At the end of September, I will release my latest study: Radiant-- Discovering the Brilliance of the Beatitudes. I am so excited to walk through this study with you where we will learn more about the heart of Christ.
Today, I wanted to give you a sneak peek inside the pages of Radiant.
"So often we want to know the will of God in a particular situation. But, if we do not know the heart of our Father, it is difficult to understand what it is that He wants us to be doing each day. The entire Bible gives us a glimpse into the heart of God, but Jesus reveals the best outline of what it looks like to live as a child of God. Considering what He said and did helps us to understand the shifts that we need to make in order to experience the true joy and freedom that come from living as a beloved daughter of our one true God.
The behavior that we see rewarded in our current culture is often not the behavior that Jesus recommended to His disciples and the crowds that followed Him. Jesus preached and taught that we should live in a heart forward manner, loving first asking questions later. What we normally associate with success and the reward of a ‘job well done’ is turned upside down and inside out by Jesus.
If you grew up in a Christian family, you are familiar with the Sermon on the Mount- the statements which are etched into many stained glass windows in churches around the world. Each of the statements runs counter to what we have been told will mark our lives as productive, successful, and “happy”. Those people around us who look like they have it “all figured out” seem to be outspoken, strong, financially stable, healthy, hard-working, and stylish.
In His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus never mentions any of the qualities that we so easily associate with the people admired by many or others who hold positions of power. Instead, Jesus points to people who are poor in spirit, hungry for justice, meek, peaceful and persecuted. Jesus points to people at the bottom of the most popular list and ones who are living with their hearts on their sleeves; people who are living Inside Out and Upside Down. These are the people who we instantly feel comfortable with and who take the time to see us for who we are and not for what we can do for them; the ones who Radiate Christ.
Reading the qualities that Jesus elevates can make us uncomfortable. Being hungry is not a feeling we enjoy. There is a reason why the word “hangry” was created. But, could it be that we and our modern way of thinking are wrong about what will actually bring us the joy and peace that we are so desperately seeking? Could it be that we do not need to acquire one more thing in order to be a ‘success’ in the eyes of God?
Are you ready to adjust your point of view in order to see the world from God’s perspective instead of your own? If so, you might realize that the answers to your silent questions have been right in front of you the whole time." (excerpt from Lesson One, Radiant)
Radiant with Women of the Word starts September 25, you can find the schedule and register here.