Good morning, Sweet Sisters!
Today we begin our Fall Bible Study. I'm looking forward to digging into God's Word with each of you! The purpose of our study here at Redeeming Elegance, is to encourage and support Christian women in their daily walk with Christ. Specifically, reading the Bible every day. I am a wife and a homeschool mother of (almost) six children. I understand how busy our lives can be and how hard it is to find time to read Scripture and be still before God. That is why Redeeming Elegance exists.
Our Bible studies are easy to follow. We read through the Bible, one book at a time, one chapter per day. Each week I will post a reading plan of 5 chapters, leaving the weekends open for you to catch up if needed. I hope to post through the week verses and things that stick out to me and I would love for each of you to comment on how God is speaking to you through His Word. Although our studies here are intended for individual reading, it is also very easy to adapt to your Ladies Small Group if you want to read through the Bible, one book at a time.
So, let's get started! Here is this week's reading plan:
Monday - Romans 1
Tuesday - Romans 2
Wednesday - Romans 3
Thursday - Romans 4
Friday - Romans 5
I am praying for each of you this week as you commit yourself to reading the Bible each day.
At the beginning of this year, I set a few personal goals for myself. I wrote them down, prayed over them, and stuck them right inside the cover of my "thank you" journal so that I would be reminded of these goals often. Unintentionally, three out of my four goals had a reoccurring theme: encourage. Specifically, my "encourage" goals consisted of:
1. Be more supportive and encouraging to my Hubby.
2. Be more intentional and encouraging to my children.
3. Be encouraging to other wives and moms.
I wish I could say that I have reached each of these goals 100%. But sadly, I'm a work in progress and this is something I will forever be working on. Life is hard for everyone. Most of us take on way more than we should, some of us have been handed with unexpected trials, all of us have been hurt by others, and everyone of us have the every day "musts" that we have to contend with. Wouldn't a little bit of encouragement help ease our worries, stresses and anxieties?
Like I said, I'm still working on this. I try to remind myself everyday to be more encouraging. I don't always succeed, but I am trying. God gives us many verses on encouragement. I wanted to share a few that really stood out to me.
"So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing." ~ I Thessalonians 5:11
"Don't be selfish; don't try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don't look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too." ~ Philippians 2:3-4
"As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend." ~ Proverbs 27:17
"Don't use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them." ~ Ephesians 4:29
"Share each other's burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ." ~Galatians 6:2
"Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of His return is drawing near." ~ Hebrews 10: 24-25
"Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken." ~ Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
I'm going to stick with my goals. I'm going to try harder. I want to always remember, I know I will slip up, but my prayer is that God will help me to become an "Encourager".
So here's my plan:
*I want to build others up.
*I want to put others first and think about their interests instead of my own.
*I want to be a friend who supports, encourages and sharpens my friends.
*I want my words to be good and helpful to all those who hear them.
*In any way I can, I want to share other's burdens. I want to pray for them and help them in whatever need they may have.
*I want to be a motivator.
*I want to make time for others, starting with my husband and children and those God has placed in my life.
*I want to help others stand firm, when they feel like their feet are being taken out from under them.
This is my prayer. However, God wants to use me, I am His to use.
Lord, help me to be encouraging to my Sweet Hubby, my Precious Children, and my family and friends who You have placed in my life. Let my words, my actions, my reactions and my attitude always reflect Your love to those who need a bit of encouragement. And when I fail, pick me up and give me the strength to try again. Make me an Encourager! In Jesus' name I pray, amen.
Reach out and encourage your people, today!
Hello Sweet Sisters!
Today we are supposed to begin our Fall Study, but due to a personal time constraint, I am pushing it off one more week. So, our Fall Bible Study through the books of Romans and Exodus, will begin next Monday, September 18, 2017. This is a great time of year to start a new study as we get more established in our fall school, work and holiday schedules. Please share this with all the ladies you know and also feel free to use this study in your own women's small group.
We are in the midst of our first few weeks of our homeschool year over here, so my days have been full of teaching, training and all the normal "keep the household together" routines. I look forward to studying God's Word with you over the next few months!
October marks this blog's 2nd anniversary. When I began writing here, I didn't really know what to expect. I was only following a prompting from the Holy Spirit to reach out to Christian women and encourage and support their daily walk for Christ. For the past couple of weeks, I have been praying about this ministry and what the next step should be or if there is to even be a next step.
I don't blog here for money. I get absolutely NO compensation.
I don't blog here for internet status. I have few viewers and even less comments.
I don't blog here to grow my social accounts. I don't facebook, twitter, or instagram (though I am a pinterest junkie).
I don't blog to win any awards of blog presentation. As you can see, I barely post pictures, there have been very few in the past two years.
So, while praying this through and seeking God's guidance on whether to continue or not, I felt I needed to think about why I do blog here. What are the reasons for the time I do spend here and does it line up with what God is calling me to? Here's what I know.
The reasons that Redeeming Elegance exists:
1. From day one, the purpose of this blog was and is to bring glory to God in every word and thought expressed here. If the content of this blog doesn't bring Him glory and point to Him, then it can't be posted.
2. To encourage, support, and equip women in their daily walk with God. Most of us who grew up in Christian homes and within church, know a lot of what the Bible says, but most Christians don't make a point or time to truly study and know the Word. This is especially true for busy moms. It's hard to find time to shower, let alone spend time reading or studying something. The purpose here is to support all women in finding that time to read the Bible. The truth is, we can't continue to grow in our faith if we don't know God and what He truly wants of us.
3. To hold up the truths in Scripture. We are living in a fast-paced, society-driven, politically-correct world. And unfortunately, most of us believers are on that same train. We tend to follow the trends of the modern world and accept things, just because the current culture does. However, that's not how God works. The Bible is the only solid truth. It is God's Word. The Bible and it's message, does not change. It's the same now as it was when it was first written and it will be the same when this world comes to an end. God is the same now and always, He doesn't change. So, anything posted here is always tested against God's Word. If something doesn't line up with Scripture, it can't be encouraged here. This means, the passages in the Bible that are now considered controversial, are considered truth here. We won't change God's Word just to make others feel comfortable or to keep from stepping on toes. All of God's Word will be shared here and it is our daily goal to strive to follow God's Word.
4. To keep me, personally, accountable in my own walk with Christ. I am one of those busy moms I mentioned before. I am a happy, stay-at-home, homeschooling momma to 5 (almost 6) kids, wife to my hubby who owns his own business, and keeper of our home. I know what it's like not to have time to do everything I would like to do, so I needed this accountability as much as the next person.
5. To encourage daily reading of Scripture, not to teach it. The goal here is to share an easy, do-able reading schedule. I am not here to teach you the Bible, it's up to you to read it, study it, and pray through it. Let God speak to you. The things I share here are simply what God is teaching me through His Word, and it would be so encouraging for me to hear from you, what you are learning as well.
So, with these thoughts being penned down, and after much prayer, I have the same push as before. If this blog only helps one woman to grow stronger in her faith, closer to Christ, and more knowledgeable of Scripture, than I am doing what God has asked of me. Even if that one woman, turns out to be me. I'm okay with that.
"No, O people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what He requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God." ~ Micah 6:8
Moving Forward we will continue to study God's Word, chapter by chapter. I'll post a weekly reading plan and together we will be in Scripture every day. Along the way, I may post things that God has taught me, I may share an encouraging verse, a prayer request, or an encouragement from real life as a woman of God, a wife, a mom and a homeschooler. My prayer is that this site is always a support and encouragement to anyone who reads here and I truly pray for each reader. This is a safe place where you can share your prayer requests in the comment section and allow other believers to lift you up in prayer. Please share this with all the woman in your life, you never know who needs that extra support, encouragement or accountability in her walk of faith. So, here is to moving forward in our walk with Jesus! :)
Our Fall Study will begin Monday, September 11, 2017. We will start in the book of Romans and end with Exodus. Our study will run for about 12 weeks. I do hope you will join me in God's Word! Until then, check back. I may have a few posts for you between now and the start of our Fall Study.
Good morning, Ladies!
This is it! Our last week in Genesis! Originally when we began our summer study in May, we were scheduled to jump right into Romans once we finished in Genesis. However, when our study was delayed a few weeks due to my own personal circumstances, it pushed us out a little. So, we are going to finish our summer study with Genesis and we will start our fall study in the book of Romans. After this week of reading, we will take a break for a few weeks. Most of us are gearing up for a new school year or just jumping back into a regular routine now that summer and vacations are mostly coming to an end. I will have more information on our fall study coming soon.
So, for today, here is this week's reading plan:
Monday - Genesis 46
Tuesday - Genesis 47
Wednesday - Genesis 48
Thursday - Genesis 49
Friday - Genesis 50
May the Lord speak to your heart and mind through these last chapters of Genesis and may He bless you abundantly as you are striving to spend time with Him each day.
Good morning, Sweet Sisters!
We have two weeks left in Genesis. How have you been changed through God's word over the past 8 weeks? What have you learned? Let's push through the next two weeks and seek God's direction. Here is this week's reading plan:
Monday - Genesis 41
Tuesday - Genesis 42
Wednesday - Genesis 43
Thursday - Genesis 44
Friday - Genesis 45
I'm praying for each of you this week! Keep reading God's Word!
Good morning, Ladies!
Once again, I am a day behind- so I will just quickly post our reading plan for the week!
Tuesday - Genesis 36
Wednesday - Genesis 37
Thursday - Genesis 38
Friday - Genesis 39
Saturday - Genesis 40
Most of you will read that word and think: this month, summer, 4th of July, fireworks, cook-outs, heat, vacation and more. I look at that word and see something entirely different. I see.....Me.
July is a big month for me. It defines who I am and who I will always be. The month of July has changed my life for eternity and because of that, it means a lot to me. The three things that mean the most to me became my reality, all in the month of July.
I asked Jesus to be my Savior in July when I was 13 years old. My future was sealed. I belong to Jesus and I'm striving every day to bring Him glory. My hope is now in Him alone, and I trust Him completely.
*My life is forever changed.
One hot July afternoon, I walked down a rose petal covered dirt path to stand with my best friend in front of all our family and closest friends and vowed to love and adore him all my life. I became a wife that day. Someone else became more important than myself. My life was now wrapped up in the most handsome, loving, funniest, creative human being I have ever known.
*My life is forever changed.
What started as a normal day of work ended in a moment that I would never forget. On July 11th, 2001, I became a mom. All of sudden, 4 weeks early, this tiny 6 pound, bald, baby boy was laid on my stomach and everything I thought I knew about life, changed in that moment. Life was no longer about me, it was all about this beautiful gift God chose to give me to love, teach, nurture, and raise for God's glory.
*My life is forever changed.
That's who I am. I am a Christian, a wife and a mama. Although there are many other traits that describe me, these are the only three that truly matter. They are the only ones that are going to make a difference for eternity.
So, what does all this have to do with "fleeting moments"?
As time is passing and I am getting older, I realize how important each moment is. I also realize how many important moments I have missed because I haven't appreciated what I have. I want to change that. I want to intentionally live "in" each moment and soak them up. I've allowed too much stuff and stress to take those precious moments from me and I don't want to keep making that same mistake.
That precious little boy, who made me a mama? He turns 16 today. 16 years old! He's almost a man. As my husband and I was planning a party for our son, he asked me this question: "Where did 16 years go?"
Where did 16 years go? Where is that bald baby boy? Where are those chunky legs that took those first steps? Where is that sweet touch that patted his baby brother on the head when they first met? Where is that country twang that called his leg a "wag" for several years? Where is that contagious laugh that would cause the rest of us to burst out in laughter? Where is that small ball glove and short bat that he used to play his first year of baseball? Where is that little boy who wanted to be a fireman just like his Pawpaw? Where are the hot wheels and the toy firetrucks? Where did all that time go? And where was I when it was all passing so quickly? I was there, but was I really there?
I am so blessed. I know that. God has given me the desires of my heart and blessed me more ways than I can count. I am the proud Mama of 5 great kids! I have the great joy and privilege to carry another precious life within my womb right now, and I get to spend eternity with a precious baby that the Lord took home early in miscarriage. I get to spend the rest of my days with my husband right next to me , holding my hand and leading our family through this life. I'm blessed and I don't want to take those blessings for granted.
Our youngest child will be one this month. That in itself is hard to believe. God closed my womb for 6 years and we thought our family was complete. But He gave us the greatest surprise in this little one. The moment we knew she was coming we began praising Him for His blessing.
You see, I've been a mom for 16 years now. I started very young and I've pretty much grown up with my children. I've learned a lot. Each of them are teaching me. I am NO expert and I still have many years and many lessons to learn, but for the lessons the Lord has already presented to me - I want to act upon them. Time goes fast. You grandmothers out there are shaking your heads in agreement. You have already learned this truth. But you new mamas are just beginning this adventure and even though we seasoned mothers will tell you this, you won't quite believe it til a few years have passed. :)
So, I'll share only this: Soak it in. Every moment of every day. The good, the bad, the hard, the gross and the ugly. Soak it in! It will soon be over and your heart will ache for those memories, those fleeting moments. Just ask the Mama whose baby just got married, or the grandmother who is now holding her baby's baby, or the widow who has laid her soul mate to rest. Time is short. Our days are numbered, and we are blessed to do life with those we love, so let's take advantage. Soak your loved ones in!
I've always loved being a mom and being with my children, and you truly couldn't pay me to be anywhere else doing any other job. But... I have overlooked some moments, and I'm learning from them. I was told this past year that I hold my baby too much. :) Ha! Ha! It's true! I hold my baby all the time and I will continue to do so as long as I am able. Here's why:
It's taken many years and five children for me to realize how short time is. Soon, she won't let me hold her. The snuggles will cease, she'll want to run and play and do things all on her own. But now, right now, I get to hold her, snuggle her and love on her. And I'm not going to miss that opportunity this time around. I'm going to enjoy every little moment I get. I'll always be glad that I did. :)
Fleeting moments..... don't miss them. Enjoy each one!
Good morning, Sweet Sisters!
Can you believe it? I'm finally on time with our reading schedule! Woohoo! I cannot promise that this punctuality will continue, but I am definitely trying. :)
We are deep in the middle of Genesis. We have seen the amazing beauty of God's creation, we've read the destruction of sin as it entered into this world and as it's wickedness grew. We saw God's wrath as He destroyed the world with the flood only to save Noah and his family because of his faithfulness. We've watched Abraham from the time God first called him, through many of his and Sarah's own mistakes, through the miracle of the birth of Isaac in their old age and the sacrifice that God asked him to make. We have seen Isaac's life from birth to his marriage to Rebekah, to the birth and life of their sons, Jacob and Esau. And this week we get to follow Jacob and some of the twists and turns his life took.
What are you learning?
What has God opened your eyes to?
What lessons have you drawn from our daily reading that you have been able to apply to your own life?
How is God speaking to you through His Word?
I'm praying for each of you this week. May God open our hearts, ears and eyes to ALL the mercy, love, grace, and lessons that He has for us. May we see Him in the big things and the little things. And may we choose to follow His direction and be obedient to His Word.
Here is this week's reading plan:
Monday - Genesis 31
Tuesday - Genesis 32
Wednesday - Genesis 33
Thursday - Genesis 34
Friday - Genesis 35
Good morning, Sweet Sisters!
We have made it half way through Genesis! What a ride we have been on! As we begin week 6 of our summer study, we are only one day off schedule. Here is this week's reading plan:
Tuesday - Genesis 26
Wednesday - Genesis 27
Thursday - Genesis 28
Friday - Genesis 29
Saturday - Genesis 30
Have a wonderful 4th of July, celebrating our country and the freedoms we still have. Let's join together and pray diligently for our country and it's leadership. God hears our prayers!
"I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth. For there is only one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity- the man Christ Jesus. He gave His life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time." ~ I Timothy 2:1-6
For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. "
Hi! I'm Andrea, wife to my handsome hubby, homeschooling mama to my 5 amazing blessings (with one more on the way), and daughter of the King of kings. I am so glad you have stopped by my little piece of the web. My prayer is that the Lord will use this blog to encourage you in your personal, daily walk with Christ.