Friday, July 01, 2016

Thriving with Jesus!

Summer series "Friday's Summer Fruits" with Donna Oswalt
"Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good..." Psalm 34:8

Last Saturday I attended a Women's Conference here in NC and heard speaker, Lisa Harper. Well-known as a speaker on the Women of Faith tour for eight years and author of eleven books, Lisa spoke on how to thrive while "Surviving as a Christian Woman in Today's World". Brought to NC by First Presbyterian Church, they graciously invited the community. We laughed and listened and learned together. We also got to meet her sweet daughter, Missy, that she adopted from Haiti. 
As Christian women we must learn to thrive and reflect the glory of Jesus on the mountains AND in the valleys. ~Lisa Harper
Taking us into the Gospel of Mark, Lisa spoke about "connecting with Jesus" and "reflecting the hope of Jesus". In worship, Lisa reminded us of our posture, "What matters most in worship is the posture of our hearts... we must be moving toward Jesus." While teaching from Mark, we learned the "key to THRIVING is to be preoccupied with Jesus." 
We can't just connect with Jesus; some of this must spill over." ~ Lisa Harper
As Lisa taught from Mark 10 about blind Bartimaeus, the lessons overflowed. The compassion Jesus has for the people and the passion of Jesus that pours out in recognizing His purpose at Calvary are major themes. Redemption and Restoration are the gifts of Christ! In Mark 10:46-49 we looked at particular word passages that help us understand the story of Bartimaeus and his healing by Jesus. Phrases like sitting by the roadside and Jesus, Son of David and rebuked him and Jesus stopped all tell the story of a healing but remain truths for us today. We must seek Jesus where we are, recognize Him as the Messiah, not be discouraged when the crowd criticizes us, and believe that Jesus will stop for us. Lisa said, "As Christians, the Sovereign call on our life is to share the love of Jesus with the world around us." Take some time to get to know Lisa via her web page and other social media; check out her books, too! ~dho

Yet when asked about her credentials, the most noticeable thing about Lisa Harper is her authenticity. During a recent interview she said, “I’m so grateful for the opportunities God’s given me but don’t forget, He often uses donkeys and rocks!” She went on to describe her greatest accomplishment to date as getting to be Missy’s mama. Because in April 2014, after a difficult two-year journey, Lisa finally got to bring her adopted daughter home from Haiti and she hasn’t stopped grinning since.

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