Our "triad" bible study is reading through Philemon and Hebrews 1-6 this last week. This week we are unable to meet and the last couple days I haven't read my readings because we had a few extra days in between our meetings. Poor excuse, I know. One of the girls in our group canceled this week so we are meeting on Monday. I decided to open up my bible study booklet on the apostle Paul, and low and behold the last place I left off, is on the book of Philemon. It is not a coincidence. It is fun to see the puzzle pieces of life work together- I had to quit this bible study from Beth Moore because I wasn't able to comit fully every week because of babysitting issues, but now I know why. It is sooo encouraging and exciting to me to see God move in this way. I have experienced this week God moving in big ways and just stretching of my faith, just as I had prayerfully asked. God is so good. As for Haiti, I am always praying that people are being rescued.. that they get the help they need before it's too late. Although they are totally bombarded with patients.... those patients are getting rescued and the funds have come in to support that service. Now I am praying for space, strength, and healing.
Back to the bible study. I love how Beth takes a one page book of Philemon and just shoots me with tons more information that i normally would have never gotten. In a nutshell, Paul basically is telling Philemon that he should welcome in Onesimus. Beth gives background info that Philemon must have been rich enough to own a large house to have Onesimus as a slave. Onesimus must have run away and possibly stolen something : (verse 18) He also indicates that he might have led Philemon to Christ (verse 19) -- I would have never picked up on those things... also - Beth pointed out the significance of Mark in this passage. (Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ, sends you greetings, and so do MARK, Aristarchus, Demas, and Luke, my fellow workers) As I re-read Acts 15: 37-38, I remembered that John Mark was the reason Paul & Barnabas as separated... Paul was just not sure that Mark should be traveling with them because Mark had deserted them previously. Two things came about this, in my opinion. Barnabas and Paul separated to reach more people, instead of sticking together. #2, because of this argument between Paul & Barnabas, Paul speaks from experience in now letting Mark be apart of his fellow workers, even though he had a previous 'grudge' against Mark. Now they are both serving together for Christ.
So that's the furthest I've gotten , and I am so excited to come back to read more. It has been refreshing to me today to read and it reminds me of how much fun learning is. I am thinking about doing another bible study book myself this summer, along with my triad just because I just love being fed like this. I am still praying that I can really balance my time better and allow enough time to do the things God wants me to do- such as my readings, and pick and prioritize my exercising, cleaning and fun things like finishing kate's quilt or maybe even just resting. I am really hoping that I can discern the best things for me and the things that matter most. I hope this post makes sense... some times I am just so excited to share that I don't think about the words I am putting onto the page, I just write!