Your One Thing from S3 E3 (Chapter 2, Pt. 1)

In Episode 1 Ivy Tyson challenged us to answer the following question every week:

What one thing is God asking you to do, think, or say differently this week, as you consider how to apply this week’s conversation to your life and context?

Do you find this as difficult as I do? I gave up this last week and adapted the challenge. My goal is to fool you into thinking I chose one thing when I actually chose two. Read my comments below to determine whether I succeeded, and then share your own one thing (or two :wink:).

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I was too tired and emotionally drained the other night to read anything serious, so I set aside the book by Ravi that I had been reading, and I turned to The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan. I found a priceless quote on p.35.

Auntie Ying is not hard of hearing. She is hard of listening.

This short statement pulled together my thoughts from Episode 3.

I enjoyed Ivy’s story about having coffee with Rick. He talked for 40 minutes. With only 5 minutes left before he had to go, he said, “So I really love sharing my ideas with people to see what they think. What do you think?”

I would not have handled the discussion as well as Ivy. I seldom have the wisdom to sit and listen for 40 minutes. Processing all that information and answering in 5 minutes is a skill I want to develop.

But the story didn’t end there. That evening Rick took Ivy on another 45-minute rabbit trail. A teenager finally broke through his intellectual barriers when she said, “I believe that God is real because I’ve experienced Him. He has told me things that were true about me and I love Him, and that’s why I think God is real.”

Rick was baffled. He was longing for love, for a God who cared about him. He turned to Ivy and asked, “Have you experienced God?”

Again I wonder how I would have answered. I’m too prone to doubt. I question God’s moving in my life. Was that really an answer to prayer, or would it have happened anyway? Are these good feelings the work of the Holy Spirit or just an emotional trip? Am I positive I’ve experienced God?

But God whispers in my ear, “Jen, keep listening.”

So that’s my one thing for the week. I want to listen better. I want to listen carefully to my friends, but more importantly, I want to listen to God. May it never be said of me, “She’s hard of listening.”

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Good morning! I was reading your comments and the question below, and it fits really well with what God has been showing me this past week.

I was listening to Joe and Vince tell stories about Ravi, and the story that really convicted me alongside the story of Rick was when a man began to go on a long angry rant at a forum and then turned to walk away. Then instead of being glad he was leaving, Ravi ran to the edge of the stage and begged him to come back to answer his questions. That got me thinking of the stories my education professors told us about their rough, angry, and cursing students. In both cases, there were pains, stories, and a broken heart behind the anger.

We must strive after Godly wisdom that is “first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy” (James 3:17). When we look past the emotions someone is portraying (not saying we should put them aside), we begin to see that there are stories that lead that person to that point whether it is a broken home, unkind words, lack of peace or love, etc. Then we can respond in Godly wisdom and love that sows peace.

To answer the question below, God is showing me I need to put aside my quick first responses and respond in the love of Christ that sees every person as an image of God who is in need of the love and saving grace of Christ.

[quote=“Jennifer_Wilkinson, post:1, topic:38193”]
What one thing is God asking you to do, think, or say differently this week, as you consider how to apply this week’s conversation to your life and context?

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Chapter 2 part 1
I’m completely stuck on Dawkin’s accusations against God. Ravi lays the argument out so clearly. I knew Dawkins is an outspoken atheist but I had to look up details on him, i.e.his education and profession. I’m so confused- how an educated person can be so passionate in their accusations against a God that’s fictional? Would he also make public and passionate arguments against Ursula and Randall, Pixar villains? Why would he waste his time? If we’re all dancing to our DNA then how can he fault Jesus followers for being anything different than just that if our DNA has programmed us to seek a creator? Hmmmm. I was probably supposed to get something more from this chapter but here I am stuck obsessing over Dawkins and imagining what great miraculous turn of events, something of Biblical proportion, God may have in store for him. :pray:t2::pray:t2::pray:t2:

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