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Chapter 3: Refusing to Be Afraid of the Dark

June 27, 2010

Thank you for coming back for week three of our study, Just Enough Light for the Step I’m On – Trusting God in the Tough Times by Stormie Omartian. I hope you are enjoying our study in learning to trust God.

Let’s open with a word of prayer.  Heavenly Father, we thank you for your Word and your love for us.  We are grateful to know that you are with us throughout this difficult journey.  We know you love our children more than we do and trust that you are working in their hearts.  Help us to focus on You, Father and transform us into the men and women you created us to be.  You are the potter, we are the clay.  Have you way with us and we trust in you.  Amen.

Refusing to Be Afraid of the Dark

Have you ever wondered why many of us are afraid of the dark?  Do you have a specific memory from your childhood where you first learned to be afraid of the dark?  For me, darkness represents my inability to be able to see the world around me and the dangers I perceive to be lurking in the darkness.  In Chapter 3, Refusing to Be Afraid of the Dark, Stormie helps us understand the types of darkness in our lives including:  spiritual darkness, darkness that comes from negative emotions, darkness from selfish demands that satisfy our flesh and darkness from living in disobedience to God.  (Page 29)  When I read these 4 types of darkness, I immediately thought of my prodigal and how she is experiencing all 4 of them.  As soon as the thought entered my mind, I felt God saying ‘the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.  This is not about our daughter…this is about you’.  Perhaps you are like me and at some point in time, you have lived in all of these types of darkness.  Why?  Because we took our focus off of Him and concentrated on our own desire.  But there is good news!  God gives us a way of out the darkness – by returning to Him.

Stormie reminds us that as long as we have a personal relationship with the Lord, we have a light in us that cannot be put out.  (Page 30)  Isn’t that comforting to know?  God wants us to know that He is constantly there, even when we cannot see it, or feel it.  Stormie says it like this “He wants you to be completely sure that the light of His Spirit in you will never be put out”.  (Page 30)  She goes on to say that “no circumstance can dim it.  It is there for now and all eternity”.  I pray that this will bring you comfort today.  God’s light is in you – always!

So, why do we experience darkness in our lives?  God uses the dark times in our lives to create dependency on Him so that He may teach us, guide us and mold us into the men and women He wants us to become.  Stormie says it beautifully like this “We’re in the dark until we see His light in it.  He wants us to reach out for Him so we can walk together in the same direction.  He desires that we draw close so that we sense His presence at all times”.  (Page 31)  She goes on to say that “the treasure we find in the darkness is Him”.  (Page 31)  The Lord is our treasure!  I have met many parents throughout this journey and have seen first-hand how the Lord has become their treasure and transformed their lives.  I have witnessed people with a head knowledge of who Jesus was, who now have Him living in their heart.  Men and women who did not know Jesus at all, now teach Bible studies or work in ministries.  They have found the treasure in the darkness.  How?  “His presence and His light are there for those who open their eyes to see it, and He brings good out of every situation”.  (Page 32)

If you are like me, you are walking in one of the darkest periods of your life.  Will you join me in opening your eyes to see the light that comes from our mighty God?  “If you feel like you’re in a dark place in your circumstances right now, know that God has not abandoned you.  You are not wandering aimlessly.  He sees the path you are on.  For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, And He ponders all his paths. (Proverbs 5:21) He is there with you in great power and wants you to realize how much He loves you”.  (Page 35)

Let’s Discuss

How have you found the treasure in the darkness?  How has God transformed your life in this journey?

We look forward to hearing from you.

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Chapter 2: Beginning to See the Light

May 23, 2010

Thank you for coming back for week two of our study, Just Enough Light for the Step I’m On – Trusting God in the Tough Times by Stormie Omartian.  I hope you found yourself challenged last week to take each step while holding the hand of our mighty God.

Let’s open with a word of prayer.  Heavenly Father, we are grateful for this study and the opportunity to grow deeper in our faith in You. Teach us Father what it is you want us to know about you and your son, Jesus.  Help us to focus on You as You work in the lives of our children.  Amen

Beginning to See the Light

I am certain we all understand that Jesus is the Light of the World, but I have to admit, Stormie offers new insight for me.  Every type of light we will ever encounter in our lives will eventually go out.  God is the only light is 100% reliable. His light is constant and never changing because God does not change.  I remember going thru a difficult time in my life when God seemed so far away.  I asked a friend ‘where did God go?  I feel so alone’.  She responded ‘God didn’t move.  Did you?’  Stormie says it like this “His light doesn’t grow dim or go out.  If it appears to, it’s because we have stepped out of the light of His presence”.  (Page 23)  When we become depressed over the trial in our life, we must make certain we are standing in the light of His presence and have not wandered in the counterfeit light of the enemy.

In His light, truth is revealed to us.  The stronger our walks with the Lord becomes, the brighter his light be illuminated to us.  Stormie says that God “gives us as much of His presence as we are able to receive”.  (Page 23)  So, how do we make certain we are walking in the light of the Lord and receiving as much of His presence as possible?  Stormie gives us an interesting analogy.  “I have electricity in my home, but if I don’t plug into it, I don’t see the light.  I have Jesus in my heart, but if I don’t plug into Him daily, I won’t see His light either, even though it is there.  I have to connect with Him.  Talk to Him.  Worship Him.  Spend time with him.  Bask in His radiance like bathing in the sun”.  (Page 24)

Let’s Discuss:

How do you connect with God?  What does your daily time with Him look like? What ideas for connecting with God can you share with your fellow parents?

I look forward to hearing from you.

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Chapter 1: Learning to Walk

May 16, 2010

Today we begin our study of Stormie Omartian’s book Just Enough Light for the Step I’m On – Trusting God in the Tough Times.  Let us begin with a word of prayer:

Heavenly Father, we thank you for this time to come together to learn more about You.  Help us to take our focus off of our children, Lord and place it on You.  Teach us Father how to walk more closely with you.  Open our hearts to you, Lord and speak to each of us during the coming weeks as we learn to trust in you.  Amen

Learning to Walk

I thought it was appropriate that our study begins with the concept of how children learn to walk.  Do you remember the day when you child took their first steps?  Remember how they held your hand until they gained confidence in themselves?  Then they released your hand to make their way into their new world opening around them.  Stormie tells us that this is not what God wants for us.  He wants us to hold His hand tightly and to rely on Him as we take each step.  Why?  So that we may enjoy freedom – the type of freedom that comes from being on the path that God has planned for us.  God has plans for each of us that are beyond our wildest dreams, but we cannot reach them without His help.  We must learn to depend on God so that He can be strong in us.

I love the sound of God being strong in me.  How about you?  Are you ready to learn to walk to with God?  Stormie tells us to take his hand and pray this prayer:  ‘Lead me in the path You have for me, Lord.  From this day on, I want to walk with you.  I take this step of faith and I trust in You to meet me here.  Align my heart with Yours’.

Let’s Discuss:

As you take one step at a time, holding God’s hand and letting Him lead, He will get you where you need to go.  How willing are you to let God lead you where you need to go?  How would you like to see your walk with God change?  How will learning to depend on God lead you through this difficult time in your life?

I look forward to hearing how you are learning to walk with God and trust in Him.

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Lord light the path, give me the strength to walk it…

May 2, 2010

As I have reflected on my Christian walk, I have discovered a consistent prayer “Lord, light my path and give me the strength to walk it”.  It always felt like an appropriate prayer.  After all, I never prayed for Him to put me on a different path, or even ‘here is where I want my path to lead’.  But rather I simply asked him to light my path.  Truth be told, if God would light the path, and by that I mean the entire path, I would run full speed toward the end.  Think about it, if God revealed to you the messenger who would bring your son or daughter out of the darkness, wouldn’t you take it upon yourself to find that person to perhaps, speed up the process?  I know I would.

Yet, God has revealed something to me…he doesn’t want to light my path.  He wants me to depend on him each and every day.  Not just for one day, so that I may take matters into my own hands.  He wants to light my next step and He wants me to wait patiently there until He lights the next one.  He wants me to be dependent on Him and to trust Him completely.

Perhaps you are like me.  If so, I have an invitation for you.  Will you join me and your friends on Parents Reaching Parents in a Stormie OMartian Bible Study entitled Just Enough Light for the Step I’m On – Trusting God in Tough Times?  This 21 week study will help us take our eyes off our children and the path they are on and focus our energy on our Sovereign God as He guides our steps.  The book (same title) is available in any Christian book store for approximately $15 or on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Just-Enough-Light-Step-Im/dp/0736923578/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1272843278&sr=8-1. It contains a prayer and study guide with seven to ten questions in the back of the book.  I will post a synopsis of each chapter along with some questions that we can discuss together.

Please join me beginning Sunday, May 16th as we come together to surrender our children to God and grow in our trust in Him.  I look forward to studying God’s Word with you!

Blessings.

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Join JBM for Corporate Prayer!

February 28, 2010

Fellow Parents,

We wanted to invite you to join us on Monday, March 1st for a time of corporate prayer.  We believe that God is about to do some awesome things not only for this ministry, but in the lives of those who seek his face.  We will be meeting every Monday night at 7pm CST via conference call to touch and agree with each other for the deliverance of those struggling and the continued strength and wisdom for their loved ones and ministries.  Please invite everyone you know to join us because together we can bring down strongholds to the glory of God!

Call In Number: (605) 475-4860; Access Code: 206853

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Merry Christmas from Parents Reaching Parents

December 24, 2009

My fellow parents,

On behalf of Janet Boynes Ministries and Parents Reaching Parents, I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas!  Yet I know as I write these words, many of you have heavy hearts.  Perhaps you son or daughter has chosen not to celebrate Christmas with your family.   Maybe your son or daughter will be celebrating with you, but your relationship is strained.  I understand your pain, but most importantly, our Heavenly Father does as well!  He is active in our children’s lives stirring their hearts and working in ways that only He knows.  We must place our trust in Him.  He will be victorious!

Heavenly Father, this is a difficult time for parents with children wandering in the wilderness.  Our hearts are heavy and the pain is unbearable at times. We know you understand for You love our children even more than we do. As Paul tells us in Phil 4:6-7, help us not to be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, may we present our requests to You.  Please give us your peace, which transcends all understanding and guard our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus as we joyfully celebrate the greatest gift of all, your Son, our Savior, Jesus.

Merry Christmas!

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On our knees

November 15, 2009

My fellow parents,

The holiday season can be a difficult time for every family and this is especially true for parents with children wandering in the desert.  Janet often reminds me that “we will win this battle on our knees”.  With that in mind, we would like to establish a Parents Reaching Parents Prayer Team. Please pray about your participation in the team.  If God places it on your heart to dedicate time daily in prayer for your fellow parents and their children, please email janetboynesministries@comcast.net and let us know.

Please post your public prayer requests here.  If you wish your requests to be confidential and for the PRP Prayer Team only, then please email them to the address above.

Phil 4:6-7   Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Let’s win this battle together…on our knees.

Blessings.

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