Our wonderful German house guest has arrived and been with us for a week now. We absolutely love her, she is as sweet as they come! Her English is excellent, she is observant, thoughtful and flexible. I hope she can stand us for the next 5 months!!
Now that the press of the holiday season is over I am back to teaching Sunday School and have joined a Bible Study. Both have been requiring much study from me and I must confess...I love it. We're going back over the Angela Thomas material in Sunday School, working through parts of the sermon on the mount.
On Sunday as I was teaching I had a revelation that I couldn't quite wrap my head around at the time, but now as I think and ponder and study I have noticed that the heart conditions mentioned in the beatitudes are a progression of maturity. It's really quite fascinating. Take a look. At some point we realize that we're broken (poor in spirit), life has nailed us to the wall and we're falling in pieces, we need a Saviour. When we break we end up mourning the loss of what was, whether it was a person, an idea, ideal or dream. In the midst of our mourning we become humbled and look to the Saviour. As our souls are healed we begin to hunger and thirst after righteousness, we are satisfied and we realize how much we needed a saviour. We can be merciful, because we've been shown mercy. Because we have shown mercy, God will contiue to show mercy and we become pure in heart. Our hearts are made pure, they are at peace and we can bring that peace into the midst of others - we are peacemakers. However, in the midst of giving away the peace that Christ offers we will most likely get persecuted. After much persecution we are poor in spirit and once again the cycle begins, another step up towards Christlikeness. Another interesting tidbit is that the blessings are bookended by receiving the Kingdom of Heaven - with getting everything else inbetween. I am fascinated by this and am going to continue studying it.
IN our Bible Study we are studying the Tabernacle with Beth Moore in a study called, A Woman's HEart - God's Dwelling Place. This, too, is a fascinating study, bridging the whole of scripture, showing the incredible brilliance of God and His design. One little tidbit from that study. The curse that was given after Adam and Eve sinned in the garden was that the land would produce thorns and thistles for them. What did Jesus wear on his head as he hung on the cross? A crown of thorns. He literally took the curse on his head - isn't that amazing! God is so good.