth, esp the application about Aslan(Jesus). It seems we always leave safety when we follow the Lord. Unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains alone. I’m so glad for the joy you have found in your children.

      1. Oops! Just quoted the scripture we are looking at. How profound!
        Michael Card sings a beautiful song about his grandfather. At the end he has a recording of a sermon from his grandfather quoting this scripture. I always remember it so fondly because of the way he spoke it. He truly believed it.

    2. Love your thoughts!! Love that line too about Aslan, He is not safe but He is good!!!

    3. yes you can let go of that control. I know, i have and it is scary and wonderful and a blessing and most important GODS will. God does not want YOU to be the head of your home, he does not want you to control it. HE wants to control it through your husband.
      will you get hurt, yep, God can put you back together, will you be scared at times, yep, and He will comfort you. Will you be totaly out of control and have no idea what’s going to happen next, yep, that’s where our trust in Him comes in.
      this is so hard! but you need to trust your husband with the role God gave him and until you give up control of your home you can not do that.
      i wasted to many years living in a role in my home that God never intended, with a shell so thick I was unable to give my husband the love, submision, and trust that God demands. giving God permission to break that shell so that I could love the way he intended me to was so painful…Aslan is not safe and I am reminded of the scene in voyage of the dawn treader that HE has to take off all those hard layers, we can not.
      i was so very hurt, i felt the only way to keep from hurting was to protect my heart by not letting Paul in. that caused so many problems. I finaly told God that I would open my heart to Paul again and trust HIM to put it back together when Paul broke it, which he has done many times since, and God has been faithful to put it back together.
      I will be praying for you this week. I know I said some hard things to hear. I hope you know that they are in love.
      God created you to be your husbands help meet, you can not be this and be in control of your home at the same time.

      1. Cyndi, thanks for sharing this. It is wonderful encouragement for us as we struggle to give up stones. I love how you share your experience with the fact that things may fall apart but the Lord is able to mend all of it.

    4. I must learn to re-read what I write before I post 😉 I always seem to go back later and realize it wasn’t quite what I meant–my first online study, so I need to adjust still!
      While I do really trust my husband, though with his mental illness it has been very hard at times, he does lead our family spiritually and makes all what I call the “big” decisions (money, travel, school, moving us 5 states away!) It is the day to day little schedule of life–when we eat, when kids go down, what they can watch/read…I just have a very strong ideals and can get rigid. I’m not spontaneous and don’t like change. So it’s more the little things like him being late from work by 30 minutes that throw me completely off if I’m not careful.
      Sorry to get so lengthy, but I do 100% agree with Cyndi in being my husband’s help-meet. I do feel in our 17 years I have grown more and more to that roll and I actually love to be led, by one I can trust…I just have a hard time with change/unknown/unscheduled events. Hope some of this makes sense!

      1. makes a ton of sence. it is so hard to trust someone who is not always easy to trust or safe. This is also where i struggle, in the every day things. I want the kids down at 9 and I come home at 10 and they are still up, or Paul gets home at 6 and dinner has been done for a half hour and the kids all need to be places by 6:30. these are the things that i get bent out of shape about. I want him to lead but i wnat him to do it my way. I know the mental illness makes this even harder. so does the diabeties. I struggle with this so much. thanks for sharing you feelings. i think we have a lot in common! I just get so excieted when I talk about how God has really freed me from so much of the need for control in our home. teenagers have also helped with this:)
        please understand that I was not judging or critisising, I was just trying to share with you the feedom I have had in this area.
        Have a blessed day!!!

        1. thank you cyndi–your examples made me smile because–yes, that’s exactly me!
          growing up in an alcoholic home, there was NO consistency, no schedule, routine..nothing I could count on. My husband and I started dating at 16 and never stopped 🙂 But the uncertainty that has come with his bi-polar, and not being on meds the first 12 years, I find myself still in that place of being afraid of uncertainty…especially since there are often times my husband is not well enough to be in charge and I have to balance a healthy amount of caring for the kids, but not wanting to be the leader–you know?

          Your story helps me a lot, thank you for your transparency.

        2. in my home my dad was always belittled by my mom. i learned from her that woman were way smarter then men and if we let them have control whe whole world would fall apart. i learned to expect the worst from men and to think woman were always right…..took a long time to learn otherwise!!! its still hare at times.
          i have had two best friends with bi-polar. I know its a very hard one. one lost her marriage over it. it is not easy to stay married to someone with it. your so right, it has to be a balance! when Pauls sugar crashes and he is driving or yelling at the kids I HAVE to step in!!! its so hard to do that without making him feel like Im better then him. its a heart attitude and that is the hard part. I can act the part but OH do I struggle with FEELING it some days:)

  6. 1-This has been so timely for me! I cannot even begin to tell you. I needed this stone of approval to be loosened so it would stop sinking me down. I learned that, God is my God not the people. That these stones can be identified in our body signals, we need to identify those and take them to God. He will work us through them. Identifying attachment disorder in me – NOW THAT WAS HUGE FREEDOM. That God does identify with everything I go through He wants my all and deserves me all. Period.

    2-Stone removal! Yes I have seen progress. The approval stone is kind of feeling like a pebble. Very freeing. Control is also feeling the same. PRAISE HIS NAME!

    3-Following Christ is truly dying to self. We must become less and Him more. Not just a little of this and that of Him but none of us and all of HIM.

    A-John 12:23-24 – Just as a seed will never become a plant unless it “dies” and is “buried” so the death and burial of Jesus is necessary to His glorification. Before there can be resurrection power and fruitfulness, there must be death.
    From Enduringword.com Commentary. I liked how they worded this..

    B-To give our all. Love Him more than our very life itself. Willing to sacrifice all for HIM.

    D-Because the only freedom is in letting it go. I must trust Christ not the stone that weighs me down. He is all I need. He is forever all I need. He gave up all for me. I must do the same for Him. No stone is worth not letting go of for that sake.

    4-Such a great phrase in the song – Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all. Really something to meditate and ponder. He deserves nothing less than my all.

    5- My take away – before Christ we were in a battle we could not win, now we are in a battle we cannot lose. (loved that!) Needed to be reminded of that.

    Noted before but I am praying for you Dee.

  7. 1. Summarize what you have learned in this HEART OF FLESH journey.

    I have learned to see my idols for what they are. While not always successful, I can see when I am running to them and call Jesus name at that time. He is who I truly love and want. My soul thirsts for Him and my flesh yearns for Him. My one desire is to sharpen my thirst and appetite for Him. Lord, help me to come to You as Mary did. She loved You so completely and intimately. I pray that You will be my one and only desire. As the deer pants for the water, so my soul longs for You, Lord.

    2. What stone or stones were you asking God to remove? Have you seen progress?

    Stones of comfort and approval with roots in pride have been revealed to me. In the stone of comfort I have seen I should not expect to always be comfortable. In fact I may frequently be called to discomfort for any reason the Lord deems necessary. I may understand or I may not.

    My stone of approval is a daily struggle but I have at times seen great victory. This is one so deep that it may have to come off in layers, like Eustice’s dragon skin. Daily I have to remove myself from the throne and remind myself, it is not about me.

    I have seem more growth from this study than in anything that I have ever done. That includes the BSF Isaiah study. It is good and I can see that God has used it for my growth in a complimentary way with this study. In it I have seen how omnipotent God is coupled with how much He loves me , which has come from both studies. These things have brought me deliverance from fear and anxiety which I have needed so badly.

    1. wow! we both used the same word picture about Eustice!

      wondering if the theme of letting God at our layers while we are trying to get rid of our idols is something I should be looking at!!
      I wonder if our idols are a result of our layers, we get so hard that we can’t feel God so we have to find something else to comfort us. or if our layers are our idols, the more we go the them the more layers we put on….hmmmm
      well either way we have to let God take off the layers in order to deal with the idols.

      1. And nearly at the same time! We must have been composing at the same time. That is remarkable.

        1. Listening..Exciting!!!!! Yes, layers..Our hearts being idol factories- running from one to the next..We are naturally bent to do that..is that where the struggle comes in when Paul said I don’t do what I want to and do what I don’t want to do..That is why what Mary did was counter-intuitive..

        2. Sorry, cut myself off too soon..I wanted to compare Eunice to Mary in that it was counter-intuitive and a struggle for him to finally let go and quit peeling the layers off himself..I think that is what I have gone through as I let go..While there is victory, something else comes up to remind me it is still there..Another layer..Once I let go I find another layer and I am bent on trying to peel it off myself and then I let go again.

        3. My first thought about my idol making heart is that I am glad the Lord is removing these layers because I don’t think I can do it myself. I wonder if this somehow ties to verse 25 and hating my life in this world?

  8. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ID3IG7-6_aM

    this is my favorite video that i have found for this song. I hope it blesses you as much as it did me. i also found a lost vs. its under this post.
    makes me laugh to see how many of you posted during the super bowl:) not a lot of football fans i see…lol

    pour contempt on all my pride Lord…let me never boast! Love like his demands my soul, my life my all. nothing i can ever do will ever “earn” His love. I don’t need to earn it, he has already given it to me!!!

    “His dying crimson, like a robe,
    Spreads o’er His body on the tree:
    Then am I dead to all the globe,
    And all the globe is dead to me.”

  9. 1. Summarize what you have learned in this HEART OF FLESH journey. Write down some a few of your main take-a-ways as you look over the past five weeks.

    * I found the problem to my luke-warm heart..It was these stones. Had I not done this study, I don’t think I would have begun the process of healing, becoming more intimate with Jesus and having victory.

    * I saw a picture of my heart’s desire in Mary and Martha, yet I also saw a picture of my heart in Judas and the disciples who scorned Mary..I saw how bent to sin I can be, how I can easily run after my idols. I saw the beauty of Jesus changing hearts of stones, giving Martha and Mary victory and they were free as they lavished their love on Jesus. When I encountered Jesus in this scene He brought me to my knees with His love..I am in awe..

    2. What stone or stones were you asking God to remove? Have you seen progress? Give us a report.

    * Yes it was comfort and approval, then God clearly showed me Comfort was on the throne and control was an issue more than approval. I have seen MAJOR progress, but know I must keep my eyes on Him..TRULY seeking Him in the word, in prayer, and listening to what He wants to teach me through other believers..I have had many tests here at home but a big test comes February 20th when I am scheduled to sing at church.

    3. A and B: What did Jesus tell those seeking Him in John 12:23-24. What did He mean? What does it mean to follow Jesus?

    * Jesus was the example of giving up his life for His passionate love of God and of us. Total self-giving, NOT selfish or locked up in his fear. Even though he was afraid He went..He could have chose to lock up his heart in his self-interests, but he didn’t. Jesus wants us to likewise do the same..

    Jesus says those who love me obey me and abide in me:

    “Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” John 14:23

    John 15;4-11..Jesus talks about abiding in Him, His love..We can’t obey Him separate from abiding in Him..

    So, just ‘loving and caring for others’ or ‘doing what Jesus tells us to do apart from loving him and abiding in his love is like dirty rags to God.

    Following Him means loving Him..then a fruit of that love relationship with Jesus is being obedient to Him..loving and caring for others. I can’t be really following Christ by merely being obedient and ‘doing what scripture says to do’. It is kind of like in the marriage bed. My husband would rather see passion toward him than duty.

    I apologize for such scattered thoughts. I don’t have time to edit this morning as my boys are up earlier than normal and need help with the shower. 🙂 Love to you all gals and can’t wait to keep reading the light God gives to this study through you all!! 🙂

  10. I love these thoughts from you Rebecca:
    “So, just ‘loving and caring for others’ or ‘doing what Jesus tells us to do apart from loving him and abiding in his love is like dirty rags to God.

    Following Him means loving Him..then a fruit of that love relationship with Jesus is being obedient to Him..loving and caring for others. I can’t be really following Christ by merely being obedient and ‘doing what scripture says to do’.”

    My take away from this study is that my “idols” are like chains about me, enslaving me..eventually leading to death…but loving Christ and following Christ leads to freedom and life. I think loving Christ extravagantly opens our eyes to the extravagant love He has for us. We love Him when we also love our neighbor, the lost, the least..

    1. Fellowsojourner..What light you have shed here: “my “idols” are like chains about me, enslaving me..eventually leading to death…but loving Christ and following Christ leads to freedom and life. I think loving Christ extravagantly opens our eyes to the extravagant love He has for us. We love Him when we also love our neighbor, the lost, the least.”

    2. Fellowsojourner, I think my answer was too abstract..Not perhaps getting down to the nitty gritty of describing what it means to follow Him.. I HIGHLY suggest listening to Keller’s sermon that Dee has linked above..I am going to listen again though..It is one of those I need to hear again in it’s entirety.

  11. Ladies, I found this from C.S. Lewis..I thought it was rich:

    “There is no safe investment. To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket—safe, dark, motionless, airless—it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. The alternative to tragedy, or at least to the risk of tragedy, is damnation. The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell.”

    1. That IS rich Rebecca! Frightening to think I was on that road!

      1. Anne, AND pride is what keeps our hearts from being vulnerable to Jesus..being willing to have it broken and changed.. OH, and YES it looks like we were ALL on that road, but thanks be to Jesus Christ, the one who pursued us all with passion to make us aware of our idols in the first place, is now breaking them! 🙂 Oh and I MUST thank God for Dee for loving us so much that she was willing to give of herself and her time to put this study up on this blog and mentor us in the process! I am thankful for ANY time I can sit at her feet and learn from her. It is truly a privilege.

  12. 1-2
    what i have taken away from this study is that my stones of pride, control, approval tend to sneak up on me. just when i think i have gotten rid of one I find myself fishing it out of the pit that i threw it in.

    I was reminded of things I knew in the past but had let the busyness of life make me slip back into bad patterns.
    I realized that my need to control is really a sign of my pride..I think i can do it best so just let me do it!

    I hate being invisible. as you can tell by all i write on this blog:) being a stay at home mom leans itself to invisibility, so often i will say something in a room full of people and no one even knows Im there. I can be driving a car and have not one person talk to me. (except for you youngest 2 who never stop talking! we had a wonderful conversation about satan and hell and demons and all kids of things that i never thought about until i was 30!) I am the hands of our home, what I long to be is the heart. Im still on the journey to figure out how to be both.

    I have felt more freedom this month from this stone then I have ever felt in my life. I don’t feel like I NEED to be right, admired or the best. I have felt free to fail and to be invisible if that is what He wants from me. I have also felt free to try something even if I may not be the best at it.

    thank you all. This blog has been such a blessing to me! I would love to meet you all on earth but if that is not to be i will look forward to meeting you in heaven.

    1. Cyndi, I love your thought here about being the heart of your home rather than just the hands. I’m with you on that journey.

  13. I just listened to 1/2 of Tim Keller’s sermon on this and was interrupted by stuff I need to do for hubby.. Anyway, WOW.. I love how he teaches what following Jesus truly is.. Can’t wait to listen again..

  14. Dee, I have a question. I listened to some of Keller’s sermon, like 1/2 of it and is he referring to salvation or the sanctification process? I can see this being applicable in both arenas and was wondering if he was referring to one. Sorry, sometimes it takes a while for the fog to clear in my head. 🙂

      1. Dee, Thanks! That makes sense..

  15. 3A. What did Jesus tell those seeking Him in John 12:23-24. What did He mean? He said that it was time for His glorification. Then He gave an analogy of how a grain of wheat must die to produce a crop. He was referring to the necessity of His death.

    B. To follow Jesus means that we must totally surrender our lives to Him. No part of us can be kept as our own.

    1. I will continue to pray.

    2. Praise God! Will continue to pray..

    3. Am praying now, Dee

      1. Prayed last night and this morning..For God to strengthen you physically and spiritually..To give the women there teachable hearts and to do some amazing things in the hearts of the women there and to hold back Satan..

        1. Me too–that you would sleep well and wake up rested and refreshed…and that God would bind Satan and that the hearts of these women would be tender, open, teachable…I wish I was there to hear you!

  16. The first thing I notice in verse 25 is that Jesus says not that he should hate his life, but that he should hate his life in this world. So I should hate my life as it pertains to worldly things? This brings to my mind something my pastor once said: we should love people and use things, but people tend to do that backward. There are so many good things I can be busy doing in this life, so what is important? I think it is our focus. Do I tend to think of this world as my home so I have to get all I can out of this life? Or is heaven where my hopes are set with the goal of taking as many people with me as I can? If this is my mindset am I dead to this world? I think that may only be a small part of what Jesus meant.

    1. Anne, I love your ponderings..You are making me think more now today..The layers and Eunice analogy and now this.. I am so there in this post..Reflecting on this in my life..

  17. C. Memorize John 12:25 in the version that speaks best to your heart. As you are memorizing this week, keep sharing your meditations with us.

    * Am doing this this morning!! 🙂

  18. Hey gals, how about IF WE ARE ABLE, meet here at various times between 11:30-1:00 Eastern time to pray. That is 10:30-12:00 Kansas time..Hoping this will encourage Dee to see how we are praying and how God answers!! I am going to get my oil changed at 9:30 and will try to hop on here and pray as I am there.. I will bring my nook and see if I can get online that way. If I can’t then I will be doing it anyway at the shop. 🙂

    1. love that idea! I’m in! (got my little one with me today, so he may join me 😉

      1. Yes Elizabeth!! Have him join in!!! How precious!
        The mechanic guy came in and said they redhead of schedule so I can join in on a real keyboard andpray!! See u all !!

        1. Hahaha, “redhead”… o meant ahead…I have no busines textings…I’m too old for this youngin stuff…;)

        2. That’s ok. I just texted Joey Yerp instead of Yes and he texted me back, ok. It is a language I don’t get. I have to pick him up at 1230 so I will be on the tail end of our time. 1200 to 130 right?

        3. 🙂 Yes.. right now it is 12:43 eastern time and 11:43 here in Kansas..Dee said she is starting at 12:00 Eastern..Not sure how long Dee speaks, but we can keep praying for about an hour and then afterward keep praying for anything the Holy Spirit lays on our heart for after she speaks, so I guess this can go on as long as the Lord leads. 🙂

    2. I am praying for her now

  19. I am having internet problems. Hopefully I will be be back up by then. If not I will pray anyway. For Dee right?

  20. My internet is back, thank You Lord. How shall we do this? Written prayers? Or maybe each of us could introduce subjects and we could all pray specifically for that thing as we are led.

    By the way I was looking back over the layers thing and thinking about what Eustace was before Aslan peeled of his dragon skin and what he became after. Then how it seems that God introduced this analogy…I am excited about how God wants to transform us! Also, if I remember right the peeling was painless once Eustace was ready.

  21. Anne and Elizabeth and anyone else,
    Awesome!!! I am at the shop in the waiting room texting. I’m
    not good at it so I might totally goof up words!

    I like the idea, Anne, of someone bringing up a subject for her to
    Pray about and we can join in. I can type a lot faster
    Than I text..;) if th holy spirit brings something else to mind
    Though while praying, go for it!!

    Yes, I too am excited at what God is showing us!!!

  22. I pray for teachable hearts ready to be molded by Him…

    1. Elizabeth, we both prayed for the same thing at the same time!!! GOd is moving!!

  23. Just got home. Dee will speak in ten minutes.. Suggestion as to what to pray for is Ready hearts..

    “Lord, you are the great I AM..the mighty one..The one who knows every woman’s heart who is there at this conference. Give Dee an impression of some women whose hearts you are after..Who you want to touch..Help her to hone in on them as she begins to speak..Encourage her heart right now with your Holy Spirit..Quicken her as she seeks your face before she speaks..

  24. Do you feel Him right now?! I have tears, He is hear, listening…oh Lord, comfort Dee..give her Your words to speak to these women…

    1. Yes!!! I was teary eyed around that time too!! Lord, speak to Dee’s heart now and give her confidence that Your leading this..Help her to listen..

  25. Clear any fogginess in the minds of the women listening right now..help them to be engaged..quicken them to hear..

  26. Lord, I pray You will be glorified in that room right now…I pray for the women, that you would quiet distractions around them, and they would hear You through Dee.I pray that she would speak words You want her to say–even if it is different than she prepared, I pray she would be led by Your Spirit within her.

    I pray also for Dee, that she would feel Your presence and your healing over her cold, and that You would bring her safely back home when the conference is over.

    1. Lord, May you be glorified…lifted on high and may these women’s hearts be drawn to you…

    2. Yes Lord, Amen

  27. Lord, thank You so much for your love for these women. In all that Dee says and all that takes place in this place right now convey that fact to each heart. May they be drawn by the cords of Your love. May they see You high and lifted up, Your glory filling this place. May their hearts be broken, for good, for redemption.

    Sing a new song to the Lord; sing His praise from the ends of the earth, you who go down to the sea with all that fills it, you islands with your inhabitants (gentiles). Let the desert and its cities shout, the settlements where Kedar dwells cry aloud. Let the inhabitants of Sela sing for joy; let them cry out from the mountaintops. Let them give glory to the Lord and declare His praise in the islands. The Lord advances like a warrior; He stirs up His zeal like a soldier. He shouts, He roars aloud, He prevails over His enemies. I have kept silent from ages past; I have been quiet and restrained Myself. But now I will groan like a woman in labor, gasping breathlessly. I will lay waste mountains and hills, and dry up all their vegetation. I will turn rivers into islands, and dry up marshes. I will lead the blind by a way they did not know; I will guide them on paths they have not known. I will turn darkness to light in front of them, and rough places to level ground. This is what I will do for them, and I will not forsake them. Isaiah 42:10-17

    Lord we pray for Your zeal to bring these women, these precious ones that You love. Bring…Your daughters from the ends of the earth(43:6)

    1. Praise God! Amen

      1. Amen with my sweet sister Joyce!

  28. Psalm 24
    The King of Glory Entering Zion. A Psalm of David.
    The earth is the Lord’s and all it contains, the world and those who dwell in it. For He has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers. Who may go up into the hill of the Lord, and who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood or sworn deceitfully. He shall receive a blessing from the Lord and righteousness from the God of his salvation. This is the generation of those who seek His face, who seek Your face-even Jacob. Selah.

    Lift up your heads, O gates, and be lifted up O ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in! Who is the King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O gates, and lift them up O ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in! Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, He is the king of glory. Selah.

    Lord we pray for opening of the door to the hearts of these women this day.

    1. Amen… Lord we come to you with this Psalm..Lord your word is true, right and it is piercing to the soul..Pierce their souls..Lord you own the heavens and the Earth and all who dwell therein including these women..bring these women to their knees the ones You have touched today and bring them to repentance that they would fall on their face before you and turn from the sin that keeps them from standing in your Holy Place..broken and spilled out at your feet Lord.. breathe on them and melt their stones and reveal the idols they worship..break them down ..for You are holy..you are the great I AM..

      1. Amen Lord!

  29. Lord as we lift up these women to You, we know that we are asking in accordance with Your will and Your heart. We praise You for Your heart of great love, for Your power to save. May You be glorified in Your ability to take broken hearts and make them new.

    In the ancient world there was a technique for making pottery that first broke the clay pot. The pieces were then put back together with molten gold. The result was a beautiful and priceless work of art.

    We ask that You would create such beauty in the room where Dee is now speaking and also in us.

  30. I pray for Dee right now, for wisdom and strength from Your Spirit alone. Empty her of herself and fill her with Your Spirit Lord. May her heart soar with the joy of Your presence in spite of the brokenness around her.

    1. Thank You that she has precious sisters with her for the next few days. May they have sweet fellowship and times of deep refreshing in the days to come.

      1. Amen, Lord! Thank you for sisters..for the beautiful gift of love..May their hearts turn over as they see Jesus in one another..Thank you for this awesome pause of prayer for our sweet sister Dee..May this bring You glory Jesus..

  31. Could we please pray for Joey. I took him to the podiatrist today because he is having severe ankle and foot pain since starting PE this semester. He found out he has a severe problem in both feet and he is pretty upset about it. So am I for that matter. But God is good and I know He has allowed this for a reason. If you would please pray that he would allow God to work in his life through this.

    1. Lord, we lift up Joey to you right now. I pray You would be his Comforter right now, Lord. I ask that You give the doctors wisdom about how to help him. I pray for Your healing on his ankle and foot Lord.
      And for Anne, give her strength, hope, to encourage Joey.

      Psalm 121:1-2
      I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
      where does my help come from?
      My help comes from the LORD,
      the Maker of heaven and earth.

    2. Anne, Sure..

      Lord Jesus you know Joey’s frame, you knitted him together, Lord you know exactly what is wrong with his feet and Lord I just ask that you would give the Doctor wisdom on the best way forward with Joey’s ankle and feet..Lord you are the great physician, the great healer and we ask that you would bring healing to Joeys feet..Lord I ask that you also bring healing to his heart that He would come to you broken and spilled out trusting you with all that he is..We thank you Lord because we know you will use this to accomplish your purposes in Joey’s and Anne’s lives. We praise your precious name..

    3. Thank you. This has been pretty devastating. I’m trying really hard to leave it with the Lord. To late in his development to reverse. Surgery is not a good option. Why did I not see it sooner?

      1. Oh Anne, I am so sorry. I will pray too though that you don’t feel guilt over this–Satan would love that, but it is not from Him! How old is Joey?
        I will continue to pray, for all of you, and for a miracle…and that He would be glorified and others drawn to Him through this trial.

      2. He is 14. What I want to do is be able to trust the Lord that He has allowed this and that He will use it for His glory and Joey’s sanctification (not sure that is the right word). That it will move him toward God and not away.
        Thank you so much for praying Elizabeth.

        1. My husband and I will together pray right now and I’m writing it on a sticky note so I will remember to continue to pray.
          He is blessed to have a mother who goes to the Lord for him!

    1. That is so wonderful to hear. I don’t even know what to say. Too many to count. Wow! Were you speaking in a prison?

        1. How wonderful! Later, when you have time we would love to hear how you saw the Lord moving. I am very encouraged that this happened outside of the prison population. I remember you saying that sometimes women were more open in the prisons. To me that makes this an even greater work of His hand.

        2. Praise HIM! Aslan was on the move indeed. 🙂

    2. Wonderful Dee! I’m praying for Joey, Anne

      1. Thank you so much Joyce. You are such a dear sister.

    3. Dee, I am moved to tears to hear this!!! Praise HIM!!!!!!!

      Lord, your loving kindness is better than life..Thank you Lord for hearing our prayers..Holy are You Lord God Almighty, to You be the power and the glory forever..

  32. The Lord spoke promise to me in these verses years ago. Recently I could not remember where they were and have been searching Isaiah for them. I just found them!

    For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out My Spirit on your descendants and My blessing on your offspring. They will sprout among the grass like poplars by the stream beds. This one will say: I am the Lord’s; another will call himself by the name of Jacob; still an other will write on his hand: The Lord’s, and name himself by the name of Israel. Isaiah 44:3-5

    1. Oh my goodness, you have no idea how the Lord just used His words to speak to me about my daughter. I don’t ever remember hearing those verses, but she and I have been traveling some very dry ground lately–this promise, “pour out My Spirit on your descendants and My blessing on your offspring” is incredibly healing to hear right now.

      1. They will sprout among the grass like poplars by stream beds…I love that picture. I will pray for you both.

  33. Thank you all for praying for Joey. I was concerned about his frame of mind when we got home from the doctor. When I took him to his guitar lesson at 8 he was greatly revived. He talked quite a bit about the situation. He very adamantly told me he would never be in a wheelchair or get a handicap sticker (the things kids think about). A wheelchair is not a threat unless something goes very wrong, but no weight bearing sports is very real. He even entertained the possibility of surgery (heel cord lengthening) which really surprised me because he hates surgery. I am leaving it up to him because the doctor explained it all very well to him. Anyway I wanted to let all of you know that the Lord did give him peace and a clear mind about the situation. In a way I think it is a relief to him to understand why he has never been able to play sports.

    1. Anne, I’m glad that Joey has a better outlook on it. He is capable of so many more things than sports anyway. Keep trusting as God has a very special plan for Joey!

  34. Joyce, Thank you for your encouragement. I know you are right. I’m fighting a bit of a worry moment right now.

    I was just organizing my study files. I created a folder for 2010 and another for 2011. They were all jumbled up and then I found the magic button that put them in order. Little things can make me so happy.

    So I was looking at this year’s studies starting with the one right before New Years. As I read it I wonder if I am floundering. I’m supposed to be changing a bad habit right? It is almost Valentine’s Day. Have I changed significantly? I have learned to recognize worry and take it to the Lord. Then there is the approval thing, which I recognize more now. Layers. I’m not going to be finished by Valentine’s…

    1. Anne, Hey girlfriend..I can SO relate, I was seeing that in my life too..BUT I have to encourage you sister that I know you know it is a process but focus on the fact that God has peeled away one layer, Hallelujah!!! Keep drawing closer to Jesus as you are..Satan WILL creep in and try to discourage you..I have experienced that big time as Satan turning up the heat, let me tell you..If I could tell you all the stuff that has been happening as God is peeling my layer away..I mean with the boys, my husband’s car, our marriage..The cool thing is that since God has peeled away that first layer I am now conscientious about listening to my body language, really doing spiritual checks as things happen..How am I reacting and why? Am I running to my gods? Sometimes I stop the process and run to Jesus, and he brings me GREAT comfort..and sometimes I have failed..But the point is that i was failing miserably before this study because I didn’t know I had these gods..God shed light on them through this study and He has peeled away a layer and I am so encouraged by that.

  35. When I survey the wondrous cross
    On which the Prince of glory died,
    My richest gain I count but loss,
    And pour contempt on all my pride.

    Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast,
    Save in the death of Christ my God!
    All the vain things that charm me most,
    I sacrifice them to His blood.

    See from His head, His hands, His feet,
    Sorrow and love flow mingled down!
    Did e’er such love and sorrow meet,
    Or thorns compose so rich a crown?

    Were the whole realm of nature mine,
    That were a offering far too small;
    Love so amazing, so divine,
    Demands my soul, my life, my all.

    This hymn pulls me right out of looking to my idols. My eyes focus on Christ and His glorious gift to me. It allows me to pour contempt on my pride and vain things that charm me because I see Jesus and His wonderful gift to me. His love inspires me.

    But, if I just read the words as a poem I don’t think it would be as effective as when it is sung so beautifully. I have heard it said that music has the ability to go straight to the heart. Something like that, I may not remember it right, but that is how it seems to me. When I was a teen I remember assuring my mother that ‘I don’t listen to the words’ and I have heard that from my son too. NOT true.

    1. Which hymn is that? It is beautiful

      1. It is ‘When I survey the Wondrous Cross’ Here is the link to you tube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-mKnY2HMXg

        1. thank you Anne, that is so beautiful!

  36. 5. My take away this week as I look back over is that this is very hard and painful work when I try to do it in my own power. But if I remember Jesus’ love for me my focus is adjusted so that I see my idols for what they are. Then I can look on them with contempt. Then they mean absolutely nothing to me.

    I have shared this before but I am remembering it again now and I think it is relevant. Once about 10 years into my marriage, I was tempted by attention from a man that I worked with. I allowed it to continue for a time and finally, in a spiritually lucid moment, I decided that the Lord meant way more to me than this attention. It is hard for me to describe what happened in that moment. It was like the sun came out of clouds and shone on me, warming and bathing me in light. It was the Lord’s pleasure that I felt, I think. The spell was broken and I wondered what in the world I ever saw in that man. I have never since been tempted in such a way. My point is that Jesus’ love when we look at it and when we experience it changes us. All the vain things of the world become just so much dirty linen.

    I have loved looking at Mary, for I see now and I understand how she loved Him. My desire to keep the fire of this love lit in my heart at all times.

    I will be working for the next 2 days and will relax after by reading your comments. I am reading Half the Sky right now. I did not want to but the Lord let me know that I should. He is right of course.

  37. Anne, I can see how your temptation 10 years ago really turned your heart to God. I have felt that feeling before, like you said, “It was the Lord’s pleasure that I felt.” It does warm your heart when you know Jesus is proud of you and your choices! In the same way, I have felt so guilt riden and burdened when I know I’ve not pleased the Lord. He really lets me know in my heart how I’m doing!

    Thank you so much for sharing that with us again, Anne, you have such a beautiful heart. I’ll keep praying for Joey and you:)

    1. Joyce, you have a beautiful heart too sister!! Both of you do. 🙂

  38. “He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal.”

    * My meditation on this verse this morning is just to simply not hold the cares of this world and situations that come up in daily life in such high esteem that they control me and cause me to listen to my idol who tells me to cling to the things this world offers for comfort, control, approval..To grasp at the wind in vain and serve them so that they consume my will or consume me and bring destruction..rather I want to enjoy life- yes, but keep it in perspective..to have my full devotion and desire be on Jesus and in living my life in abandonment to Him. These “things”, “blessings”, and “people’s approval” won’t consume my life or define me-Rather, Jesus will and I will view life through His eyes not my flesh’s eyes. The cool thing is that since I know Him and am sealed in Him, nothing can break that so when I do sin and struggle Jesus will come to my rescue! ♥

    I can’t help but think of Solomon in this verse and how he lived an example of ‘loving his life’ and I think he repented and was later able to write in Ecclesiastes about the empty vanity of pursuing worldly pleasures over God.

    1. So, even when we do “fail”, God can make beauty out of ashes. 🙂

    1. glad your having a wonderful time! its -1 here, just sayin:)
      I am going to see the friend in highschool that led me to the lord this weekend. i have not seen her in 12 years and she has been through 2 marriages, one of which she is trying to put back together, and a pregnancy out of marriage since then.
      I can honestly say that I have nothing but love and compassion for her! not an ounce of judgement. God is so good to change prideful hearts.
      I can not wait to see my friend and just pour Gods love all over her!
      thank you sisters, for teaching me that Love is soooooooo much better then perfection.

      1. Cyndi, you are like a fresh spring of water.. So glad you are here!! God gives you great insight to share with us!

  39. 3 D. Think about your stone and why you want to hold onto it. It feels counter-intuitive to let it go. But why is it the wise thing to do? (This is an important question so you can speak to your soul in moments of temptation.)

    * It is wise to let go of it because it grieves God and keeps me from growing deeper in intimacy with Jesus. When I cling to Jesus rather than my idol, it will bear His peace, contentment, joy, humility, love and the relationships around me will blossom. His fragrance will flow out of me onto others.. If I hold onto my stone it will bear pride, anxiety, worry, anger, hate, self-preservation and selfishness and eventually destroy me and the relationships around me.

    I say this knowing there will be stumbling block times even when I am clinging to Jesus..Life won’t be perfect, but the point is to move forward, forge ahead and when I am tempted, I can now move toward Jesus instead of my idols because He has made me aware they are there and how to recognize it when I begin running to them.

    SPEAKING of..God is STILL peeling the layers off of the stone of comfort and control, but approval/control came together and reared their ugly heads now with my eldest son and his grades..He is an “A” student, but he is struggling in two classes because he isn’t interested and can be lazy. I worry about what the teachers think of our parenting if Eli keeps being irresponsible losing paperwork and stuff and the stone is anger.. YIKES..I laid into him the other day and I keep doing it when I see him being lazy.. I told my brother about it and guess what? They are doing a study on idols of the heart at his church..I think it is the Tim Keller study!! hahaha!! He told me, “You need to see which idol you are running too that is causing you to get angry.” and he went on..He didn’t know I was doing this study. God pursued me on this! 🙂

  40. 1. Summarize what you have learned in this Heart of Flesh Journey. Write down a few of your main take-aways.

    First of all, I’ve missed all of you this week! I just couldn’t seem to get it together, time-wise and organization, to do the study and get to the blog. But I’ve been thinking and had some time finally to join in. Sorry Dee I missed all the earlier excitement about your speaking in Florida; you were covered in prayer by the ladies here and it sounds like much fruit came of it!

    Well, to begin, this study wasn’t what I expected at the start, with how it began. Like we were encouraged to make a list of 5 reasons we want to change something; to identify stones. I thought it was going to be coming up with a disciplined plan to change habits of behavior, like a “plan of attack”. I didn’t know it would lead to uncovering the IDOLS behind the sin, or the “stone”. At first I wondered what Mary and Martha had to do with all of this. I found out.
    I’ve learned to look past the sin, or stone, and look for the underlying idol at its root. Strangely, the book I just finished, Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers, tied into all of this. The main character, Angel, finally falls in love with Michael, but he becomes her idol. This seemed to represent Dee’s words to me, “We can’t have both our idol and the presence of the Lord”. Angel and Michael had to be separated before God could draw her to Himself.

    I’ve also been using the poem by John Donne, “Batter My Heart”, as a prayer. I am helpless to change myself, and miserably “betrothed unto Your enemy”. God must divorce me from the enemy, and break that bond. I’ve learned it is by the power of His love that I shall be set free.

    Looking closely at John 12:30-38 as Tim Keller suggests and looking for the three things: a verse or thought that causes me to worship Jesus, confession of sin, and giving thanks was helpful for me personally as I continue to grieve my nephew, Thomas. I actually placed a small picture of Thomas as I held my open Bible, next to the verse, “Jesus wept”. I don’t know still why there wasn’t a “Lazarus” miracle in this life for Thomas, but I know Jesus wept over him. I had to confess that I, too, misjudged Him as the Jews did in the passage in which they questioned His love for Lazarus because He didn’t save him from dying. I still believe the “therefore” in the next verse, “Jesus therefore again being deeply moved within”, was in part to those who doubted His love and goodness. I, too, accused Him of not loving Thomas and not doing what I would have done. Finally, giving thanks because I know Thomas has had the stone rolled away and he lives in freedom now, all because Jesus died for him and he had trusted in Him.

    2. What stone or stones were you asking God to remove? Have you seen progress?

    Some days yes, and some days no. Some of the stones were my thought-life, the jealousy/resentment toward my mother-in-law, dependency on other people for my security. Old habits die hard. I am beginning to see that in order to replace the idol with God is going to take an action in the opposite direction, not just reading Scripture, doing this study, or even praying about it. I have to take a step of faith by doing something.
    For example, the other day I was taking a meal to my parents. I am within 15 min. of my in-laws when I go to my parents home. On that particular day, I was in a time crunch as I had to pick my daughter up from school, and I didn’t have time to stop anywhere else. But I realized that I really don’t have any inclination or desire to stop by and visit my in-laws. We just aren’t really close. In 20 years of marriage, my mother in law has never suggested that she and I have lunch or do something together. Neither have I, though. So I can realize the idol behind my wrong attitudes toward her, I can pray, read about how Mary and Martha gave up their idols, but still never let it go. I think it’s going to take ACTION. Like going over there to visit, even if I don’t feel like it. Even if I say, “well, she never…..”

  41. 3. When a Christian is defined as “someone who follows Jesus”, that is accurate – but often what is meant is following some of His teachings, such as being loving and caring. But read John 12:20-26.

    A. What did Jesus tell those seeking Him in John 12:23-24. What did He mean?

    I think Jesus is speaking of His own imminent death here. He is going to die, and because of that, all men will be drawn to Him, their sins will have a way to be forgiven.

    B. According to the above, what does it mean to “follow Jesus”?

    Jesus set an example for us in His death in that we must die to self in order to bear fruit. It’s not about trying to follow His teachings, but dying to self so He can live His life through us.

  42. C. Memorize John 12:25 in the version that speaks best to your heart.

    After looking at several translations, I think I like this one the best, from The Message.

    “Listen carefully: Unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over. In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, RECKLESS IN YOUR LOVE, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal.”

    My first thought is that the love I am to be reckless in is my love for the Lord Jesus Christ.

  43. I’m finally getting back to the first 2 questions! Dee, when you wrote above: “We must, as Mary did, see Him as so beautiful, that we are willing to give all for this wondrous Savior.” has really struck me this week. It reminded me of the St. Augustine’s Confession :”You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.” I think that is one of my biggest take-aways. Years ago when I did the Gospel Transformation study, I was shocked by my practicing idolatry. I realized every single thought/action seemed to be somehow rooted in my pride and ego. But that was 5 years ago, and since then I have retreated to my old ways and excused them, until this study…a HUGE mirror I cannot avoid–showing me once again the ways I have enthroned my Self. But this study has given me a safe place again to really look honestly at my sin and most importantly, to be reminded that the Rx for my condition, is to take my brokenness to His feet. To rest in the beauty of His love for me.

    Progress? Well, this morning I realized I had forgotten to set out my husband’s breakfast last night (I always set it out the night before because he gets up earlier than me on weekdays!), meaning he must have found something for himself before he left extra early this morning–he never said a word when we talked by phone this morning, but it hit me later while exercising.Anyway, my usual response would have honestly been to find some way of excusing myself and blaming it on one of the many other things I had to do, or something like that. This morning I just said I was sorry,I forgot. The point is, I have come to realize how hard it is for me to admit “failure” in even the tiniest of areas. This is something I struggled with when we first got married, and now 17 years later it’s just worse–I want to be the perfect wife, perfect mom, and if I forget or mess up, it is somehow someone else’s fault!
    So, I am trying to learn to just rest in my fallibility, lay down the idol of my self-righteousness, pride. This is why He died for me.

    One of my favorite hymns keeps running through my mind these last few days:

    1. Take my life and let it be
    Consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
    *Take my moments and my days,
    Let them flow in endless praise.
    2. Take my hands and let them move
    At the impulse of Thy love.
    Take my feet and let them be
    Swift and beautiful for Thee.
    3. Take my voice and let me sing,
    Always, only for my King.
    Take my lips and let them be
    Filled with messages from Thee.
    4. Take my silver and my gold,
    Not a mite would I withhold.
    Take my intellect and use
    Every pow’r as Thou shalt choose.
    5. Take my will and make it Thine,
    It shall be no longer mine.
    Take my heart, it is Thine own,
    It shall be Thy royal throne.
    6. Take my love, my Lord, I pour
    At Thy feet its treasure store.
    Take myself and I will be
    Ever, only, all for Thee.

  44. 4. Here is what I found this morning to meditate on in the song “When I survey the Wondrous Cross”..

    “My richest gain I count but loss,
    And pour contempt on all my pride”

    * When I am in awe of who Jesus is and what He did on the cross, I see my pride as inferior, worthless..actually I feel like a fool for having any pride.. and the ‘things’ of this world are held loosely in my hands..

    “Were the whole realm of nature mine,
    That were a present far too small;
    Love so amazing, so divine,
    Demands my soul, my life, my all.”

    **Your loving kindness is better than life** His love is so pure, holy, perfect He is perfect love.. Even if I were given the whole realm of nature it would be a present far to small compared to the love of Christ..His love is so amazing I can’t help but be drawn to Him.. This love brings a response of enchantment and passion toward him and compels me to lay down my soul, my life, my all at His feet..Broken and spilled out..

  45. Dee, this is wonderful-exciting-scary! I have a deep sense of joy with all that is happening here and now. Aslan is truly on the move!

    I have this morning a little bit of a revelation that I think is from the Lord. It is not a new concept but what is new is my ability to apply it where my feet meet the dusty road.

    When Jesus called Lazarus from the tomb and when He fed the multitudes with bread, He always began with Thanksgiving. The concept to me is that THANKSGIVING unlocked the miracle.

    When I got up this morning I intended to go to a Psalm but I went to the wrong bookmark, stayed there, a little on the sleepy side and began to read. It was Isaiah 44:1-5, again. My impression was that the Lord was speaking to me here in regard to those things most precious to me. The miracle that I so desire is what I will begin to thank Him for. I have prayed all that He has lead me to pray so now I will rejoice in what He will do.

    Yesterday morning I got up to a message from my oldest saying that he felt like Job! Not sure how to take that but I pray that the hounds of heaven are at his heels.

    1. Anne,
      Good thoughts here on thanksgiving. I just began an inductive study in Philippians this week, and as we go verse by verse, I read that Paul said in 1:3, “I thank my God every time I remember you”. The point was made that as a guideline for prayer, we should always begin by giving thanks.
      I think you’re on to something, Anne!

  46. Dear Heavenly Father,

    I lift up Dee to you today, asking for You to quicken her and give her Your wisdom and discernment about tomorrow’s new post for our study.
    Lord, You know Dee’s heart is not to give us the wisdom of men, or her own opinions, but she wants to give us Your words and and Your wisdom and the knowledge of You. Please pour into her what You want her to give to us.

    O God, You are my God, I shall seek You earnestly;
    My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You,
    In a dry and weary land where there is no water.

    Help us, Lord, to thirst and to yearn for You;
    fill up our dry and weary hearts as we strive
    for freedom from these stones which you never
    intended for us to carry; fill them up with You,
    the Living Water, until we are saturated and overflowing
    and spilling over.

    We love you, Lord.
    In Jesus’ Name,Amen