Summer of Joy

Abiding in the Word

Sometimes I am a big bundle of hormones. Like today. I can’t think straight. I don’t remember why I came in this room. I get really peeved over embarrassingly irrelevant things. And I will cry at the drop of a hat. I think women should have some way to warn others on days like this. Maybe a button that says DEFCON 1: Maximum Readiness/Nuclear war is imminent. Or a T-shirt like this:

Don’t expect much from me and
please don’t get on my last nerve.
I am super busy fighting The Curse.

It really is a Curse, you know: To the woman He said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you” (Gen 3:16). Matthew Henry says of this verse: We have here the sentence passed upon the woman for her sin. Two things she is condemned to: a state of sorrow, and a state of subjection, proper punishments of a sin in which she had gratified her pleasure and her pride.

Girls, women got off to a bit of a rough start there. In Genesis. The word means Beginning. You know Who was there, at the beginning?

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1:1-4).

This Word. He is powerful. But He is also good. Eve chose to live under the Curse to profit herself.

Christ chose to live under the Curse to profit others.
He came on a rescue mission.

He turned that Curse upside down, fulfilling this prophecy: I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing…[and] all peoples on earth will be blessed through you (Gen 12:2-3).

This Word, He turns things upside down and transforms them like that…that’s just how He rolls. God’s…powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God’s Word. We can’t get away from it—no matter what (Hebrews 4:12, The Message).

modern SHEMA

This detailed description of a life founded on God’s Word is called The SHEMA, because, in Hebrew, actually it begins with: “Shema Yisrael” (Deut. 6:4). Our Bibles translate the Hebrew to “Hear, O Israel”. This Hebrew word “Shema” has a more profound translation: it means BOTH “hear” and “do”; it means to “obey”. The idea that hearing the Truth should be accompanied by doing the Truth is found in the New Testament too:

  • Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves (James 1:22)
  • Jesus said, “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock” (Matt 7:24-25).

Here is what I know:

When I lose my joy, I find it again by abiding in The Word.

Jesus said, “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life” (John 6:63). God’s Spirit, at work through His Word can change my mind. And in hearing and doing His Word, my life is changed. Abiding in the Word is the healing and wholeness that we all need; it is freedom from The Curse. And this freedom is a joy-maker.

Are you still fighting The Curse, like me? Did you know that because of Jesus, we have been freed from the Curse? How’s that for some #SummerofJoy Gospel?
Please share with our #SummerofJoy community about a time that you felt God’s steadfast love.  Or tell us about how the love relationship between you and God brings you joy.

This summer we are inviting you to join us

on an 8 week journey towards

abiding in the harvest. 

We have an entire resource page set up to help you succeed. Each week we will be adding new ideas to it. This week we would encourage you to  read the suggested daily scripture, select one or two of the action activity ideas, start a joy journal to implement, and be sure to subscribe to the Summer of Joy Spotify playlist.

Oh, and because we think this is super fun and every big kid (a.k.a:adult) could benefit from some added joy in their life we would love for you to share it with a friend or two. #summerofjoy

week three final

Find all the resources you need to get started here.

Diamond Willow PhotographyBrit IMG_25152013-03-09018Britta is a sojourner.  She was a military kid and is a military wife, now living in the high desert of Arizona and far, far from her New Orleans family.  She happily homeschools and one of her favorite hobbies is snuggling on the couch reading history and literature with 11-year-old Gracie and 9-year-old Josh. Britta and her husband Scott recently celebrated their 20th Anniversary. Britta writes about the intersection of God’s Word and her world at Britta Lafont ~ Everyday Holiness (