In Order To Hear, We Must First Listen

Yesterday I shared about a moment when God spoke to me. Today I want to share a bit about how taking part in Bible study and immersing myself in His Word is inspiring and encouraging me to continue along the path He showed me.

The study I am taking part in right now is an online study via Proverbs31 Ministries using the book Living So That: Making Faith-Filled Choices in the Midst of a Messy Life. This week the focus of the study is "God Spoke So That..." I didn't expect this study to affect me in the ways that it has. The reading so far this week helped me to see that while I had listened to God and started down the path he showed me, I stopped along that path.

I was no longer crying out to God for answers. Not only that, but I was also not actively seeking His Word. I would occasionally read a passage or two from the Bible. I would read a verse a friend had posted online. I would listen to the message at church. What I was not doing was actively immersing myself in His Word everyday. If I do not surround myself with His Word, how can I possibly hear what he has to say?

Have you ever had one of those moments when you decide to do something but you really have no idea why? I had one of those moments last week. I decided to check out the Proverbs31 website. I've done Bible studies and read books by some of the women who are a part of this ministry before, usually as a part of a women's group I am in at church. I have seen some of the women with the ministry speak (and they were awesome, I must say). Going to the website? It had never really crossed my mind. I spend enough time online, why would I add one more site to visit to the list? Yet I did. As soon as I was there the online Bible study caught my eye and the next thing I knew I was signing up and purchasing the book for my Kindle. Suddenly I was soul deep in not just this book, but in THE Book.

I am going to get all metaphorical on you again as I say that coming across this study was like coming across a fresh water stream on my path out of the wood and discovering I was dying of thirst and didn't even know it. I have been led to scripture that has quenched and nourished me in ways that I truly needed. God is speaking to me and I am once again listening.

I will share this week's memory verse with you as it has hit me right when and where I needed it and perhaps it will do the same for you....
All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 
- 2 Timothy 3:16-17

One of the things God spoke to me with that morning sunrise months ago was that in following the path He showed me I would be able to do good work for Him. The memory verse this week has reminded me that if I am to do His work then I need to immerse myself in His Word. Without that, how can I possibly keep moving down the path He has set me on?

I also want to share a couple of things I have gotten from Living So That which have struck me this week and will stick with me.
"One of the most important reasons we read the Word is to equip us"
This is a great reminder that if I do not turn to His Word then I will not be properly equipped to do what He asks of me. I will remain stuck without His guidance. This reminds me of a quote I hear quite often in adoption circles, "God does not call the equipped, he equips the called." I know that was certainly true of our journey to adopt our son.
The other thing that has struck me is, "ministry is doing God's work wherever He has placed us."
The reason this one impacts me is because of my social anxiety. While this is not a physical place, it certainly is a very real place that I am in with my life. It has often kept me from doing many things and going many places. This statement reminds me of the fact that not only did God speak to me but I specifically felt Him telling me that the path he was leading me on would not be hindered by that anxiety. He gave me a way to move forward in life and to share Him and His Word with others that would not lead me to panic attacks but would instead focus on my strengths. He knows where I am in all aspects of life, including those that have a tendency to cripple me and so He showed me a way that I could do ministry from right where I am in my struggles with that anxiety right now.

I want to listen when God speaks and to do that I have to put myself in His Word. I am thankful for being led exactly there.