Friday, February 1, 2019

A Life Interrupted is a Life That is Privileged

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I'm a planner.  I plan most things out in advance.  I don't plan ahead for everything in my life but once I have a plan in place, I get all out of sorts if something interferes with my plan.  If something comes along and interrupts my plan, everything seems to fall apart.   This makes life interruptions harder for me to manage, but I've started looking at life interruptions in a different way.  Our new ladies' Bible study is on the book of Jonah.  Through this study, Priscilla Shirer is teaching us how to navigate a life interrupted.  She is helping us see that a life interrupted is a life that is privileged.

Image Credit:  Brian Mann - Public Domain Image via Freely Photos

The very first verse in this study hits the nail on the head, so to speak.
For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. - Isaiah 55:8
I like to think that I have a plan for the year or maybe for the next 10 years . . . or 50.  I have it all thought out, but my thoughts are not God's thoughts and my ways are not His ways.

Jonah's life was interrupted.  God had a plan for Jonah and it was not the plan Jonah had anticipated.  Jonah ran from what God told him to do and it landed him in a heap of trouble - right into the belly of big fish.  

I've felt like Jonah lately.  Several months ago, almost a whole year now, my life was interrupted.  It's a bit of a long story but to make it short, I became ill and lost my business.  I had a plan to work my business a few more years and then implement another plan . . . but my thoughts were not God's thoughts and my ways were not His ways.  I was a life interrupted but I did not see it as a privilege at first.

In Jonah's case, he was told to go to a place called Nineveh.  Nineveh was a terrible place.  The people were brutal and violent.  Nineveh was a place of hopelessness and Jonah didn't want to go.  

You can read the full story of Jonah here, but to summarize the ending for you (sorry for the spoiler alert), Jonah eventually obeyed God and Nineveh saw a great revival.  

In the introduction, Priscilla said a few things that caught my attention.  

1.  One of the greatest revivals in history occurred because one man (ONE) responded in obedience.  

2.  God doesn't NEED me to accomplish His perfect plan.  It is a privilege to be called - to be favored enough by God to be asked to participate in His plan and purpose for all eternity.  WOW.  I never thought of it that way.  What a privilege!

God is showing me the direction he wants me to go from here.  It's not happening as fast as I would prefer but again, my thoughts are not His thoughts and my ways are not His ways. 

3.   The interrupted life is the cure for the search for significance.  

After I became ill and lost my business, I had no idea what to do.  I had no idea what my calling was.  However, since that time I have been able to serve others in ways I never could have accomplished otherwise.  He is opening doors of opportunity for me that never could have happened had He not interrupted my plan.  I am in awe of the things in which He is inviting me to participate. I am finding a sense of purpose again.  I still don't know all that He is working out but watching it all unfold and knowing He is orchestrating a beautiful thing out of what I first saw as a major inconvenience has been a beautiful experience.  

I am looking forward to the rest of this study, Jonah:  Navigating a Life Interupted by Priscilla Shirer.  I hope you'll stick around and allow me to show you what I learn because there is more!  I will be sharing short summaries about how I can apply these truths to my life while supporting the work Priscilla does through her ministry.

You'll find all my posts about this Bible study series here

In order to benefit from all this study has to offer under the direction of Priscilla Shirer, you'll need to either attend a full study group session at your church or another location.  If this option is not available for you, you can purchase the entire study, complete with all the DVDs below.


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