Limitless Life Blog Hop ~ Week 3

So, it’s Week 3. And I know exactly what that means. It means we are almost halfway through this amazing study and YOU are still going strong! Yay!! But it also means that some of you are tired and really having to push forward to finish.

One of this week’s chapters is perfect for this very moment. (Don’t you love how God works these little details out? How He not only goes with us but also goes before us and makes provision for our every need?)

In Chapter Six, From Religious to Grace-Covered, Derwin says, “Works-based righteousness produces performance-based living, which suffocates our souls. It’s limiting.”

I know this life of performance-based living. I’ve lived it and it almost destroyed me. After years of performing and pleasing and working in and for ministry, my husband and I found ourselves burned out, worn out, and distant in our relationship with Jesus. God graciously lifted us out and gently drew us to Himself where we were restored, refreshed, renewed and introduced to love and grace as we had never known before.

You see, we don’t have to finish this study so that God will be pleased with us. He’s already pleased with us.

We don’t have to finish it so that He will love and accept us. He already loves and accepts us.

Derwin nails it when he says, “Many Christ-followers try to live for God’s acceptance, love, and blessings instead of living from God’s love, acceptance, and blessings to us based on the Jesus’ accomplishments for us.

Jesus has already accomplished and provided everything we need to have and walk and live in relationship with our heavenly Father.

So, as we move forward, let’s do more than just finish. Let’s do more than just check off our assignments each day.

Are you suffocating a little? Take a deep breath right now. Allow God to breathe into you winds of refreshment, renewal and restoration.

Peer into these scriptures expecting to see Him. Press in to our study ready to know Him. Turn the pages with desire to live and abide in His very presence. It’s not about performance and doing. It’s about knowing and becoming.

“Let the floodgates of God’s grace sweep you off your feet.”

Love and grace, grace, grace,

Shelly

P.S. ~ We can’t wait to read how God has revealed Himself to you through this week’s study!

SO . . . Let’s get this party started!

A few ways you can participate are:

  • Link to your blog (if you have one) after writing about one of this week’s topics
  • Pick one (or more) blog(s) to read and leave some encouraging comments
  • Choose one of this week’s topics and write about it in the comment section

Or, if you need a day to catch up (or just bask in the awesome love and presence of God!), use today to do that! (Grace, grace, grace, remember?) Nicki shared some beautiful words of encouragement this week, so you’ll want to visit those posts if you haven’t already! πŸ™‚

(For those of you linking your blogs, we do have a few rules to follow so that things stay neat, tidy and relevant. If you have any questions about what to do or how to do it,Β click here to read the Blog Hop 101 post.Β )

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Also, don’t forget our amazing Facebook event happening tonight! Here’s what you can expect:

Damaged or Restored, Do or Done? Join Proverbs 31’s Online Bible Study Team for Rev It Up as we explore what God says about us as He views us through His Son, Jesus, in a fast moving hour of online Bible study with practical application, encouragement and fellowship!

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Things to bring:
β€’ Your Bible
β€’ Limitless Life book
β€’ Notecards (5 just in case)
β€’ Pen
β€’ Paper/journal
β€’ Highlighter
Click here to join —>Β RSVP to Rev It Up Live on June 12!

Β *********************************

Now, here are the topics for Week 3:

NOTE: Please specify which topic you chose, by either using the suggested title OR adding the Topic # somewhere in your post.

1. MAP IT ~ John 1:12 ~ Expand our weekly verse using various study methods (verse mapping, word studies, etc.).
 (Click here to learn more about verse mapping from our awesome friend Heather BleierΒ or copy the following into your browser:Β http://bit.ly/11j4zW2)

2. SNAP IT ~ Derwin mentions writing Chapter 6 from his favorite coffee shop. For fun, share a picture of your favorite place to study or write.


3. WRITE IT ~ Choose one of the following writing prompts from Chapters 5 & 6 and share something from your heart relating to our study: Stupid Barriers, United, A Rest at Jacob’s Well, Grace: A Gift for Humanity, Living Water, It Is Finished, Spiritual Identity Protection Program, The Jig is Up, In Need of a New Nature, Forever Loved and Accepted, Justified


4. SHARE IT ~ Do you have a story or testimony of going From Damaged Goods to Trophy of Grace or From Religious to Grace-Covered?

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Comments

  1. Shelly, what an encouragement you’ve provided for us here, this morning! Oh, that the floodgates of grace would be opened wide here in this community! I’m looking forward to reading and seeing all that God has done in our hearts this week. And, starting fresh for the new one – knowing that God is already there!

  2. Elizabeth says:

    I believe I’m FINALLY understanding. Jesus loves me just because. Broken, angery, shattered, hurting, scared Elizabeth. He loves me for no other reason than because I’m His. I don’t have to perform or earn it like I have all my life with my earthly parents.. He ALWAYS loves me, even when I fall. Wow…

    • Amen, Wow! Isn’t it amazing and isn’t it wonderful? I’m with you. Finally understanding, even after being a believer for 27 years. The Always part is truly amazing. As human beings, we just can’t comprehend how far, wide, deep is the Father’s love for us.

    • Yes, Elizabeth!!! You got it!! His love for you is unconditional and unending! You are forever loved!! Isn’t His love so amazing??

  3. Thank you Shelly! I, like you, have had the burn out from doing this, serving here, etc etc–Praise God He has and continues to show me its not about having a checklist of things to complete–its about complete service and listening to Him!!

  4. Good morning, I am knee-deep in preparing for our younger son’s high school graduation on Saturday morning, and a graduation party at our home Saturday afternoon, and I know that His grace is sufficient onto me. πŸ™‚

    • Carol, congratulations! Yes, His grace is sufficient. He will fill you with happiness during the celebration. What an exciting time for you and your family.

    • Carol ~ I can testify that this is true! My son graduated last Friday night and we had parties all weekend plus one at our house on Sunday! And guess what? God’s grace is sufficient! πŸ™‚ Congrats to you all on a beautiful accomplishment and celebration!

  5. Forever Loved and Accepted ~ I LOVE this.. and need to be reminded of this. As a family we have had some VERY difficult years. On those days when I am feeling downtrodded and alone it is so comforting to know that Jesus is there.. forever loving me and accepting me inspite my sins and moments of anxiety over the trials of life. Yesterday marked the 31st year anniersary of the birth of our daughter Avenelle Joy who was stillborn in my 9th trimester. The day still overwhelms me with emotions of the loss of her and after 4 years of infertility we were blesed with our first ‘live’ child and now have 3 grown children in the mid twenties. It is so comforting for me to know I am loved and accpeted on days like this. EVery time I have the opportunity I hug my children so tightly. I give thanks for the gift they are to me. I look forward to the day when I can see our daugther Avenelle in heaven. And because of Christ’s death and love for me I will be able to hold her again and my other children will be able to meet their sister!

    • We serve such a good, merciful, compassionate God! We never have to walk through anything alone and His grace is always sufficient. Praying that He will breathe healing and encouragement into those deep, tender places of your heart.

  6. Thank you so much for your words this morning Shelly…they were exactly what I needed to hear! Praise God for going before me and preparing this message for me, through you, when I needed to hear it πŸ™‚
    Love you!

  7. I am overwhelmed and so thankful for this chapter. I have spent a good deal of my life running in performance based mode. I KNOW the grace of God and yet, sometimes I still allow myself to slip back into reliving my past sins (in my mind=guilt) and feeling as if I’m just not good enough. Not only do I want to remember I am living by the grace of God, I want to be able to extend grace to those I come into contact with. I am especially hard on my children, suspicious of their activity, feeling as if they are not walking with the Lord although I know they are saved. I am judging them based upon what I see. But, actually what I see is not the problem, it’s what my mind sees and what I imagine. I am asking for prayer to leave this in the hands of God; at the feet of Jesus. Jesus is the one to change their hearts and their paths. They are saved through grace, nothing can snatch them out of His hand, but He does allow a free will and allows them to make their own decisions. My job is to pray, pray, pray and extend the grace that He extends to me on a daily basis. I am absolutely loving this book, absorbing all of it, and allowing it to change me along with daily scripture reading. I am thankful that it makes scripture so much more real to me. I am experiencing the change and letting go of what must be the white washed tomb attitude I tend to carry and have carried for the past 27 years. I am hard on others, and I am most hard on myself. Praise God for His work in transforming all of us who are involved in this study.

    • Susan, It’s so exciting to read about the changes you are experiencing while we are studying God’s Word together. I’m praising God with you for His transforming power! So, so happy you are walking with us here in community! God is doing great things in our midst! πŸ™‚

  8. Thank you shelly for your inspiring words. God has spoken to me that he has loved and accepted me. And stop trying to gain his love by trying to prove to him that I can succeed by my education and work. I learned you don’t have to gain or earn his love. It’s already been given as a gift of grace. And salvation. I’m trying to go to school in so many places and I’m overwhelmed and very stressed out and feel like I’m at the end of the rope. All because I’m trying to make God proud of all that I have done. God been loving me and never left me. But I know realize that I left him. I supposed to start up a blog today after work asking for God’s strength. I kind of have an idea of the use of the blog.

    • Latasha, God is already proud of you! You are the apple of His eye! You are a daughter of the King! He rejoices and sings over you today no matter what you have or haven’t accomplished! Stand proud as the Trophy of Grace you are, sister, and let Him love you like only He can! πŸ™‚

  9. Brittany says:

    WOW! Living from God’s love and NOT for it! That truly touched my heart! Words can’t begin to express the change that has happened in my heart from that one simple truth. I honestly don’t know what to say except Lord help me to believe that this is what you want from me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen! πŸ™‚

    • Brittany, God’s love is truly something that already fully and completely belongs to us. It’s that solid place our feet can stand when everyone else abandons us. It’s the hope we can cling to when life dishes out discouragement and hopelessness. It’s that place of unchanging certainty and promises that can never be broken. God is love and He has already given freely the fullness of His very nature. I love how He is touching your heart and revealing truth to you as we study scripture together! When we seek Him, we will find Him! πŸ™‚ Blessings! ~ Shelly

  10. Donna W says:

    Guess who came to the front door while I was studying Chapter 6?…a couple of ladies from the Jehovah’s Witnesses. And I gave the wrong answer (for them). I stopped and prayed through the negative self-talk that had begun once I closed the door. God IS in control, even when I experience negative things I do not want. I am unlearning the notion that if I did everything right I would not have any problems. That tends to spiral into the ought/should/musts of religiousness rather than the freedom of grace. “Sanctification is not the basis of (my) justification”, it’s the other way around. I “do not need to strive or struggle to earn God’s love, acceptance, or forgiveness.”

  11. John 1:12
    MAP IT
    The Voice (VOICE)John 1:12
    12 But for all who did receive and trust in Him, He gave them the right to be reborn as children of God;
    Here are my thoughts as I mapped this verse, be blessed…
    All God needs from you and I and everyone else in the whole wide world is to recieve and trust that he is who he says he is and can do what he says he can do. It is all in the bible for you and I to learn of and to know what is available for us. Him = the word of God. (In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God). I just need to spend more time in the word and trust what the God is telling me through his word and take action based on what I believe in the word and I can live out the reborn nature that I already have. My inheritance is already mine. However if I don’t know what it is or don’t understand it I will be ignorant and will not be able to live based on who I am and what I have in Him. It is based on that knowledge ( faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God) that I begin to believe more and more of who he is and who I am in him and I begin to exercise my right as a child of God. I also begin to live in alignment with Him i.e grace covered. I really think that the reason why most I and most of us christains have been so deceived by the enemy is because we have not really taken the time and effort to dig deeper into the word of God for ourselves, and we have felt very comfortable with what other people have told us about God as opposed to going to him ourselves. When information is passed on through multiple sources, it becomes filtered and the truth becomes watered down. God wants us to get to know him for ourselves, it is very personal. I’m not married but I assume a husband and wife will have to spend one on one time together to really get to know each other, they will not depend on a third party to help them get to know each other. the same with God and us, I feel He is calling on us his daughters to draw closer to him and get to know him and start living in the light of His glory.

    I am excited about the journey he is taking all of us on. I pray this process will bring a lasting change in all of our lives in Jesus name.

  12. What a JOY reading your words today! Your blogs are so good! I LOVE reading what God is doing in so many of you as we dig into scripture together! He is changing and transforming us from the inside out! Thank you to everyone who participated by linking up, sharing your heart here in the comment section, and/or sharing the love on other blogs! πŸ™‚ Remember, you can link up until Monday evening. Love you all!

  13. Tammy Haymon says:

    Spiritual Identity Protection Program – This topic has special meaning for me today. Last night I went online to set up a savings account for my 14 year old son because he asked me to set him one up to save for something special. Today I got a call from the financial institution to ask if it was okay to open the account, but they could not talk to me – they had to talk with my 14 year old son because the account was in his name or my husband’s. My husband was (and usually is) covered up at work, so I handle all the finances. And my son is a minor for crying out loud! But because I didn’t have the proper identity, I had no authority on this account even though I am the one who set it up!!!

    Anyway, after doing verse mapping on our verse this week, it just feels good to know that I have the authority to be called a child of God just because Christ said so. Because I am a child of God, I can speak directly to the Father just by calling on Jesus’ name. Because the Word became flesh and because I chose to believe, my spiritual identity is protected and I have all authority and privileges of a family member in God’s family. Praise Jesus!

  14. Joycelyn says:

    Thanks Tammy for connecting that physical experience with the spiritual intent. You presented it so beautifully and simplistically.

  15. Joycelyn says:

    Thanks Kemi for your your thoughts on John 1:12. I’ve never done verse mapping before and I see that there are several ways to do it. It seems that whatever way you choose to do it the important key is to listen for God to speak to your heart. I think I can use verse mapping to dig deeper into the study of God’s Word. I also have trouble with meditation and “being still” because my mind wanders when I’m not focused on anything. But just as I do with everything else I must pray for God’s help.Please pray that He will develop these skills in My life for His glory.

  16. Rebecca says:

    This week’s reading led me to see Jesus as my savior in a whole new light. He’s my savior in the small things that trouble me. I have been struggling with some things in my life and of course have been trying to battle them myself, in my own way. I literally saw him in my mind, reaching his hand out to me, as if to say “follow me” and “don’t be afraid”. I cannot say I’m no longer afraid of the things in my life that are challenging, but I am bringing up that image of Him in my mind when I am afraid or stressed, talking to Him all day long, and I can see my fears and situations that trouble me turning around already. I think the idea of an all-loving and accepting God is finally sinking in. It makes the things of this life seem small and makes me want to reach out to others in kindness and forgiveness.

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