May 8

Living With Courage

In my last blog post, I talked about how so much of what we ask God for has already been given to us, we just need to take action.  I also posted a link to a sermon from my pastor, Steven Furtick of Elevation Church which brought home this message stating that to “wait” on the Lord doesn’t necessarily mean to sit still. Wait isn’t passive, it’s active, like a waiter or waitress, “waiting” tables in a restaurant. I know this to be true. I was a waitress for years, and the last thing I did was sit still. I served. To “wait” meant to serve. So perhaps waiting on the Lord means we should actively be serving. (If you missed this message, you can watch it here.) I assure you, it is worth your time.  Just read the comments in my last blog post. POWERFUL!

We have 3 winners from the last blog post. Randomly selected, the winners are:  Donna Mahoney, Cynda, and Anita.  I am emailing you to give you details, but you won an advanced, unedited copy of Pastor Steven Furtick’s last book, Sun Stand Still.  Thanks to all who posted their top 3 points from Pastor Furtick’s message. They were great!

I don’t think it’s any coincidence, that our focus last week was accessing the power, peace, faith, security, comfort, forgiveness from God that we already have and this week the opening paragraph of Chapter 12 says this:

We don’t need to go looking for what we already possess.

I am not ahead in this study. I am doing it with you. When I read that yesterday, you could have knocked me over. We don’t need to go looking for what we already possess

Then if you keep reading chapter 12, over on p. 221, we get to the word “wait.” Micca Campbell writes, Wisdom revealed itself in one word: “Wait.”  Waiting doesn’t mean to sit around passively. It means to wait on God’s peace for direction as we move forward in obedience to His Word. Again, I am blown away by God’s timing!!!   The same message, different source.

Could it be ladies that God is really trying to make sure we get all this?  Anytime I get the same message from more than one godly source, I consider it a confirmation that God is trying to tell me something. In this case, I think He is trying to tell all of us something. Isn’t this exciting?

So, next question:  How do we access what we already possess and how do we wait on God while moving forward in obedience?

Answer: We live with courage.

Micca explains this well on p. 226-227. She proposes that we can allow our anxiety to prevent us from moving or we can face our task with courage. Then she asks, “How does one find courage when they’re trembling in fear? Sometimes it comes down to deciding what is more important–the thing we need to do or yielding to our fear. You see, courage is not absence of fear as you might think. Rather it withstands fear. Courage means being brave in spite of fear or hard circumstances. In other words, you and I have to experience fear in order to be courageous. We must use our fear like a step that enables us to reach our faith….Courage is being brave enough to move through our fears.”

Whatever God is calling us to do, He gives us this promise from Joshua 1:9:  “Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

It’s time ladies to live our lives in a way that allows us to reach our God-given potential. Live out our dreams, pursue our passions and walk in faith.

It’s been a blessing to join you in this study! You have taught me so much! Thank you!

Just because we may be done reading this book, doesn’t mean the message stops. No, no. The message is just beginning. How are you going to live out your faith in your life courageously? Please share in the comment section a risk you plan on taking. Thanks!

 

 

***To sign up for our next Online Bible Study, just fill in the blanks in the right column of this blog. We will be reading I Used to Be More Organized by Glynnis Whitwer. More details here. Study begins May 27th.

 

Melissa

Comments

  1. Tricia says:

    This has been such an amazing Bible study! I’ve gained so much from it. It’s been an awesome journey & I’ve been blessed to have grown so much in my faith throughout it. I can’t wait for the next study!
    A risk I plan on taking is to go out & start volunteering, become active in ministering opportunities that utilize my spiritual gifts. I’ve always been too afraid to do anything like this before. So that’s my next step.

    • Donna B says:

      Tricia … way to overcome those fears and live in faith!!! Volunteering and serving othes is amazing!! You will be great at it!!! Can’t wait to see how God is going to continually grow you up in Him as you serve others! Love your servant’s heart!

    • Tricia,
      This is sooooo great! Don’t delay! Write this down and get a plan! I’m so excited for you and where God will lead you. When you are serving Him, you can’t go wrong. I love this, thanks for sharing!

  2. Teresa says:

    I have felt for some time that God has BIG plans for me. I have been watchfully “waiting” for a while now. It seems the time is right to lay down past fears and move forward in a direction that ties up some loose ends.

    I have enrolled in Liberty University’s online program to complete my last year of my bachelor’s degree and I plan to pursue a Master’s in Christian Counseling/Psychology. This is a BIG deal for me. In the fall, there will be three women (2 young and 1 old) enrolled at the college level and 1 in her junior year of High School. My poor husband!!!

    God has continually placed people, both young and adult, that have needed my counsel over the years. I feel very honored every time I am approached for Godly advice. They want to know the truth about what the Bible says for their lives. I hope by “waiting” forward, He will see fit to use me in many ways in the future. All I know is, He put me here for a purpose and I am His to do whatever He asks.

    I look forward with anticipation for the blessings yet to come from laying down this major fear of failure and have faith that He will see me through.

    Thank you for your wisdom throughout these studies.

    • Teresa! Way to go girl!!!! This is great. Please keep us updated on what the Lord is doing in your life. I’m so excited for you going back to school!

      • Anonymous says:

        I’ve done it! I have applied to Liberty University Online, filled out my FAFSA, faxed my first university for my transcripts…now I just have to “wait forwardly” until I hear from Lberty about my path and curriculum. Excited. Nervous. Trusting!!!!!

  3. Donna B says:

    Yay Teresa!!! God is good all the time and ALL the time God is good!! And, yep, sometimes He is just waiting on us to say “YES”!! You go GIRL!! Be that difference maker that He has created you to be! Not only are you going to bless others, but God is also going to bless you for your radical obedience to Him. And yep, I’ll be throwing up some prayers for the husband too! :0)

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks, Donna! Meg says you’re the one that can get those prayers heard! I choose to step out on faith with the rest of you God Gals.

  4. Lynn Graham says:

    this was a great bible study I learned alot from it. I plan to return to volunteering at the hospital in the emergency room. also I am going to try to venture outside when they say there is a 20% – 40% chance of thunderstorms today, instead of sitting home for a sunny day. Melissa, I won’t be doing the next study ( I’m not bragging) because I’m very organized and have always been.I will be doing the next class after this. my book is already preordered.

    • Lynn,
      I’m so proud of you! Facing your fears and moving forward! Please email me and keep me updated about volunteering in the ER and getting outside more!
      I’m jealous that you don’t need the next study! I wish I didn’t! I’m so glad you will be joining me again for Unglued. Blessings!

  5. Marcia says:

    Hi Melissa, this is awesome and one of my biggest problems. Sometimes I am so paralyzed by fear that I can’t do anything. It is time to psh through that fear, so that God can use me in anyway that he chooses as a confident women.Thanks for the insight.

    • Marcia,
      You can do this! Take the step. Listen to Pastor Furtick’s message and read Chapter 12 of An Untroubled Heart. God has great plans for you and wants to use you. Don’t let fear control you, you got God on your side. I know you can do this!

  6. Melissa, I know God brought me to this study exactly at the right time. I have struggled with fear and panic attacks most of my life and I know that God has bigger plans for me than to stay locked into a past full of fear but to step into the future of all of His glorious plans. This study has blessed me more than I can put into words through the book but also through meeting so many great ladies that now have become friends. I am excited for the next study and be a part of the leadership on FB. It is exciting. My goal to step out of fear is to go on a family vacation which we haven’t done in about 5 years. I have been so afraid of leaving the comfort of my “surroundings” that I haven’t been willing to step out. I know God wants me to trust Him and that is my goal. To step out, even in small ways. After being agorarphobic for awhile in my life, I have allowed fear to control me too long. Step Out is my goal. Thankfully, I am able to work, drive and go do normal errands etc but I still have many things to overcome. I have loved the study and am blessed to call you my friend..

    • Angie, I’m so proud of you for stepping out! Keep trusting and serving God. Take that risk, He’s with you all the way. Joshua 1:9!

  7. Carolyn Johnson says:

    How can I say thank you for guiding us to this amazing book and study. I lead a group of 10 ladies and I have recommended this book as our next book. Do you know where I can order multiple copies? I have some health issues and have carried the book to appointments so I could read scripture and many sections regarding fear. I can’t wait to share this message with others. Thanks a million!

    • You can order copies from almost anywhere really. We can help you at Proverbs 31, 877-731-4663 (ask for Teri) or you can order online (Amazon) or from your local bookstore. I love that you will be leading this study! That rocks!

  8. Carolyn Johnson says:

    Oops! Forgot to mention that I have always feared thunderstorms and flying. Because of this study I am taking a trip of a lifetime with my family! I have decided that I need to go get my goat! Know what I mean. The trip is June 4 th. Pray for me will you?

  9. Awesome! Will be praying for you and your trip!

  10. Tamara says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bb7TSGptd3Y
    My husband and I have been through some tough “waiting” periods in our marriage. The most recent time, something happened this past weekend and we are currently waiting to see how God works things out. We are at peace with God’s plan–but yes, the waiting is tough. Yesterday morning, I was trying to ‘abide’ while getting my kids ready for school and decided to turn on my internet radio. This song by John Waller, instantly came on. It is a song I listen to repeatedly while I’m struggling with God’s timing. I knew that was God giving me the song at that right moment. Then I received your blog, Melissa, and again am reminded that we are to serve, to be courageous and move forward while we are waiting.
    Thank you for allowing God to work through you in these studies. It has been an amazing journey and I’m thrilled to continue on with all of you.

    • Donna B says:

      I love John Waller!! Love his songs!! Praying for you as you move forward and as you abide in HIM! His timing is perfect! Thanks for joining us in this journey and looking forward to getting “organized” with you!

  11. Ana M. says:

    What an incredible study! I thank God because I know his timing is perfect. I mentioned a while a go about my daughter who fought cancer last year and my fears about it ( her scans were clear last week by the way! praise God!!) And I know in my heart that this is my ministry, the place God wants me to serve, he has been putting families in my path in the past couple of weeks that have been going through rough times, I hope I can be used by Him!!!
    Thank you for this study, it has made me get to know my savior in a more deeper and wonderful way!!

    • Kelly K says:

      I am so Glad that your daughters scans have come back clean. i continue to pray for her healing and for Gods plans for your life. I know he is using you to better his kingdom.

    • Donna B says:

      YAY God!! Remember His faithfulness always!!! Praising Him for answered prayers for you and your daughter. And HE will definitely use you! All you have to do is say “yes”! Can’t wait to hear how!!! Thanks for joining us on this journey and will be praying that you keep moving forward and that your faith keeps getting BIGGER and BIGGER while your fears get smaller and smaller.

      Blessed to have you in the group,
      Donna

      • Ana M. says:

        He is Donna!! Thank you so much! I am blessed to have the opportunity even if it’s through a computer, to get to be in a group with wonderful people like you!
        God Bless you!!

  12. Kelly K says:

    First, I am going to seek God earnestly to find out how he can use me and where he wants me to go. Then I am going to allow him to guide me in that direction. With each step I will work at where i am going until I have met each and every goal he has set out for me. My biggest problem is that I do not see myself as having any talents. I cannot see how God can use me if he can use me in any way. I have had many different dreams of what I would like to do but I just don’t see myself as having any of the things necessary to complete them.

    • Donna B says:

      Yay Kelly! And as you seek Him, He is going to equip you!!

      2 Timothy 3:16-17

      16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

      Hold onto this promise and keep moving those feet forward one step at a time! So proud of you and can’t wait for you to share how God leads you to serve others. He is going to do great things in and through you!

      Donna B

  13. Lynda Parker says:

    I have loved this study and am sad to see it end! I have learned to truly walk WITH God! To “abide” in Him! To long for Him, seek His will for my life, spend TIME with Him, listen to Him, tell others about Him, to truly LOVE others the way He loves them! And to pray with expectancy! I volunteer at a Pregnancy Resource Center and I am seeking God’s will concerning leading a class for women who have experienced a pregnancy loss through miscarriage, stillbirth or any form of early infant death. In order to do this the Lord had to take me to a deeper level of comitment to Him and His ways, His leadership, and actually “surrendering” my will to His! I am so excited to see where He leads! I am thankful to have found Proverbs 31 ministries! Thank you girls for surrendering to His guidance!

    • Lynda,
      I’m so glad this study has helped you learn to “abide” in the Lord! What a blessing! I pray God guides you as you seek His will. What an exciting opportunity and one I know is sensitive. Keep abiding in Him and I’m sure the decision will be clear. God bless!

  14. Kim Golds says:

    This study has been one of my favorites and I plan to do it again at our church women’s sunday school class. Packed full of Awesome stuff!!! I plan to live this out by facing those fears and choosing to fully give them to God and trust him in the midst of them. I KNOW that he is Faithful. I also know he is wanting me to just be still and know. to fully give everything to him and rest in him . It’s there that I find my peace. Big Hugs to you Melissa :)

    • thanks Kim! Hugs right back! Let me know when/if you lead this study at your church. I love that you are facing your fears BUT giving them to God! You are so right, He is faithful and we can bank on that!

    • Kim Golds says:

      We are going to be starting it on June 24th :) I can’t wait. Many of the Ladies in that group so need Freedom in this area. I am Excited to do it again. So much good stuff to absorb :)

  15. For me, it’s all about continuing to move forward. It’s a struggle for me not to go back and get down about the past, especially unresolved situations. Truthfully though, some situations never do resolve and that’s where living courageously for me comes in to play. I like things to have neat and tidy closure. I like something valuable to come out of every situation, even the sticky ones. When it’s unclear exactly what the value is, it’s hard not to replay and get stuck. It’s a risk to move forward, yet one I’m taking with Jesus. Each step is a step of faith. Each thought that brings me back has to be attacked with Truth. Trusting God and His Word is key. Keeping my eyes on Him is crucial. Right now I feel like I am in the middle of God’s will for me. I will keep on leading these online Bible studies and devoting my time to my family first. I will remember that I already have what I need.

    Thank you to everyone in this group. Your comments keep me going. They are inspiring, motivating, encouraging, and I learn so much from you. Thank you for also sharing the tough stuff. It’s an honor to pray for you and a comfort to know I’m not alone. Love you!

    • Tricia says:

      Melissa, what you said here could have been written by me. I so like nice & neat little resolutions to everything. And I took myself a little step backwards last night. Things got hard to talk about & I went back to that old familiar shut down mode to avoid dealing with it. Doing that always gets me down. I’m ready to get back up today though. It’s time to fight back. Thanks for the realness in your posts.

    • Hope V says:

      Melissa – you said: “Each step is a step of faith. Each thought that brings me back has to be attacked with Truth. Trusting God and His Word is key. Keeping my eyes on Him is crucial. ”

      This is exactly how I feel!!

      • Wow, when you wrote it Hope, it sounded so much better than when I did. I read your quote by me and I was thinking, “wow, I really said that? that’s good!”

        Thanks girl!

  16. Lisa Kramp says:

    This study for me has cemented God’s timing is perfect! At the start of this study, I wasn’t sure it was for me. That I had fears. WELL, I sure do and many at that! During this study, we moved to a new town. Anxiety set in right away and fears flooded my mind. I was able to take what I was reading each week and apply it to exactly where I was. The answer each week was to hand it over to God. To let Him work. All I had to do was show up, be present and accept. Not always easy and it scared me to death. I don’t like the unknown. Due to past circumstances, I hang on to some control over my world. I think I always will. But, when God calls me to move, I have learned through this study to MOVE. He has nothing but the best in store for my life and all I have to do is trust Him and his plans. They may not be my plans…but they are the best ones for me. So, here I sit with my boxes still piled high and I KNOW, rather I like it or not, I am right where God wants me. And while still a little unsure, I am taking this new adventure in stride because I know God already knows where this adventure will take me. Thank you Micca for your story, for your courage to trust in God and use your circumstances to better my life in a time of uncertainty. Melissa, thank you for allowing God to use you to bring these amazing studies to life for so many. Thank you for allowing us to peak into your life as a woman, mom, wife and Jesus girl! Love you BIG!!!

    • Lisa,
      I watch you and I’m so impressed. You are quiet, but when you speak, it’s with wisdom. I love your quiet leadership and the way you love. Thank you for being honest about your fears, even that in the beginning you didn’t think you had any and WHAMO-SMACK~you got bombarded. But just look at you now. You have grown closer to God in a way you couldn’t have otherwise. Love you big too girl! Way big!

    • Lisa, I sooo agree with what Melissa said.

      I have been so blessed to have you as a leader…the quiet one who knows me, encourages me, loves me. You have inspired, coached, prayed, encouraged me in my growth in my faith.

      One of the qualities I love most about your and Melissa’s leadership styles is the transparency and openness (redundant?) that you share with us. Great leaders show who they are (warts and all). . .not who they want to be. There is such freedom in that.

      I think we all try to have control in some way or other over our world…But God in his perfect timing and infinite wisdom teaches us to turn it over to Him. He already has the control…He just wants us to realize it! “Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails”! Prov 19:21

      Love you More!

  17. Hope V says:

    Melissa – this study has been life changing. I am so blessed to have been a part of it and to have been one of the Online Bible Studies Group Leaders. The ladies I have met through this will remain fast friends. I walked into this study awash with fears. So many overwhelming anxious thoughts and what ifs and terrors of things that were out of my control. I honestly sit now a person who is truly at peace in the loving hands of my Father. I truly feel like I can ABIDE in him and understand that HE is in control. He sees the big picture and nothing happens without a reason and through it all he is out for my Good. My life verse was always Jer 29:11 but it means more to me now than ever. I know he is there for me and I can rest in him and be still but also know that when I WAIT on him it is an active waiting, to do what His word says and to follow his commands. To bring every thought captive and not allow myself to let my mind run away with me anymore but immediately STOP that and turn to HIM. I am so grateful to Micca for writing this empowering book and for opening my eyes and heart to a new level of intimacy with the Father.

    • Life-changing. Wow Hope! Isn’t God so great? You can’t receive what He offers though unless you are willing and open. And you were/are! Which is why this was life changing for you.

      You are so right, gotta keep those thoughts captive, I know that too well. Thanks for sharing! Love you!

  18. Sharon mi says:

    Melissa, I am juist going to keep it real here today. Yesterday and today of all times when I am finishing up an amazing study on ovecoming fear I am riddled with it. My struggle is with fear and panic attacks. I can be good for months and then wham…out of nowhere it hits me. There is a situation with my dad and his health that the enemy always seems to be able to use to really get this thing going too, and that is the case right now. BUT GOD…I have been praying on my knees and also with my face to the floor but I still feel so anxiety filled and panic stricken and helpless. BUT GOD…and His promises in His Word!
    I am going to CHOOSE to put one foot in front of the other today and walk in faith! Not fear! Because of this study I am reminded what I already have in Christ..and today…even though I don’t feel it…not one bit…I am going to choose to believe it! I am going to Believe God and what He says! I am going to believe the Mighty, Glorious God of the bible…not the god of my feelings! And for now, I am going to do this step by step, day after day, until the next thing God shows me to do.
    May God bless you Melissa and all the beautiful women of God who have walked through this study!

  19. Sharon,
    Always keep it real here! Thank you because I wouldn’t want you any other way! I’m not surprised at all that upon finishing a study on fear that you would be attacked in this way. I bet many will be. I’m so impressed that you are CHOOSING to walk in faith, even when you don’t feel it! That’s awesome!

    I know your struggle, and I’m going to keep it real right back. There are certain triggers that bring panic in me. And when they come up I feel like I can’t breathe. My mind races. I don’t even think it’s fear though, it’s a heavy unsettledness and it’s physical. I talked to my doctor about it and she prescribed me something specifically for these panic episodes. I don’t take it often, maybe just once or twice a month. I know everyone is different, I’m not saying you need anything, just sharing that I can relate to certain situations/triggers that bring on panic.

    God bless you girl! Thanks for studying with me :)

  20. I have been so blessed by this study and all of the MT online bible studies I have done. This book was so REAL…. first time in a long time a book made me cry! The realness really helped make this issue real for me and drop my guard to actually work through the issues, let God do His work within me, and be VICTORIOUS!!! <3

    • Yay Megan!!! These studies have been a blessing to me too and so have you! I’m so glad you got a lot out of this last one! Thank you for your involvement, encouragement, prayers, and friendship!

  21. Today, my 18-year-old son (Daniel) and a fellow college student in his church (Austin) safely arrived in a Middle Eastern country for a 6-week mission trip. As I read the final chapter of Untroubled Heart this morning, I couldn’t help but think of these 2 young men who are truly living out what it means to have courage that comes from God. As I read through various scriptures in this chapter, the one that hit me the strongest was Joshua 1:9. My prayers for Daniel and Austin this morning centered around that verse, and I claimed that promise for them as they begin their journey sharing the light and love of Christ in a land of darkness. I am claiming this verse for myself as I lay my fears down before our all powerful God and walk in faith. Before my son left, he said to please pray for them, not so much for their safety but for God’s will to be done while there. Even though this study is coming to an end, I feel like it’s just beginning for me! What a tremendous encouragement this study has been for me spiritually, more than I could ever say. And I know there will be so much more to come in the living out of all you’ve shared from the depths of your journey with God. So, I offer my deepest thanks to you, Melissa, as well as to Micca and to Kristi Seat (my online group leader) for allowing God to use you to minister so powerfully in my life. Even though I’ve never seen you face to face, God has revealed so much of Himself through you at a time in my life I needed it so desperately. Keep up the good work for Him!

    • Genia,
      Thank you so much for your very kind words. Wow. I am thankful to God for bringing you to this online study and for His work in your life! I love that you feel like this is the beginning, not the end! I hope everyone feels that way. We learned it, now it’s time live it!

      I’m praying for Daniel and Austin on their mission trip that “God’s will be done while they are there” and I’m praying for safety too! Very courageous young men!

      Blessings!

  22. Donna B says:

    Melissa Ross Taylor!!!

    You just called Lisa Kramp quiet …. are we talking about the same Lisa Kramp??? And then you called me LOUD and CRAZY??? So thinking you are a wee bit confused right now.

    ACCEPT, BELIEVE, RECEIVE & LIVE FULLY!!! (Ring a bell for you?)

    I am taking my goat!!! Making the CHOICE to take my goat and heading to the cross with my goat, step by step!! Heading to the heart of Jesus with my goat and not looking back and not waiting on God, cause that would be me going in the wrong direction!! And BELIEVING that God has already given me the FAITH to overcome my fears that may come up along the journey.

    And along the way, going to soak up some wisdom, love and courage BELIEVING that He has already given me these things to overcome my fears and that He will reveal Himself to me in new and exciting ways along the journey to His heart. (So loved Micca’s reference to the Wizard of Oz and how the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and the Lion already possessed what they wanted and what they sought after!)

    I loved how Micca talks about the BIGNESS of God! “God is BIG enough for us to place our faith in Him. He’s BIGGER than the enemy. He’s BIGGER than the unknown. He’s BIGGER than sickness and death. He’s BIGGER than your hurt. He’s BIGGER than the war on family, changes in the workplace, terrorism, our financial state, our social state, and moral collapse. GOD IS BIG ENOUGH!!! ” ACCEPTING, BELIEVING, RECEIVING & LIVING FULLY IN HIS BIGNESS!!

    And TRUSTING …. trusting God to equip me along the journey so that I can live out His plans for my life. A life that desires to be lived out in such a way that others not only see Jesus in me, but want the same Jesus that lives in me! Make Jesus known by my actions and not so much by my words.

    “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” (2 Cor 9:8) I fell in love with this verse!!! God will not only lead me to the good works that He wants to accomplish in and through me for Him and others but He will give me an abundant supply of grace to accomplish His will!

    BECAUSE I HAVE GOD, I HAVE EVERYTHING I NEED TO LIVE BY FAITH – NOT FEAR.

    And then there is that the little journey I agreed to go on with Samantha Reed, her journey of YES!

    http://samanthareed.org/2012/05/saying-yes/

    And I can never get these verses or this song out of my head …..

    “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

    “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ (Matthew 25:34-36, 40)

    And my passion and dream are to be a difference maker for His Kingdom – to live out the above verses in my life every day! NO MATTER WHAT!! hence the song ….. love this song by Sidewalk Prophets – Live Like That!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GfosSggwQS0

    I LULNMW MELISSA ROSS TAYLOR!!

  23. kim johnston says:

    I am dealing with a lot of emotions right now and life circumstances that are so overwhelming, and am unsure if It is indeed God’s plan for my life. I have a chronic health condition that is effecting my ability to work. A part of me says ” Just keep pushin”, but after 6 years my body is telling me something completely different.

    I am unsure what to do..I have prayed and asked for healing for a long time and it hasn’t happened. So is that God’s way of telling me that I need to do something different. I am a single parent and am the only provider for our family, but how am I supposed to provide if I am ill and not able too. This decision will be big in so many ways, and I am so afraid to make a move for fear of making the wrong choice.

    I am praying for God’s guidance and direction in my situtation and praying that He would reveal to me His plan. I know that His ways are not my ways. I trust that He will see me through this, because He has been so faithful to me in the past, but if I am being honest, I am still fearful of the unknown and maybe just maybe this is His way of telling me…Just move and do what you have to do.

    This study has truly been a blessing to me. Thank you Melissa for this bible study and thank you Micca Campbell for writing such a heartfelt book that helped me relate to you and how God worked in your heartache. I am a work in progress, but because of you both I am living with less fear and more faith!

    • Donna B says:

      Kim, we are all a work in progress! Each and every last one of us and you are so not alone in your journey. Praising God that you are living in less fear and MORE faith! And yep, one step at a time is what He asks of us….forward steps to His heart.

      God, I thank you for Kim. I thank you for the boldness that you have filled her with in order to share her story. I praise you and I thank you that you are filling her up with FAITH. I would ask that you would continue to fill her up with yourself. Focus her heart and her eyes on you and not on her circumstances. Show Kim that you are BIGGER than any fear that is thrown at her. Order her steps, guide her steps and walk those steps with her. Guard her heart. Give her your discernment as she makes those hard decisions. Fill her with your promises and give her the strength to rely on your promises. Increase her faith and help her with her unbelief. Flood her with your peace. And God, heal her body if it’s your will. Go before her. Calm her. Take away the feelings of being overwhelmed and just let her relax in that fact that you are in control of all. Provide for her needs. Give the doctors wisdom as they treat Kim. And through it all, draw her closer to you and honor and glorify yourself in and through Kim. We ask these things in Jesus’ name. Amen.

  24. Ginny B says:

    I chose to live my faith by letting go of the past. There is an unresolved situation with my 17 year old daughter who is currently not living with me. While it breaks my heart to see the choices she is making I chose to let go and let God handle this, trusting that He has a plan. While she says she has accepted His gift of salvation, her fruits show otherwise, however God sees her heart and I chose to trust God.

  25. kim johnston says:

    Donna,

    Wow..thank you so much for your wonderful prayer over me. I will so miss the fellowship and friends through this study. I am prayerfully awaiting another study, as God laid this one on my heart and it was just what I needed.

    Thanks again for kind and encouraging words:)

  26. Nicki Edwards says:

    I had just finished my own blog about waiting on God’s perfect timing etc. and then read this chapter of the book and now I’ve just read your blog post. Yes, God definitely wants to speak to us and remind us to wait patiently for Him BUT not sitting on our backsides doing nothing!
    This study has meant so much for me…not just the book, but connecting with other like minded women. I had no idea there were so many of you…such a shame you live on the other side of the globe!
    Bless you abundantly.
    x

  27. Carol Bruntlett says:

    Well I am going to be real I am thanking God for this bible study because towards the end it really spoke to me about abiding in God because you see I am not to good with having a quite time with the Lord or even getting quite before Him, and so toward she end it talks about abiding with God and on page 207 it says do you wait with expectancy or do you doubt His provision well part of me doubts because I am going thru an issue right now in my life of not having a job actually Imlost my job about 3 weeks into this study so when that happen I started wandering why and I did question God and He sees my situation and He knows my needs and I was like God you see what’s going on come on now I need help so then the next pg talks about peace and I want peace among my circumstances so as I go on I know what I am going thru God will use it for His good He is refining me in the process no I don’t like it and part of me that struggles with insecurity and many times in my life have just flat out wanted to give up and not go on anymore I said it would be easier to just say I am not doing this and quit living but that is not an option in my life yeah the enemy would love for me to give up and say the heck with it but God says no God says you will be fine, God says I am here God says I have this my child God says I will carry you, and I would rather trust my Savior and fight the good fight I know God will turn it around I know He loves us I know that nothing can Seperate us from the love of God,
    I hate to see this bible study end , I have always wanted to minister to the hurting and teach bible studies and help others but I have never had that chance to do that I know if I had a place that I could help others and take in the hurting and homeless I would . My heart has always been to minister to people (women) that have been abused , hurting, struggling , maybe one day God will give me that oppurtunity to do that.
    Thanks Melissa for all you do and keeping us in the word of God
    I love you
    You bless me and encourage me
    Carol
    I want peace and I want to trust God and live a life for Him and I want to live in freedom somI am asking God to show me how to abide in Him thru out the day and to give Him my day right when I get up

  28. Jodi Howald says:

    I’ve been feeling God trying to push me in another direction in regard to my church home. I currently direct the praise bans, but feel God wanting me to ‘walk on the water’ and trust His guidance. I AM SO AFRAID. Afraid to fail, afraid to look stupid, afraid I’ll miss what He really wants me to do; but I’m making the choice to be COURAGEOUS and to actively serve Him while obeying His prompting to use my talents in other locations. Very, very scary. But I’m willing to trust a God who never lets go.

  29. Jodi Howald says:

    (Praise band – sorry) lol

    • Teresa B says:

      Jodi, until you get out of the boat you can’t walk on the water. If you are feeling the leading to other ministries, then you have to leave the one you are in now. God has already prepared someone to fill that spot. He has been preparing you for the next assignment. Do not be afraid to follow God. There is no stronger hand to hold or shoulder to lean on.

      We also felt led to leave our church home after 18 years of service in many different capacities. I think it is a natural progression in our spiritual growth. We took the step of faith a little more than a year ago. We have been so blessed.

      Let me know if I can help you in any way. Your heart is in good hands! Trust Him

  30. Judy McMillin says:

    In order to live my life courageously, I am going to take up Scripture memory again. It has gone by the wayside, and this book and study filled with MIGHTY scriptures has reminded me. His word is LIVING and sharper than a two edged SWORD. It can cut through all the deception the enemy tries to throw my way. I am grateful this book was chosen. There was no hiding from all the fears I try to hold onto.

  31. Kristi S says:

    *I must apologize for the lengthy nature of this comment but God laid it on my heart to write and press Send…” Thank you for indulging me…This is a great step of courage for me!! Love you sisters!

    “We will either cower away from hard situations or charge forward with courage. As for the cowardly lion, he did both.” (p. 225) Yes. I can relate to that!! When I read this, I also thought of Simon Peter and how He would blindly walk forward in faith and then cower back when it didn’t make sense. Yet, God never left His side. He knew Peter’s heart. Would I compare myself to a disciple? Obviously not. But, I am a risk taker-ask my sister for she has the scars from all the dares!

    I was the one who tackled the muddy BMX track with my beach cruiser. Yes. A beach cruiser. I was the one who would step on stage and sing in front of 500 people. I was the one who quit my job and drove across the country to Austin, TX for 6 months prior to beginning the doctorate of pharmacy program at UNC. I found a job and I was able to spend time with my nephews but I also began to watch my life unravel. God wanted me to rely on Him but it took seven more years to come to that realization. Yes. It seems I’m a bit slow.

    Although I could rest on personal “victories,” I did not have a strong enough relationship with the Lord to tackle life when it didn’t make sense. Instead, I tried to numb the pain with anything and everything. I graduated summa cum laude but no one knew that I was getting thrown against the wall every night simply for dropping a fork or talking too much. I was the first one to step out and sing the solo but I couldn’t sing in front of my friends. I worked several jobs at a time because I didn’t want to be alone. I’ve taken risks in my personal life but never in the areas that mattered most. Through years of abuse, I was just like the characters in the “Wizard of Oz,” I couldn’t see all the gifts that God had given me. But, when everything is ripped away what do you have left? God. This past year, I have learned to take risks for God because I’ve found that He is the only remedy that will heal you completely.

    “How does one find courage when they’re trembling in fear? Sometimes it comes down to deciding what is more important-the thing we need to do or yielding to our fear. Courage means being brave in spite of fear or hard circumstances.” (p. 226-227) I thought I could never escape fear. There was always something that I NEEDED to worry about because, otherwise, my life would fall apart. Of course, it did in spite of my best efforts. However, when I look back over my life, I also realize that God used EVERYTHING to bring me back to Him and closer to my calling.

    I don’t think that it’s a coincidence that this study is ending on the same day that I moved to North Carolina last year. As I write this, I can still recall the inner turmoil in my soul on the 9th of May as my mother and I packed up little Yoda with as many of my “treasures” as my car could hold. When I left on the 10th, it was bittersweet. I knew every street and every face downtown but I knew that I didn’t belong there. When I moved back home in 2007, I was a broken individual. My dream to become a pharmacist-to live a legacy of healing like my dearly departed uncle-was dashed. However, God was there even when I couldn’t feel His presence. I was blessed with loyal friends who stood with me through the death of my grandmothers as well as through a horrible illness. Yet, I wasn’t dependent on God. Instead, I searched everywhere for validation. At the local bar. An engagement to an individual I convinced myself to love in spite of his mania and the ensuing yelling matches. Yet, God was there. He moved greatly in spite of ME.

    When I was minutes from the grave physically, emotionally and spiritually, He rescued me. When I woke up emaciated at 85 pounds, I realized how far downhill my life had spiraled. From July 2010 to May 9 2011, I depended on God-He was all I had-my only prayer was that God would spare me so that my family wouldn’t have to deal with death one more time. I had no idea that God would use all those sleepless nights to build a faith that would be there even when my flesh failed.

    A year ago, I made a pact with God that as long as I had breath in my lungs, I would place His will over my own. I would inconvenience myself for Him. I would trust Him even when it didn’t make sense (which is hard for me because I have always been a control freak!). My dreams were no longer my own but His.

    When I moved to Charlotte, NC, I asked Him for a church and I found one in which the music is just as important to the ministry as the preaching. A ministry that believes God’s promises are just as alive today and that we should EXPECT to see miracles occur in our lives. I asked Him to surround me with His angels and to guide me in my daily walk with Him. He provided these online studies. The devil had taken so much from me and, yet, gradually, God was leading me down a different path. He provided a joy and a confidence in His love for me-two items that were hidden so deep that I thought they would never be available to me again. More importantly, I discovered that the only way I could survive was on faith. Nothing was certain-my health, my living situation, my finances and the list goes on. But, God has provided.

    Throughout the pages of this book, I have been continuously challenged each week by issues that I thought were behind me. Yet, it is on my heart that He has been preparing me for such a time as now-this “pit” is only temporary. However, if I had not relied COMPLETELY on Him last year, then, I wouldn’t be able to TRUST that He could shut the lions’ mouths NOW.

    Just this past week, I was told that I would need to move my things by the middle of May. At first, I was paralyzed. I have nowhere to go. Seriously, God, again? Life was just beginning to “normalize.” Yet, God reminded me of my past. Every time I have moved geographically (even if only 20 minutes away), He has moved me closer to my purpose. Of course, I write this with the well-worn “freak out” button close at hand but I’m choosing to take a seat further away from the past and a bit closer to God. A God who has a plan for me (Jeremiah 29:11)

    I would never say that I’m not fearful and I’m certainly NOT brave. Yet, I stand on His provisions in my past. In fact, I’m throwing my fears into the waters that surround this dilapidated boat-to use as stepping stones in a continuous journey of faith knowing that if I keep my eye on Jesus, I can do anything! I stand on God’s promise to Joshua because He has a plan for ALL who believe in Him. “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will NEVER leave or forsake you…Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you WHEREVER you go” (Joshua 1:6,9)
    *If you got this far, thank you for allowing me to share a bit of my story with you.

  32. Kristi S says:

    So, I will have courage and take action in my job situation as I wait on the Lord to open a door that will glorify Him. I have faith that He will provide a means to glorify Him at all times no matter what I am doing. I am continuing to have faith that God will provide the funds to attend She Speaks so that I might be able to hone the gifts and calling that God has placed on my heart. I will be courageous and trust that He will provide a place to rest my head at night so that I may wake up and do His will. (Ok. I’m write these words with trembling hands but I will NOT doubt that Jesus did not bring me to this city to leave me stranded. He has a plan.)

    • Kristi – Thank you so much for sharing your story, laying it all out there, your transparency and vulnerability. I’ve known you through some of this journey you’ve been on and I have been blessed to watch God move in and through you so much. He has so much for you and His hand is on you. I love you so much my sweet sister. I believe in Him and his plan for your life and I believe in You.

  33. Julie W. says:

    I’m going to make a big leap of faith this summer by selling my home in MA and move to NC. I will be leaving my family and friends, but I know the Lord will be at my side every step of the way. I want to live courageously and faithfully knowing that I’m in the palm of God’s hand. I’m pushing through the fear and excited to enter this new chapter of my life!

    • Kristi S says:

      Julie! I’m so proud of you and will be praying for you. I have been in that boat and I understand how you are feeling. It’s tough when you must move away from all of the people you care about. So many wonderful people in North Carolina. If you have any questions, I have lived in Raleigh/Durham area as well as in the Wilmington area. Currently, I live in the Charlotte area so if you need support, don’t hesitate to contact the Online Bible Studies Team if only for prayer. We are here for you. Proud of you! You can do it sister!

  34. When I started reading this book I didn’t really think I had FEARS that I needed to address; in fact, I almost didn’t do this study. However, boy was I wrong. My biggest fear, I think, was allowing myself to face my past, to “give it the time of day”. To survive, I had to bury it (or so I thought) – it sure was easier that way. I think my fear was if I opened all of the wounds of my past up, I would get stuck there and be unable to move forward, that I would end up dwelling in them and could almost see myself drowning in a lake of misery – never to resurface. However, I believe that I am in a position now with a FAITH that is stronger than my FEARS to face the past and be able to utilize my past to help others in my future. It’s God’s Amazing Grace through Micca’s awesome book. I loved the how the Wizard of Oz was used to teach us we already have just what we need – that God has given us everything we need. I will forever LOVE the Wizard of Oz in a brand new way!!!! In fact, I plan to get myself a nice big poster to hang in my house and in my office to remember just that – Jesus has given us everything we will ever need!!!!!

    I will begin facing this fear immediately as I slowly but surely work on my writing and sharing my story with other teens and young adults in hopes of reaching them before they get to a place of no return. I will attend my 1st She Speaks conference in July to learn and absorb as much as I can to help with my writing and sharing. (yes, even nervous about this!) – AND I will be going back home to Orchard Park, NY (home of the Buffalo Bills!) to celebrate my 30 year high school reunion in July 2013 (it’s already in the works of being planned!). I left NY when I was in 7th grade when my mom passed away – I had several really good friends that never knew what happened to me, I all of a sudden moved away. They have invited me back…..and I’m very nervous to reunite with these friends! I didn’t actually graduate with them – was just a part of that class in 1978…..however, part of recovering from my past is facing it…and how awesome will it be to be a part of that group one more time – even if it is scary and awkward! Thank you Micca and thank you Melissa for the opportunity to GROW!!!! Looking forward to the next one!

  35. Jacqueline Phiri says:

    I have enjoyed this study so much. It has helped me during the loss of mum who died on the day the study started and also my uncle a few weeks ago. I have learned to trust God and overcome my fears. My takeaway verse from this study would be Joshua 1:9.

  36. Wow, what a powerful & moving Bible study! I remember crying when I read Chapter 1 and cried today as I read Chapter 12! It was a good cry as I abided in Him today as I finished the book. I had been praying about several things and waiting….today with the story on Carrie & the Indian woman, reading the section on discernment, this all just jumped out at me today. God answered a major prayer and I am hoping my husband & I will be leading this particular study to a young man who is searching. After reading the part on the Good Samaritan God opened my heart that I need to reach out and be that good samaritan to those around and He has layed upon me this particular young person. All praise to God!
    I’m so thankful He uses Micca, Proverbs 31, Melissa Taylor, Lisa Kramp and Donna Bostick for His work & glory. God Bless you All!

  37. Joyce Olmstead says:

    I finally got the opportunity to listen to Pastor Steve’s message “Get Your Own Goat.” It had some amazing concepts in it. A few that resonated with me were:
    – Waiting on God is not permission to be passive.
    – What I call patience heaven calls procrastination.
    – I have a “claim in,” and God’s not doing anything!! (sob sob)
    -If you’re waiting on Me, you’re backing up.
    -If you’re bored, it has nothing to do with what I’ve given you. (Jesus)
    – I need an elevated perspective. What do I need to lay hold of today that’s been there all the time?

    Melissa, I can’t thank you enough for your part in what God is doing in the larger body of Christ. Personally, I have been challenged to a deeper walk with God, and the “ride” has been so welcomed. Our God is so gentle, even in His chastising, because it produces the peaceable fruit of right standing with Him! For which I am eternally grateful! Thank you again. I look forward to more studies with you and the Proverbs 31 team. Joyce

  38. Melissa,
    Last night I had a terrible dream that my husband passed away leaving me to raise my three small children. Note: this fear was the primary reason why I choose to read this book and engage in is bible study. I woke crying and terribly afraid of what my dream might mean. Does this mean my fear is going to become a reality? I lay in bed praying to God to take my fears captive, however, as I got up this morning I found myself sill agonizing over my dream. It was as if all my fears were right back at the surface. I again prayed to God for his help! As I walked to the kitchen for breakfast, I noticed my phone on the counter. I looked over at it and noticed that someone the dictionary app was on and the word it had looked up was “lord” it read the one who has power, authority, and influence. When I hit the exit button it lead me to my notebook on my phone where a week ago after finishing Micca’s book I had wrote (with the help of Micca) thee following to help me when I become afraid.

    Lord I trust that you are with me. I know that you will never leave me nor forsake me. I am NOT alone! You care for me. No matter what happens in my life your grace will be sufficient for me! You are my provider and you have a special and perfect plan for me. While I may be really afraid right now, I will choose to trust you Lord! Your goodness and Mercy wil, follow me all the days of my life, and I day I will get to dwell in with you forever!

    Reading this brought tears to my eyes as I felt God’s presence surround me! I don’t have to fear my dream, a loss of a loved one, ect because God is there! His promises stand true that no matter what He IS THERE!

    Anyhow, I just wanted you to know that God’s power is still at work even though this study is over. Thank you for doining this study and inspiring me in my walk with God! God bless you!

    • Kelly K says:

      Oddly, after I read your comment finished my email and the next email had this verse in it and it seems as if this is the perfect verse to what you were talking about.

      Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again – my Savior and my God!
      –Psalm 42:11, NLT

  39. Because of having too much on my plate, I have become completely disorganized! But in spite of my schedule, I always take time to spend with my Bible and also with all the sweet ladies at Proverbs 31 Ministries. That is my life line.