7HHH – Enjoyment & Caring Bible Study

I was debating…video or no video? And the only reason I’ve decided to not lead us through video for this session is because of this – for us to lean in closer to the Word, dig out truth for our own discovery, and because of what we will be addressing in this lesson.

_________________________________

When you think of things that you enjoy, what are those things? Write some out in your journal. Literally title a page, “Things I Enjoy.” It could be certain hobbies like crafting, decorating, singing or sewing. You may enjoy writing, studying, or reading. Make a list of foods or places, even outdoor spaces, and those special trips to grandmother’s house where you always enjoy a glass of tea on her front porch swing.

Your list is yours. It is all yours! You can write 5, 10, 15, 20 things. But it really is good to exercise to do, to simply reflect on how uniquely, fearfully, and wonderfully made you truly are! God has made YOU to enjoy so many things that are earthly, but they are things TO BE enjoyed by you.

How do I know this about God? Well, we see in Scripture, verses that describe things of this earth that are being enjoyed. Look to Psalm 8:3-9

When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers—
the moon and the stars you set in place—
what are mere mortals that you should think about them,
human beings that you should care for them?
Yet you made them only a little lower than God
and crowned them with glory and honor.
You gave them charge of everything you made,
putting all things under their authority—
the flocks and the herds
and all the wild animals,
the birds in the sky, the fish in the sea,
and everything that swims the ocean currents.
O Lord, our Lord, your majestic name fills the earth!

Does this sound like someone who is enjoying things of this earth that God says it’s good for us to enjoy? When it says, “You gave them charge of everything you made….the flocks and the herds and all the wild animals, the birds in the sky, the fish in the sea, and everything that swings in the ocean currents,” what the author is doing is he is looking all around, taking it all in, seeing  all that God made, (made for man to care for and tend to), while at the same time in awe of it all! To have charge over your children doesn’t mean to only use authority in telling them do this, don’t do this.  “You gave them charge of everything you made” also means “This charge is your work, it is your worship, and it is for you to enjoy ME in the middle of it all. Enjoy the flocks, the herds, the animals and the birds, enjoy the fish and everything in the ocean. It’s all yours to tend to, care for, and enjoy it all as you do.”

So as we write down things we enjoy, that’s realize that God has allowed us to enjoy it all!

When you have the time, go to the Psalms. Find the Psalms that are simply praising God. The verses where He is being praised for what He has created for what He has done. For Who He is. And underline them in blue. Circle the words of praise in blue. The more we color our bible with blue, then when we go to the Word of God to simply enjoy Him, when we see BLUE, we see the ENJOYMENT of God! As we lift our eyes to heaven, as we look up into the sky here on earth, we see blue. So as we lift the eyes of our heart to Him, it’s in the blue verses of praise, worship, enjoyment that fill us with beatific-ness!  The happiness of heaven!

___________________

Now, consider making this list.  Let’s take our thoughts a little higher. Let’s write down the things He has SHOWN us that we enjoy.  He has shown us forgiveness, mercy, unconditional love, healing…make a list of how He’s shown you His nature in personal ways. This is one way we begin cultivating the Habit of Caring to a level in our life that is far beyond caring for the immediate needs of our house, (cleaning, folding, straightening). Caring for the immediate needs of our family (food, clothes, transportation, etc.). When we enjoy God for Who He is, we are enjoying Him like we enjoy a beautiful sunrise saying, “Oh wow! Look at those colors of gold and pink streaming across the sky.” Taking that same awe in enjoyment, “Oh God! Look at You! You are so slow to anger, abounding in love because it’s Who you are. You are so kind to surprise me with grace unexpected and to overwhelm me with mercy never-ending.”

When we truly ENJOY GOD, friend, I just have to tell you … HOW you care for those in your own household is completely changed. HOW you care is elevated to a place of BEATIFIC BLESSINGS that the household will feel, will experience, and will always remember. Enjoying God causes us to care with His mercy and grace infused in everything we do.

_________________________

But what happens when you show you care, and yet there is still, 1) rebellion and 2) disharmony in the home? What happens when you show you care and yet, it’s 1) ignored, 2) rejected and 3) shunned from household members for all sorts of reasons? What then? First of all, everything I just listed that could be happening in the home, can actually all fall under the category of “disrespect.” So when I use that word in the rest of our lesson, I’m using it as an “umbrella” – all the other undesirable behaviors listed will fall under that one word. So as we finish the rest of our study time, ANY verse you read that speaks of “Caring” underline it in green or pink. You may need to look deeper – look closer into certain verses – but they are there, that highlight a caring spirit.

_____________________

First, if you are married, the marriage is the first priority. Your relationship with God IS the #1 first LIFE priority, but in the priorities of the household, your spouse is first. It is the first priority to be covered, protected and maintained at all times as one unit. Wives, support your husband and husband, support your wife. At. All. Time. We are to honor one another. One vital organ to the entire body of the household is the organ of the “one flesh” – husband and wife are not “two” according to Scripture, they are “one” … meaning, nothing ever comes between husband and wife. They are one flesh – can have differing opinions, thoughts, bents, etc. BUT when it comes to the household management and decisions, it’s paramount that they are in agreement.

Second, the children. Children need to clearly understand that their parents are “one.” When my children were small, they would try to go to one parent, ask if they could do something and get a “no.” Then go to another parent, ask the same thing and if they got a “Yes”, then guess what … there was conflict. Children of all ages, 3-18 years old, push the boundaries, try to redefine them, find ways around them, and even try to obliterate them all together. But when there is a clear understanding of what the boundaries are, not with a heavy hand but with a hand of grace, then they are much more likely to respond in obedience. But if they do not – what do we do?

We first:

  1. Praylook up Ephesians 6:18 – write it out in your journal. When does it say we are to pray. In what specific occasions? _____  We must talk with God about it all.
  2. Pray Specificallylook up Ephesians 3:16 – write it out, too. What does it say we are to ask that God will do? ________ Some translations say empower, some say strengthen us. When you are facing any form of disrespect, rebellion, disharmony, being rejected in any way…you are going to need HIS strength to help you! And since we are talking momma to momma here, you know what I’m talking about…because on those days, or those moments when you want to blow!, … you need HIM to help you stay under His control, and not the flesh. (Can you tell I am talking from experience, here?) I’m just keeping it real!
  3. TALK – nothing is ever resolved through silence. Silence actually has a damaging effect on the body. Look up Psalm 32:3. What happened as David tried to conceal his sin from God? He kept silent and what happened? ________ The same is true in remaining silent when there are any issues in the home that are bringing harm or strife into the home. We always called them, “Come to Jesus Meetings”. That was when we all came together and it was time to lovingly, kindly yet truthfully lay out on the table the issues that were causing divide. If anyone in the household wants to avoid the needed conversations, it simply will snowball into a growing cancer.
  4. Quick to Forgive – This simply has to happen when there is real repentance. Holding on to grudges or clinging to the past, only feeds a bitter spirit and destroys the one who is unwilling to forgive. Instead, delight in forgiveness. Read Micah 7:18.  How does God feel about forgiveness as we find in this one verse?
  5. Quick to ReconcileRead these verses: Genesis 50:1-21 – if there were ever a story in the Bible where we see God at work through ONE person, bringing His “HAPPY” back into a family’s life, it is in the story of Joseph and his brothers. Write verses 20-21 in your journal using any translation you like and if need be, personalize it. Joseph told them to not be afraid. So I wrote it on my chalkboard, “I will not be afraid” – He told them that they had evil planned against them. On my chalkboard I “named” where evil comes from – Satan. Satan used his brothers to plan and evil against him, but God used those same plans and brought out so much good. As Joseph stood there and told them..look around. See how God has positioned me so that I can help save the lives (literally, because there was a famine in the land) of many. Then he says he is going to provide for them and their children. For them to not be afraid and he was speaking kindly to them the whole time. Speaking heart to heart. “You have nothing to fear; I’ll take care of you and your children.” He reassured them, speaking with them heart-to-heart.” He shows what CARING truly is! It forgives and it provides and it leads and it reassures and it helps … al because FIRST he enjoyed his God.

Genesis 50

Let every word of verses 20-21 in chapter 50 penetrate deep into your own heart. He was not only forgiving toward his brothers, but he was ready to meet their needs. He cared for them. Truly cared. But why? Because that is what true “reconciliation” looks like. It is back in a God-honoring relationship again. A relationship that bears the mark of Christ’s servant heart. You are ready to serve them! As we are studying about “7 Habits of a HAPPY (Beatific) Household” – this story of Joseph is so powerful for us because we see a man who not only lived his life enjoying God, but because he first enjoyed God, he was empowered to show he cared in all 5 ways: prayer, praying specifically, talking, quick to forgive, and quick to reconcile. He cared not only for his brothers, but for their children and their own entire households. If you are not familiar with the story of his life prior to chapter 50, then you can read more about him in previous chapters – Chapters 37-50.

Look back over those 5 things we just covered. Put a check beside the ones that are really speaking to you right now.

Have you been so burdened by continued disrespect that you have not taken the time to really pray?  It’s upset you, it’s hurt you, and God knows how you’re feeling  … He sees .. He cares … and He is right there with you. Giving you His attention and He is listening as you pour out your heart to Him.  Will you stop right now and pray? Don’t worry about finding the right words, just pray. Your pray may come out of your mouth in words, and it may pour out of your heart in tears. He hears tears. And He wipes them away, too. Take a moment. If this is where you are, then dear friend, please … pray.

Where there is disrespect, there is this one glaringly obvious need in the person displaying such behavior, and it’s the need to be trained. That may sound like a harsh word, but actually it is a loving word – a word that reflects caring. Training brings understanding. It does not mean to man-handled or threaten, or to have rules without relationship. Rules without relationships WILL bring rebellion.

Training is simply providing a safe place to have character developed into the ways and knowledge of God.

I don’t want to get too far off the topic of “caring”, but one of the most caring things you can do in your home is provide: 1) structure 2) boundary 3) reward and consequences –  When I watch videos of soldiers in training, the men who are placed in charge of the training use all three (structure, boundary, reward/consequences) in shaping untrained men/women into a person who shows GREAT respect. They also demonstrate behaviors worthy of great respect.

How do you cultivate this in a household? It’s with these principles in place: 1) consistency 2) clarity

When members of any household know what was expected yesterday is expected today, that promotes peace and creates that safe place for the children. What was not acceptable yesterday is not acceptable today, so confusion is eliminated. When they know there is consistency with what is allowed and what isn’t allowed in their home, they are much more quickly trained (character being developed) into people of respect…to parents, adults, siblings and ultimately to God.

Grace Based Parenting

The book “Grace-based Parenting” is definitely one I believe all parents should read. It addresses a few “styles” of parenting that many modern-day families display: 1) the harsh authoritarian style of parenting, 2) the overly permissive parenting, 3) the fear-driven parenting, and 4) the grace-based parenting.

Dr. Tim Kimmel, founder of Family Matters ministries, offers a refreshing new look at parenting. Rejecting rigid rules and checklists that don’t work, Dr. Kimmel recommends a parenting style that mirrors God’s love, reflects His forgiveness, and displaces fear as a motivator for behavior. As we embrace the grace God offers in how we CARE for our children, we begin to give it – creating a solid foundation for growing morally strong and spiritually motivated children. His revolutionary book presents a whole new way to nurture a healthy family.

Whishy-washy family expectations causes confusion and it can make a child feel unsafe, and more apt to push the boundaries. If there is no consistency, then the lack of it is actually training them to be or do “whatever they feel.”  But when parents are consistent it breeds “clarity” –  And where there is clarity, there is also vision – hope – direction – peace.

Clarity only comes where there is good communication.

Is anyone in your household giving anyone the silent treatment? If so, that must end! That is definitely one way the enemy gets his foot in the door of our lives. Silence eats at us, it eats away at us, and it can do more damage to a relationship than you can possibly imagine. Silence is deadly when it comes to relationships that need reconciliation or taken to a place of greater understanding. You show you care when you open the door and are willing to talk – and listen – communicating respectfully. Is there someone in your household that you need to communicate with? Pray – pray specifically – then talk. Open the door, with kindness and grace, to a conversation that needs to happen in your household. Don’t give the enemy another second of silence. It truly shows you care when you instigate loving, meaningful, purposeful and enjoyable conversations toward reconciliation….it’s enjoyable because God is so honored where He finds reconciliation.

Here is James 3:17-18 from the Message –

Real wisdom, God’s wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterized by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, {heaven’s happy!} not hot one day and cold the next, not two-faced. You can develop a healthy, robust community {household} that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor.

**{ } and italics added for emphasis and explanation

____________

Spend some time in prayer before you end this time of study and reflection. I just couldn’t make a video rushing us through the contents of this one lesson. It needs time. It needs participation from us. It needs our involvement. So, Enjoy God. Like Joseph, forgive and demonstrate love for your family, show them you care. And your household will experience the Beatific Blessings of God! There will be a happy among your home that is supernatural! That will exceed your mind! Overcome your life with an inexpressible and glorious JOY!

Enjoying and Caring With You,

lisa

 

 

Posted in

lisa rippy

I’m Lisa Rippy, a happily married woman to my wonderful Rip. We have 5 children and we live right outside of Madison, MS. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always had a love for all things “homey” from decorating, simplifying, remodeling, organizing and simply turning a house into a "Home Sweet Home." My passion is helping families live the life they long for in the interior of their hearts and homes. It all requires thought, planning and work that Rip and I both love to do! But if there is anything at all I can do to help you and your home life, please reach out to me. Nothing would thrill me more than to inspire YOUR heart and home!

3 Comments

  1. Jan Miller on June 15, 2016 at 3:48 pm

    I couldn’t find the pdf!

    • Lisa Rippy on June 15, 2016 at 11:33 pm

      Hi Jan! There is no PDF on this lesson…but you read along and write in your journal all the verses, answers, and thoughts to questions all along the way. (Trying to help women who are struggling with “how to journal” as they are having their quiet time. To read Scripture, think it through, look deeper into God’s Word…but the next habit for Members will have a PDF, and a couple of added links and printables.

  2. Jessi Wise on June 25, 2016 at 11:04 am

    Hi! The part about disrespect is something I have learned a lot about this week.

    In his book, “Loving Our Kids On Purpose”, Danny Silk talks about the importance of boundaries and choosing to be loving and respectful NO Matter HOW other people choose to act.

    Instead of barking orders, i can state what it is I will do, because I am the only person I can control. “I will be happy to talk to you when your volume matches mine.” Or “I will be happy to listen when you can speak with a kind voice” or “I will gladly take you to your game after you finish vacuuming your room” puts a pretty little fence around me.

    Also, choosing to be loving and respectful allows me to speak kindly in spite of my kids attitudes, and doesn’t let them control my attitude or responses. That allows me to be a powerful person.

    My household is becoming happier as I seek wisdom from the Bible and from His people. Thank you for cheering us on!

Leave a Comment





Subscribe to Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest thoughts and ideas from Interior Inspirations!
Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.