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He Gives Us a Heart to Know Him

Good Morning Girls Online Bible Study

Many years ago, as a young missionary in a new country, I was eager to explore the beautiful hills and vineyards near my new apartment. I was on a long walk in the Vienna woods. I had moved to Austria to work with young college students. New to the area, I did not realize how easy it was to get lost in the forested hills. I had no map, no water, no food, no jacket and at that time, no cell phone.

Venturing too far, too late in the day, the sun began to set and fear began to tug at my heart. What would I do if the sun went down before I found my way to safety? All of the paths looked the same, the woods became more ominous with the shadows of the sun sinking in the sky. My German was very poor and I could not read the signs.

A breath prayer emerged from my lips, “God, please, please help me. I am lost and I need to find my way back home before it turns dark. I am afraid and I don’t know what to do.”

Gradually, as I walked forward little by little, I began to see light shining through the trees that indicated a more populated area just below. I spotted a familiar building in the distance and followed its shadow until I came to the lower part of the woods where I had entered the woods hours before. Finally, I found the path that led me home. It was such a joy and relief to finally reach home, where I belonged.

Scripture often uses the metaphor of a pathway to describe our journey in life. Each of our paths and journeys of life are different, but each of us sometimes gets lost. Sometimes our pathways are covered with the darkness of sin, selfishness, difficulties with others, scars from our past. Often, our hearts are filled with fear as we look at the shadows and not to God. Yet, the more we walk the pathway of our lives with God, the more we will grow to understand His love.

Learning to know the heart of God as we walk our path is the key to experiencing His love more consistently, and learning to understand His will for our lives. We have to believe in His good will toward us to be able to experience His ever-present love. We must replace the darkness of fears or bitterness with the light of His loving desire to guide and bless us at each step along the way. We can only rest in His love when we have rid ourselves from the fear of our heart as we walk the path of our life with Him. His love will lead us home. His goodwill and promise to be with us, will give us security.

God’s love is not just a feeling that we are supposed to “muster” up. His love is based on His character and promise to be with us. I love our verse for today, because it gives us the substance of God’s commitment to us, amidst our own path of life, to assure us of His goodwill and love.

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The verse we have to read today has encouraged my heart so very much. Even though the people of Jeremiah’s time had rebelled against God’s ways and had compromised His will for their life, God still watched over them and promised them that in their future, He would do them good and not evil, that He would take them closer to His heart. This is what God promised them on their road ahead:

He would set his eyes–watch us–and willed them His goodness and presence to provide for the His children–us.

He would lead them from their place of banishment to their own land, from the dark path where they had walked to a new place–a path of life. His will was to guide them home and to to guide us home.

His heart is to build up his children, and not to overthrow them.

He will plant us and allow us to grow, and not allow us to be plucked up–pulled away from His presence and protection.

But most of all, we see God’s heart:

“I will give them hearts that recognize me–that knows me. They will be my people and I will be their God.” God wants to give you a new heart, a heart that is so close to His, that you understand deeply and experience in reality His deep love and commitment to you. God longs for us to be “His people” –His family, to own Him as our very own father, and he has already extended His son, Jesus, to adopt us, to be in community with Him, to guide and protect us. His love is not just a “feeling,” His desire is to love us in the foundational reality of our lives and He wants to guide us that we may be secure in belonging to Him.

If you feel lost on your path of life, or have any fear or feeling that you are alone, please know that God’s heart for you is so very good. He will guide you and bring you to know Him and to understand Him. Just give yourself to Him, as you are in all of your circumstances today–and let Him begin to lead you toward His love, His goodness and His desire to show you how to live with Him in harmony.

sally

 

 

 

 

 

Previous posts:

My Year Long Surprise
#YouAreLoved Book Release Day & {Giveaway}
Making of Disciples of ALL Nations
The Launching of a Dream
Because Sometimes You Need Reminded that You are Loved…

Special Video From Angela & Sally
#You Are Loved- Available for FREE in 7 translations!

Week 1- He Calls Us Beloved
Monday- Let’s Get Started
Wednesday- You Are Not Alone
Friday-We Are Loved!

Week 2- Knowing God
Monday- Chapter 2: Knowing God

 

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Comments

  1. Thank you so much for this message. I am the hurting mom of a son who is wandering further and further into the darkness and away from the family who loves him and the faith he was raise in. He is planning to move 3 states away to join his girlfriend – a girl who is a self-avowed pagan witch. My heart is breaking. I am praying that God will keep His watchful eye on him. I am praying that He will hold my son’s heart in His hands and not let him get completely lost in that darkness. I am praying that God will eventually lead him out of the darkness and back home.

    • Praying, praying for your son today. My own son just produced a movie called Confessions of a Prodigal Son because he has a heart for the straying youth who are caught in a storm of choices. I pray your mama heart will find comfort from God and I will pray for you today. Thanks so much for leaving your comment. You are on my heart.

    • Tiffany wirth says:

      Beth, you and your son are in my prayers.

    • Beth,
      I was one of those kids that moved away because I had stars in my eyes for a guy that I thought cared. We got engaged but even though my mom and others had seen right through him, it took me moving away to get those stars knocked out of my visual view. I started seeing him for who he really was, a user, drug-addict, and cheater. I thank God everyday for letting me see the truth and for unanswered prayers. I have given my heart and life to God and it is wonderful. Sometimes us kids just don’t want to see the nastiness the world throws at us. I will tell you this, I know God was with me the whole miserable journey, he kept me safe. I pray God that he keeps your son safe and that he opens his eyes to the truth. God is always there, and he has a plan.

  2. Tiffany wirth says:

    Good morning. I have been struggling with so many things, and the worst one would be that I have feared committing the unpardonable sin. When I was led to this study, I was so full of hope. I am still full of hope. I have seen for myself that God hasn’t abandoned me, and I know this study is helping me through this difficult time. I thank everyone who played a part in preparing this study. I know I truly needed it, to get into His Word and truly absorb the fact that He loves me. I can’t let Satan still my joy, and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing. It’s my prayer that by the end of this study, I am so full of joy that I can’t contain it. I love our Lord, and I am so thankful for Who He is.

    • Oh, do not worry, sweet one. His love is so much more powerful and strong and embracing than our weak and weary hearts. He is a refreshing water and sees us as mere toddlers muddling through. You are very precious to Him, and He died for you so that you would never ever have to earn His forgiveness on your own efforts. May you know HIs grace today.

  3. This study has helped my heart a lot. I am following along with the daily verses on the youversion app. I was wondering if it were possible to put the week’s memory verse underneath the verse we are to s.o.a.p. for everyday. That would be so helpful. If not I understand. I don’t want to sound ungrateful. Just an idea I had.

    • Edwena,

      Are you talking about putting the memory verses on the youversion app? We cannot change what is already submitted to the app. However that is a good idea I am sure the team will look into it for next time.

      This study has been very helpful to my heart as well. I am glad you were able to find us!

      Jami
      Leadership Encourager

  4. Celia aguilera says:

    I was so encouraged to see Sally make this comment that touched me deeply. Hit home to say the least: “HIS HEART IS TO BUILD UP HIS CHILDREN, AND NOT OVER THROW THEM”. I was overthrown today, and it hurt my being to the core. So, this is my prayer. My lord, I am at you seams of your clothing. Change me to believe the changes your are doing in and with me. I know father god that first is my insides which, I am excited to see what you have done and will continue to do. Now, its the insides you are doing incredibly. I plea to you my precious and holy father, please help me to become visible for all to see your power and influence over me. Fill with your spirit. My sisters my for me. Our lord is doing incredible things in this study. Starting with me. Amen!

    • Beautiful Prayer Celia – thank you for sharing with us!
      I prayed with you – for you!

      Blessings,
      Martha ‘Leadership Encourager’

  5. Brandi Carson says:

    Hi to all of the ladies out there doing this study! It has been so great so far, and it’s only week 2! I am chewing on all of the wonderful, life-giving verses, and the guiding blog posts are so helpful and encouraging. Sally…I loved your words in particular today…”Learning to know the heart of God as we walk our path is the key to experiencing His love more consistently, and learning to understand His will for our lives”. I wrote that in my journal to reflect on along with the verse today. As a single gal in my 30′s, I am so grateful for what God has done in my life and the beautiful surprises He has placed within it. But truth be told, my heart longs to understand why I am still single. Thankfully, He has given me a joyfully full and active single life that I also cherish deeply. But Satan’s lies often attack, and I have those moments of being unable to “feel” God’s love and understand why I can’t also have an “earthly” love. Thankful for the reminder today that I need to actively pursue the love and promises that God has already put out there for me to experience. It gives me such peace and opens my eyes to love on a greater, soul-deep level. Sending out a special prayer to my fellow single gals! My pastor, Bill Hybels, spoke words to me one weekend that I will never forget….You are a treasured child of the most High God! I pray you continue to be encouraged, loved, and valued for the treasure you are to Christ! Praying also for our married friends and mamas out there, who we know face their own challenges in marriage and parenthood! I love that both are gathered here! Love & Blessings to you all….

    • Brandi,
      Thank you for you joining us and sharing! Oooh so glad to hear its given you such peace and opened your eyes to love on a great, soul – deep level. Beautifully said! <3

      Blessings,
      Martha ‘Leadership Encourager’

  6. Amen! Thanks for sharing this,am so in need of knowing the will of God for my life’s journey especially after a broken relationship. I am now out to get closer to the heart of God, to know Him more and more.

    • Gladys,
      Thank you for sharing! Lifting you up in prayer for peace and stillness to hear God, to know His will for your life.
      Blessings,
      Martha ‘Leadership Encourager’

  7. I’m sorry for making a comment on the blog, but I don’t know how else to send a message to GMG. I live in Malaysia and my colleagues and I have been doing GMG studies for almost two years now. We were excited about studying You are Loved but are having difficulty getting the book. It seems that Amazon blocks the Kindle book from being purchased in Asia or the Pacific. I’m American, so I purchased a book for my Korean colleague, but still the book could be downloaded. Is it possible to do something about this? We use English for the study. Thanks. And Bless you for your beautiful ministry to women.

  8. Hi Brandi–
    I just want to encourage you, my sweet sister, and tell you how special you are to God. He is so in love with you, and I pray you may know deep down in your heart that His love is so deep for you. I can so relate to what you’re feeling. I spent so much of my single years wanting so much to be married. I longed so much for that earthly love. I married at the age of 31, but it has been extremely difficult because I now see how much value I placed on marriage and how much of my own worth I had tied into that dream. My value was not based in Christ. Now my marriage is very broken, and I am bringing all my broken pieces to God–every bit of my heart and marriage and identity–praying that He will heal my warped perceptions and teach me that I am His, and He loves me no matter what. I am doing it backwards–I should have established this in my heart before marriage(I honestly thought I had.)

    Don’t be too quick to give your single season away. Jesus loves you, and His plans for you are very good! Soak up every bit of protection and freedom and provision He’s giving you–that’s how special you are to Him! Continue waiting for God’s best for your life! I’ll be praying for you.

    p.s. Any sisters reading this, I’d really, really appreciate your prayers for healing and restoration in my heart and marriage. Thanks so much!

    • Hi Andra! Thank you so much for sharing your story and for your encouragement. I am so sorry to hear what you are going through, and I pray for healing and for broken things to be made new again! I would love to continue to hear from you and how this bible study is speaking to your heart. I did not sign up for a group study this time, as it is my first time doing an online study. I wasn’t sure what to expect. Thankful that we can still gather here in the posts. Be blessed!!

    • Andra,
      Thank you so much for sharing with us and offering such wonderful encouragement! When my first marriage broke down – I spent the 10 years working on me and developing a strong foundation with God.
      Lifting you up in prayer for healing and restoration in your marriage and in your heart.
      Blessings,
      Martha ‘Leadership Encourager’

  9. I look back at my life and can count how many times God saved my live and kept me safe from myself. It took me almost dying to see just how much God was telling me “I LOVE YOU”! When it hit me, I cried. Trying to find love in all the wrong places, as the song goes. When all along I had the most important love of all, Gods. He was with me in the hospital and held me when my lung collapsed and I was bleeding internally. He held me the night I was in so much pain from the breathing tubes and was having a bad reaction from the pain meds, I could feel him literally holding me until I went to sleep. My mom said I did not cry in pain that whole night. I was also visited by angels, who kept checking me. Thank God for not giving up on me.

    • Pamela,
      Ooh bless you for sharing – made me cry! I’m so glad you felt His loving arms embracing you! Praise the Lord you are here to share your story! Thank you!
      Blessings,
      Martha ‘Leadership Encourager’

  10. Christine says:

    I thoroughly enjoy this website. I am doing the intentionally focused bible study week 1 so far, and I am enjoying and being blessed by it.

Trackbacks

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  3. […] 2- Knowing God Monday- Chapter 2: Knowing God Wednesday- He Gives Us a Heart to Know Him Friday-Knowing God: When Doubt […]

  4. […] 2- Knowing God Monday- Chapter 2: Knowing God Wednesday- He Gives Us a Heart to Know Him Friday-Knowing God: When Doubt […]

  5. […] 2- Knowing God Monday- Chapter 2: Knowing God Wednesday- He Gives Us a Heart to Know Him Friday-Knowing God: When Doubt […]

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