If you have read my blog for any amount of time you know that I love doing Bible study. I even have a post here with a long list of different studies that I would recommend if you are looking to start one. This summer I have done two studies, Children of the Day: 1 & 2 Thessalonians by Beth Moore and Missing Pieces by Jennifer Rothschild.
I thought I would start with Missing Pieces, but when I picked it up I just couldn't get started on it. Why? I am not sure, but it may have to do with the fact that it was hitting too close to home. I needed time before I delved into it. So I started with Beth Moore's Children of the Day.
I love Beth's studies, but I don't love them all equally. Children of the Day ended up being good, but not one that I would say I would go back and do again (which I have done with several of her other studies). One reason is that I prefer topical studies. This one goes through I and II Thessalonians so the topics jump all over the place as you move through the books. Her other study, James: Mercy Triumphs, does that too, but I seemed to connect with James more for some reason. That being said, I still gleaned some great concepts out of Children of the Day. Her lesson on hindrances, mending us in order to equip us, and on how cynics function in a church really hit home for me. So in the long run, I felt that it was well-worth the effort to go through it. I think that we are all at different places in life so a certain Bible study will hit us one way while hitting a friend in a totally different area.
Here is a quote or two from the study:
God mends our pasts to tend to our futures.
Joy in hardship is weird...People who retain delight while walking through demoralizing circumstances are not normal.
The irony is that inactive hands often spark overactive tongues... and ... cynics tend to run in packs.
Missing Pieces was the Bible study I thought I wasn't going to like after I bought it. Boy, was I wrong! It is just what I needed. I think I rejected it because it was exactly what I needed. Jennifer Rothschild focuses in on God and how we view Him when we are going through suffering. There are six weeks of study each asking a different question...
God, do you care?
God, are you fair?
God, are you there?
God, are you aware?
God, do you hear prayer?
God, do you err?
Jennifer asks the hard questions that we tend to push to the back of our minds because they are just too scary. Through the study she discusses God's compassion, justice, omnipresence, and omniscience. I have gotten so much peace from this study because I have been able to realize that God's love has followed me even through the hard times.
Here are a few quotes from the study...
Your pain is what God uses to expose the reality that you've been granted and sustained by mercy all along.
If we really want to experience our own wholeness, we must take God in His wholeness.
The Bible gives us if/then scenarios we can count on.
I would recommend her study if you are in a season of struggling!