Feb 23, 2012

Thursday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Romans 8

Happy Thursday, SHINE girls! How is your week going?

Ok, I am not gonna lie. It's still Wednesday as I am writing this.

Remember how I told you that my sweet love, Lem, started getting up with me in the early mornings? At 5:00 a.m.?

Well, we are now having our morning quiet time together. Which is fine. (I suppose.)

So, with this new routine, I find the best time for me to write (in the quiet) is while my children are at school.

Okay, confession time over....moving on.

Man, are we loving Romans 8 or what? I mean, seriously, half of the (2 to 3) verses that I have memorized in this little brain of mine come from Romans Chapter 8! Some good, good stuff in here, girls.

As I was at my usual Wednesday 9:15 am spinning class this morning, I had an epiphany of sorts. (i love that word--epiphany. don't you? it has a sophisticated ring to it. makes me feel smart. good thing y'all know better. )

 Okay, anyway, as I was spinning on my little bike watching my friend Kelli teach the class, I heard the Lord whispering to me something.

He said this: "Your life is a whole lot like this spinning class. Isn't it?"

I look around going, "Huh? Who said that?"

He then continued with telling me that I could easily "fake" it as I sat here on this bike spinning. The only person who knows the resistance that I have the bike set on is....me. Nobody else in the whole class has a clue if I am really "working" or just looking like I am working hard.

Okay, God was on to something here.

I thought about the million times during this class that I was tired and didn't really want to push hard. I wanted an easy workout. The good thing is...nobody around me would ever know the difference. I could huff and puff, and even force a bead of sweat to come off my face. (Seriously, I can.)

So, what is there to gain by me "looking the part" and not actually "doing the work"?

Absolutely nothing.

Will just showing up and giving the bike a little easy spin help my waistline to shrink?

Nope, not one bit.

However, what happens if I do give it my all for that 35 minutes? What happens when I push even harder than the teacher tells me to push? Or, if I truly stay the course and not for one second turn that knob on the bike to the "easy" resistance?

I will see the results.

No, not immediately, but in a month or two my waist will be smaller, my legs will be firmer, and my tummy will be a little flatter.


All because instead of wasting my time on "easy", I chose to do the work. I was already there anyway. Why not make my time useful?

How does this relate to our faith walk?

Here's what God was telling me:

We can go to church, read the bible, do a little bible study here and there, look the part, talk the talk....

But, are we really walking the walk?

Are we going through all the right motions, but not doing the work?

By work, I mean....keeping ourselves conditioned by:

  • soaking ourselves in His Word daily
  • praying for others
  • obeying
  •  loving
  • forgiving
  •  showing kindness
  •  taming our tongues
  • keeping our hearts pure
  •  putting others before ourselves
  • being truthful

We can look the part all day long girls. We can even make it look real, real pretty. But, what results will we see in the next month?

Absolutely nothing.

When you look at my friend, Kelli, the spinning instructor, you know she works out. You don't even have to ask her. It's obvious.

I want people to know when they see me that without a doubt--I am a Christian. I want my walk to be obvious to all who see me. I shouldn't have to wear a badge telling people I am a Christian--it should be written all over my life.

Let's dig in, girls! Let's truly do the work and start seeing the fruit from it.

 It's good, good stuff.

No, it's better than good. It's the best stuff.

I know for a fact that I am in need of some serious work. I've had my bike on "easy" long enough.

Who's with me?

no more easy street,


"For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power." 1 Corinthians 4:20


Anonymous said...

Ping ping ping....ya hear it?? That is the sound of the hammer hitting that nail again....square on the head!

Preach it sister!

This is good!! nahhh...it is better than good!!

Love u
Kim J

Rebekah Hudgins Vepraskas said...

Thank you, Jill. As much as it is hard for me to admit, I needed this badly. This is my busiest day of the week and I will manage it better because of this. I don't want to coast and sprint, coast and sprint. I want to be consistent and intentional in everything I do. Especially in my role as wife, mother and CEO of my home. This is the role that satan plants the most seeds of self doubt. If I could be firm on my pedal, I think those doubts would fade more.

I love you so!

SouthMainMuse said...

Great post and analogy Jill. One I can so relate to from the perspective of sitting there on that bike. Some days I really don't want to be there -- those are the days it's toughest to stay focused. I think that is always a struggle for me. Making the effort even when everything is saying -- check out. Love you and keep spinning.

Lisa said...

I recently became a Christian. I grew up attending Church 3 times a week, not really knowing Him. So many times in my young adult life, I cried and asked God to save me, all the while, not truly giving myself to Him. Each time I couldn't understand why my life didn't change. I did not want to give up the worldly things in my life that kept me from Him. Late last year I had enough with the disappointments in my life and begged God to make me His. I accepted that I needed to change my life, walk differently. And by the Grace of God, I am hear today, born anew. Today's post touched me bc my relationship w God is constant. I wouldn't dare ignore or allow my precious daughter to play second fiddle in my life; why would I do that to my Heavenly Father? Walk the walk ladies. I know that it is difficult at times, but as sisters in Christ, we have one another to lean on. I follow your posts daily and yearn to have to strength you do and the relationship w God that you do. Being apart of this group of Shine Ladies is such a blessing to me. I am continually uplifted by reading the Word and reading your words. Thank you ladies....

conny said...

Wow thank you Jill ...last week was really hard for my self and my baby Chloe (she is 9 ) but is my baby ...becuase we move to a new place my divorce was finalice , was hurt and more hard hear your daugther cry and telling you why God let this happend I've praying for a long time with you mommy why ? It was hard and painful try to explain my precious Chloe .... I just told her to keep praying that God wI'lli help us to go thru this and there is a rainbow in the end of the tunel to trust on Him with all her heart and soul ... And after this past week reading this everyday has help me I feel like God was spoken to me
.. Thank you Jill

Erin Davis said...

Thank you Jill! To be honest...i was dreading reading this chapter. This chapter became vital in my life on April 7, 2011. This is the date my mama asked us to read Romans 8 to her before they took her off of life support. This is what she chose to hear the day she knew she would meet Jesus face to face! Why? Why this chapter? Out of all of the chapters she requested ...why this one over and over again! Why did she choose Romans 8 right before we said "goodbye"?
Of corse...now I understand! I believe she wanted this read for us...not for her! She was (as ALWAYS) thinking of us, her sweet family, her dear husband and loving children. She was preaching to us through God's word!
13 For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.

She knew of the pain we would experience in our grief over her. She knew of the hard times we would face in a world without her.
we read:
18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us

My mom was unable to speak due a ventalator. However, God gave her a voice that day. She spoke to us through His word! What a gift He gave to us all.

38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[k] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Thank you Lord for loving me so much that SHINED bright on my darkest day!
Erin Davis

Jill Hill said...

Erin, no words. Just tears.

Thank you for sharing such an intimate moment in your life with us. Wow. What a story!

You are precious and I cannot wait to meet you one day!

much love,


Jill Hill said...

Praying for you, sweet Conny. You are LOVED! Hang in there...clinging to Him.

Anonymous said...

Came across these two verses........

24-25You've all been to the stadium and seen the athletes race. Everyone runs; one wins. Run to win. All good athletes train hard. They do it for a gold medal that tarnishes and fades. You're after one that's gold eternally.

26-27I don't know about you, but I'm running hard for the finish line. I'm giving it everything I've got. No sloppy living for me! I'm staying alert and in top condition. I'm not going to get caught napping, telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself. 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (the msg)


12-14I'm not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don't get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I've got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I'm off and running, and I'm not turning back.
15-16So let's keep focused on that goal, those of us who want everything God has for us. If any of you have something else in mind, something less than total commitment, God will clear your blurred vision—you'll see it yet! Now that we're on the right track, let's stay on it. Philippians 3:12-16 (the msg)

Had to share these...

Women Who Pray said...

Anonymous, you just iced the cake of this whole page! I love the cheering each other on ...iron sharpening iron...one scriptures even says provoking to good works!!! This is being kind to one another. We're making sure that none of us get caught...snared...and left behind.
Of course this wasn't the first time..for me to read Romans 8. Read, studied... and from many...my memory goes back to the time
Baba..my Mama..asked me to go with her to visit the daughter of a lady in her S.S. class...she taught 2nd Singles at Rehobeth Baptist Church in Decatur
It turned out the lady wasn't expected to live long...Mama had me go with her on at least one other visit like this...the case was "terminal"..last stages...
She had a son she didn't want to leave...Mama had become friends with her husband and son through this ladies' mother..the grandmother. The boy was autistic..and surprisingly, he was in my school at Creekland Middle School. So God!!! Such a set up!
The lady wanted to get in the wheelchair...she asked me to push her...now remember, I had not laid eyes on this woman or her mother...I'm there for my mother.
Mama asked me to go pray for people or to lift them up a lot in the days after she and daddy were back and forth in the hospital and out themselves. Mama had taken us to the hospital so many times as children.
Mama knew I would sing to her Healed Forever that Daddy wrote and said God told him to give to me to write the music. He said wherever it was sung...people would be healed!
So, this was one of those times I went with her.
The lady ...can't remember name or anything..but the request was that I read Romans 8. So, Erin, I understand from a little different perspective the reading of this scripture..and you Beka boo...it is SOME scripture!
Well, I read it...watching her as I did. I sang Healed Forever! and Mama and I left.
I think it was only a couple of days...maybe the next day...she went on to be with the LORD!!
I was younger, and of course, I was not sure why I went. I knew that Mama asked and I would never not have gone to pray with Mama. I love Daddy's song...sang at both hers and Paw Paw's funerals.
As many times I said...LORD, why don't you get someone else to go? It doesn't work when I go.
Oh, but I know now...I'm a lot older...at least 15 years or more...and I've been with many just before their death...and sang...prayed...or whatever Holy Spirit said..He's BOSS!!! GLORY to GOD!!
That scripture was for you and your family Erin...it was for me and Mama and the lady's Mama...all in that room...and the nurses that came in and out..and even for the angels viewing on!!!! But, it was for her!!! The peace that was on her face when we left...and the knowing where she was going and that it was all going to be alright..
She knew her Mama and husband would be ok...and that son...the autistic boy...
Well, I went back to school...and I found his class...and I visited it...
He didn't know or respond to me...but my love for him and all the autistic, aspberger's, ADD, ADHD, and on and on grew and grew...and I had autistic students in my classes the last 2 years...and God Bless them...some of the smartest kids I've ever taught!!! One that was diagnosed aspberger's ...who sat on the floor of my trailer...chewing on anything...even staples...was a genius...they couldn't find a place for him that he was not bored...he was well into high school with his math and science abilities...I learned to let them teach us ...me and the class.
I know even as I write...that connection was even for me in my classroom...and my relationship to special needs children...they always love to come to me...they know I love them all.

Jill Hill said...

I'm praying for you! I don't know why I never responded to this?! Please know you have support! Please email me if yuk need a friend or encouragement! Much love!!