Unglued Bible Study-3 Ways to Stay on God’s Side

angry-woman.jpgHola Divas!  If you will recall, we discussed Joshua earlier this week and the choice he had to make before going into battle.  I would call getting ready for battle an “unglued situation”.

When I come unglued, I fly into action to “fix” the situation. Stopping to choose a side is the last thing on my mind.  In the Unglued Participant’s Guide, Lysa gave us some action steps on how to “stay on God’s side”.

1.  Use Truth–What is REALLY true about the situation or person.  There are so many outside influences that sometimes getting a little truth about the matter is a really wise thing to do.  Remember, our perception may NOT be the reality.

2.  Use self-control.  I can only control KATINA! In Unglued situations, I often behave in ways to control the other person or the outcome: pouting, yelling, sulking, silent treatment, etc…)  As Lysa says, “Our feelings are indicators NOT dictators”.

3.  Use prayer–Pray for the person who is getting on your last nerve!  I think it is only natural to pray for the resolution of a situation that has us unglued. The only issue with that  is what if the situation does not resolve?

Our prayer for the week:

God, help me choose to be on YOUR side, trusting that YOU will help me face things outside of my control without acting out of control.  

Homework for this week:

Read chapters 1-2 in the Unglued book!

Determined….NOT Desperate-(Made to Crave Bible Study)

Made to Crave Bible Study

Hola Divas!  Welcome to week three of our bible study, Made to Crave by Lysa TerKuerst.  If you are just joining us, you may want to check out previous Made to Crave  posts or visit our Meetup Page

During each session, Lysa gives us a theme word.  For the first session, the word was empowerment.  Our word for this session is Determined.

Webster’s online dictionary defines determined as: having made a firm decision and being resolved not to change it. 

Determined is a mindset.

At the opposite end of the “mindset spectrum’ is desperate.  Desperate is defined as: feeling, showing, or involving a hopeless sense that a situation is so bad as to be impossible to deal with.  

As Lysa so eloquently put it…Desperation breeds defeat. 

When we are  desperate,  we want instant gratification.  We become laser focused on what we want. We see what we want. We think about what we want. We simply MUST have it or we couldn’t possibly live on!

In desperate times, we just might do, say, eat, or give away….ANYTHING!

girl-eating-chocolate-cake-280X280

In Genesis 25:29-34, we find an exchange between two brothers illustrating what desperation can do:

One day when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau arrived home from the wilderness exhausted and hungry.

(Can you say set up for desperation?  When I arrive home after working all day exhausted and hungry…the best intentions in the world just may not be able to keep me from  running to a drive through instead of cooking a healthy meal.)

Esau said to Jacob, “I’m starved! Give me some of that red stew!” “All right,” Jacob replied, “but trade me your rights as the firstborn son.”

(Do we have some sibling rivalry going on?  Jacob did NOT have Esau’s best interests in mind.  However, Esau’s defenses were down…he smelled the soup, the saw the soup, he wanted the soup, he simply had to have the soup. So….. he went straight into crazytown-manipulation-drama-king mode:

“Look, I’m dying of starvation!” said Esau. “What good is my birthright to me now?”

I am sure NONE of you have eeeevvvver  gone into drama queen mode (the attitude, pouting, noodle-necking, sulking, silent treatment, oh no I am fine…just about to die), when you desperately wanted something.

pout

Divas, we have to be careful with desperation…it breeds defeat. We want …..and we want ….and we start manipulating to get what we want and before we know it….desperation turns our manipulation back on us,  and WE GET PLAYED!

But Jacob said, “First you must swear that your birthright is mine.” So Esau swore an oath, thereby selling all his rights as the firstborn to his brother, Jacob. Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and lentil stew. Esau ate the meal, then got up and left. He showed contempt for his rights as the firstborn.

Divas would you trade your inheritance for soup?  

soup 

One method of handling “physical” desperation is to not allow ourselves to get soooo hungry we become desperate.

Part of the homework for this week is to determine in advance what we are going to eat so that we are not caught off guard…exhausted and hungry!  If you need help, check out our post on the plate method and plan out at least 3 days worth of meals.

Maybe you don’t have a food issue.  Where do you become so desperate in your life that you make “feel-good right now” decisions with painful long-term consequences?

Come on back later this week as we talk about “spiritual determination”.

Keep us posted about how things are going in the comments section!

 

Five Minute Friday-Voice

Five Minute FridayEvery Friday, Lisa Jo Baker hosts a blog link up called Five Minute Fridays (FMF). She provides a word prompt and then participants are to set their timers for five minutes and write until the timer goes off.  I am so thankful that I found Five Minute Fridays!  FMF gives me an opportunity to just “freestyle”! Many of you have told me that you really enjoy reading the FMF posts!  The word for today is VOICE. Happy Friday Divas and here goes:

The VOICE is one to those things we rarely think about.  Our VOICE is one of the ways we use to communicate, to speak our mind, to make our requests known.  For all of the divas from the south out there, it is our VOICE with our southern drawl that let’s everyone know that we are country girls!

I have found that our fitness classes have provided a VOICE for many women.  Ladies come to class with the weight of the world and they squat, punch, and salsa all over their problems.  If only for a moment, they are able to step away from “the drama”. 

Some people have one of “those VOICES”; the kind that you recognize without seeing them.  Yet others have VOICEs so soft that we have to listen really intently to hear them.  For me, God’s VOICE is often like that.  When my life gets busy and the to-do list gets longer, I find it hard to hear Him.

In class, we always cool down with a song of worship.  One of my favorites is Laura Cooksey’s song, REST.  Based on Matthew 11:28, the song reminds us to go to God with our burdens.   Last night when we cooled down to REST, it was amazing to watch you all worship our great GOD.  I glanced over and saw one lady with her arms stretched to the Lord, her eyes were closed and her head was tilted back… right then I felt God’s VOICE remind me that HE is in control.

Don’t forget to join us tomorrow for a FREE Class (Mix of Devoted Fitness and ZUMBA)

Girls’ Night Out

We had soooo much fun at our Girls’ Night Out Spa Party!  Thank you so much to everyone who attended!  From manicures to pedicures and food all in between…….we had a blast!

I think we kept the nail salon owners VERY entertained with our dancing! Not sure anyone has danced at the salon before.  Leave it to the Divas to be the first!

Dancing through life together couldn’t be more fun!

 

Laughing at Yourself

I had a song request that I couldn’t fit into the play list from last week so I just tossed it in for this week.  I have done that routine several times so I did NOT practice. Last night,  when the song came on, I drew a complete blank.  I literally just stood on stage and watched as the “front row Divas” began the routine.

Once I saw them get it started, I remembered! I laughed at myself and started the song over!  I jokingly announced to the class that they should follow the girls in the front row and not me!

My “real job” is a little crazy right now and there are things that I do not like but I cannot change.  With the “end of school shuffle”, our home schedule is crazy and let’s not even add housework.  To say that my brain is fried, is an understatement.  As I stood in front of my class with a lost look on my face, my inner voice was just about to say something negative when I silenced her by laughing at myself and singing along with the music!

Sometimes you just gotta accept your humanness and laugh at yourself.  Mistakes happen.   When mistakes happen, especially when they happen with all eyes on YOU, don’t let your inner mean girl get you off your game.

I must admit, my inner mean girl can REALLY bully me.  Yesterday, I stood up to my bully by laughing!  Perfection and being the “best dancer” was not my goal anyway.  My goal was and is to be USED by God to encourage the heart of women through dance fitness.

When we cooled down at the end of class to Kirk Franklin’s “I Smile”, I couldn’t help but catch a glance of how awesome God really is.  As I watched all of the beautiful Divas stretching and singing along, in spite of their own personal struggles,  it reminded me that it is because of HIM that we can smile when things don’t go our way.

Dancing mixed with a little singing and some laugher brought about GRATITUDE!

Psalm 126:2

Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things  for them.” (NIV)

Divas, what do you need to ease up on yourself about and perhaps have a little laugh at your own expense? 

Awake and Alive

Divas, we had an amazing workout/praise party on Saturday!!  It was truly a “Soulful Saturday”!

One of the new songs on Saturday was Awake and Alive by Skillet.  Dancing this song was totally out of my “normal” genres of music.  I am a R&B, gospel, and hip hop girl.  I also love salsa, merengue and reggaeton.  I am a beat person.  The baseline, the beat of a song is what speaks to me first, then the lyrics.

Skillet’s Awake and Alive delivered on both a great beat and ah-mazing lyrics!  Larae Puckett, founder of Devoted Fitness choreographed the routine.  When we finished dancing to it, the room erupted with shouts!  It was a glorious sight!

So  many temptations and well-meaning obligations get thrown our way from the media, other people, and societal norms.   At times, it seems easier to just give in and go along with the status quo.

Awake and Alive opens with this verse:

I’m at war with the world
And they try to pull me into the dark
I struggle to find my faith
As I’m slipping from your arms

Life gets sooooo overwhelming that we feel as though we are going under.  We get so used to things being hard that we sort of fall asleep and go through the motions of barely getting by.  We forget to tap into our true power source.

The next verse in the song reads:

It’s getting harder to stay awake
And my strength is fading fast
You breathe into me at last

I don’t know about y’all but the older I get, the faster my strength seems to fade.  Some weeks I look at all of things that I need to do and my strength goes all Scarlet O’Hara…  “Let’s think about it tomorrow”.  Some times things happen and I don’t understand them and I get stuck on the “Why” of it all.  I get stuck on trying to identify WHY things are happening instead of trusting God and allowing Him to breathe His strength into me.

I saw a commercial recently for the 5-hour energy drink.  Obviously the run down-tired feeling is a national epidemic!

When God breathes into us, we realize that we ARE Alive and Awake.

The powerful chorus goes like this:

I’m awake, I’m alive
Now I know what I believe inside
Now it’s my time
I’ll do what I want ’cause this is my life

(Here, right now)
Right here, right now
Stand my ground and never back down
I know what I believe inside
I’m awake, and I’m alive

Psalm 142:1-3(CEV)

I pray to you, Lord. I beg for mercy.  I tell you all of my worries and my troubles,  and whenever I feel low, you are there to guide me.

Divas, let’s not forget to tap into our power source.  We are AWAKE and ALIVE!