About the Author

Jessica Turner is the author of Stretched Too Thin: How Working Moms Can Lose the Guilt, Work Smarter and Thrive, and blogs on The Mom Creative. Every day is a juggling act as she balances working full-time, making memories with her family, photographing the every day and trying to be...

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  1. Looks like i’m the first today!
    Wearing the virtues in a God weary-world is hard because it acceptable to cheat a little, lie a little and gossip, that is just so easy. When i find myself in ‘gossiping’ situation at work i will walk away and just appear busy doing something. Over time people have learnt not to share with me so readily, but it would be so easy to just stay .

    At church we had a lesson on honesty and we were challenged to be ‘perfectly honest’, no lying, cheating or stealing. I would say that i was an honest person, but wouldn’t i tell my best friend that her new hair-do was hideous of cause not or that the dress she had just bought was awlful, no i wouldnt do that either. It was interesting for me to note how the little things creep in. At work i noted that i would help myself, to milk, pats of butter, bread, jam and even do photocopying which wasnt for work and without permission. I became very aware of my dis-honesty in the small things and changed them.

    My favourite verse from the scriptures i just Col 2:14 – ‘Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailin it to his cross.’
    Jesus took my sins and nailed them to the cross with him and all i have to do is move on. But that i not easy when everything and everyone and just life in general seems to suggest otherwise.

    seed – accepting that i am not perfect
    water – know that i can change
    grow – know that my sins are forgiven even before i ask

    I think the next chapter is for me.

  2. Seed: What am I practicing? God is constantly building character in me, but am I choosing to obey or disobey? A daily goal for me should be to look different (wear the virtues better) than I did yesterday, a week ago, month ago, year ago, etc

    Water: Practicing RESTRAINT will help me chiselable (nice word) when God is building character in me.

    Bloom: CHOSEN HOLY DEARLY LOVED: I’m understanding that none of these actions are done BY me but done IN me b/c of Christ.

    This study is really changing my perspective and my heart!

  3. I love the image of the Amazon that Kelly gave us in this chapter. I so often feel like I am walking with Christ, but I am not seeing the fruit of that walk. I am not letting Him change the temperature and make up of my inner self so my self matches His self.

    CHOSEN, HOLY, DEARLY LOVED. I am continuing to embrace this truth. Also, I am choosing to walk from old ways, and to pray that God will seek them out in me and show me the path that leads away from them to the angel in the stone of my heart. He is showing me that it’s time to blend the rivers. To allow Him to change me FULLY instead of on the surface.

    • i had never heard this about the Amazon before . .and I loved how it parallels our walk with Christ – we walk along beside Him, keeping all our traits that we don’t want to let go off (like our anger or our judgemental attitudes) . .. and eventually we yield, we give them over to Him. and then we are one with Him.

      May we all yield to Him, maybe a little each day — but eventually we will be joined with Him. I love the verse in Galatians (2:20) I have been crucified with Him, it is no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me.”

  4. Seed: I was so liberated by the truth shared on page 68 that God is one who chisels things off. My job is to yield to Him and let the Spirit lead.

    Water: I agree with Angie’s assertion in the video — I need to get rid of my baby blanket so that I can stop “sucking my thumb.” I need to examine what I am practicing. I can’t be clothed in compassion and forgiveness if I am carrying around fleshy garments that are blinding and binding me.

    Grow: Praying that my “heart and longings begin to further and further dissolve into His” (see page 71).

  5. Seed: as written above accepting that I am not perfect and allowing God to chisel off the stuff that I don’t need.

    Water: letting God do the work in me and stop getting in the way!

    Growth: praying for a change of heart and mind

    Thanks so much for this book 🙂

    • I am enjoying this book study. I have a lot of chiseling to do, today I typed the following up to paste into my prayer Journal.
      I Believe, I am Chosen, I am Dearly Loved, I an Holy, I am Forgiven, All through my
      faith in God.
      I had a hard time typing these words in, for some reason I don’t feel worthy of them, they must be for someone else not me.
      I can easily read these words and nod my head in agreement but do I really feel justified?
      But they are for me, I just wrote them!
      Unsure as I am I will make the effort to commit myself to God and these words, through prayer and grace I will find a way to rest in him.
      Thanks for having a place for me to come every day.

  6. Seed: I recognize I’ve got some weeds that need to be pulled to allow God’s seed to take root. My head knows I’ve got to stop complaining and gossiping, let go of my insecurity, not be jealous when others seem to have it more together than me, halt impatience, especially with my family, and fight anger. My heart just needs to follow!!!
    Water: What I really need is a deliberate time with God. I try to do this but in order for my practices to be changed, I need to do it daily. Time spent in God’s Word is never lost. Prayer is another area I need to foster. I think I am seeing some of my old practices change as I dive into God’s Word.
    Bloom: Because of some new habits I have developed (reading my Bible, writing in my Prayer Journal- even though I need to devote more time to this), I am seeing a change in my practices. Yes, I still complain and gossip, but usually end it quickly. I find myself genuinely happy for others, I realize I have reason to be insecure because Christ has given me security and sometimes my heart even believes my head on this one. I am more patient with my son and husband, and am less angry. But there is still room for improvement. Thank God for His refining work, and a love that never gives up!!!

  7. Seed: GOD is at work in me but I am also to be working on myself as well. The Amazon is a great analogy of this.

    Water: I need to watch what I am practicing. I need to chisel off my old self with its practices. To know what I’m doing, and to avoid “tapping our hammers somewhat aimlessly” (p.72) I need to be indulging in Scripture daily. I know this is what I should do but it doesn’t always happen.

    Bloom/Grow: I could really relate to Kelly’s idea that I don’t want to justify the practices of the “old life”. I find myself not wanting to watch/listen to ungodly tv/music/movies, go to some places, etc. where my conscience is pricked… well, more like stabbed with a dagger. This is such an amazing feeling because then I know the Holy Spirit is working within me!

  8. I have always struggled with the words justificationa and santification. I didn’t quite understand what it meant. But the way you guys articulated it helped me a lot. So thank you! The practices that I have stopped way before this bible study but realize now that it is so relavent is watching t.v. and rated R movies. Watching does not provide me with any substance and encourages me to be envious and lazy. Watching rated R movies also does not provide me with any substances and brings images that I do not need to see. I get made fun of for that because I am only 26 but I stand my ground in the choices I make (which is so hard because of the criticism I get)

  9. Again, I am reminded about the importance of Scripture meditation and study, prayer and having people in my life that are not afraid to speak truth to me about what I need to be doing to strip away the old and begin anew. So thankful for that reminder….again!