I just started a new Beth Moore lecture series on the book of Revelation. I was a little hesitant. I mean, Beth Moore and Revelation? Really? Actually, most of my hesitation revolves around the fact that the book of Revelation has always freaked me out a bit. Growing up, Sunday school teachers always talked about Revelation in regard to "the end times" and all of the horrible things that were going to happen before Christ's Second Coming. It was more a scare tactic than an in-depth study. But, I decided that if God had placed Revelation on the hearts of others in the congregation, then God must be wanting to say something.
I was pleasantly surprised by the first session. I learned that the word Apocolypse actually translates to an unveiling or a disclosure. How could I have missed that in two years of seminary? Revelation is a new revealing of Jesus Christ to us through the apostle John. It is communicated through figurative language so that each generation may find their own time in the reading. (The aforementioned comment was actually from our facilitator Karen, but I thought it was brilliant.)
Throughout the ten week study, Beth Moore challenges you each week to pray and seek a new revelation of God in your life. I must confess that asking God for a revelation makes my stomach begin to squirm in anxiety. It's been my experience that if you ask God to reveal himself, he will, and you'd better be ready for anything! I'm always afraid that God is going to pull me into some sort of life-altering decision, upset the careful balance I've worked so hard to create, and send me scrambling for a foothold which he always provides, but not until after I've fallen for a bit. But I'm going to do it, because I feel like God has some things he wants to tell me. And really, I want to hear them.
The other challenge Beth presented to us was to give up something that has been holding us back for the ten weeks of our study. We read from Revelation 1:4-5 in which Christ is described as the one who loves us, has freed us, and has made us to be a royal priesthood. She asked us to imagine a life free from whatever binds us, whether it be fear, anger, compulsion, bitterness, etc... and to put it down for just ten weeks throughout the course of the study. I've been pondering this for a bit, and I'm not sure what I need to put down. I think, as always, it's the need to have things worked out. It all goes back to the need for THE PLAN. There are a lot of things up in the air now for me, and I need to just let go and be at peace with that. God will work it out in his way and time.
I also need to let go of emotional eating. It's become a bad coping mechanism. When my kids are driving me crazy, I need to forgo the ice cream and instead, allow myself five minutes of quiet to re-center. Instead of a big, greasy, cheesy pizza at the end of a long week, I can take my kids on a walk or to a park, or sit outside on the back porch after the kids are in bed and have a glass of wine with my husband. I need to let my body be and do what God designed it to do. Easier said than done! :-)
So this is my journey the next ten weeks. I'm praying it will be a productive one and one that allows me to grow closer to God. I would encourage you to pray for revelations these next ten weeks as well, then let me know what happens. I love seeing all of the amazing things God can do!!
Blessings and Peace,