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Oh, how challenging, rewarding, hard, helpful, illuminating, thought-provoking, revealing, impactful, life-changing, and heart-piercing this Heart of a Woman study has been! I love it!

The format is so unique. I love the daily homework. I have enjoyed the Scriptures we’ve been provided to pray through each day. It’s new to me to ask the Lord to search my heart and reveal my sin, especially sin that is deep rooted or so familiar I don’t even recognize it as sin.

It has been very helpful to me to systematically work through the sin identification process. We first worked on recognizing our sins, moved to the thoughts and feelings associated with those sins, and now, we are working on identifying the root causes of our sins. This is all by God’s grace. My sin nature identifies with my sin and doesn’t want to change.

Yes, I have loved this study, but it has not been easy! Naming my sin and writing it down have not been fun. I have been forced to admit that my thoughts and feelings are often self-centered and unloving. Now, throw in confessing all of that out loud to a group of women! That requires a willingness to be vulnerable and potentially uncomfortable. Praise God the women of Thistlebend are so warm and loving and genuinely seek to grow in their relationship with the Lord. We are all sisters in Christ. This bond creates a safe place to be transparent. The sharing in our group is precious.

This week has been especially illuminating for me. I have been praying for God to show me my root sins. I have always thought that many of my sins are rooted in selfishness. I covet my “me time” and assumed I did so because I was placing my needs first. But as I thought and prayed about it this week, I was led to ask: “Why am I selfish with my time?” And the Lord led me to a new truth: I am fearful. I am fearful the Lord will not provide the time I feel I need, and so I hold fast to it. I try to control it.

I remember once trying to pull up an overgrown bush in our yard. From the surface, it looked like I would be able to do it myself – if I just dug deep enough, surely I would be able to pull it out by its roots! But I soon learned that the roots were deeper than I thought and twisted together, which strengthened them and made them impossible to move. Ultimately, I had to use a sharp blade to cut through the tangled mess of roots and pull them out in small clumps.

I feel like the roots of the sin of my heart are like that overgrown bush! They have grown together and have formed a dense and tangled mess in my heart. It is easy to feel discouraged when confronted with those roots. It is then that I must fix my eyes on the Lord, and draw upon His strength. No root is too deep or strong for the Perfect Gardener!

Growing in Grace

 

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