Monday, October 19, 2015

TGSGI - Chapter 7

"May the Lord bless him!" Naomi told her daughter-in-law. "He is showing his kindness to you as well as to your dead husband.  That man is one of our closest relatives, one of our family redeemers."  Ruth 2:20

This week we are reading verses 18-23 in the second chapter of Ruth (The Book of Lovingkindness) and chapter 7 of The Girl's Still Got It, by Liz Curtis Higgs.  If you have some catching up to do, that's ok!  Jump right in, come as you are.  I am so glad you are here!

First, I have to say a great big Hallelujah!  After years of computer issues, I finally have a new computer!  I am very thankful for this speedy little machine :)  If you're wondering if you missed a blog for chapter 6, you didn't.  I did.  The last 2 weeks were, well, a little overwhelming & overbooked.  I just couldn't deal with computer problems on top of all of it.  I hope chapter 6 enlightened, informed, and entertained.  I'd love to hear your thoughts on it.  Feel free to include them in the Comments on this post.

Amidst all of the stress of the last 2 weeks, I realized I needed to take some time for myself.  I had been avoiding the treadmill and felt awful about it.  I was just muscling through our book & study. I needed some quiet mindfulness that really made me focus and not allow my mind to wander.  So, I turned back to my yoga practice and a new source (for me), YouTube.  I found Yoga with Adrienne, did a random session or two and then decided to take her 30 Day Challenge.  Now, I usually don't do challenges, just not my thing.  But, I liked her style and I needed a push.  I started it last Monday; by Day 3 I was struggling to take that 20 minutes to practice (told you I don't do challenges), but I did it and I'm happy to say I just finished Day 7!  And it was 30 minutes long!!

The interesting thing about today's practice was that there was no picture.  I'm sure it was my total lack of understanding of how the TV, Blu-Ray player and the 2 remotes work, that caused this glitch; no matter what I tried, I couldn't see the sweet smile of Adrienne.  Instead of turning it off, I embraced the black screen and just listened to her voice.  The yogi always leads the class by verbal instruction, so I didn't think it would be that difficult.  It was definitely a different experience.  I had to really pay attention and not rely on seeing her in a pose.  At one point I wasn't quite sure what she meant, so I did what I thought she was saying.  Part way through, I confused two poses and was doing Warrior 2 when I should have been doing Warrior 1; I fixed it when we did it on the other side.  But, I also noticed that I wasn't distracted with visual stimulus.  I didn't watch the traffic out her window, I didn't wish my house was as uncluttered as hers, and I didn't admire the antique writing table in the corner.  I just listened and moved.  It was both humbling & empowering.

The black TV screen with a guiding voice reminds me of my relationship with God, my Redeemer.  I don't always have a visual, but through His word and being in a community of believers, I am able to move forward, doing what He says.  I don't always get it right, sometimes I have to guess at exactly what He means, and sometimes I get it wrong or am confused.  But, God continues to guide me, knowing I'll get it right the next time.  He gently guides my movements as long as I am listening, purposefully tuned in to His voice. And He allows for making adjustments along the way.  Through the many blessings of life, He reminds me to breathe and smile.

I wonder if our ancient sister Ruth felt this way.  Clearly, she heard God's call to move.  But without a visual (a flashing neon arrow or at least the gratitude of her mother-in-law) how did she know she was getting it right?  I'm going to guess that it was her faith that allowed her to boldly go in the direction that God was calling her.  She did the best she could; she did what she thought God was telling her to do and left the rest up to Him.  What an important message for us!

Chapter 7 in our book starts to show us how Boaz parallels what God does for His people and foreshadows what Jesus will do for us.  Turn to the study guide questions in the back of the book.  They are especially good this week and will help deepen our relationship with our Redeemer; moving as God leads, even when we don't have a visual!

Scroll down and leave a comment, question or "ah-ha" moment!

Your Partner in Ministry,


"Kind words are like honey - sweet to the soul and healthy for the body."  Proverbs 16:24

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

TGSGI Chapter 5

"Now there was a wealthy and influential man in Bethlehem named Boaz, who was a relative of Naomi's husband, Elimelech."  Ruth 2:1

Oooo, something good this way comes!

First: yea!  My computer is working today and has allowed me to hop on here and write to you!  And I'm glad because this chapter is so exciting!  Ok, not action-movie exciting, but almost.

The opening verse gives us a glimpse of this guy, Boaz before he actually shows up in the story.  That's a teaser, not a spoiler alert.  It makes what comes later, that much more exciting.  Think about when you're watching a movie and you know what's going to happen, but the character doesn't.  How do you react?  I usually yell at the screen, "No, don't go in there!"  or "Yes!  You are going to love this!" depending on the scene.  Knowing what's going to happen doesn't make it any less thrilling and in fact, sometimes ramps us the excitement.  So it was with the ancient audience who was listening to this story and for us as we read it today.

We have the flash forward and then back to 'the present' in verse 2.  Ruth, this strong, independent woman suggests that she go glean in the fields.  Wow!  She's willing to do whatever it takes to make a life for herself and for Naomi now that they are in Bethlehem.  And she just so happens to wind up in Boaz's field?  Did you see that coming?  Of course you did, otherwise why mention him in the first verse!  Now do you see how things are unfolding.  This story is really getting good.

But my favorite part isn't directly found in Ruth.  Oh, the original listeners would have known this fact, but we miss it in the 21st Century because we don't hear these stories over & over again.  They aren't a part of our heritage and our gatherings.  But here's the juicy part: Boaz's mother was Rahab!!  Oh my goodness!  When I read that (on page 66) I just about yelled, 'shut the front door!'  This adds so many layers to this guy, this story, and their relationship.  I love it!  Am I too excited about this?  Am I that much of a book geek?  Maybe, but I just can't help myself.  I love a good story and the fact that's it's a Biblical story, just makes it that much better!

There's a lot more good stuff in these first few verses of chapter 2.  What was your favorite part?  What in Liz's writing helped you more fully understand these verses?  Was there any part that made you want to 'yell at the screen'?

After reading Ruth 2:1-7 and chapter 5 in The Girl's Still Got It, spend some time diving deeper into your heart with the study guide questions in the back of the book.  If you're joining the live discussion on Friday morning, be ready with some thoughts on omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent and the concept of providence.

I'd love to hear what you think of this chapter and this part of Ruth, the story, and the characters Ruth, Naomi, & Boaz!  Leave your thoughts, ideas, and conversation starters in the Comment section!

Your Partner in Ministry,


"Kind words are like honey - sweet to the soul and healthy for the body."  Proverbs 16:24