It's a new year and things have started out fresh! Last night I attended the first meeting of my church's women's bible study and we went through Romans 6:1-14. This passage is rich with promises and truth. We are a new creation when we accept Christ. Our old sinful self was buried with Him and new life has been born when He was resurrected! New Life... a fresh start, different, not held back from past sins! Sin no longer has us wrapped in chains. We will still be tempted and still fall into sin, but we no longer Have to do it!!! We have the greatest weapon of all on our side and ready to help us battle sin... Jesus Christ! For it is nothing that we have done that saves us from sin, but what He has done.
Having all of this running through my mind I thought "Am I living like I am a new creation? Am I living out the truth that I am dead to my old self?" The answer is no. And that word no is something that has been holding me back for a long time.
No I don't want to go to the women's bible study because I don't think I'll know anyone.
No I don't want to go to small group because I feel like I'm at a totally different place in my life than everyone else.
No I don't want to admit to that person that I totally told them a bold faced lie! They may judge me and hate me!
Though saying no obviously isn't a sin, saying no to God is. God wanted me to go to that Bible study, I knew it all along but up until the actual minute of walking through the front doors I was trying to come up with a reason why I couldn't do it. I wanted to say no so badly. Had I done what I wanted I would have missed out on a HUGE blessing! Same with small group this week. I didn't want to go because I was grumpy and didn't feel like hanging out with people. But again I would have missed out on yet another blessing and great fellowship. God nudges our hearts for a reason. He doesn't just tell us to do something for the fun of it, He has a purpose. Whether it's to bless someone else or us.
So where am I going with all this? I'm done with telling God no. I want to live the rest of the year, and my life, saying yes. Even if it means doing crazy scary things like moving (yes, to me that is terrifying!)
But I want to receive every bit of blessing I can and see God working in others. My hope and dream is to get on here every week and say "Hey guys this week I said yes to this and this is what happened!!!" But I also realize that there are going to be weeks maybe even months when God doesn't ask much of me. So here's my commitment, for every week that something does happen I will blog about it and tell you. I'm excited to see what saying yes will mean for me! Saying no has lead to guilt and regret... I want to be done with that! I want to say "Lord what do you have for me? You want me to talk to that person that I hardly know about that awkward thing? Ok I will!" If it's what God wants me to do then it will be beneficial :) Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow. But some day :)
Before I tell you about my week I have to tell you that I saw this idea on another blog. This girls story sounded so much like my own and her willingness to say yes inspired me to do that too. SEE!!! Saying yes has already been a blessing to her! She may never even know it but she has helped a person grow in their faith :) Here's a link to her blog if you're interested! http://samanthareed.org/2012/01/a-year-of-yes/
This week, as I've already said, was the first week of my church's bible study for the women. For the past month or so I had been wanting to get involved with my church and get to know the people in it. I go to a Harvest Bible chapel, if you've ever been to one of those you probably know how big they can get! I love our pastor and how he preaches the word with out apology. The only thing I really have to complain about is that I don't know hardly anyone outside of my small group there! When they announced the Bible study I felt God nudging my heart saying this was the perfect way to start getting involved. It took me a whole month to finally get signed up simply because I was afraid. As the day got closer doubts started flooding my mind and my introvert personality balked at the idea of walking into a room full of faces I didn't know, not to mention driving in the dark to a place I have never been! I'm basically blind at night (that probably worries a few of you) and I tend to get lost very easily. But I did it. After much prodding and prayer from my best friend I said yes and went. I am SO thankful I did! I can't wait to continue digging into God's word with these ladies! Not only will I be building relationships with new people but I will be getting into God's word and learning new truths!
Another thing I said yes to this week was confessing my sin and asking for forgiveness... from the person I sinned against. I lied to a few of my friends and God kept nudging me through out the night to admit it. Usually I just confess my sin to God and try to get over it, even though He always puts it on my heart to admit it to that person and truly be free from it. Especially when it's a lie because that tends to lead to more lies and more when you don't admit you lied in the first place. For once I said "Yes Lord" and admitted it. Wouldn't you know He blessed me with such great friends that they forgave me and I am now free from guilt. I don't have this guilty conscience nagging at me and telling me I need to come clean. It is seriously the best feeling!
I pray that you don't take from this that it's all what I do that brings me blessings. It's not! It's just me following God's will. And He is giving me the strength to do so. I am so excited for this journey, and scared silly! ;) But lets go on it together. If you feel God nudging your heart to say yes to Him more I urge you to take that step. Lets see what amazing things He will do!