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Friday, September 11, 2015

Book of the Month Club The Treasured Woman: Profiles from Proverbs 31 by Christa Bryant Week 2 Discussion

The Treasured Woman: Profiles from Proverbs 31

Chapter Four (My Thoughts)

When I examine life, one the greatest treasures I have is that my children and husband are all Christians. I truly know what a blessing it is, and I also know that is not something every sister in Christ can say.

Chapter four really stresses the importance of the seed we plant in our children. Instilling the love of God in a child at a young age goes a long way to their being faithful as an adult.

Christa stated "The greatest way to convince our children of the love of God is not in some program or curriculum; the greatest way to convince our children is to be convinced ourselves." Would that my brothers and sisters would understand that simple lesson! I have seen many people stress over the next new program "so our children will be engaged," and never even consider the example they are living in front of their child. We must practice what we preach if we are going to show our children how much God and his church truly means to us.

Chapter Five (My Thoughts)

Reaching out to the poor and less fortunate to fill earthly needs is very important. The old adage that states a person doesn't care what you know until they know how much you care is very true. We must spend our time helping others when possible. There are people all around us who are sick, dying and poor. Many of them are living in sin, and without our hands to help them up and point the way to Christ they may never obey the gospel.

I have often heard well-meaning brethren ask, "What if I help someone and they do something wrong, keep coming back, or are just using me?" Typically this is asked when helping a person involves our own pocket book or the church treasury. The best answer I can offer is to remind us that helping a person is not wrong, and we should always err on the side of right.

I remember a couple stopping by the church building when we were at our first preaching position. My husband and I were both in our early twenties and had a very low monthly income. Usually money requests were talked about with the elders, but we were the only people at the building. The couple asked for money for groceries and we gave them as much as we could.

About thirty-minutes later we saw the man and woman walking out of the convenience store with a case of beer. At first I was angry, because we gave money out of our grocery budget so another family could have food and they bought alcohol. But, the more I thought about it, the more I was ashamed over my anger.

We had done what was right. At the time, I didn't know if the people were telling me the truth or not when they asked for money, but I knew they were asking, and I had the opportunity to help them.

God knew that we had given them money for food, but what they did with it was out of our control and on their heads. We could have used this experience to prevent us from ever helping someone again, but that's not what happened. Any time we can help someone we do, and I'd like to encourage you to do so, too.

Always pay attention to those around you. You will find so many people in need. Stay observant. I know a Christian woman who saw a woman crying at the gas pump. So she went and asked the lady what was the matter. The crying woman had accidentally forgotten her purse at home and didn't know how she was going to pay for her gas. So, the Christian woman paid for it.

I know another instance where a woman and her daughter were broken down on the side of the road. They were traveling and were several hundred miles away from home and didn't have any money to spare. A family stopped and offered help, but the car needed a mechanic. This family gave the women a ride to the closest motel and paid for them to stay a night. When the ladies asked what they could do in return, the man told them when they have the opportunity to stop in to visit their local church of Christ. A seed was planted.

There are so many opportunities to help people if we just pay attention. 

Chapter Six (My Thoughts)

Prioritizing. Christa points out, and rightly so, we can not "trade being over-worked for hard work."  I am certain I am not the only person who sometimes has this problem. Often it seems that I have a perpetual hand in the air waving saying pick me, pick me. I'll do it."

We must learn to prioritize our lives (me included.) We must also remember that doing good works for the Lord does not mean we do EVERY good work. I heard someone say that if we are doing every good work that goes on in a congregation, we probably aren't doing our best work at any of them. So, I would encourage you to choose things you feel passionate about and do those things.

As a preacher's wife, I know what it means to be pulled in every direction. It often seems that the preacher's wife is expected to be involved with everything a congregation does. If this is you, STOP! Choose a few good works that your are passionate about and do those with all your might, but learn to say no.

If you're not a preacher's wife and you've expected your preacher's wife to take up all the extra slack. You need to re-evaluate your thinking, and then see what you can do to help her.

Together, we as women can work hard for the Lord, and through doing so we can plant the seed for the kingdom. I want to challenge you to plant those seeds, help people in need and work hard for the cause of Christ.

I'm loving this study! Aren't you?

--Susan


What other things did you take from this weeks readings?