James Online Bible Study Week 3

By December 4, 2011James

Welcome back to our third week of online bible study as we continue discussing James, Mercy Triumphs by Beth Moore. We’ve just finished reading week three and a favorite moment is when Beth writes “with the study of the book of James, you can either change or quit. Let’s not quit.” A few of you have already mentioned convicting moments from this study and how the lessons seem to touch you personally. Keep sharing your experiences and walk forward in faith as we discover more about the book of James.

Last week we studied joy amidst anguish. This week we looked at controlling anger and our voices, and spending time listening. We’re reminded to hear the bible and not just read the bible. This week I challenge you to listen to scripture. Find an audio bible, listen online, or if you’re using the audio CD’s for this study listen to the bonus CD where Beth Moore reads the book of James. You might even ask your husband or a friend to read it aloud to you. Challenge yourself to listen and hear the bible, not just read it. Here’s the Bible Gateway Audio Bible.

In scripture we know Jesus listened to the heart and not just to the words. He gave many examples of listening through the Spirit and when he left us, the Holy Spirit remained with us. We have the gift to listen to the hearts of our neighbors, our family members, our coworkers and our friends. If we’re too busy focused on our own hearts, on distracted with prejudices, the Spirit cannot do his work in us. Quieting our mouths, stilling our minds and listening to the Counselor gives is the wisdom to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.

Listening to James 1:27 I had a jaw-breaking moment with my bible. As I pondered the words, I thought….

  • what if James was referring to spiritual orphans?
  • what if James was referring to widows of the church?
  • what if James was referring to the pure blood of Jesus?

If so, then for me the verse would mean:

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after (spiritual) orphans and (church) widows in their distress and to keep (your heart) from being polluted by the world.

In this case, pure religion would be finding and caring for spiritual orphans as lost sheep and bringing them back to the Father. It would be caring for those who divorced religion and bringing them back to God. It would mean keeping your heart flowing with the blood of Jesus’ love for others so they could see God working inside you.

I’ve always looked at this verse as children without parents (orphans), wives without husbands (widows) and purity. Listening to the verse gave me a deeper meaning. I’m not suggesting you re-write the bible….however I.m showing you an example of how you can listen to the bible and apply a scripture verse to your situation or life. That’s the joy of bible study.

Prayer Requests

There are some special prayer needs from members participating in this bible study. Please take some time this week and pray for them. If you have a prayer request for our prayer wall, please click here.

Beth Moore Quotes

  • True religion is all hands on deck and all heads out of the sand.
  • Left to ourselves, we’re mud pies baking in the elements of preference and prejudice.
  • At the end of the day, what impresses us dictates us.
  • Because we look up, we’re compelled to look out.
  • We’re not bound to ritual laws but we are bound to love.
  • Faith and favoritism don’t mix.

For Next Week

Group Discussion- Answer one question or as many as you like

  1. What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
  2. What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
  3. How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
  4. Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.

Author Christine Abraham

Founder and Ministry Director of the Womens Bible Cafe™ since 2009, Christine has led 60+ online Bible Studies for women. She completed a Graduate of Biblical Studies from Liberty University. She’s an inspired writer, Amazon Top Reviewer and Blogger Follow on Facebook

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Join the discussion 60 Comments

  • Julie says:

    I am angry about the divorce, angry that Dave is making changes so quickly and seems to be disregarding or rather not ensuring he puts his kids first. I am angry that Dave didn’t fight to have his new step daughter attend a different school than our daughter who only has only 5 months left in her Senior year. I am angry that he seems so indifferent to those that he is hurting and fails to see that there are other options that would be less hurtful. When I feel dishonored, I feel anger, frustrated and desire to prove I am honorable — which fills me with bitterness. I pray for the Lord to pull me out of bitterness and fill me with joy of knowing and serving others.

    God has stirred in me a passion for learning, growing and sharing with women that have been abandoned, broken, betrayed, destroyed by their husband or someone that they love.

  • Neli says:

    2.What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?

    I have been working on this in my faith walk. I am learning to die to myself and to discipline myself. It is helpful to remember that I am God’s and he is the one sitting at the throne of my heart, not me. I find that if you feed the flesh and its desires in one area, it is harder to starve it in another. It is better when it is all across the board. This is why God wants us to surrender all ou ourselves to Him. I have and am struggling with this to some extent, but I always find there is reward (joy, peace, etc) in doing it God’s way as opposed to mine.

  • Victoria says:

    What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you? Jealousy, Lack of control, Lack of money 🙁 It was hard to admit those last two—but I do get angry over them and really need to nail them to the cross, and leave them there.

    What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ? I wrote a small list and then wrote a note above them “None of these as much as I should” Prayer, Praise, Teaching Children’s Church, Bible Study- by myself and with my daughter, Attending church

    How can you show love to your neighbor this month? Taking time away from my “busy schedule” to listen, to just be there.

    Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.
    I have so many!!
    Pg 77: “We need humility to receive a word from God down into the soil of our humanity. We tend to take God’s message to us and hang it around someone else’s neck, but its first target was our own souls.” WOW!
    Stop talking about living in victory, and DO IT!
    Pg 78: “We can underline our Bibles till our pens run dry without a drop of ink splattering our lives. The self-deception slithers in when we mistake appreciation for application or being touched with being changed.” Seriously, this one hit me in the face so hard, I swear I had a red mark from it! 🙂
    “It’s not until the hearing turns into doing that believing leads to blessing.”
    I won’t write it out, but the last 3 paragraphs on pg 86! I wrote beside it, “OMG! Love!”
    We cannot be a blend of faith and favoritism. LOVE COVERS!
    “Blessed are those who need Him enough to know Him enough to love Him enough to know He’s enough.”
    “We answer to a living Orator who still oxygenates His Word with warm breath and as in the days of Jeremiah, still watches to see that His Word is fulfilled.”
    “Jesus called His followers to something beyond righteous rules. He called them to right relationships.”

  • Jennifer D says:

    4. Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.
    1. On page 74-75, I love how Melissa describes how her mom can recite James. Makes people feel like that they are back in time at the temple, listen to James for as it was for real.
    2. In addition, on page 78, the quote Self-deception slithers in when we mistake appreciation for application or being touched with being changed.

  • carin says:

    1.What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
    When people don’t’ get it. Things that I get blamed for when it is not my fault or issue.

    2.What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
    By constantly being in his word. My feelings and actions get so whacked out when I don’t have my dose of scripture or pray continuously.

    3.How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
    Not sure. But God has sure opened my eyes to things that his word says that I sure have not been doing. (see favorite moment for explanation)

    4.Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.
    In week two it was brought to my attention about the poor and that there are hundreds of scriptures that points out that.we are to give in some manner to them. Then this week talks about Orphans and widows too. My husband & I have no children so I have to believe that God is teaching us to use our money wisely to help people in these areas. I watched a movie just recently on the Hallmark channel and it showed a childless couple wondering how they can help out in areas that they were not aware of . I don’t believe watching that movie was a coincidence.. Praying that God keeps guiding us in the direction and we don’t get off course.

  • Crystal says:

    1. What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
    -As a new Christian I am really amazed by the way my preferences in music, movies, TV programs, and even conversations has changed/ evolved. Additionally, my behavior and reactions to the world has begun to change. One of the biggest struggles I’ve had with this is when people who have known me for many years (including friends and family members) try to push me back into my old mold. I really try to be patient, but like anyone, sometimes my patience runs short and this really angers me. I have a hard time grappling with the fact that people don’t really want the best for those they’re supposed to love–this really angers me.

    2. What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
    -Prayer, bible study, small group fellowship, going to church

    3. How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
    -I’m usually very shy and just avoid eye contact so that I don’t have to deal with the awkward surface conversations that take place between two people who don’t know each other very well (either because of time, interests, or judgements). I’m going to try to keep my face up and greet everyone with a smile and a hello and just see where it goes from there.

    4. Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.
    -Day Two’s lesson really reached out to me. I really connected to the translation of the gazer in the mirror who looks intently at his face then forgot it, as the man seeing his TRUE identity- the bearer of the very image of God who forgets who he is when he goes back out into the world. It seems absurd, but she makes a great point, “The self-deception slithers in when we mistake appreciation for application or being touched with being changed… the Word of God…is meant to do more than penetrate. It’s meant to activate.”

  • Amy S. says:

    When thinking of showing love to my neighbor, Beth’s quote comes to mind. “Because we look up, we’re compelled to look out.” I work at home, so my “neighbors” are mostly my physical neighbors. So many times, I’m out walking my dog and I just want to walk quickly, without distraction, and get on the rest of my day. Since I work at home, I have to keep myself on a schedule, or I won’t be able to be productive. Although productivity is important, I believe that many times I get too caught up in it to look out. Beth’s quote compelled me to look up more–to take the time to reach out. Sometimes, even to stop and ask someone how they’re doing shows that you care. That’s what’s on my mind–to look out more and not get so caught up in my own stuff that I neglect to show care for those around me.

  • Krystle says:

    1. What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
    I don’t like being ignored or someone being at mad at me and not coming up to me to tell me and work through it. We have several issues going on, right now, in our family and those issues make me angry but they also make me sad.

    2. What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
    I talk to God, I pray, and I think taking the steps to reconnect with my faith and Christ through this Bible study also show my devotion but also show my need to reconnect with him and grow with Him and through Him.

    3. How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
    This month we should host a dinner, bring food to the shelters, bring supplies to shelters, help out a neighbor who’s lost it all, or just telling someone how much you appreciate them.

    4. Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.
    As I was doing the lessons and reading and writing my mind also started thinking about how things related to my life and the next thing I knew I was pouring my feelings onto the page, as though, I was being told to write it down and leave it in the book. I felt better after I wrote it and I asked God while I was writing to help me because I’m honestly at my wits end. If only I could have him in my kitchen and ask (beg) Him personally to help me with these issues.

    • Christine says:

      As God’s children, I think He treasures those moments when we’re at our wits end and need to just dump it all at His feet and ask for help. I’m amazed how often I hear women say they had overwhelming tears and fall apart when praying, yet God created us to have these feelings. We’ve been conditioned by society (and Satan) to hide our tears and so we feel guilty for crying, even before God. Subtle warfare from Satan. So to all my sisters in Christ I say….Let the tears fall, don’t be ashamed of your sorrow and give God your heart. He already knows what you’re feeling…He wants to heal you and get the junk out!

  • Debby says:

    I think this time of year more than any other stirs ways to show love for our neighbors. We give gifts, money, etc. But this should just be the jumping off point and should continue. Our ‘neighbors’ need help throughout the year not just one time. When God puts the need before us, we need to act on it.

  • Lexi says:

    This week the section regarding anger really spoke to me. We should be slow to become angry and “slow to assume the mantle of righteous indignation, because in so doing we implicitly claim to speak for God.”

    That quote really spoke to me. How many times do I try to justify my anger as righteous anger? In those instances, I’m claiming to speak for God. That’s a huge responsibility and one that I should always be mindful of.

    I realized just how quick I am to become angry and frustrated with those around me-especially those in my family and my children. I was really convicted to work to control my frustration toward my kids and not allow myself to become impatient with them so quickly.

    The other part of our lesson that spoke to me was about change. We can do countless Bible studies and spend all our time in church, but if God’s Word is not bringing about a change in our lives, then something is very wrong. Lately, I’ve been enjoying church and getting back into Bible study. However, I’m learning lots of information but I was failing to apply what I had learned and live it out daily. It’s so easy to come off the Bible study high in the morning, but when the kids are up and they are fighting and other things begin happening during my day, I am quick to forget what I have read and respond in anger and frustration.

    I’m working to get back into the daily battle-daily dying to self and working to exhibit change.

    • Michelle M says:

      Lexi, I just finished week 3, and I was reading through the comments. I am RIGHT THERE with you in the daily conundrum! And I get so frustrated with myself! Which is why I need to press in to the Holy Spirit, every day!

      May the Lord bless your day,
      I will be thinking of you in prayer, as I pray for my own wisdom. 🙂

  • Allison says:

    What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?

    I have to admit to being a bit quick tempered when I feel I am being misunderstood
    or when I don’t feel my opinions are being respected. Admittedly, I am also a bit stubborn, so I need to pray for more flexibility and patience when conflict comes up. I could also benefit from the familiar quote: “Don’t sweat the small stuff.”

    What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?

    Being a musician for the past 40 years, I have been blessed to have played in several church music groups through the years. Music provides a way for people to allow their deep, inner-most emotions to come through. I enjoy the closeness I feel while worshipping through music.

    How can you show love to your neighbor this month?

    Just by remembering that everyone has a story and trying not to be judgmental of others. Simply put, “Treat others as you would like to be treated.” Giving the gift of time is also important, as well.

    Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.

    I was reminded to be a doer not just a listener and to keep the spirit of the Christmas season in my actions and heart all year long.

  • Emily M says:

    1. What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
    When things don’t go my way. When I’m disappointed. When someone’s words or actions hurt me. When things are broken, valuables (favorite water pitcher) or intangibles (trust). When things are stolen.
    2. What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
    Bible study, devotion, quiet prayer time, attending church, volunteering time & resources to the needy.
    3. How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
    Helping them with no expectation of returning the favor, pray for them, giving them things they need.
    4. Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.
    Loving others as much as we love ourselves will strip selfishness & showing favoritism from our hearts. Loving others is serving others humbly & forgiving freely. Be blessed!

  • LaTanya says:

    My favorite part of day 3 was “You don’t live this kind of life accidentally. You make up your mind who you want to be and daily die to the rest.” WOW!! It is so easy to get caught up in trying to fit in with everyone. Workplace, church friends, neighbors, relatives. But, when God is our focus, he becomes our daily inspiration to please him. I simply ask Him who he wants me to help & how. Our every idea of helping someone is not always caught up in how we want to help them. I am realizing, God may just have a different plan. Thank you, Lord for the revelation of your love gift to those who may not have all the luxury of this life. My prayer is that my eyes, heart, and actions will be opened to be his love gift to a hurting world…everyday!

  • Marietta says:

    Christine, thank you for sharing your insights about orphans, widows and hearts. I had a big AHA as a result. You described a beautiful application of acting out our faith.

    1.What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
    I suffer from righteous indignation. Nothing makes me spontaneously strike back quicker than someone challenging me when I believe I don’t “deserve” it. God help me with that.
    2.What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
    In the last year and a half I have been reading my Bible in the morning before breakfast. I have coffee with God. At first it was just an exercise of seeking, because at that time I was having some deep spiritual doubts and God’s Spirit lead me to just “hear him out.” Well, I hear Him. He loves ME and that humbles me deeply. God speaks personally through His word. He has given me many convictions and each time I listen and then ACT upon the Spirit’s stirring I receive grace beyond measure.
    3.How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
    As I read the lesson this week I thought of something a friend holds against me. Just this morning God gave me the answer to what to do. She thinks I kept or lost a set of DVDs that are precious to her. In fact, I did not, but rather actually did return them to her and as I did another of her friends borrowed them. So, I am not at fault. yet she believes I am and has told me so. Previously, I thought “Well, that’s HER problem.” But God let me know this morning that it truly is MY responsibility. So, this week I will replace her DVD set with love and joy in my heart knowing that then I can lay my gift (my love) at the feet of Christ.

    • Christine says:

      Thank you Marietta. 🙂 I’ve gotten off schedule with my mornings with God, and I now squeeze Him into a busy day or the end of the evening. I miss the quiet moments because intimacy with Him centers the entire day. Thanks for this reminder….tomorrow it’s just me and God in the morning.

      I love what you are doing for your friend. Someday she may find both DVD’s and God will convict her that love inspired you more than pride. Jesus humbled himself with love, and your action shows Christ-like faith. Inspiring!

  • Glynis says:

    About anger: I know that I get angry, and definitely not a righteous kind of anger, when I feel like I’ve lost control over a situation, or when I feel like I’m not being heard. I usually snap at my children or my close family and it hurts the relationship. Every time. Once those angry words are said they can never be taken back. And God is working on me about too…so Mindy shouldn’t feel all alone 🙂

    One of the hardest days of study during week 3 was on Day 4 about favoritism. I never thought of myself as playing favorites, but I know that I do. I work in a downtown church, so every day I am confronted with people on both sides–the haves and the have-nots. I have a feeling that God will add this favoritism to the list of things He’ll be working on with me!

  • Mindy says:

    1.What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
    When I feel someone is challenging or contradicting me (working on this), cruelty and disrespect in words and/or actions to others,
    2.What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
    Mostly prayer, also bible devotions/study, working on my obedience.
    3.How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
    I’d like to slow down and give them my full attention and not be too busy to stop listen to and ‘see’ them.
    4.Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.
    I love how when God is working with you on something he pulls out no stops. I’ve been working on listening more and speaking/getting ruffled less. I’m visiting friends and they have a scripture about this posted on their wall that I all but ran into when I arrived; the next morning our lesson was James 1:19, which is exactly what I’ve been working on. I love God… he has a fun sense of humor. I’m getting all but pounded over the head with this message everywhere :o)

  • Barbara says:

    I like the way Beth keeps us pulled back into grace as we struggle to live the Christian disciplines. Having come to know the Lord in a more legalistic – law keeping – mentality, I know the peace and joy that comes from knowing the Lord through Grace. Romans 5-8 helps us keep it in check too. The disciplines such as dealing with controlling anger can be a form of suffering! As we live our lives and work to meet goals and fulfill responsibilities we have to continually reign ourselves in to remember who is the sovereign control of all. It’s not about me!

  • evie730 says:

    1. what has sparked my anger as of late is medial personnel at the hospital. One day I had to close my eyes and pray to God, as I really wanted to cuss everyone out. I am a witness he will send peace when you ask for it!

    2. Some ways I manifest devotion to God is my time with him in the morning. I wake up early to pray before I go to work. I try to get Proverbs in a lunch and make sure I got some word in me before the day is over. I loveeeee prayer!

    3. I may get something from the bakery for co-workers at work just because.

    4. Favorite moment was when Beth Moore stated its not until hearing turns into doing that believing leads to blessings. I was like what a powerful statement right there.

  • kris says:

    Perfect, lacking in nothing. God really wants the best for us.

  • Rhonda B. says:

    1.What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?
    Seeing someone tearing apart a Christian brother’s heart with their lies and bitter words of jealousy.
    2.What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?
    By trying to stay in the Word every day, and interceding for those in my church who are under attack by the enemy.
    3.How can you show love to your neighbor this month?
    I plan to adopt a Christmas angel from a local daycare’s list, and visit with some shut-ins this month.

  • Jennifer says:

    My favorite message from this week; DOING! and figuring out how to live in this ‘polluted world” and to be humble and still serve others actively. (All Beths words). I am praying that I will be more aware of need around me on a daily basis and we are collecting items (clothing,toys, etc.) to be taken to kids in Uganda or the Congo during our annual Christmas party.

  • Amanda says:

    1. Child neglect/abuse probably provokes the most anger (and sadness) in me.
    2. Prayer, attending church, doing these Bible studies, trying to be a good example to my children.
    4. I underlined a few sentences on page 86 regarding God being practical and what we do to help someone may be nothing much to us, but huge to the person we do it for. How many times has a thought crossed my mind to do something for someone, then decided not to because I didn’t think it was a big deal or just plain was too caught up in myself and my own life. I’m going to try to be more mindful of that.

  • Christy says:

    1.What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you? Definitely when I feel insulted or not considered.
    2.What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ? Remembering that it’s not about me, it’s about HIM, and resisting grudges or anger so that I can hear the Spirit’s direction in loving others.
    3.How can you show love to your neighbor this month? By taking them frozen meals for those super crazy days. By filling a human need in hopes that their hearts will soften to my Provider.
    4.Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson. “At the end of the day, what impresses us, dictates us.” This is so true, and I hadn’t realized it’s impact before.

  • Bonnie Hearl says:

    I thought this week was very intense. Extemely thought provoking. I found myself stopping many times and asking God for extra help to try to be sure I was understanding the message. I must say I miss the discussion that goes with meeting weekly face to face with a group. I am famous for trying to make more of something than there is, and I do like a challenge, so I definately will persevere.

  • Renee says:

    What angers me? What we have done to our food. But actually it isn’t anger. Its a deep sadness. I really don’t get angry. Sometimes irritated. I marked myself on the anger scale at 2 until I read the next paragraph. Then I had to count being irritated and ranked myself at 5. I am going to work on that.

  • Angie says:

    3. How can you show love to your neighbor this month?

    I have one neighbor specifically that I just don’t like and I am sad to say that I do treat him differently than the others. He always goes out of his way to say hi and try to chat with me and I am always too busy or “right in the middle of something” and blow him off. I am going to make a concerted effort to go out of my way to search him out and spend some time chatting with him. Forgive me, Father; and thank you for not letting me get away with this. I needed this lesson badly.

    4. Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson.

    I thought coming up with an acronym for WORDS was hard but fun. I am not creative at all so this was a real challenge for me but I am pretty pleased with what I came up with:

    Walk
    Out
    Revealed
    Directions
    Steadfastly

    or

    Written
    Orders
    Require
    Doing
    Something

    or

    Worked
    Out
    Revelation
    Delights
    Spirit

    I would love to hear what others came up with!

  • Susan says:

    1.What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you? When I was working I would become angry over those who were allowed to use short cuts in established procedures and processes. Then I realized that I was becoming angry over something I had no control over. So over time I let go of this anger. Mistreatment of people and animals angers me.
    2.What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ? worship, bible study, being outdoors and enjoying the beauty God creates every day, and my actions towards others.
    3.How can you show love to your neighbor this month? by helping them anyway I can.
    4.Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson. Religion pure and undefiled is grit without the grime. Wow!

  • Jessica says:

    1) Things that can easily anger me include news stories about parents who abuse their children, as well as about parents who murder their children. I believe children are a heritage of the Lord, and they are to be trained in the way they should go. They are also to be loved by their parents and others. This is why I do not watch the news very often.

    3) I can show love to my neighbors this month by helping those who are in need and treating others with respect and courtesy even when I don’t feel like it. This month, I helped a few elderly people decorate our church for Christmas. One of these people is one of our deacons. I decided to help them out after hearing Beth Moore quote James 2:16 on one of the audio CD’s. It states, “If a brother or sister is without clothes and lacks daily food, and you say, ‘Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well’, but you don’t give them what the body needs, what good is it?”. My pastor’s wife and I helped them out, and they were thankful to have us come and help them. This experience helped me to feel more grateful that I have such a loving church family.

  • Cindy says:

    Hi Everyone. Sorry I’ve been slow to join in, but I started late and got behind–though I’m enjoying catching up. So, about showing love to my neighbor . . . . Right now I am in school pursuing a second career in nursing. This semester I’ve been in a course on psych nursing, which has been quite revelatory for me since I had little previous experience with psychiatric disorders. But three months in a psych hospital has taught me not only about these illnesses, but also about these frequently overlooked people. One reason a study of James appealed to me is because I have realized some ways in which I have unthinkingly been a respecter of persons. I definitely feel called to serve this population, even if the service is simply affirming someone’s dignity.

  • Jayme says:

    The lesson of anger really hit home this week. I have struggle with a “short fuse” all of my life. Things that anger me: not following protocol (this pertains to my job) and I get angry with myself when my work doesn’t turn out well. I have tended to see things things in black and white my whole life. In the past 5 years I’ve learned to see a few more things in the gray area. So my two anger example usually come back to my viewing situations in black and white. However, the more I work on this with God, the better is will come.

    Since I am living in Switzerland right now, I don’t not attend a church. The language is a bit of a problem for understanding. Therefore, I have gotten in the habit of sitting in a church when there is not service and talking to God. I also go hiking a lot and spend my time there talking to God. I have always felt closer to God when I’m in nature.

  • Rhonda says:

    I think what brings me to anger most quickly is people who mistreat or abuse those weaker than themselves. I don’t care if it is a child, a beaten down wife, a skid row drunk, or the mentally ill or disabled. In my career I have seen so many of these individuals used for their Social Security by “loving families” while the person themselves would go without food or medicine. Unfortunately, I became distrustful of the families who did want to care for their loved one, wondering what their motives were. I became quite weary being constantly on guard around everyone and doubting the good that was often there. I also am quick to be angry about the false religious who case the rest of us to be looked at with suspicion. I admit that I too, look at those who have attained jail house or other bad times salvation with veiled suspicion, forgetting that it is up to God to see inside thier hearts, not me. A favorite moment for me from this week’s study was reading Melissa’s comments. She writes so differently form Beth, but what she writes always leaves me with something new to ponder.

  • Adele-Alys says:

    What makes me angry

    Given the season and the fact that we live near several shopping meccas, I would have to say inconsiderate and aggressive drivers. While folks who drive drunk occassionally get all the press, next to nothing is said about people who venture forth daily as if they owned the road. My sister was killed at age 20 in an automobile accident; her girls were both under two and have no memory of her. I think thats too high a price to pay, just so someone could get somewhere 10 minutes earlier.

    • Christine says:

      Praying for your sister’s children and for automobile drivers to lover their neighbors and not themselves while driving.

      I remember a lesson learned after the attacks of Sept. 11 as I drove around town, I was convicted that the person driving near me might be the same person who would save my life in an emergency like 9/11. So I changed my vision and started praying for the drivers around me as I commuted to work or carpooled my kids. I still pray for the drivers, not knowing what weight they carry in their hearts. I pray blessings over them and often the Spirit guides me what to pray. I’m grieved when I see someone smoking a cigarette while driving and intentionally killing themselves, one puff at a time. I pray for these neighbors as well as the aggressive drivers. It reminds me of the innocent people and children who battled cancer and lost their lives, while others mock cancer by inhaling smoke and thinking with pride “it won’t happen to me.” Yep…that angers me, knowing they can reduce the risk of cancer and the resulting impact it has on their family members. I’m also angered by cell phone drivers….so I have many opportunities to pray for my fellow drivers.

    • Ann says:

      Agressive drivers make me very angry too. When I was younger I was just as dangerous as they were while driving. But I’ve mellowed in my “old” age.

  • Nancy says:

    What kind of things spark feelings of anger in you?

    The majority of TV shows and Movies sparks my anger. Casual sex, adultery, homosexuality, foul language, violence, vampires, and horror are featured subjects in TV shows and movies. Many are done with a storyline that make these things seem acceptable. It makes me sick inside.

    What are some ways you manifest devotion to Christ?

    Bible studies with small groups. This has been a major turn in my relationship with Jesus. It keeps me reading, studying, focused, sharing and learning with other sisters.

    Worshiping with other believers.

    Praying for others and asking for guidance.

    How can you show love to your neighbor this month?

    Looking for some volunteer work which would help others.

    Use God’s love and direct it in my daily encounter with others, being quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger. Live it.

    Share a favorite moment from this week’s lesson

    True religion. Beth really spoke to me (pg 86, 2nd to last paragraph) With a large dose of the Holy Ghost “You don’t live this life accidentally. You make up your mind who you want to be and daily die to the rest.” I want to live without favoritism and with the wisdom of God. I need to ask for guidance daily and remember he gives it generously. James 1:5

  • Sandra A says:

    1. Anger – the trivializing, commercializing and mocking of the one true and holy God and his son Jesus Christ…
    2. Manifest devotion to Chirst – listening to God’s word, listening to the Holy Spirit, listen to my neighbor…no presumptions…no judgements…

  • Cindy H says:

    1. Anger is an emotion that doesn’t happen to me often, but I would say that unfairness and cruelty can spark anger.
    2. The church that I am now attending have a wonderful time of praise and worship. That is something that I have been missing in church for the last 40 or so years. It is a yearning that comes deep within to worship God. I also enjoy getting up early in the morning and lighting a candle as I read God’s word and pray.
    3. It is amazing how this works. As I pray that God will show me someone in need that day…..He does! Imagine that.
    4. I enjoyed dividing my life into quarters and taking a fresh look as to how God has been working.

  • Penny says:

    Showing love to neighbors is often difficult because people do not neighbor (at least in my neighborhood) like they used to. However, they do come together in crisis. My one neighbor next door husband was just diagnosed with ALS. I have already talked to her several times to see if she needs anything. Right now, things are okay, but down the road it is going to be tough. Many of the neighbors have also asked how they can help. I am going to continue to see what I can do for her.

  • Penny says:

    Right now what often sparks anger in me, I am not sure if it is real anger, but it makes me upset is that we have many family members who are able to help with caring for my mother who has dementia and they will not commit to helping. All we need is for everyone to commit 3 hours a week, but they can’t seem to find the time. I find myself thinking I hope they don’t show up at the service, crying and acting grief stricken, as I feel that will really make me mad. I actually find myself wantting to tell them that, but I hold it back. I also feel this is a sin on my part, feeling this way. She did a lot for them and now they cannot find 3 hours a week to help with her care. I guess my anger kind of shows here.

    • Angie says:

      I know these feelings, Penny. My 81 year old mother has Parkinson’s and can do very little for herself anymore. My 82 year old father is her full time caregiver which is very difficult for him physically. There are 6 of us children and only one of my sisters and myself help as we are able. I work full time so have limited time available and my sister that also helps is recently retired so she has been able to take on a little more of their care. One of my other sisters does not work at all and has told my dad flat out that she doesn’t clean house so don’t ask her. I get so angry when I think about it that I see red. God has really been working on me in this area and calming me down alot though. One of my saving thoughts is that when mom and dad are gone I will be able to genuinely say I have no regrets. I don’t think right now the other 4 kids would be able to say that. I will be praying for your situation and I think you can take comfort knowing that God sees everything you are doing and is well pleased I’m sure.

  • Carolyn W. says:

    1. What really sparks anger in me is seeing or hearing
    of awful treatment towards people and individuals I won’t
    even read the paper or watch the news anymore.
    2. Manifest devotion. Hmmm. I am sure outwardly though
    I speak of knowing Jesus I dont know if I manifest it.

    • Christine says:

      I can’t tolerate the news either. It reminds me of adult-bullying. It would be nice if the news was presented as a historical perspective rather than an emotional perspective.

    • Renee says:

      I quit watching or reading the news years ago! I feel like I live under a rock. I also quit watching TV except for cooking or traveling shows. I have some CDs of really old TV, but I hate the stuff that it is now.

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