Jun 17

SLL Week 11, Day 1

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness.
We do not know what we ought to pray for,

but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.”
~ Romans 8:26 (NIV)


Hello there!  Stephanie Raquel here, from Illinois — not Steph in Texas :) — and I am beyond thrilled to be teaching this week, as we jump into Chapter 11 of Stressed-Less Living by Tracie Miles.

Because I haven’t yet met most of you, I’ve prepared a brief intro video, which also gives you our Reflection Verse challenge for the week!  And by the way, hello to the amazing women from OBS Facebook Group 47!  =)

(If you can’t see the video, please click HERE to see it.)

I’m soooo very excited about this chapter.  You know why?  Because it’s chock-full of practical wisdom.  LOVE THAT!!  We’ll dive into more of the specifics of the book tomorrow.  Meanwhile, as you probably saw in the video, here is your assignment for today:

  1. Read all of Romans Chapter 8.  Ideally, twice, in two different versions.  If you don’t own two different bibles, BibleGateway.com is an awesome resource for you to add a parallel translation, even in another language!  (Two of my personal faves are the NIV and The Message.)  EXTRA CREDIT:  Begin exploring Romans 8:26 a little deeper, and verse map it over the next few days!
  2. Take a moment to share the reflection verse with a family member or a close friend.  This is a powerful verse, in the middle of a powerful chapter!  And it deserves to be shared because not only will it encourage someone else, it will also cement God’s word into your heart.  You might even encourage her to sign up for the next OBS with you!  Some optional ways to do this:
  • Handwrite the verse on your bathroom mirror.
  • Text it to a friend who’s facing difficulties.
  • Send an encouraging e-mail.
  • Make it visually creative, and post it to Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram (@P31OBS).  Make sure to tag us if you can!
  • “Go old school” and write the verse in a card, or send it in a letter with a stamp on it!  Who doesn’t love getting actual personalized mail??


Finally, I would love to hear from you in the comments below!  Please note, every comment enters you into a drawing for a chance to win an autographed copy of What Happens When Women Say Yes to God by Lysa TerKeurst, our next P31 Online Bible Study.  We’ll announce the winner on Friday!

  1. What are your impressions as you read Romans 8?  What was your favorite verse or verses, and why?
  2. How did you share the reflection verse with a friend or loved one?   And, if you know it, what was the reaction?
  3. What do you think about the fact that the God of the Universe, who knows all and sees all, is capable of praying for YOU?  How does that impact your prayer life?

Bonus Assignment

Start reading Chapter 11, cuz it’s only 5 pages long.  We’ll be back in touch tomorrow!

Love & Hugs,
Steph Raquel




  1. Bree (OBS Facebook Leader) says:

    My favorite verses from Romans 8 are verses 16-18:

    “For his Holy Spirit speaks to us deep in our hearts and tells us that we are God’s children. And since we are his children, we will share his treasures — for everything God gives to his Son, Christ, is ours, too. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering. Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will give us later. ”

    These verses are powerful for me, because they give me hope. I’m going through a tough trial right now, but thankfully it’s not permanent, because God will deliver me!

    • I just shared this verse with a friend who recently lost her 22 year old daughter. She is hurting and feels like her faith is shattered. May she see through God’s word that He alone is the answer to the giant hole in her heart.

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      Love that passage!!

  2. Halona Luna says:

    I am so excited about the next study. I would like to win!!

  3. Brenda E says:

    I shared this verse with my daughter. She is 16 and working at a summer church camp for 6 weeks. She takes life very seriously and needs encouragement in her faith walk.

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      She sounds amazing! What a blessing she has in a positive mom role model!!

  4. I also shared with a mom who lost her 19 year old daughter back in April. Just that God loves her more than she can imagine and when she doesn’t even know what to pray anymore God is begging for their hearts and they will be carried through this. This Biblestudy has been life changing, I just want to thank all of the amazing women who are pouring into this to make this possible. May God bless everyone here and touch every single life!!!

  5. Constance says:

    I love Romans chapter 8! It has so many powerful verses. One that stood out for me was verse 32: “If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us?” (from the Message) He gave us the greatest gift ever, why do we sometimes doubt he will answer our prayer?

    It is still very early in the day, but today I will send verse 26 on a card to my aunt, whose husband is dying of cancer (he is expected to die any day). I will also post it on the facebook page of a friend whose 21 year old daughter was abused and killed about two months ago.

  6. Carol Thompson group 26 says:

    There are so many amazing verses in this chapter…
    V 15– we did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out Abba, Father
    Vv16-17- we are co- heirs with Christ
    V 31– if God is for us who can be against us??
    V35– who shall separate us from the love of Christ….
    Vv37-39– nothing!!!
    I hope to share this today with a friend going through a difficult time and with another friend who is seeking.
    I hope to keep the idea of living in the spirit and not the flesh foremost in my mind as yesterday I had a meltdown with my husband over something stupid.

  7. I too live in Illinois (southern) across the river from St. Louis. What part of Illinois do you live?

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      Hi Debbie! I’m in suburban Chicago. For “some” reason, my little blog decided to be goofy yesterday for the first time — it was fixed last night, but down again today. Romans 8:28, though, right?! =) So here’s my bio … =)

      Stephanie Raquel is passionate about leading women who lead women. She has been leading small groups for more than two decades, prior to graduating from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She and her husband, Steve, have three spunky daughters and have served with Cru’s Metro Chicago development team as well as their local FamilyLife Leadership Team. Stephanie currently serves as the director of women’s ministry at The Compass Church in Naperville, Ill. A cancer survivor and occasional triathlete, most days you can find her enjoying sports, savoring a Cafe Mocha or tweeting on @stephraquel.

  8. A friend of my daughter’s roommate was hit and killed by a drunk driver on Saturday night. I am sending verse 26 for her to share with her roommate and waiting for more opportunities to share. After a few weeks of reading on the outer edge of the OBS -I am ready to jump back into the middle of it all :)

  9. Heather says:

    I like to read Romans. Romans 8 is such a powerful chapter reminding us of how the Spirit helps us in our weakness( Verse 26) but also verse 34: ” …Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us.”( New American Standard)
    The idea that the God of the universe prays for me! awesome!

  10. Janet F says:

    My 10 year old granddaughter is going to camp next week and I am writing her a letter each day. I am doing a verse map of our verse to give to her to read on one of the days at camp.
    I love verse 1 of Chapter 8 in Romans. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” God does not condemn us. He loves us and convicts us but never condemns us, no living under the black cloud :)

    • Janet, that is such a sweet thing to do – but also, what a legacy of faith you are creating for and with her!

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      I totally agree with Missy! What a powerful influence you are in her world!!

  11. Jennifer says:

    Romans 8 is such a gift – pointing out so many of the precious blessings of being a follower of Christ. As Bree said, this chapter to me is all about the hope I have as His beloved child – never alone no matter what it going on.

    I look forward to sharing this verse with my son – he’s struggling to see the value and importance of something he cannot see, and I appreciate your prayers as we work through a student edition of “Renovation of the Heart” together.

    Much love,

    • I agree Jennifer that Paul has given us a beautiful gift with Romans 8. It is a message of hope and comforts that Paul promises will always get us through even the toughest times. I will be praying for you son.
      Love in Christ,

  12. Stephanie W says:

    Going old school sounds fun! Haven’t done this in a while…I have some Christmas stamps left over that never got used :) I’ll be sending personal mail to my dear friend who’s moved out of town.

  13. TJ Conner says:

    V 39- It is impossible to get beyond God’s loving reach.

  14. Tammy H. says:

    I read both the NIV and the Message. Loved the Message, never read it before. The verses that spoke the most to me was 39. Very comforting and very reassuring. We need that every now and then. Even when things are going good, we need to hear more positive things. Thanks for this challenge. What a way to start the day!!

  15. Hi Steph! Thank you for this assignment. Digging into Romans 8 – especially comparing two different versions – just fired me right up for this week. Romans 8:24 has always been simple and powerful to me, ” We were saved, and we have this hope.” (NCV) and I found it even more so this morning.

    I look forward to sharing Romans 8:26 with a friend that I am meeting for coffee who is struggling with her child’s new diagnosis with Autism this morning. As believers, a hug and a prayer including a potent scripture like vs. 26, is sometimes the very best comfort we can give.

    I’m looking forward to this week!

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      LOVE that sentiment … Hugs, Prayers, and Scriptures … a power-filled combo to help us stress less!! =)

  16. You are right, this is such an amazing chapter, it really is difficult to pick ‘ a favorite’ verse. That being said, verse 28 is my ‘life verse’, so I am a little partial there!

    How can you go wrong when:

    …..You live in a state of being adventurously expectant

    ……You wake up each morning greeting God, and the day, with the childlike enthusiasm of, “What do we get to do today? Is today the day we get to go to Disneyland? What is it, what do you have planned for today? What’s next Papa?”

    …….You partner with the Holy Spirit using His Power to pray to God. It is so
    relaxing, soothing and restful to know that you are praying God’s perfect will, yet there is no stress, no energy, no brain power required. Simply rest in Him and give
    voice to the ‘wordless groans’ of the Holy Spirit. (when you can’t speak out loud, give voice in your head. Yep, this is powerful, anytime, anywhere praying the perfect will of God) This is so exciting, makes me want to pray without ceasing!

    ……You know and believe that He makes all things work together for your good!

    ……You know that there is NOTHING that can separate you from His LOVE!

    Moving forward in today, (and every day), being adventurously expectant!!! “What’s
    on the agenda, Papa??? Can’t hardly wait, just so excited!!!”.

    Thank you for this awesome assignment today!
    In His Love, Kym

  17. I’m excited about this chapter and as always God knows exactly what
    I need and when. Amen!!!! I have had a situation within our family that has been very difficult to handle and this complete study has been a blessing. Just last night I turned to God and said Gid I know you know everything that is happening,I just don’t know anymore what to pray,please take this,and the consequences from me and handle this…. I am so thankful for his word,his help,and studiesnlikenthis that encourage me along the way. I love this ref. verse am
    Nd plan on posting this on Facebook,as wellas sending it to a family member. Thank you again for this study and for once again showing me the power of god through it all. God bless, Patti

  18. I’m excited about this chapter and as always God knows exactly what
    I need and when. Amen!!!! I have had a situation within our family that has been very difficult to handle and this complete study has been a blessing. Just last night I turned to God and said God I know you know everything that is happening,I just don’t know anymore what to pray,please take this,and the consequences from me and handle this…. I am so thankful for his word,his help,and studiesnlikenthis that encourage me along the way. I love this ref. verse am
    Nd plan on posting this on Facebook,as wellas sending it to a family member. Thank you again for this study and for once again showing me the power of god through it all. God bless, Patti

  19. I read the chapter in both the NIV and The Message. I have never read from The Message before. I shared our reflection verse with a friend whom I am strictly an online pen pal with. We have never met or talked to each other, but through our writing, we are sharing our journey with each other.

    There were two other verses in that chapter that I reflected on. The first was verse 24:

    “For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has?”

    It gave me a different perspective of things I cannot see and made me realize that once I see things, I do think very differently about them…and I never thought about it, but I guess hope would be gone at that moment.

    The other versus was one I have heard so often, and I don’t think we can ever be remind to much of this!

    “What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” ~Romans 8:31

    What an amazing feeling to know the answer to this and I think this is the ultimate in hope. I never realized how much hope faith can give you. Definitely something to hold on to.

    • I have looked for a Message Bible and have not been able to find one. What is the difference and can you tell me more about it?

      • Hi Kati,

        I use two websites: biblestudytools.com and biblegateway.com. Both of those websites will allow you to read different versions, including The Message. I think both also allow you to read two versions side by side to see the differences. Both sites are completely free to use.

        I would think any book store that sells bibles would have have The Message version. It’s my understanding that version is more of a “reading” bible and helps the reader to understand the bible using today’s language instead of trying to interpret old language.

        Hope that helps!

      • Stephanie Raquel says:

        The Message is a modern translation of thought-for-thought, moreso than word-for-word. Eugene Peterson wrote the Psalms & Proverbs first, and then gradually expanded to the whole bible! There’s a sale of the New Testament version for just $6 right now at Family Christian (with free shipping!) http://www.familychristian.com/the-message-remix-bible-new-testament-1.html

  20. Sondra R says:

    I so enjoy reading each “take-away”” for these insightful ladies, such encouragement and blessings recieved from each one. I also, read Romans 8, in both translations and the read verse 26, in NRSV. “Likewise the SPISIT helps us in our weakness for we do not kow how to pray as we ought, but that very SPIRIT intercedes with “sighs” too deep for words.” Grabbed tight to my heaart that GOD’s SPIRIT sighs, just as I also sigh, when overwhelmed with joy or grief. Just too wonderful to fully explain. Thanks

  21. Sondra R says:

    I so enjoy reading each “take-away”” from these insightful ladies, such encouragement and blessings recieved from each one. I also, read Romans 8, in both translations and the read verse 26, in NRSV. “Likewise the SPIRIT helps us in our weakness for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very SPIRIT intercedes with “sighs” too deep for words.” Grabbed tight to my heaart that GOD’s SPIRIT sighs, just as I also sigh, when overwhelmed with joy or grief. Just too wonderful to fully explain. Thanks

  22. The verses that stood out for me are Romans 8: 24-25:

    For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

    Hope is what keeps me going every day, as I have chronic illness, and without hope of ever getting better, or just the hope of a better day, I can get very down and depressed. I love how verse 25 says ” we wait for it patiently.” Most days I get very impatient with being chronically ill, but I know that when I build my hope on God that He will see me through even the most difficult of days.

    Verse 18: I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

    Although some days I feel like giving up and giving in, I know that what I am going through here on this earth is only temporary and that one day I will be living the glorious life with no pain, fatigue and illness in my body and that is a hope that I can hang on to!!

    I will be sharing these verses with my mom who is going through depression associated with kidney dialysis. Thank you for the assignment of reading the whole chapter. As this brought light into my darkness today!!

    • Kim,
      What a blessing your post is. Hope is the only thing that we have isn’t it. You have a beautiful attitude for someone suffering with a chronic illness. I knew a man who was diagnosed with cancer and was told there was nothing to be done. He had a beautiful, almost happy attitude about it. I asked him about it one day and he confided in me that after the diagnosis he got angry at God and hid in his home depressed for 2 weeks. He wanted to know “Why me?” He said that in an angry desperation one day he opened his Bible and the verse that fell before his eyes was 2 Corinthians 12:9 “My grace is sufficient for thee.” and he started realizing “Why not me?” That is when his attitude changed.

      I admire you for your beautiful peace and bright personality. You have made my load seem lighter. Thank you.

      • Awe, thank you Kati. Some days are really hard, but God remains the same and that is what I hold on to. I also love that verse about His grace being sufficient. Thank you again for your kind words:)

  23. I put this verse up on my FB page (the MSG version) & instantly had comments that say, “I needed this”… we forget that sometimes, because God knows our hearts, we don’t have to say anything at all. That’s so comforting.

  24. I will send this to my parents. My father is really struggeling in conquering his alcoholism and my mother struggles with him. He wants so badly to get out of this prison but it is very very difficult. This will really encourage them. Also I will send this to my brother and his wife who so desperately want to have a baby and it is just not happening where al his four sisters have at least two children each. My sister in law is the sweetest girl ever and she deserves to have some encouragement. I myself will also dig real deep in this chapter of Romans 8. Sometimes I am overwhelmed and do not know wher to start praying for. Then it is really goos to know that God knows and that his Spirit prays for me.

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      Praying for you as you wrestle with family members who are keeping your prayer life active! I feel ya, sister!!

  25. Sondra R says:

    Dearest Ladies, pardon my errors. I to have grandaughters at camp this week. They are cousins and this is the first time together for a week without Nana’s supervision. Praying they will maintain a calm and peaceful spirit for the entire week. Please join me in prayer for all the needs of our OBS sisters. Again, thanks.

  26. I love Romans 8 in the Message translation!!! “If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave Him up for us all–how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen?” Romans 8: 31 This REALLY spoke to me this morning! I really needed to hear this! Thank you Stephanie! Great post and video! -Sue

  27. I LOVE Romans 8:26 and know that it is a “Godincidence” that this verse was revealed to me this morning. I am facing several “which direction do I take?” areas in my life and was awake in the night wanting to pray but not having the words to pray. Thanks for the gentle reminder that the Holy Spirit will pray with me and for me! WOW!!! How awesome is our God?
    I also love verses 28-39 from Romans 8 especially vs. 35-39– it is IMPOSSIBLE to be separated from Christ. WHEW!

    • I agree Emily! Those are my favorite verses too. I love the promises found in Rom 8:28 & 35-39. Now THAT is worth smiling about! :)

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      Ever heard the definition of coincidence? Where God performs a miracle, and chooses to remain anonymous. =) That was on my parents’ refrigerator growing up!! Glad you were encouraged today!!

  28. Romans is one of my favorite books of the Bible, & Ch 8 my fav chapter of the book! Soo many good verses!
    8:1: No condemnation. Hallelujah!
    8:18: What we are going through now, doesnt even compare to the glory that is to come! Hang on sweet sista!
    8:24-28 (my fav): We have hope to anchor our souls, the Spirit to help us during hard times- and even pray for us!, & in the end God will work it all out. It’s all good. :)
    8:31: With God on my side- who can be against me?
    8:35-39: A perfect promise. Nothing can separate me from the love of Christ. Can I get an Amen??

  29. Thank you for this assignment. The verses that spoke to me the most were the focus verse for this week and the one following it (26-27) . . .
    “26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.”
    What a comfort that the Holy Spirit: helps us in our weakness, realizes our limitations, searches our hearts and then intercedes on our behalf, all in a way that is according to God’s will.

  30. Lee Roberts says:

    28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[i] have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
    Wow these verses just jumped out at me. They are so special we as a family have been going through some tough times and God is really working through all our lives. It is so wonderful to see how when we let him God does so many amazing things in our lives out even bad circumstances. Thank you God for working on us and for refining us into your own image.

  31. I love Romans 8 mainly because Paul never minimizes our suffering here on this earth. He himself suffered beatings, imprisonments, shipwrecks, and chronic illness. He insists throughout Romans 8 that the future rewards will be worth the suffering.

    My favorite verse that I shared by texting it to my youth group today was Romans 8:26 “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.”

    I love this verse because for me sometimes there are just no words for the suffering and the Holy Spirits comes in to bat for us. Isn’t that amazing and comforting.

  32. Wow! This is a great chapter! I love Romans 8:28 “We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.”
    Romans 8: 31 “What then shall we say to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?”

  33. I sent this verse in an e-mail to my close girlfriends. I really like this verse. I’ve read it before and it was a new idea for me – that God spirit was praying for me even when I wasn’t sure what to ask for or how to put my prayers into words. As I said in my message to my girlfriends, it’s encouraging to know that God is looking out for me even when I’m at a loss for words.

  34. Marie (Ree) says:

    Romans 8:38-39 speaks the most to me: “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

    I am convinced too!

    I’m in search of the one that God wants me to share this with today! Could it perhaps be you?

  35. Crystal says:

    1. There is such wonderful truths in Romans 8, but the one verse I have hung onto this year is found in the middle of verse 24, “But hope that is seen is no hope at all.” Hope is my word for the year, and this verse reminds me to hold onto God in the waiting.
    2. I shared Romans 8:26, The Message, through text to some friends I encourage.
    3. I am thankful that the God of the Universe prays for me because He knows my heart, what is best for me, and His will for me which is all I really want.

  36. My hub had a rough morning- He called & told me about a little tiff he & his boss had and the boss was exceptionally rude. Hes in the middle of interviewing elsewhere & until now we have been torn. But I sent him this verse in a text several hours later. He wrote back “That made me happy.” :-)
    Happy Monday!

  37. Wow, if you could only see my Bible. I have ALL of Romans chapter 8 highlighted and mostly all underlined! Such a great GREAT chapter! I didn’t specifically share Romans 8:26 with one person, but I posted about the whole of Romans chapter 8 on my FB page with a link to it! Most of the people I really connect with is all done on FB! I just hope some people take the time to read it and I hope it touches them like it touched me.

  38. Melissa D. says:

    What a great chapter! So many groups of verses in Romans 8 have been committed to memory in the past; it was refreshing to read through them again!

  39. Meg Derosier says:

    My favorite verse is Rom 8:1 For now there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus! I love this verse! we are not condemned!

  40. Courtney says:

    Romans 8 is just a wonderful chapter that contains so many great verses. Today, verse 28 spoke to my heart.

    “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”

    It’s just a reminder that no matter how bad the storm may be, how dim the road is, and how hopeless the situation is, God is working it out for the best. Although we can’t see if or understand some situations, especially hurtful ones, the end result will always be to our benefit. We must trust, believe, and wait for God to show us.

    I shared this verse and today’s blog via email to a dear friend of mine. One day everything was going well in her life, but she felt God wasn’t moving fast enough on a few things. She took matters into her own hands, and lets just say it was too many cooks in that pot! It’s been a rough 5 years for her, but as I remind her daily He still has you here! Things may not be ideal, but you still have clothing, food,and shelter for you and your son. I forward her the P31 devotionals daily and our blogs from this OBS. I’m praying something will pierce her heart and she jumps in with us, even if there’s only a week left. Between my church and this ministry, my life has changed. I thank God for my lows because that’s where I found him again and he put me in touch with some awesome women! I want her to experience this new found joy and freedom, but she keeps resisting. She says she reads what I forward, but never comments. She says she believes God, but threatens suicide daily. I love her to pieces, but I’m dealing with my own health issues. I don’t want to be selfish, but the same time I don’t want her spirit to kill my joy. But, I can’t expect my healing to be the same for her. I just know this ministry helped saved my life and I want the same for her. Am I being controlling? Should I back off, pray, and let God work?

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      Courtney, I am praying for wisdom and discernment for you in ministering to your friend! First and foremost is to be sure she is safe. That can take a trained counselor to do it well. Is there a suicide prevention hotline in your county or local area? Send me an e-mail and we’ll see if we can connect you to some additional resources…. stephraquelp31{at} gmail.com …

      Also, here’s the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Let’s keep in touch!!

    • This is a tough line to walk Courtney. What a blessing you must be to your friend! But I know it has to be tough to watch her hurt. Just remember you can and probably should continue to send her encouragement…nothing wrong with that! But just remember you aren’t responsible for the decisions she makes or the response she has. If she threatens suicide daily she is likely struggling with mental illness of some kind and needs to see a professional counselor. You could suggest this but remember it may not be received well. So maybe just pray the door for her to seek counseling will open and her heart will be softened towards it. And yes you can for sure send her the suicide hotline, but be sure you set healthy boundaries with her!!!

      • Courtney says:

        Thank you for the support, both Stephanies! And thank you for going over and beyond by speaking with through email about this. I know how great God is and I want her to see it too!

  41. Hiya Steph – thank you for the welcome this week. Truly amazing to think that God is praying for me. There are a zillion + people in the world and he prays for each of us by name. Wow. Makes me feel very special…which is the point…but I can say it – But sure would like to feel it. Working on it. looking forward to this weeks study.
    My Favorite verse – is Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Constant reminder that I need HIM!!
    God Bless you this week.

  42. yes, I need a reset button!

  43. Great Chapter of scripture! Reassuring and encouraging. I’ve always focused on verse 28, but I love verse 26 because I have experienced that. To not know what to say, not know what to pray in that need, but just be still and let my groans be heard. I love that God knows me that intimately to know my groans through His spirit!

    • I also shared the verses 26-28 with my close Christian friends in hopes to encourage!

  44. Phyllis Wiley says:

    We are having VBS at church this week. I am sharing the verse with one of the ladies that I am volunteering with who has just been diagnosed with a serious health issue.

    • Stephanie Raquel says:

      Awwww, bless you, Phyllis, for serving in VBS! I swear, God has a special place reserved in Heaven for those who serve in any capacity with children’s ministries!! Praying for your friend who’s been recently diagnosed. Such a blessing you are to her, as well!!! =)

  45. Michelle H. says:

    Hi Stephanie! In reading Romans 8 I had forgotten how many powerful verses are in it. I think I will put the audio version I have in my car and listen to it this week on my hour-long commute. I have done this in past bible studies and it really helps me learn the passages. May as well use my commute time for a good purpose!

  46. Melissa Chambers says:

    For the past six months I have been using a section in one of my study Bibles called, God’s promises when\for…and it provides about thirty topics like when I feel weak, sick, I fail, I obey and also gives verses to encourage. I take one topic and verse five days a week and send it to three girlfriends as a Bible Study email. I use three different translations (thank you Bible Gateway for making them to accessible and easy to copy and paste) and then take the four Study Bibles I have and write a message of sorts to go along with verse. I also text that verse in the morning to the three ladies so we can stay focused on God’s word as we go through the day. About three weeks ago Romans 8:26 came up for God’s promise when you are weak. I remembered that we had studied it recently so I sent this as the tonight’s Bible Study email to the ladies:

    My online bible study is focused on Romans 8:26 and we have been challenged to read the verse in more than one translation and share it with a friend and I remembered that we had this verse come up in our Bible Study not three weeks ago. God is directing us to go back, so I have copy and pasted below what I shared on May 21st with you and will add my thoughts from today as well. Please let me know if this verse speaks to you in a special way so I can share it with the online bible study crew – I know it would be encouraging to them!

    God’s promise when you are weak

    Our daily verse for Wednesday, May 22 (Steel’s 6th Birthday :) ) and Tuesday, June 18th is from the Message Translation, Romans 8:26b He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans.
    Romans 8:26

    English Standard Version (ESV)

    26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.

    Romans 8:26

    New Living Translation (NLT)

    26 And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.
    [NLT at Tyndale] [Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.]

    Romans 8:26

    The Message (MSG)

    26-28 Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.

    When I was struggling with my lust issues I had a lot of verses given to me trying to encourage and convict me but it was actually this verse that spoke volumes to me – the notion that the Holy Spirit is so deep inside of us praying for us in ways we don’t can’t even express moved me to take action to get a handle on my sinful behavior. After a “friend” would leave I was often collapse on my kitchen floor crying for so long I fell asleep in a heap of shame and regret but also couldn’t bring myself to actually think of what I had just done, it was a silent pain – but knowing the Holy Spirit wasn’t letting me hide from God but intervening on my behalf and praying for me to repent and accept forgiveness empowered me!

    June 17th The book I am reading with the OBS group is, Stressed Less Living by Traci Miles and in this week’s chapter she offers, “six action steps that, if you are willing to implement them in your every day life, will serve as crucial stepping stones towards achieving your goal of living a stressed-less life.” What I am being led to share with you tonight is action step #4. “Be filled with the Spirit. So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. Galatians 5:16. “The temptation to worry can seem unbeatable. The longing to take control of a problem and absolve God from the privilege of intervening in our lives can become all-consuming. Yet, when we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we are empowered to stand firm against the pulls of the world.” Traci then concludes the chapter saying, “If he “fixed” our problems overnight, would our love, dependency, and gratefulness for him really grow? We have to choose believe that God is God before he can act as God over our life. Unbelief puts our circumstances between us and God; faith puts God between us and our circumstances. If you are serious about “resetting” your life, then let God be God in your life.”

    The Holy Spirit has been working in me through the book to bring me peace about where God has me in life right now. While I understand the blessing of not working, both my physical and mental health are a million times better than it was a year ago and I have all this time in His word and serving Him it has been a difficult journey pride wise. I find it hard to face my Nana sometimes because she worked through the worst circumstances a woman could experience, during a time in our Country where woman in the work force wasn’t common place. My flesh screams shame and guilt and I was not excited about this book at all because I thought I am going to be faced with woman who actually have stress in life while I am living a life of leisure! Instead it has been an answer to the prayer I know the Holy Spirit was lifting up on my behalf, it has helped me embrace this time of rest, renewal and regeneration as God’s time. God has orchestrated this time for Him, for me to be the woman he longs for me to be. I am blessed through it, for it and because of it and I shouldn’t have any shame. In a couple short months I get to hang out with Gavin everyday of the week and of course God brought Colton and Steel into the Zeller family just as I was layed off and it has been an amazing blessing to get to walk so closely with their family! I have been holding onto a lot of sinful pride which I now know fueled my clinical anxiety and PTSD issues, keeping me from experiencing the victory I had on that front the past couple months, which is as well as long as I have been reading this book! Praise Jesus!

  47. What are your impressions as you read Romans 8? What was your favorite verse or verses, and why? My impressions of Romans 8 are many. There is so much to learn from this Chapter. I have read it many times and focus on a different part each time. I like that we are no longer under condemnation. God has given us the strength to overcome our sin nature. We need to keep our minds on the Spirit. Like I said. So much information. “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord, Romans 8: 38-39

    How did you share the reflection verse with a friend or loved one? And, if you know it, what was the reaction? I posted the verse on my Facebook page. I don’t know of any reaction toward that verse as of right now.

    What do you think about the fact that the God of the Universe, who knows all and sees all, is capable of praying for YOU? How does that impact your prayer life? I love the fact that Jesus is interceding for me on my behalf. Because Lord knows there are times when I am going through things and I just do not know the right words to say or what is the best thing to pray about. You know when there is something you have been wanting and even thinking was something God wants for you but your still not sure what the right prayer is. Do you know at all what I am talking about? Because at this point. i wish Jesus was down here typing this statement up. Because I have thoroughly confused myself.

  48. I read two versions of romans 8. My impressoin was Romans really tells you all about how much God loves us. It also tells us how to know we are of the spirit and not the flesh. People ask this question alot how do I know that I am filled with the spirit or still in the flesh.

    My favorite verses are 26 And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. 27 And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers[l] in harmony with God’s own will. 28 And we know that God causes everything to work together[m] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. ILike these scriptures because sometimes I truly do not know exactlay how I should pray. I am going through this right now and I am so thankful that our father can pray for us. I know that when he prays for me everything is going to be perfect..

    I am going to share our verse with my sons and lots of family members and friends I know so many people who needs to hear this verse . I will share by phone and by snail mail. I hope they will feel the power of this verse and all of romans chapter 8.

  49. I had never read from “The Message” before, but all of the comments here made me curious, so I read Romans 8:26 in both NIV and The Message. What a comfort that verse is! As I read the words, I saw myself as I usually am at the end of a hard trying week at school: lessons don’t go as planned, students misbehaving, students not really comprehending, more paperwork than I know what to do with, and little time for me and my family.

    In the past I have sometimes felt almost guilty about praying to God for comfort over such little things while there are others with such big problems. I have almost felt insignificant and unworthy of God’s calming presence and grace. Because of this, I think I have taken the BIG things to God in prayer and tried to handle the regular day to day stresses on my own. Through this study I have experienced a wonderful renewal; a knowledge that I am worthy, no problem is insignificant to God, and that I must take time to bring him into the daily “mix” of my life, regardless of what is happening. The minute that life is weighing on me, even if it is because of simple day-to-day things, God is right there with me… even if I don’t sometimes know what to pray for. He truly knows what I need and when I need it. I just need to keep him there, right there beside me, right there INSIDE me…. right there in my heart.

  50. Beth Wright ~ OBS Group Leader says:

    My mom is having a really rough time with her health right now. Complications from when she broke her hip April 2012. They travel all over the US in their travel trailer and she’s very frustrated that they are stuck in NC right now until they can get her issues figured out. I texted her the verse this morning. Think it really lifted her spirits!!