Worn Out

Thursday, April 02, 2015  ::   7 important comments

I've been pretty out of it this week. I told Chad I felt one of three possibilities may be happening.

     1. My 'bucket' (what I pour out of to do all the stuff I do) is empty.
     2. Hormonies were making me fuzzy and weird.
     3. Residual stroke effects (Dr said it would happen) could be causing fatigue.

Or what if it was a combination of all three? Or what if it's been allergies or I'm catching a cold? Or what if I was just being a wimp?

Bleh. That's it. Just Bleh.

Do you ever feel that way? I wish I could just go, go, go sometimes but I can't. And guess what...God knows I can't, that you can't, that he didn't create us to go, go go all the time.


Come to me all who labor and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  ~Matthew 11:28 

Even youths will grow tired and weary, and young men will stumble and fall. ~Isaiah 40:30

For I will satisfy the weary soul. ~Jeremiah 31:25

My soul finds rest in God alone. ~Psalm 62:1 
Sometimes I just need rest for no explanation at all. It's difficult for me to admit, mostly because I may not have anything to show for what is zapping my energy. However, I'm continually needing to grow in the area of resting in Jesus. Reading a book that is just fun. Taking a nap in the middle of my day off. Skipping exercise for the day. Baking cookies to give to some friends. Rest.

A friend of my shared an excellent verse with me yesterday that encouraged my soul. I'm going to commit it to memory. Does anyone else need to meditate on this?


I, Daniel, was worn out. I lay exhausted for several days. Then I went about the king's business. ~Daniel 8:27 

Yes! Exactly! Worn out and lay exhausted for a few days. But then we get up and go about King Jesus' business.

I haven't been very productive in output this week. But I'm simply taking a break, getting ready to go about the King's business.

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What are you memorizing right now? What scripture is God using to speak to your heart lately? How are you feeling right now? Ready to go or needing rest? 

May your heart, mind, body, and soul find rest in Jesus! 

Claw Foot Bathtubs and K Awards

Sunday, March 15, 2015  ::   18 important comments

Third grade ate my lunch. I spent my kindergarten through second grade years in a small school in the thriving metropolis of Kermit, TX, population 8,000 or so. My family was blessed enough to move into a bigger house across town (a whole mile or so) which meant I would have to transfer to the other elementary school, Purple Sage, aka Purple Prison. I don't know why the kids called it that because I'm sure it was a lovely school with lovely teachers, but I was convinced. I would begin the third grade in prison away from the friendships I had obviously worked diligently as a 5-7 year old to cultivate, and by cultivate, I mean sharing my crayons and chasing boys on the playground.

To be a little braggy, I was a top dog my first three years of school. I know for a fact I was one of Miss Lemon's favorite little first graders. She had an awesome claw foot bathtub full of pillows in her room, and if you got the most papers on the board for a week you could take your rest time in the tub. It was so fantastic. (Sometimes I wonder if she ever washed those pillows. Can anyone say head lice? *shudder*) I received so many awards my first grade year that she started coming up with new, exciting ways to treat me, such as drinking a coke out of the bottle while sitting in the school office. Let me tell you a first grader in 1980 felt pretty darn awesome with a reward like that.

I didn't, however, receive the title of teacher's pet in second grade. With Mrs. Riley probably no one did. We sat in rows and dared not utter a word. I'm convinced she's started me down the track of my fear/hatred of math. Let's just say she didn't really want to help me understand how parenthesis work in an equation, but that's for another story. However, in Kermit, TX in the 1980s at the end of every school year, teachers passed out these beautiful certificates called K Awards, and Mrs. Riley thought I deserved the best handwriting award plus a couple of other acknowledgments. In first grade, Miss Lemon gave me a stack of K Awards. So, in first and second grade my desire to achieve for recognition was born.
Can't you just imagine how funny and cute it must have been seeing me belt out "I AM A PROMISE" at the top of my lungs during the talent competition of the Miss Cinderella Pagent? I think my mom may be the only one on the planet that would defend how amazing I actually was.
2nd Grade, I think, but maybe 3rd grade based on the awesome pair of grown-up teeth that seem to be making their debut.
But, this surely is 3rd Grade, maybe. But that short suit... don't be jealous. 
Third grade, however, was a whole new playing field. "Thankfully" (kind of) I had a "friend" (kind of) from church in my class. Truth be told, I was pretty much jealous of her because I fully believed she could do everything better than me... roller skate, sing in our kids' choir, memorize bible verses, all the important little kid things. And "thankfully" she sat right in front of me in our row on the first day of third grade. She thought it would be a good idea to turn around and tell me all the things, and therefore, our teacher thought it would be a good idea to write our names on the board as a lesson to the whole class that chatty brats would not be tolerated. And I cried. I had never in all my life been in trouble in school. Purple Prison lived up to its name on the very first day of school.

In third grade, I struggled to make friends, didn't win any class competitions, rarely had a paper put on the board, peed my pants in class, and didn't receive a single K Award. I most definitely thought I deserved something. I mean, I had achieved in first and second grade. How could I have been so overlooked in third grade? It was a rough life for a 9 year old. The struggle was real, folks. Do not doubt it. 

Recently I was blessed with the opportunity to travel to Austin for the IF: Gathering. In the first session, one of the speakers prayed very strongly for God to speak to all of us, "to give us a word." Simultaneously in my heart, I was telling God that if he had something specific I would listen, but that he owed me nothing and I would be content to be in his presence. But do you know what he did for me? Gave to me in very specific, personal ways. He is a good, good Father. 

Throughout my life I've been a hard worker, sometimes for the sake of hard work and sometimes for the sake of what I could gain, whether an award or a friend or a pants size. But, God showed me during IF that through the years of my life, what seemed to be an independence or an indifference to people's response to me was actually a wall of protection I had built because of life's disappointments. 

You see, I believe it's all connected. What happened to us as children certainly affects how we interact with the world as adults. God showed me that as a nine year old I began to believe the lie that I was overlooked. One would think that something so seemingly insignificant wouldn't affect me, but one would be wrong. As God was gently revealing this to me, I saw glimpses of how I responded to situations in middle school, high school, college, and even now, of how I played off being "overlooked" like a cool cat. I had let a corner of my heart become hard and stoney. 

The ironic truth is that I am overlooked by people quite often. As God was working in my heart during one powerful song, he was revealing to me that through all the overlooking, I had begun to believe that he was also overlooking me in order to use other friends, other leaders, and other churches. Through his kindness he was breaking the chains on my life by whispering to me that I belong to him, he knows my name, he uses my gifts, he has me in the place he chose for me. 

Please know I haven't been walking around for the past 33 years trying my hardest not to be overlooked. The rotten fruit of this lie recently showed up in my life by way of a discontentment in wondering if I was doing enough or even if I was enough. I found myself constantly looking to the left and to the right to see what others were doing, and to see if anyone was looking at me. It was exhausting, and most definitely robbed me of contentment and joy. What he showed me that day in Austin is that he is enough. Now I've known this in my head for years. With my hands lifted high I could honestly and loudly sing all the songs telling him that he was enough for me. But the beauty of rich, God-revealed living is that he not only wants us to know his truths in our heads, he wants us to experience them in our lives. Through the power of his Spirit, he was moving this grace from my head to my heart, so I could live it, believe it, and proclaim it. Such sweet relief.   

To wrap up the weekend at IF, we each wrote our step of faith (where and what) to show how we would respond to what God spoke to our hearts. I wrote: My place is Tucson, and my step is to believe that I'm not overlooked and to lead my people with as much love as I can give. Honestly, I think I've been loving them strongly for a really long time. But, I also know that I've reserved the stoney part of my heart for self-preservation for when someone leaves, or gives harsh critique, or chooses someone else over me. And guess what! People will leave. I will receive harsh critique. Others will be chosen over me. But as much as I know I would not overlook my children for someone else, I know God doesn't overlook me. And as much as I know my children aren't meant to do everything all the time, I know God does not mean for me to take on responsibility that he hasn't given me. And as much as I want my children to find their niche and be filled with such great joy while maintaining soft, pliable hearts, God wants me to love where I'm serving, love the gifts he's given me to use, and to allow him to mold and make my heart more and more like his. 

Interestingly enough, when I returned to Tucson, I heard from my women that I love to lead, that they missed me. They, too, wrote on rocks while engaging in the simulcast of IF, and they left their pile of rocks on my desk which was a beautiful display of their love for me. I use the words on their rocks to pray for them by asking God to give them strength, perseverance, and joy as they take their faith steps. 

Friends, even if the people around us, people we think should see us, people we long to know can't seem to even remember our names, God never ever overlooks his children. He doesn't seek to give us a job or a platform or a best friend or a spouse or the perfect house to prove he remembers us. He has already given Jesus and his Spirit to prove that we've not been overlooked. He is fully available to us. We no longer need to look to the left or to the right to see what others are doing or to see if they are looking at us. We only need to look to straight ahead to the face of God. 


So, if you made it this far, congratulations! This lengthy thing is more like a chapter of a book than a blog post. Thanks for hanging with me until the end. As a reward (ha, see what I did there?) I'm doing a little give away. To enter all you have to do is leave a comment. Answer one of the following questions and then at the end of the week, I'll draw someone's name. 

I'm giving away Donald Miller's new book Scary Close. It is so, so good. I read it in a couple of days, and if you know my slow reading abilities that should tell you how good it is! Mr. Miller will challenge you in your ideas of vulnerability and relationships. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I will read it again.

Leave comment to enter because you want this book. I promise.  

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What have you been learning lately? Did anything I shared resonate with you? In what ways do you see you are God's beloved? In what ways have you seen the connectedness of your life? 

Many blessings in your faith steps! 

Determined Discipline

Sunday, March 01, 2015  ::   10 important comments

Through the years I've started and not finished many hobbies from photography to learning to play the bass or the banjo. You see, I'm an ideas person. I can have ideas until the cows come home. Lately, my mind as been swimming with so many potential good visions. Sometimes I wish I could simply put the ideas in a bowl, add some sugar, flour, and eggs, pour them into a pan, and turn them all into completed accomplishments.

A couple of the ideas I've had I really want to see through. But they are both BIG ideas. It will take so much prayer and discipline. And I'm a little scared. Actually, so scared that I don't even want to tell anyone about them because I'm afraid I can't accomplish them, and then I will feel flakey or worse, like a failure.

But, at the same time I'm so thankful for new thoughts and plans. When I was in my 20s, I heard someone say that most people stop learning new things when they are in their 30s and just coast to the end of their lives living off the few years of accumulated head knowledge they've managed to gain. It alarmed/pushed me into determined discipline to position myself as a learner for the rest of my life. Notice the words: determined discipline. Learning can sometimes begin accidentally, but it must continue with effort and intentionality. Continued ideas, vision, and direction are some sweet fruits of learning.

As you might have guessed it, I believe learning for a follower of Jesus begins with time spent in the Bible. Reading it, hearing it, studying it, meditating on it, and of course, memorizing it. I hope those of you that are joining in this accountability group are not just spending time memorizing verses. You will be one lopsided person if that is all you are doing. You must take this one ingredient and mix it will all the other aspects of taking in His Word to grow into an accomplished learner full of vision and ideas from Jesus.

Do you have the notion that all of this should be easy? Were you hoping that taking in His Word and obeying would come automatically or naturally? Did you know it would take effort? Listen, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it. But the truly challenging and changing stuff of life takes real work. The gate is narrow, not just for the Kingdom, but for many good things in this life. So keep up the good, hard, soul-changing work! You will continually reap the fruit of learning, my friends. I know it to be true.

I'm still working on 2 Timothy 3:1-7. I have verses one through four down, but five is still tripping me up, so I'm going to keep working on it. I'm hoping to have the whole passage down by the end of the month because six and seven will be easy for me to remember. If you've been around me at all, you've heard me get preachy about these two.

2 Timothy 3:6-7 
For among them are those that creep into households and capture weak-willed women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at the knowledge of truth. 

Which that last phrase puts a whole new aspect onto being a learner, doesn't it? To be a faithful-to-Jesus learner, we must fix our eyes on Him or we "learn" all kinds of things but never arrive at the knowledge of the TRUTH! That makes me shiver. I don't want the ways of this dark world to worm their way into my mind, heart, or home. I want to be a learner with ideas, vision, and direction from the Spirit of God!

Now it's your turn. Please post the verses you are memorizing and/or studying.

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Do you see yourself as a teachable person? In what ways do you learn from God and from others? What have you been learning lately? 

May your life be enriched through determined discipline, my friends! 

To Build Up or Destroy, the Choice is Yours

Wednesday, February 11, 2015  ::   5 important comments

**trigger warning**

There is so much from the world that comes against purity and holiness and marriage. I spent some time reading through the stats of how many people have read 50 Shades of Grey and how many people are expected to see the movie and my heart and head just hurt. To live in a time where women and children are sexually exploited, where children are abused, where story after story of rape on college campuses with very little done to prosecute and punish abound, yet books and movies like this become best sellers absolutely astounds me. I cannot for the life of me understand why any women at all would want to subject herself to such insidiousness.

I can already hear some of you asking why I would have such a strong opinion without having read the book. Well, first, I'm not stupid or naive. I've read the reviews and anything that promotes the domination of women in sex is not uplifting or treasuring to us which I know is not God's design. Second, I do not have to drink arsenic to know it will kill me. Third, I've been married to one man who deeply treasures me for 20 years. The intimacy between us is far greater than anything the distorted world has to offer. There you have it: I'm not stupid, I don't drink poison, and my marriage is healthy, which I believe, gives me a voice you should heed.

Friends, please, please do not be weak-willed in your faith and understanding of who God desires for you to be. Do not give into filling your heart, mind, and soul with this movie.

Marriage takes real work. It requires honesty, integrity, communication, commitment, selflessness, understanding, compassion, diligence, and much, much more. What's interesting is so much of what happens in a marriage can be viewed by friends, neighbors, family. How you keep your house, how you parent your children, how you spend your money, even how you bicker and argue can be observed by others. But, there is one thing that is for you and your spouse only, one private aspect of your marriage that should include absolutely no one else.

Sexual intimacy was created for two people who have covenanted together to spend the rest of their days living life in such a way that displays and gives witness to how Jesus Christ loves the church. 

Because marriage was created to show the world how much Jesus loves us, Satan (the DLB), a very real and present enemy absolutely hates marriage. He continually shows how he seeks to destroy us. If genuine intimacy was created to be experienced between one man and one woman, he is doing his best to steal, kill, and destroy it. Again, abuse, exploitation, perversion in the form of pornography all set themselves up to be the exact contradiction to what intimacy is meant to be.

And, the DLB is cunning. He knows that many of us believe we are strong enough to withstand abusing someone or becoming addicted to porn, so he creates subtle distortions through stories that appeal to humanity, to our thirst for relationships, attention, fantasy. A racy make-out scene here, a Car'ls Jr/Hardy's commercial there. A TV show where 25 single women make out with the same guy here, or a mall store with boobs and underwear in our faces there. It is everywhere and we buy it hook, line, and sinker... but slowly, not knowing that we are being boiled in our own pot of hypocrisy, numbness, and smut.

One verse that has been so wrongly used in the Christian sub-culture world of dating is Proverbs 4:23. Come on, finish it for me: Above all else guard...  Yep. I know you've heard it. Maybe you've even quoted it when you were dating someone, or about to break up with someone. Or maybe you've thrown it in the face of your friend when you felt like they were loving too much too soon. But let's reclaim it today for the sake of what it truly means.

Proverbs 4:23 
Above all else guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. 

Whatever you put into your heart, mind, and soul, will eventually come out. (Luke 6:45)

If you put humility in your heart, serving others will spill out of you.

If you guard your heart with thankfulness, your well will not run dry with entitlement.

If you fill yourself up with patience, you will flow with kindness.

Likewise,

If you allow gossip to enter your heart, you will soon think of yourself higher than you ought.

If you engage in political hatred, you alienate people Jesus asks you to love.

If you shut yourself off from community, the well of your soul will feel isolated and alone.

Deeper still,

If you take in content through the internet, books, or movies that does not lift your soul, you will crave more, lust for more, soon be ensnared.

If you do not guard the sexual intimacy of your marriage, you will grow dissatisfied with your spouse and distance between you is inevitable, and you will seek it in other ways.

If you are not married and you seek to satisfy desires for relational intimacy apart of Jesus and purposeful community, you will become a target for the DLB to fill your heart with lies of entitlement, shame, rejection, and regret.

People, let us guard our hearts! Why exchange the truth for a lie? Why believe unholy thoughts that set themselves up against the knowledge of God? Why continue to learn about the stuff of this world but never arrive at the knowledge of the Truth?

Guard intimacy in your marriage. It is the only thing that is just for you and your spouse. It is a gift to be treasured and guarded, the point at which you can come together, recalibrate, refocus, refresh. Do not let anything in this world come into what was meant for just you and your life mate. If you need resources to help you grow in your understanding of intimacy with your spouse, email me.

If you are not married, guard your heart. The drive for sex can only be fully quenched in marriage. Love satisfies. Lust craves. Love gives. Lust takes. Love enables true intimacy. Lust kills true intimacy. Love protects. Lust destroys. Love builds your heart. Lust destroys your heart. Guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.

If you are a follower of Jesus, do not watch or read 50 Shades of Grey.

If you are not a follower of Jesus, guard your heart, too! Fill your mind and heart with life-giving, humanity-lifting wisdom. Do not watch 50 Shades of Grey.

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Many, many blessings to your heart! May Jesus satisfy your deepest needs to be known, loved, and treasured.

The Daily Battle

Saturday, February 07, 2015  ::   10 important comments

He did not do many mighty works among them because of their unbelief. Matthew 13:58

These words have chased me for the last few years. Three years ago I began to ask God to increase my faith, teach me not just to believe in Him, but to believe Him. Like so many people who pray that prayer, I did not know what the cost of asking for more faith would mean for me. Soon after begging God for more faith, my family and I faced a health situation that would require me to quiet my fears, trust Him with my family, and take a year sabbatical to heal and to learn to just be with God.

I learned good, rich lessons of resting, and being with Jesus, of trusting Him, obeying Him in the day to day walk of life.  But, let me be honest with you, as the time between that sweet rest grows, there are more and more days when I wonder if I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing, wondering if I should be doing more. The funny thing is I know what I'm passionate about, investing in women and teaching them to do the same. I love telling people about Jesus and experiencing life transformation with them. But sometimes. Oh those sometimes. Sometimes I wonder if I am enough, if there is more, if I 'm missing something.

Yesterday Jennie Allen started the If: Gathering by challenging us with faith. There was so much passion and urgency erupting out of her. As she talked of Joshua and Caleb's faith the story was building in my heart again, am I doing what I should be doing or is there more? And then the answer came.

This faith, this life, our lives are to be spent for the Gospel, for the souls of men!

"We are at war and the prize is faith! There is nothing more damaging to hell! If God is real then let's go take the land. It isn't in the measure of our faith. It is in the measure of our immeasurable God!" -Jennie Allen

Friends, this is the stuff of daily living! This is not only the big adventure to do big things in the eyes of people. It is opening your mouth to your co-worker, your classmate, your roommate, your mom, your brother, those with whom you are in contact every day. Every normal, mundane day of your life is the actual battle!

I often believe the lie that my life is small, but I am living out my faith with my family and church in Tucson, AZ where 90% of the people are unchurched. Another level of freedom came to me during Jennie's message yesterday. The battle is for the souls of the people in my every day life. In head knowledge I know this truth. Now I'm asking God to make it a reality in the experiential knowledge of my soul. If I am not willing to fight the daily battle then I am no true warrior. Ann Voskamp summed it up at the end of the night perfectly for me as she led us in confession. Forgive me for wanting a calling bigger than my character.

Jesus, help me, help us be faithful with the few. Help me battle in the everyday. Let my character run deep. Let me long for you so much more than I long to do work for you.

Increase our faith. Please do many mighty works among us because our faith pleases you!

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What challenges your faith? Who do you need to tell about Jesus? Have you considered the measure of your character compared to the calling you desire? 

May rich blessings of faith grow in your heart as you do what He's asked you to do! 


Soul Care

Thursday, February 05, 2015  ::   6 important comments

Beautiful words filled my mind when the alarm went off this morning. 

I've spent this week wondering: Wondering why Alysa gave me her IF: Gathering ticket. Wondering what to expect. Wondering about the women in the IF Facebook groups. Wondering what God has for me. Wondering what to expect or even if I should have expectations. Wondering if God has something to teach me, show me, tell me. Wondering. 

Yesterday I focused on laying all the wonderings down. The God of the Universe owes me nothing. Jesus is enough. His presence in my life is a gift of His unfailing love. As I faded into sleep and whispered the dreamy prayers of my heart, I confessed to Jesus that the break from routine and sitting in His presence this weekend was enough for me.  

At 6:05 the alarm buzzed, and my mind was instantly full. 

"I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word I put my hope; my soul waits for the Lord, more than watchman wait for morning, more than watchman wait for morning." Psalm 130:5-6

"My soul finds rest in God alone. My salvation comes from Him." Ps 62:1

"My soul will be satisfied as with the richest of foods, with singing lips my mouth will praise you." Ps 63:3

Turns out my true desire for this weekend is to rest in Jesus, to have little to no responsibility, to just be with Him. The burden of expectations has been lifted.

I'm already breathing more deeply and slowly, enjoying the slowed rhythm of waiting. My soul rests and waits. He will satisfy me, not the music, not the speakers, not the women with whom I interact. I trust He will use those good things, but He doesn't need to. He is enough. 



Practice to Truly Live

Sunday, February 01, 2015  ::   13 important comments

To carry out an activity habitually or regularly is to practice. What in your life is something for which you desire proficiency? For me, exercise, baking, and even parenting are parts of my life that demand consistent practice. I've tasted the cookies of people that only bake once in a blue moon. Usually, one bite is plenty. Lone crumbs on the plate after a party give great evidence that someone has practiced baking their favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe.

Practice. 

Our spiritual lives require this important discipline. The more I practice praying, the more I realize I'm truly talking to God with no pretense, fear, or entitlement. Kindness grows as we practice seeing the needs of those around us. Generosity grows as we practice meeting those needs. John Ortberg wrote a book teaching about the purpose in training for the life you want verses simply trying to obtain it. (Consider reading this good book.) 

Of course you know I'm going to say the same is true in memorizing scripture. The more you practice, your ability to remember verses will grow. The more you practice, your ability to apply them to your everyday life will grow. The more you practice, your ability to calm your heart and mind, obey a prompting of the Spirit, and even spontaneously pray scripture will grow and grow and grow. 

Unfortunately, many of us as children took the word "practice" and put it in the negative word folder of our minds. How many of you were forced to practice piano or violin? Did you just shiver a little bit? For me, it was practicing math facts. Just typing that sentence made my lip snarl and nostrils flare. Ick. Well can we just please stop a minute and reclaim the beautiful word of practice? How about these words: 

Review, carry out, persist, work out, get in there, make progress, labor, and my favorite, do your thing! 

A few times a week, say the verse you are memorizing out loud over and over. A few times a week practice remembering the verses you already know by reviewing them. This practice makes the power of His word a very tangible reality in our hearts, minds, and souls. Don't you desire this fruit in your life? I do. I so so SO want this in my life and in yours. 

Click on this photo, so you can get a good glimpse at theses dates. I've been practicing my verses for many, many moons.
You will have to look closely, but there are some antique cards in that pile. 1991! Raise your hand if that card is older than you. Yes. I know. Quite a few of you. Amazingly, I still know each of those verses because I PRACTICE them regularly and have been since I learned them! So whatever your method is, review should be a vital part of your practice. 

This next photo is only a point of encouragement. Jeremiah 9:24 says, "Let him who boasts, boast in this, that he understands and knows me." I'm not promoting my skills, but wanting to show you what your heart, mind, and soul can take in if you practice. 
Review your verses, friends. REVIEW YO VERSES! Practice. Practice remembering. Practice learning. Practice living. Practice loving. Practice being. And then when you practice doing, your heart and mind will be set on heavenly things where Christ is seated at the right hand of God, not on earthly things. (Colossians 3:1-2)

This month I'm continuing to take in the passage in 2 Timothy about how the world will be full of junk worming its way into weak-willed women's homes. I'll be working on verses 3 through 5. 

2 Timothy 3:3-5
heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. 

Such "happy" verses, aren't they? A good explanation of all of this will be written up soon. I promise. 

Please post what you will be memorizing and/or practicing this month. I can't wait to read what you have to say! 

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What are you memorizing? Are you reviewing? How are you practicing what you are learning? 

Blessings in your practice, my friends!