In The Word Wednesday :: James 1:20

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Most of us are probably more familiar with the verse preceding the one I referenced in the title of this post. James 1:19 says “This you know, my beloved brethren (talking about the will of God bearing fruit). But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger;” That’s the part that I think most people would be the familiar with.

Today I want to focus on something that I learned this week about the next verse, though. James 1:20 says, “for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” I love studying the Word of God because it is living and active. Even if you’ve never read many or even some of the books of the Bible, in my mind, James is one of the books that is more popular because it is easy to read and very applicable to our lives. I have probably read this verse 100 times and on the hundred and first time I learned something new that I want to share with you.

For me, it pertains specifically to how I relate to my much younger siblings and how I parent my 2 1/2 year-old son. However, I think the truth rings just as true for any circumstance in life where anger can be involved.

One of the specific definitions listed for anger in Strong’s concordance is “anger exhibited in punishment.” My displays of anger to try to punish does not make the other person acceptable to God. And because training in righteousness is the goal of discipline, I’m basically wasting my time getting angry.

So the next time I find myself getting a little agitated, I am going to try to heed God’s Word of being slow to the anger and a quick listener. No matter how awesome my lecture is, man’s anger does not produce God’s righteousness. It is our job to understand and communicate God’s words, not to speak according to our own ideas. The commentary by Matthew Henry gave this quote by a Dr. Manton: “That if we were a swift to hear as we are ready to speak there would be less of wrath, and more of profit, in our meetings.”

Meet Me Monday :: Stasha Savage

Each Monday, we introduce you to a woman that is either on staff at one of our church campuses or is the wife of one of our pastors on our campuses. Meet Stasha Savage! Stasha is our Children’s Music Coordinator and her husband, Dean, is the Pastor of Worship Ministries.

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1. It’s 9 pm and you have the house to yourself. What do you do? Watch re-runs or a movie.

2. Morning person or night owl?  I HAVE to be a morning person because of my children’s schedules but I would never be a morning person by choice!

3. How do you take your coffee? Dark roast, cold, liquid creamer and Splenda.

4. What’s on your nightstand? Pictures of my kids, a lamp, my glasses case and my asthma inhaler.

5. What’s your favorite smell? What smell do you hate? Favorite smell-my parents house (especially when mom is cooking or baking!) or my kids as babies, right out of the tub. Smell I hate-too many to count but tomatoes come to mind.

6. If you could only eat one nationality of food for the rest of your life, what would it be? Are desserts a particular nationality???

7. Have you always lived in Wichita Falls? I was born and raised in Huntsville, AL.  Got married and lived in 3 cities in TN. Came to TX 10 years ago for Dean to start work on his Doctorate.

8. What did you want to be when you were little? Marie Osmond

9. What’s your favorite hobby? Having fun with my family

10. Tell us one funny or weird thing about you:  I am the pickiest eater I know!

Freebie Friday :: Grandma Peggy’s Taco Soup

Now that Fall is here (and it actually feels like it, too!) it’s the perfect time for soup! For today’s freebie, I’m sharing the recipe for my Grandma Peggy’s Taco Soup. It’s super easy and super yummy!

Ingredients:
3 lbs. Hamburger Meat
1 large onion, chopped
1 can undrained pinto beans
1 can undrained ranch style beans
1 can undrained corn
1 can Rotel
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
1 package of Hidden Valley Ranch Seasoning (You don’t have to use the whole thing if you don’t want to!)
1 package Taco Mix (Again, you don’t have to use the whole thing if you don’t want to!)

Directions:

1. Brown meat and onion together
2. Add beans, corn and Rotel
3. Add tomatoes, ranch and taco seasonings
4. Let cook and simmer. Serve with shredded cheddar cheese

TACOSOUP

The Greatest Commandment

Something stuck with me recently that I wanted to share with you. If you’ve been in church for any amount of time, the following verses could be familiar to you:

Deuteronomy 6:5- You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  (NASB)

Matthew 22:37- And He said to him, ” ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ (NASB)

 

While the Old Testament passage is addressed to the Israelites, the New Testament passage is addressed to the Pharisees trying to trap Jesus.

But there is something there that I’ve never latched onto before that I think is important to remember as we become anchored in the Word:

Matthew 22:37- And He said to him, ” ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ (NASB- emphasis mine)

When we begin to read and study the Word on our own, it can be hard, confusing, and leave us with more questions than answers. But I think what Kathy encouraged us to do in Week 1 of the Anchored series is necessary: we must persevere. We are so blessed by the access we have to commentaries, but use them only after you have studied with your mind. Your mind…I have never thought myself capable of becoming a good student of the Word. But God has something to say to that: But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. (James 1:5 NASB)

God wants me to abide in Him, to know his Word with MY mind- not Kathy Drake’s mind, not Mary Royal’s mind, not Beth Moore’s mind! These women have incredible truths to share, so don’t hear me say we should never seek wisdom outside of ourselves. In fact, I would warn against only seeking “our” wisdom. But use your study skills that you learned in school and then check your work against trusted sources. No matter how awesome the commentary, it cannot take the place of knowing the Word for yourself.

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Meet Me Monday :: Deidra Thompson

Each Monday, we introduce you to a woman that is either on staff at one of our church campuses or is the wife of one of our pastors on our campuses. Let us introduce you to Deidra Thompson. She is the Director of Children’s and Preschool Ministries at the Church at Sheppard.

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1. It’s 9 pm and you have the house to yourself. What do you do? Probably sleep or watch Netflix. I love binge-watching television shows.

2. Morning person or night owl? Morning person. I can stay up late if I have to, but I’m much more productive in the mornings.

3. How do you take your coffee? I like it strong, but sweet. I go for sugar-infused flavored creamer to lighten my coffee.

4. What’s on your nightstand? Himalayan Salt Lamp and my glasses. I’m basically blind.

5. What’s your favorite smell? What smell do you hate? I really don’t have a good sense of smell. So, I don’t notice much. I love really strong candles or perfumes because I can ACTUALLY experience them! Smell I hate? Garbage that’s been hanging out in the heat. Gross.

6. If you could only eat one nationality of food for the rest of your life, what would it be? Oh, man. I love food. How am I supposed to pick one? I’ll just say whatever ethnic food includes bacon the most.

7. Have you always lived in Wichita Falls? No. I was born in Florida and moved to Texas when I was 3 months old. Since then I’ve lived primarily in East Texas. I love those pine forests!

8. What did you want to be when you were little? Goodness. I always loved to sing. I thought that being a singer would be pretty much the best thing ever.

9. What’s your favorite hobby? I still really enjoy making music. I love to play new instruments and learn new songs. My current favorite is the ukulele. So much fun!

10. Tell us one funny or weird thing about you:  We have a tendency to refer to ourselves in collective instead of in first-person.

Some Updates For You…

We interrupt regularly scheduled programming to bring you some updates.

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Don’t forget that the Nick Vujicic event is THIS SUNDAY at 10:30 am at Kay Yeager Coliseum. Here is a link to our church website with some FAQs and a video!

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The podcast website is up to date, complete with handouts. You can access it here.

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Anne interviewed some students with some interesting questions, and their answers and faces are pretty funny.

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We’re back in iTunes. Now, you can still subscribe through the podbean website, nothing has changed there. But, we now officially have a iTunes feed to make it easier for our iDevice friends should they choose that route. (UPDATE::When seraching for our feed, it says it’s not available in the US iTunes store. We are working to get that fixed).

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I’ve added a tab at the top of this page that says “Podcast” (top right corner) so that you can access podcasts from the blog, too!

In The Word Wednesday :: Psalm 119:1-2

 

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1 How blessed are those whose way is blameless,
Who walk in the law of the Lord.
2 How blessed are those who observe His testimonies,
Who seek Him with all their heart.

Psalm 119:1-2

This is a passage I’ve read a few times over. It’s one of those good life verses, you know what I mean? It is easily understood and seemingly easily enough to apply. “Seek God with all of our heart.” Who doesn’t want to do that?

As a planner, I usually desire to be as in-control of mine and my families schedule as possible. If I’m being really honest, and I am, I plan out my Bible study times every Sunday. If I don’t have a specific task set up for that day, I either 1) end up wasting a lot of time wondering what to do (which is so crazy since I have SO MUCH at my fingertips) or 2) I keep putting it off until I figure it out. Then, it’s 11 pm and I’m in bed exhausted and go “well, this wouldn’t be my best, Lord. Tomorrow, when I’m fresh. I don’t want this to just become a check list.”

What I’ve discovered recently (and you may already know this, as I feel I should have known it) is the importance of my time in the Word not be ONLY a thing I do each day. Notice that I said “only” because the discipline of actually being in the Word is just that, a discipline, it is training that corrects, molds, or perfects the mental faculties or moral character (from Merriam Webster). But “walking in the law of the Lord” is ongoing. Anytime I try to compartmentalize or make my time in the Word just a thing I cross of my to do list, and don’t let it bless me and change me, my way cannot be blameless. If I am only crossing it off my list like I would a workout or chore, I cannot be blessed, which is literally “happy” in this passage.

So, seeking God with my whole heart becomes something that requires work- to walk in the law continually, I have to know the law and know the testimonies. The word for “seek” means to “frequent a place.” Not just mark it off as done and then move on. It means to practice, to study, and seek with application.

God’s Word is sharper than any double edged sword (Heb. 4:12) and has the power to transform. Will you let it today?

Meet Me Monday :: Tabitha Havens

Each Monday, we introduce you to a woman that is either on staff at one of our church campuses or is the wife of one of our pastors on our campuses. Let’s get to know Tabitha Havens a little better today. Her husband, Robb, is the Campus Pastor at our Ft. Sill campus.

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1. It’s 9 pm and you have the house to yourself. What do you do? Enjoy the calm!

2. Morning person or night owl? Night owl!

3. How do you take your coffee? With French Vanilla creamer!

4. What’s on your nightstand? Lamp, Kleenex, earphones and books I start but forget to finish.

5. What’s your favorite smell? What smell do you hate? My favorite smell is cookies baking in the oven and the smell I hate is hot dog vomit- I have cleaned way too much of that from my girls.

6. If you could only eat one nationality of food for the rest of your life, what would it be? Texas (American?) because I love eating steak medium rare!

7. Have you always lived in Wichita Falls? I was born in Springfield, Missouri and my parents moved to DFW area shortly I was born. We moved to Wichita Falls when I was in 2nd grade. Moving to Lawton to plant our Ft. Sill campus was the first time for us to move as a family.

8. What did you want to be when you were little? A teacher

9. What’s your favorite hobby? Shopping! Does that count as a hobby? I also love to go antique shopping. I don’t dig for finds, I just like looking and seeing how others take old things and make them new!

10. Tell us one funny or weird thing about you:  If someone loses something, it drives me crazy until I find it- like to the point that I stop everything else until I find it. I try to act like it’s no big deal, but inside I am beyond frustrated.