For our “Held and Beloved” online study friends… a pause to PRAY as we start a new study week:
Dear heavenly, gracious Father, we come to You. These are worrisome days. Unprecedented. Anxious. Uncertain. Each of us responds in different ways, battling unique fears or concerns or challenges. More than ever, we long to know that You see us, that You understand, that You will help us recognize Your voice and Your generous provisions each day. That You will lead us forward. Tune our hearts to Yours. Reassure us that we are known and loved beyond measure. That the One who gave His own Son to redeem us also delights to meet any and every need we might have. Let these stories reveal your care for us, the truth that You cherish each of us, and speak to us by name, giving us fresh direction and the courage to follow. In the Name of Your Son and our Savior, the LORD JESUS, amen.
This week we will take a look at CHAPTER SEVEN. As you have time on your own, read through the chapter and the accompanying Bible passages. Keep a notebook handy to jot down anything that touches your heart, encourages you, leaves you with questions. Through the week, as the LORD leads you, share your discoveries in the comments below?
• CHAPTER SEVEN •
the One who speaks my name: blessed is she who recognizes His tender and personal care
Brief Summary: Hagar heard the one true GOD speak her name and lead her in the right path. Mary heard JESUS speak her name and lead her to the next step in loving and serving Him well. Through a long, stressful season for her husband at work, the author learned to cry out to GOD, recognize His voice responding to her heart, His tender care in the hardest moments, and His help to simply trust Him. The LORD revealed Himself as the One who calls us by name and cares for us personally, who tunes our hearts to recognize His voice!
** Read more of their stories . . . and reflect on your own! **
HAGAR (Genesis 16, 21)
In what situation did Hagar encounter God?
What do we learn about the heart of God in reaching out to her?
How did she respond to Him?
What options did Hagar have in her challenging situation?
MARY MAGDALENE (Luke 8:1–3, Mark 15:37–47, John 20:1–18)
What drew Mary to the tomb after Jesus’ death?
What was heavy on her heart?
How did Jesus reveal Himself to her?
How did He realign her thinking?
What new job did He give her to do?
What times of suffering have left you battle-weary, heart-broken, defeated?
In what ways has the Lord come close to care for you? To speak truth that realigns your thinking? That gives you hope?
How has He been tuning your heart to recognize His voice? To know He calls to you by name? To receive fresh direction from a Savior who loves you?
“You are GOD who sees me… truly here I have seen Him who looks after me.”
Genesis 16:13 (ESV)
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