Do you have a supportive community of Christian women in your life? Some of us at Holy Hen House met because of a weekly bible study that began several years ago. It continues today and the location hops around our houses. The opportunity to take time out during the middle of the week (we meet after kids bedtime) and study God's Word with other women is what brought us together. In the beginning some of us didn't even know each other but now we are close friends and are SO thankful for the quality time we spend around the table sipping coffee and sharing our lives. So! Do you have some friends or know some women (soon to be friends!) that you can carve some time out of your week and dig into God's Word together? If yes, great! Use this book for your next study! If not - this is a great excuse to get one started.
This giveaway includes THREE Bible Moms books and ONE adorable tote to carry your Bible and new book in! Why have three books go to one winner? Well... this giveaway is for you to share! One book for you and two books to give to two other women that you'd like to read through the book and Bible with. There is even a chapter in the book that includes tips for leading a small group study - how to avoid husband bashing, conversation hogs and gossiping are great reminders. It may feel like a lot of effort to start but once you finish your first study together you will be looking forward to the next. Studying the Bible isn't just to learn what God says (which is great by all means!) but also for the Holy Spirit to strengthen your faith and work through your life. Get ready to grow in ways that you cannot even imagine.
Amber Albee Swenson is the author of Bible Moms: Life Lessons from Mothers in the Bible. Bible Moms is twelve Bible studies probing the heart of God on what it means to be the kind of mother He calls us to be. It's about examining our hearts, confronting our sin, finding the truth of scripture and applying it. She also wrote The Whisper Theory and writes a devotional blog at www.biblemoms.com. In 2011, she started putting on seminars for women with the intent of bringing the Bible to life in tangible, applicable ways. She is married, has four children, a dog and a cat. For fun she scrapbooks and watches murder mysteries. Her other pastime is meeting friends for coffee (although she never drinks coffee, only smoothies or tea) or for walks. She has some fantastic friends who keep her afloat, give lots of advice, direction and prayers.
Corissa Nelson Art is giving away one of her new canvas tote bags based off of Colossians 3:12-17. Don't you love her design? It is perfect to carry a Bible Moms study book, bible, cellphone (just in case the little ones wake up!) and whatever else you may need for bible study. Corissa is a designer and artist in Wisconsin, with a background in architectural design and historic preservation. She uses her knowledge of form, composition, and presentation to provide art and design for individuals, non-profits, small businesses, and WELS churches. Come see Corissa's new website and keep updated on her latest designs and love of all things coffee on her facebook page too.
Now that you know the basics let me just share some of my thoughts on Bible Moms: Life Lessons from Mothers in the Bible. Typically, I am a bible study and devotional book sceptic. I prefer choosing a book of the bible and reading through it with my friends letting the discussion and prayer time happen naturally.
Here is where Amber got me.
Amber is that friend. The friend that looks through your heart and tells you exactly what you need (maybe not want) to hear and makes you love her by being ever so gentle and just plain right! She is a wonderful storyteller and she makes the moms mentioned in the bible relatable. Thousands of years are shortened from when these women lived and cultural differences are blurred as Amber takes a bible mom's story and makes it relevant to my own. Amber asks questions that help me see the answer for myself... What is my motive? Am I manipulative? What is my top priority? Who is really leading my home? God? my husband? or ME?
Amber is discerning. Here's one example of her questions that I just love... it's not an easy one word answer to get past this one.
"Do you ever find yourself praying and trying to explain a situation to the Lord? Or, do you offer solutions to your problems to the Lord? For instance, have you asked God to give you a raise so you can pay off your debt? Have you ever considered doing that is assuming God doesn't understand your situation? You assume if God did understand, He would have already given you a raise, so you need to tell Him how your debt is likely to get paid. For some people, a raise would indeed do the trick, but if overspending is a problem, no amount of money could pay off debt you keep accumulating. Consider the way you pray, and consider the depth of this passage. Is your prayer life in need of some fine-tuning?" (p.88, Lesson Seven: Hannah)
Whew!!! This is the kind of friend I want to go to when I can't see my actions or choices clearly. I may not be able to see her in person but reading through her book I feel as though she's right here mentoring my heart to God. Amber's great understanding of the Bible is shared naturally and doesn't come off forced or dry like a textbook.
Amber is humble and gentle. God's love for us isn't taken for granted in her writing. On a particular rough day my heart was broken, my temper flared and all I wanted to do was give up. Amber reminded me of God's promises...
"God has promised to never leave or forsake us. At the point when we don't know if we can go on, He always offers help, whether in the form of family members, friends, a sermon that says exactly what we need to hear, or something else. Like Mary, we need only to go through life saying to the Lord, whatever comes our way, "I am your servant. May it be to me, whatever you want, because I trust in You to see me through whatever you give me." What peace we have when we leave our lives totally in God's hands." (p.144, Lesson Eleven: Mary)
Overall, what I like most about Bible Moms is that God's Word doesn't take a back seat. Each chapter is saturated with Bible passages in a way that has me flipping through my Bible to see what God has to say about each topic. I don't think that I have ever said "I couldn't put that bible study book down"... until now.
Bible Moms includes topics such as:
Resisting Satan and His Schemes
Waiting on the Lord
Mothers-in-Law and Daughters-in-Law
Guiding Our Husbands
When Children Fall Away
How to Respond to God's Call in Our Lives
The Importance of Christian Fellowship and others!
Let me encourage you (once again!) to find or start a small group to study God's Word and share prayer with. It is a unique blessing that can be overlooked. You will make valuable friendships that last a lifetime. Let us know if you start a group or if you have one that you can invite others to! We'd love to hear!
Who is your favorite mom mentioned in the Bible? Eve, Sarah, Rebekah, Jochebed, Rachel, Leah, Hannah, Elizabeth, Mary, Timothy's mother Eunice (even his grandmother Lois!)...? Tell us why!