We have a great Redeemer. When we feel that all is lost, all is broken...we have a Savior who restores, heals and redeems that which was lost.
This Bible study, Joseph - Keeping a Soft Heart in a Hard Place, is a gift of redemption for me. It is my "pain turned platform." It is the good that God worked from "all things" - the good, the bad, the ugly - as He worked His plan for my life. It is a hard earned and bittersweet blessing. And I am so amazed that I have the opportunity to present it to you today.
My heart was broken. And it hurt for a long time. But as I read the story of Joseph in Genesis 37-50 I determined that I would one day emerge from my pain the same way Joseph emerged from his prison...healed and useful to God. Sticking with Joseph close enough to hear his wounded heart beat, I learned that he had kept his hurt heart soft. He hadn't erected walls of self-preservation. He didn't withdraw in self-pity. And he didn't push people away with bitterness and hate. Instead he hoped and put his faith in a big God...and kept on loving.
I wanted what Joseph had. So I determined to live the way Joseph lived.
And God provided healing. Complete, lovely, scar-free and glorious healing. And as a sweet and unexpected bonus He put a new Bible study in my heart...one I couldn't wait to share with other women, especially those who may have been hurt. It's not a study I would or could have written two years ago. But it is a precious gift that emerged from a painful season...because we have a great Redeemer.
That's right. Yay! This is my first Bible study to include teaching videos!!! Yippee! God provided a brilliant videographer at the right place, time and price, and he produced beautiful videos of my teaching sessions. I'm so thrilled and thankful.
The videos are each about 25 minutes. You can do the study with or without the videos. They are totally optional, but I know many women love being able to hear the author's heart and voice. So I'm very pleased to be able to offer these eight sessions on DVD to you...eventually. We're still working on the packaging, so it will be another month or so before they're ready. But they're coming!!!
This is not just a verse-by-verse Bible study of Genesis 37-50, but it is that. And it's not just a study of Joseph, the guy with the great coat, the warped family and the ghastly ride, but it is that, too. Really, this Bible study is a study of the heart...the human heart. It's a peak into Joseph's heart that gives us a few clues about how he kept his wounded heart soft so that God could heal him completely.
Yes, I wrote it on the heals of my own hurtful experience, but it's not about me. You won't find me belly-aching and licking my wounds here. You'll find God's promises, His prescription for healing, His truth and His instructions. You'll find ointment for your wounds, compassion for your grief and encouragement for healing. It's a safe place, but one that encourages you to press on in faith, keep loving, hold on to hope and keep your focus on God.
And you don't have to be in a hard place to benefit from this study. Let's face it. Everyone will find themselves in a pit of one sort or another eventually. And when you find yourself there, you'll be glad you spent some serious time in Joseph's presence.
If you would like to help me spread the word about this Bible study...to your friends, your Bible study teacher, your sister, whoever...please leave me a comment either here or on my Facebook page. Oh, and "like" the page while you're there, if you will.