I am coming out of a dynamic year of Bible Study.
The gals I met with each week at my church were fabulous, and the conversations were lively.
No one tried to be perfect. Some nights we came in work out clothes. Some nights we laughed so hard there were tears. Some nights we disagreed, and it was okay to agree to disagree. I am more humbly aware than ever how very far from perfect I am…
January began with a study I called “Change Your Mind, Change Your Life”. It was 3 dvd series by Andy Stanley, “It’s Your Move,” “Taking Responsibility For Your Life Because No One Else Will,” and “Guardrails.” Each night we watched 2 twenty minute sessions, chatted about them and chatted a bit about the book Love Does by Bob Goff. That book is a must.
Especially chapter 4.
I was on chapter 14 before I realized that the subtitles were outlining the author’s process of changing his mind. About faith. About authenticity. About life. Here are some examples:
- I used to be afraid of failing at things that really mattered to me, but now I am more afraid of succeeding at things that don’t matter.
- I used to think being a believer was enough, but now I know Jesus wants us to participate, no matter what condition we’re in.
- I used to think you had to be special for God to use you, but now I know you simply need to say yes.
- I used to think religion tasted horrible, but now I know I was just eating the fake stuff.
Leading Brighten A Corner for the last decade has been an incredible process of learning to change my mind without feeling like my entire identity was at stake.
The subtitle for chapter 18 is: “I used to think life could be shared with anyone, but now I know choosing the right people is pretty important.”
This weaved beautifully together with much of the teaching on the DVD’s, particularly the sessions about Proverbs 13:20:
Walk with the wise and become wise, for the companion of fools suffers harm.
It does not say the companion of fools becomes a fool, just that when a fool’s life explodes (which it will) the shrapnel has an impact on you, the companion. Andy Stanley defined a wise person as someone who understands that ALL OF LIFE IS CONNECTED. The decisions we made last year impact this year. The decisions we make today impact tomorrow. Choosing to follow God impacts everything. Not choosing to follow God–even in just one area of life–also, impacts everything.
(I am still trying to explain that to my checkbook.)
A fool, very simply, is someone who knows the right thing to do, but doesn’t care.
I am continuing to wrestle with this, heavily desiring to apply it and live it. How do we walk with the wise?
This is how I am attempting to live it out…
I go to church. Submitting to the teaching of a pastor I respect is very helpful. Not because I agree with everything…not even close. Sometimes I am not sure I even like Christians. I certainly have no desire to be like every Christian I see around me, but (overall) the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. Particularly because, as I said before, I am usually the most imperfect one in the crowd.
I read. A lot. Blogs. Books. Supreme Court Decisions. (My dad was a judge, it is in my blood.) The Bible. There are so many people who are so much better than I am at so many things. People who are smarter, more caring, gentler, whose knowledge spills onto me and stretches me.
I keep trying. This means I keep failing. However, I also succeed sometimes. Each is its own gift.
I force myself to pray. It doesn’t come easily. I forget to do it often. I lose my train of thought as I am doing it…often. But I know that wisdom can not be attained without it.
How are you going about trying to attain wisdom?
Walk with us, would you? It is a joyous adventure.