Saturday, June 25, 2011

A Strong Woman vs. A Woman of Strength

   So, it's summer and I've been doing a lot more reading.  Last week I finished the book Disaster Status by Candace Calvert.  It's a medical drama-type fiction book.  The main character is a nurse who has a very strong personality and likes to be in charge.  She has a hard time letting anyone else do anything and tends to sometime be a little overprotective of her family.  She's a Christian, but has a hard time really letting God be God and take care of things.  Yes, she sounds a little like me...everything except the nurse part.
   At one point in the book, she discovers a gift her grandmother has for her.  It is a framed copy of a poem called "A Woman of Strength."  I looked for this particular version, but didn't find it as it was written in the book, so I copied it from the book.  It didn't give an author.  I thought it was worth sharing:

     A strong woman works out everyday...but a woman of strength kneels to pray, keeping her soul in shape.
     A strong woman isn't afraid of anything...but a woman of strength shows courage in the midst of her fear.
     A strong woman won't let anyone get the best of her...yet a woman of strength gives her best to everyone.
     A strong woman makes mistakes and avoids the same for tomorrow...A woman of strength realizes life's mistakes, thanking God for the blessings as she capitalizes on them.
     A strong woman walks head first with no doubt in her mind...but a woman of strength knows God will catcher her when she falls.
     A strong woman wears the look of confidence on her face...but a woman of strength wears grace.
     A strong woman has faith that for the journey she'll have enough...but a woman of strength knows it's in the journey she will become strong.

   After reading that, I have one more line to add:

     A strong woman asks, "What would Jesus do?" and does it...but a woman of strength asks, "What would Jesus do?" and before she does it asks, "How would Jesus do it?"

Feel free to add more in the comments section!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


   No, don't worry; I won't be quoting Shakespeare.  This week's Bible study has me pondering names.  Can you guess what we're studying?  Think lists of names...genealogies...  We started I Chronicles.  I have to say, when I knew I & II Chronicles were coming up in our study, I wasn't thrilled.  I remember reading (or I guess I should say skimming) list after list of who begot who and whose father was who.  This time, however, I have a little better perspective.
   I've been reading the scripture readings on my Kindle in The Message version.  In his introduction to Chronicles, Eugene Peterson says, "Holy history is not constructed from impersonal  forces or abstract ideas; it is woven from names- persons, each one unique." Each name list is for a purpose, for a reason.
   In Adventuring Through the Bible, Ray Stedman says the genealogies are important for two reasons. One reason is to figure out Bible chronology.  The second is " to show God's plan in working through human beings to achieve His purposes." (Stedman, p.190)  Stedman goes on to point out how some people, although considered great in history, are only given a few verses, while others are covered in great detail.  The difference is some are more obedient than others.  God appears to dismiss those who human history may rank high according to human views, but do not have hearts aligned with His.
   This time as I read, instead of skimming, I looked at each name.  Oddly enough, I actually recognized some of the names as either "good" or "bad" kings and people who were mentioned in other portions of scripture.  (On a side note: I came across the name Kenaniah, my all-time favorite guy name.  Kenaniah was the Levite in charge of music/singing in the Temple. Petra, a vintage Christian rock group, had a song called "Kenaniah." )
    Saw a t-shirt.  The front said, "Christianity is not a religion."  The back said, "RELIGION IS HUMANS trying to work their way to God. CHRISTIANITY IS GOD, coming to men and women through a relationship with Jesus Christ."  Those men and women have names.  I'm not going to be skimming through the lists anymore!