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Sovereign God (Ephesians – Week 3)

February 9, 2014

I meditate on it all the time—God’s sovereignty. It’s a truth that sustains me, strengthens me, and encourages me . . . a truth that lifts and refocuses me. When I have no earthly answers, and I’m headed to despair, I call it to mind and stand on it—God is sovereign.

Not that I fully understand it. Somehow, we also have a part to play. God, in His infinite wisdom, uses our prayers, our words, and our actions. And even when we’re not praying, saying, or doing what we should, God works in that too. In the last couple of weeks on the blog, we’ve talked about God’s sovereignty a bit. And I love that we’re just fine with not understanding it fully. We don’t have to fully understand it to trust in it, and stand on it. And yet, I love that there’s so much to glean from the Bible about it.

I pray that this week’s lesson is an encouragement to you. You can find the video here.  The discussion is my favorite part. I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes this week!

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39 Comments

  • Reply Deon A February 9, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    Hey Kim,

    Love your hair :)

    Wow these weekly study never ceases to amaze me! There is so much to reflect on this week. Will be back hopefully by mid-week to comment.

    Amazing way to start off the week focusing on Gods Sovereignty.

    Will be back

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 9, 2014 at 10:47 pm

      Hey Deon! You know I’m smiling…I think you’re the first to watch each week. :) And thank you!…a little experimentation with perm rods. ;)

      “Amazing way to start off the week focusing on Gods Sovereignty”…amen…I’m amazed how much His sovereignty comes up in my heart and mind. May we maintain a God-ward focus. Looking forward as always to your midweek meditations. :)

  • Reply Kara February 10, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Powerful!! Nice hair too:)

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 11, 2014 at 9:50 pm

      Praise God! And thanks so much, sis…you know it means a lot coming from you :))

  • Reply alli February 10, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    Ok i already know your blog kim was heaven sent to me being you always deal with issues directly almost specifically to my life, my question is do you ever miss it? I see folks walking by andvim thinking ok you are living my life is ‘so and so’ had not made that poor choice. Of course according to this God already favored that in too. Still sometimes i always feel like im living plan “b” im sure my momma can attest to this given im not who she planned on my being. I think if he or she had ‘only’ maybe i wouldnt b ‘x y or z’ so its gonna take ‘work’ to figure that God includes our mistakes and mishaps too. Thanks for this im having questions about relationships and was thinking about the whole predetermination thing this week. ‘Who He foreknew’ bc many times i feel like i missed my blessing

    • Reply Tamara Davis February 11, 2014 at 8:03 am

      Naw shuga, you didn’t miss it! Stay in sync with Him and He will lead you right to it :)

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 11, 2014 at 9:59 pm

      Sis, each one of us has made poor choices, mistakes, and out-and-out sinned. God *had* to factor it in because that’s the nature of sinful man. ;) That’s why it’s so amazing that He works ALL OF THAT together for good. I honestly don’t sit and wonder what my life could’ve been if this thing or that thing had happened. You’ll drive yourself crazy doing that. :) All you can do is pray for God to order your steps NOW and trust that He’s able to make your paths straight…which He’s well able to do. And if you’re in Christ, how could you have missed your blessing?? You’re blessed with EVERY spiritual blessing in the heavenly places…there’s no way you could miss it! Trust that God’s got your life under control, and that He will guide you where you should go…because it’s TRUTH.

  • Reply alli February 10, 2014 at 12:06 pm

    God already ‘factored’ sorry

  • Reply Deborah (Debbie) February 10, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    Good day Kim!

    Wow. You KNOW the truth of God’s sovereignty is one that I get REAL excited about. But it makes my mind spin too. It makes sense to me — even the parts that don’t make sense that bring in our responsibility and choices, the choices of others…I don’t know how, but it seems that a God who is like our God (and there is only ONE of those kinds of gods) can work all of this together and reconcile it and be perfectly just and righteous and gracious and good and…while doing so…and I need to accept and embrace and rest in that BY FAITH)…

    I took copious notes :) . I am meditating on a few things with respect to how seeing this truth again through todays study speaks to me and applies to a number of situations in my life and the life of those I love and God brings across my path to care for…but you said “It’s never out of the blue to God.” Oh, my I can’t even begin to tell you where that had me going and inviting me to rest…but it was a reminder that I needed and has me going back over a number of things to offer them all up to God with the realization that I can rest easy from all the “if only’s” I might be tempted to rehearse. And I love this “There is nothing about your life that has escaped His notice.” Isn’t that something…and here’s something I know to be true — if God notices, He has acted. When 1 Peter says that we can cast all our cares on Him for He cares for us, we are being told that we can cast ALL our cares (past present future/of our making, the making of others or circumstance) and He has made us and those things His personal concern…and He’s made provision (He’s provided before we needed) for us and for His purposes.

    While (again) I am called to make choices and decisions (just as good old Rehoboam was) and am accountable for them — and God chooses to work through them, STILL He is able to “direct the hearts of kings” and Debbies (Proverbs 21:1) (You might not see the “and Debbies” in your version of Proverbs 21:1 but really, it’s there!), He can frustrate or prosper advice (2 Sam.17:14), He is able to take random arrows and hit the mark. He is able to work all this — our will, choices, actions and His sovereignty together…Its a wonderous thing.

    (This is something God has been working on making clear to me, I think: My ability to choose and to act and in fact, the ability of others to choose and to act, NEVER limits God’s sovereignty…EVER!!!!)

    Just how do we live in the wonder that God’s sovereignty is not about fatalism but instead invites us to rest and wonder??!!! Its a mystery worth celebrating!!! But then all God things really are worth celebrating :)

    Thank you for this good food…its better than chocolate :)

    • Reply Deborah (Debbie) February 10, 2014 at 4:40 pm

      P.S. I forgot this…I may be accountable and responsible, but my HOPE is in God — not in myself or my choices — and He is faithful to work this all out according to HIS plans and purposes which are always good. YAY HIM!!!

    • Reply Rhonda J. Smith February 11, 2014 at 7:05 am

      Debbie,

      You hit on my two favorite parts of the video too: “It’s never out of the blue to God” and “There is nothing about your life that has escaped his notice.” Both these bring great comfort and amazement (which I hope to write more on below). You said it best for me here: “I don’t know how, but it seems that a God who is like our God (and there is only ONE of those kinds of gods) can work all of this together and reconcile it and be perfectly just and righteous and gracious and good and…while doing so…and I need to accept and embrace and rest in that BY FAITH)…” Yes, well stated, Sis. And I accept and embrace and rest in that BY FAITH with you.

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 11, 2014 at 10:16 pm

      Good evening Debbie! I’m totally nodding and smiling and half-chuckling at this…”It makes sense to me — even the parts that don’t make sense…” I know exactly what you mean! :) It DOES seem that “a God who is like our God” would be perfectly capable of reconciling everything our minds deem irreconcilable. After all, that’s why we bow and defer and praise and worship…because there is NO ONE like HIM… You always get me ready to praise. :)

      I’m also nodding at the fact that there ALWAYS seem to be “situations” where we need to apply the truth we know. Somehow, when new wrinkles pop up, especially ones we’ve never seen, it takes a minute to think, “Oh, yeah, God can handle that TOO.” “I can rest in THIS too.” I like the way you put this…”…has me going back over a number of things to offer them all up to God…” Yes, Lord, may we offer every little thing up to You, even those things we thought we surrendered and gave gotten hold of again…

      And AMEN to God making our cares His personal concern. What?!? That’s mind-blowing. HE CARES. It’s such a simple statement, but so powerful…because as you said, it also means “Hh has acted.” “…provided before we needed…” *pause and insert additional praise party*

      “STILL He is able to ‘direct the hearts of kings’ and Debbies…” I’m loving this because I think of this verse all the time in relation to my husband…that if God can direct the hearts of kings, surely He can direct good ol’ hubby. But I need to call it to mind more often FOR MYSELF…lol It’s such an awesome verse that (using your words) invites us to rest. I need to get an arrow and prop it somewhere prominently in my home to remind myself that He’s able to take that random arrow and cause it to hit the mark. I’m seriously about to Google arrows…:)

      “… the ability of others to choose and to act, NEVER limits God’s sovereignty…EVER!!!!)”…but what about our children??? :) That’s where I have to remind myself often…that God is sovereign over THEM too. I love that I can rest in that…though I need to rest in that more often. :) These are indeed mysteries worth celebrating. Standing in awe with you at this better-than-chocolate feast.

  • Reply Nichole Christian February 10, 2014 at 10:59 pm

    Wow,Kim:

    I really thought this would be the week I’d be brief. I mean, what more could there be for me to say/ feel?

    Yet, the deeper we dive and the more you illuminate God’s nature through this study, the more I hear the voices of my grandmothers, women who believed in “walking and talking with Him. ” They trusted that they were, “His own,” recipients of a joy “none other has ever known.”

    My paternal granny loved to tell her knuckle- head grandchildren , me in particular, that we’d “understand it better by and by.” Her words Cantonese to my ears. Old lady church speak.

    But look at God working through His word bringing it all back and growing me up. I feel like I’m in grad school and this blog/ this study is an advanced seminar. The sisters who gather hear are teaching me. Thank you all!

    All day, I’ve been floored by one verse:”being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will.” So deep!

    Two hours after I watched the video for the first time, I received what would’ve ordinarily been crushing news : a project I’d poured a ton of heart, sweat and time preparing for launch suffered an irrevocable setback. Though I winced as I took the news in , I also heard that verse playback in my head. And then Romans 8:28. And then more ” nutty news .”

    But the verse wouldn’t let me wilt. Not this time.
    It lodged itself in my head like a cornerstone, inviting me to stand and to believe that God’s will is sovereign, sufficient and sure to be for my good so long as I trust who he’s said I am — his child. I’m too smitten now to fall back on doubt.I ‘m more curious about doing life_ good times & rough times_ His way. Glory to growth. I bet my grandma is doing some kinda a dance up in heaven.

    Her truth is suddenly mine. I am starting to understand it better by and by. His grace is enough!

    • Reply Marietta Taylor February 16, 2014 at 3:30 pm

      Nichole,

      When you wrote “But the verse wouldn’t let me wilt”, it reminded me of Isaiah 58:10-11. Specifically verse 11 stuck out where it says “And the Lord will continually guide you, And satisfy your desire in scorched places And you will be like a watered garden, And like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.” You were in a scorched place (your bad news) BUT GOD had given you a verse that “watered” you so you would not wilt before the enemy. What a testimony that is.

  • Reply Nichole Christian February 10, 2014 at 11:01 pm

    Wow,Kim:

    I really thought this would be the week I’d be brief. I mean, what more could there be for me to say/ feel?

    Yet, the deeper we dive and the more you illuminate God’s nature through this study, the more I hear the voices of my grandmothers, women who believed in “walking and talking with Him. ” They trusted that they were, “His own,” recipients of a joy “none other has ever known.”

    My paternal granny loved to tell her knuckle- head grandchildren , me in particular, that we’d “understand it better by and by.” Her words Cantonese to my ears. Old lady church speak.

    But look at God working through His word bringing it all back and growing me up. I feel like I’m in grad school and this blog/ this study is an advanced seminar. The sisters who gather hear are teaching me. Thank you all!

    All day, I’ve been floored by one verse:”being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will.” So deep!

    Two hours after I watched the video for the first time, I received what would’ve ordinarily been crushing news : a project I’d poured a ton of heart, sweat and time preparing for launch suffered an irrevocable setback. Though I winced as I took the news in , I also heard that verse playback in my head. And then Romans 8:28. And then more ” nutty news .”

    But the verse wouldn’t let me wilt. Not this time.
    It lodged itself in my head like a cornerstone, inviting me to stand and to believe that God’s will is sovereign, sufficient and sure to be for my good so long as I trust who he’s said I am — his child. I’m too smitten now to fall back on doubt.I ‘m more curious about doing life_ good times & rough times_ His way. Glory to growth. I bet my grandma is doing some kinda a dance up in heaven.

    Her truth is suddenly mine. I am starting to understand it better by and by. His grace is enough!

    • Reply Rhonda J. Smith February 11, 2014 at 7:13 am

      Nik,

      You have me crying over here, on my knees crying and shouting and so full of joy! Yours words, beautifully strung together as only God created for you to do the way you do, aren’t just beautiful aesthetically but spiritually. They are proof of a God working all things after the counsel of His will and His bringing us where He has destined for us to be in due season. I AM SO PROUD OF YOU AND AMAZED AT GOD AT WORK IN AND THROUGH YOU AND THE POWERFUL TRUTHS YOU HAVE UNEARTHED AND THE WAY YOU COMMUNICATE THOSE TRUTHS. You are a faith walker and a faith writer. Keep walking and writing. Your journey has a home in many hearts!

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 11, 2014 at 10:34 pm

      Ahhhhh, this is sooooo good… I’m with Rhonda. In fact, I could cut and paste Rhonda’s comment and insert it here because I couldn’t agree more that your words were so “beautifully strung together”…and not “just beautiful aesthetically but spiritually.” You definitely have a beautiful way of expressing yourself, yet it’s more than that…there’s a beauty in the way you express the happenings down deep in your soul. And there’s a beauty in the way you capture God’s working in your past, through your grandmothers, and how He’s brought you to “understand it better by and by.” Wow…. I’m still meditating on all you said.

      And THEN to be able to put it into immediate action with a very real setback. Yes, yes…such a huge difference between wincing (our natural immediate reaction) and wilting. I LOVE when God’s word takes such deep residence in us that it won’t let us wilt. “It lodged itself in my head like a cornerstone, inviting me to stand and to believe that God’s will is sovereign…” Can I just stare at those words? They mean so much because I’ve been there, in the midst of a crushing situation where wilting seemed the obvious thing to do…yet I couldn’t The power of God’s Spirit is real. The power of His Word is real. And when it’s YOURS, it can’t be taken away.

      I had to pause and thank God (again) for the depth of His work in your heart. Glory to growth indeed! Your grandma is FOR SURE doing some kinda dance. As Rhonda said, we are seeing living proof of God working all things after the counsel of His will, right here on this blog. All we can do is PRAISE. Blessings to you, sis…I love that you couldn’t be brief. :D

      • Reply Rochelle February 15, 2014 at 6:49 pm

        Nichole,

        Your words touched my soul as well, and really made me think of all the times I’ve allowed situations to send me wilting rather than hold onto to a nugget of God’s truth. So real and so powerful, especially your having the courage to do life, through good and bad, His way. Making a mental bookmark.

        May we all remember, He is indeed sovereign and His plans CANNOT be thwarted!

        Thanks Kim and to all for your uplifting words!

        Blessings,

        ~ R

  • Reply Rhonda J. Smith February 11, 2014 at 7:45 am

    Kim,

    You are da bomb! When can you come to Detroit to teach? Maybe I need to hook it up! LOL. I’m serious, though.

    This study right here took me to greater heights and deeper depths, right when I needed it. This is a season where the enemy frequently casts a spirit of oppression over me. I will be perfectly fine, things going great in my family, no schisms with friends or acquaintances and then I will just be overcome with gloom. As I told you God had me return to Ephesians to study for ways to war, specifically for me to fight off these oppression attacks from the evil one. My outline included observing from each chapter who I am in Christ. Well, I missed most of my identity that you identified in chapter 1, reserving those for my section on ‘what God has done for us.’ Of course if God “chose us in Him” then I am chosen and if He “predestined us to adoption” then I am adopted. Thank God for your eyes and His leading me to you to teach me. Thank you. I now have more identity weapons to defeat the enemy with, armor to protect me from his spiritual attacks.

    As I told Debbie, the two areas from the study that struck me most were “It’s never out of the blue to God” and “There is nothing about your life that has escaped his notice.” I love how you illuminated the first with the account of Ahab’s death and the second with King Rehoboam seeking unwise counsel. I have read both these, even did a study on the need for seeking and following wise counsel using this Rehoboam account as an example, but never had I focused on the “randomness” of the arrow hitting Ahab in the joint of his armor or that Rehoboam following bad counsel “…was a turn from the Lord, that He might establish His word….” Though I understand that us having free will doesn’t mean the choices we make are ‘free’ in the sense that we make them without any other influences, it still remains a mystery to me exactly how God works to influence our choices for His glory and our good. It doesn’t bother me, no matter how curious I am. My faith in Him to be faithful has strengthened and I have greater resolve to serve Him with all my being. My default will not be to worry but trust in a God who has my life well in hand.

    Thank you, Sis, as always, for your love for God, His word and us. This has been a blessing indeed!

    • Reply Tamara Davis February 11, 2014 at 9:45 am

      Hi Rhonda! The identity part has me thinking too. The enemy did his best to rob of me that for a very long time. He’s the ultimate identity thief! I am learning who I am in Him and will be meditating on that more and more. My pastor preached a message called “Your In Christ Image” and it may be time to repay a visit to that message. The Word is so rich with life changing truths and it’s up to us to dig in and grab hold of them. Kim is doing an awesome job of planting and watering. The Lord is surely getting the increase.

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 11, 2014 at 10:56 pm

      :)) Your encouragement means so much, sis! Truly. I know you’re a serious student of the Word, so I thank God that you’re finding this study to be a help for you. Only God. And HOW GOD it is that this study would come right in the season in which the enemy brings torment. First, what a blessing that you recognize what it is, who it’s from, and when it comes. And it’s so awesome that God gave you a plan to study Ephesians…talk about this not being a random moment. God knew the season you’d be in and had already ordained what you needed, which you had done…and here we are, reinforcing truths that you need. I’m praising Him! Praise God that you have more identity weapons…and powerful ones at that!

      Ahab and Rehoboam…I truly think I focused on these aspects in my studies because I’ve been so fascinated with God’s sovereignty. :) Some years back, I specifically studied it, and ever since, it jumps out at me no matter what I’m reading. It transformed my walk with God in so many ways to be able to trust and rest in that…though it IS a mystery to me how He does what He does. I love that awe-factor with God. Love how you put this…”My faith in Him to be faithful has strengthened”…exactly!…and AMEN.

      Thank you as well, sis! You have blessed me tremendously. I love what God is doing in our hearts here.

  • Reply Tamara Davis February 11, 2014 at 8:29 am

    Good morning everyone! I watched the video this morning and what a good way to start the day. My favorite part is “according to the counsel of His will”. Then you married it with Romans 8:28! YES!!! (By the way, I am still reading David’s life and I almost skipped the part of the video when you started talking about him because it was like someone telling the end of the story. LOL)

    After watching the video, I started thinking about how as a little girl, I was always left out, the last one to be picked on the teams, picked on by others, bullied, etc. Today, God is using me to be an encourager and it still amazes how He always points me to the person in the room who is isolating him/herself. I don’t like for people to feel or be left out. It’s all apart of the will He has for my life! I drove in to work thinking also thinking about how 20 years ago this month, my life changed. Seemed like the event just happened last year, because it stands out so vividly, but today, God is using that to help me minister to other women! Glory! 20 years ago, I had no idea. I am starting to see so many of the pieces of my life come together for such a time as this, according to the counsel of His will.

    Thanks for such a rich and encouraging study Kim. Yes, I started my list. :)

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 11, 2014 at 11:12 pm

      Good evening Tamara! :) I’m laughing at the part about telling the end of the story…because I know you hate that…lol But you already knew He became king and then had Solomon, right? :D It’s funny you mention marrying Ephesians 1:11 with Romans 8:28. That came to me as I was doing the video…I heard myself saying “works all things” and the Holy Spirit flashed Romans 8:28 in my mind. I love when He gives those “YES!” connections. :)

      You’ve shared some of your story as a girl growing up, but it still saddens me to hear that you were always left out and picked on. It’s so hurtful! You could’ve become bitter and distrustful of people. But look at what God has done instead. It’s so beautiful that you look for the person who’s isolated, and that you’re always ready with an encouraging word. God redeemed your childhood! He flipped it totally on its head. Praise be to God for His power!

      And WOW, I realized recently that this year will be 20 years for me as well, since my life changed through Christ. Like you, I had no idea what it all meant. And like you, I’m seeing so many pieces come together even now. What a time to rejoice in Him!

      I’m thankful He not only redeemed you but sent you here as a faithful encourager among us all. You might’ve been picked last for their teams, but you were picked by God before time began…for an eternal team. Glory to God!

      • Reply Tamara Davis February 12, 2014 at 8:36 am

        LOL! Yes, I knew the part about Solomon but I didn’t really know Solomon’s story and what happened after him. I will still read it because it’s some good stuff in there.

        My 20 years ago story is not a good one, on the surface, but seeing what God is doing with it is really keeping a smile on my face and praise in my heart.

  • Reply Deon A February 11, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    Hello Ladies

    Here is another version which sums up what Kim says so well. I’m excited and full all over again will be back with my thoughts, but I figured maybe someone might benefit from reading this. Have a blessed night:)

    Ephesians 1:8-12 ( message bible)
    He thought of everything, provided for everything we could possibly need, letting us in on the plans he took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long–range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth.
    It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.

  • Reply Deon A February 12, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    Day4 : As I continue to reflect there are so many things that comes to me I’m just not sure where to begin. I’m FULL!

    I feel so blessed and honored to be apart of this study and this blog family. There is so much wealth and strength in just knowing who we are in Christ and what he has to offer us as his children. We are Blessed! Abundantly blessed! As I watched the video and reflected I was led to the following scriptures and thoughts.

    2 Peter 1:3
    His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence.

    And what struck me is that “everything we need to live out the life Christ has for us is already provided through HIM” as I thought on this I was led to Psalm 23 and like the Psalmist as I read these verses and continue the study I am FULL ( my cup indeed overflows!)

    Psalms 23:5-6
    5a)You prepare a table before me

    5b)You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

    6a) Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life,

    Oftentimes I don’t feel like God is working things out for my good but I choose to say like the psalmist “surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life”. I will not be defeated by the negative words of the enemy but I will stand on what God says about me and believe who he says I am.

    Finally, I had to go to this verse right here because every time the enemy tries to make me feel low and take me back to that place of feeling like I don’t belong here. I remind him that God expected me and he made every provision for me. This verse right here always help me to put things in perspective “Psalms 139:16
    Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you,The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day.”

    All that to say this “according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will”. Again, it doesn’t seem like it even as I write this and think about my current challenges or past experiences but If God says it then I’m going to believe it!

    I know I said finally but even as I continue to read what my fellow sisters have posted I couldn’t help but rest in Phil1:6 and encourage us “that He who began a good work in you will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Jesus Christ returns”

    Love you all and Kim thank you so much for this study words can never describe the impact this series has on my soul.
    PS. Sorry for the length and by the way my list of I am’s have been growing since I read your book “cherished”

    Deon

    • Reply Tamara Davis February 13, 2014 at 8:09 am

      Deon, one thing I’ve learned about Kim and this blog, you NEVER have to apologize for a lengthy reply. We all do it.

      I know you like the Message Translation so read Psalms 23:6 in the Message Translation. A friend of mine sent me a text of it in that version and it was a blessing.

      It is really warming my heart to see how much you’re growing and how much this series means to you. I am honored to be a part of your “real time” testimony. The Lord is good! It’s strengthening me!

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 14, 2014 at 9:46 am

      Hi Deon! I smiled when I saw you were back with your reflections. :) Yes, we are indeed abundantly blessed! I LOVE the verse from 2 Peter 1:3. That’s a verse I reflect on often. That’s a verse we can stand on. Like Paul’s prayer in Ephesians One (the next lesson), it’s based on “the knowledge of Him.” I love that as we grow in our knowledge of God, we find all that we already have! That’s mind boggling to me.

      And Psalm 23…you had to know it’s one of my go-to Psalms, although I didn’t cover that one. :) It’s a short one, but it’s packed! Just meditating on “my cup overflows”…do we believe that?? In Christ, how could it not overflow? I’m excited just thinking about it right now. That’s all the enemy can do is make us feel defeated (in fact, I just edited a part of the teaching for 2 weeks from now where I talk about him making us feel defeated because that’s all he can do)…it’s a LIE. We are more than conquerors. And PRAISE GOD that when you “feel” like God isn’t working things out for your good…or that you don’t belong here…you don’t stay there…you stand on truth. Amen! Yes, BELIEVE His Word! There’s nothing else in this world to believe BUT that. :)

      Deon, I’m in awe of God and can’t thank Him enough that your soul is being impacted by this study. He is such a faithful God! (And ditto to what Tamara said about length. :)) And ahh, praising Him as well that your list of I am’s is growing since Cherished! That makes my soul do a happy dance. :) Love you too!

  • Reply Deon A February 13, 2014 at 11:03 am

    Hey Tamara,

    Thank you i will defiitely check out Psalm 23 in the message bible. The truth is I read the scriptures from several versions as i reflect because i want the word to get deep down in the core of my soul.

    I am also honored that I can be apart of the growth that we all are experincing here.:)

    much love and blessing

  • Reply Brenda February 13, 2014 at 10:25 pm

    Kim and blog family,

    I’m so blessed to soak up all the wisdom and knowledge from this study – from the teaching in the video to sharing of additional translations, etc.

    It’s important to know who we are and who’s we are. The enemy tries on a regular to make me forget. He’s on his job and I’m on mine too. There was a time when facing the challenges I’m facing now – financially and emotionally I would not know how or even want to encourage myself or anyone else. God’s teaching me to trust Him, reminding me that He has a plan and He’s sovereign – thanks Kim. “You can’t thwart the plan of God” and “nothing escapes Him.” Trials, disappointments, etc are necessary for my growth. There’s purpose… There’s hope… There’s His sovereignty. When I don’t understand or know what the outcome will be I just have to trust.

    Love how God is leading you in this study. You’er truly gifted. All of you have blessed me.

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 14, 2014 at 9:53 am

      Brenda, there’s so much in your posts. Knowing that you’ve endured and continue to endure challenges, I’m in awe of the way God is growing you through them. I know it’s hard. I know you must have low moments. But WOW, this–> “He’s on his job and I’m on mine too.” AMEN! I love that you’re “on your job” of trusting God and believing that He has a plan and a purpose through all of this, despite the enemy’s schemes and lies. “There was a time when…I would not know how or even want to encourage myself or anyone else.” That’s so real, and I can identify. Praise God for the way He teaches us and motivates us.

      God’s strength is working mightily in you. Keep walking in His strength and grace. He will never fail you. Pausing to pray right now for you, Brenda.

      • Reply Brenda February 14, 2014 at 1:11 pm

        Thank you for your prayers Kim. You have no idea how God had used your ministry (books and blog family) along with other things as encouragement along the way. Joining your blog family a couple years ago(or so) was really stepping outside of my comfort zone but life changing.

  • Reply Danielle February 14, 2014 at 12:48 am

    Hi all! This will be a short post because I am TIRED, but God’s been nudging me all day to get in here and type out some of this stuff – my Bible’s been sitting out, open since I did the video study this morning, so I’ve been seeing all my colored notes and whatnot every time I walk past the kitchen table!

    This was another awesome video, and, again, Kim, the end was awesome! Talking about how even in the midst of trials, we need to stand…..oh, do we ever! Even at this moment as I am able to look BACK at a grueling trial, I know this is SOOOOOOOOOOO true! God propped me up much during the past few years, and I grew in love, grace, favor, knowledge, all these good things because of His “kind intentions”. I know that more trials are ahead in this life for me, but for this brief moment I am content to just stand and praise and be joyful for the work He has done. “You can’t thwart God” – ooh, I loved that! He knows I have tried! :) And He knows my STUBBORN husband that I love so, so dearly has REALLY tried!! :) :)

    The thing that really stuck out, for me, was the “kind intentions” of verse 9. My NIV translation says “because of His GOOD PLEASURE”, and while that is still a positive spin, I always read that as a little like “because God was in a good mood and felt like it…..”. The “kind intentions” translation puts a WHOLE other meaning on it – He gives us this special insight and knowledge because He wants to give us a gift, in a sense. Not because He feels like it, but because He loves us and is kind to us. That really struck me.

    Anyways, I guess the term “short” is not really applicable to this post anymore, huh? I’m off to bed, but I had to get that out. There’s a whole lot more about the concept of “You can’t thwart God” that is still rollin’ around in this brain, but it’s something that I can’t articulate here, especially at 12:45 in the morning! LOL….

    Goodnight, all – these comments are awesome! I loved reading through the dialogues *almost* as much as watching the video!

    • Reply Kim Cash Tate February 14, 2014 at 10:09 am

      Hey Danielle! How is it that, when you’re tired, you still string together words that generate excitement? And I know this wasn’t exactly meant to generate a chuckle, but it did…when you said, “He knows I have tried!” [to thwart the hand of God]. I was thinking how, when I say that, I’m thinking about the enemy’s schemes. And yet, I’m guilty too! When I stray outside of God’s will for whatever reason, I better know and understand that I can’t thwart God! :) And I’m thankful I can’t…it’s for that reason that He’s protected me when I’ve strayed.

      I also love what you got out of “kind intentions.” God is funny… As I was talking about that, I thought, “Kind intentions”…hmm…not necessarily something that may generate excitement but it IS good stuff. But it DID generate excitement in you. I love that you GOT exactly what’s there…that it’s not because of a feeling God had at the time, but out of His love and out of His plan and purpose for us. As I think about it, maybe it’s because we use that word “kind” so much that I didn’t think it would generate excitement…the slightest act can be deemed “kind.” So if we hear God is kind, it’s like, okay great. :) BUT, kindness is a fruit of the Spirit. It BEGINS with God. It means so much more than we attribute to it. Kindness IS God. I think I want to meditate on that some more…:)

      “God propped me up much during the past few years, and I grew in love, grace, favor, knowledge, all these good things because of His ‘kind intentions’.”…so, so awesome. Maan, I could meditate long on that too…all that He does IN His kindness…even that His kindness allows us to endure trials so we can grow in those things you named. Suffice to say, I’m thankful you stayed up a few minutes more to post this. :) May the Lord continue to prop you up with His mighty hand. May His kindness overflow continually toward you…and we know from His Word that it will!

      • Reply Tamara Davis February 14, 2014 at 10:14 am

        “Kindness IS God”….wow, yeah that one just got me too.

  • Reply Marietta Taylor February 16, 2014 at 3:15 pm

    Sometimes I find myself crying out to God saying ” I don’t this. I don’t get what you are doing. Help me to trust your plan.” I know I can trust God but the knowing and the “doing” are not always in synch. I pray over time they will synch more often, but in the mean time I’ll keep praying my trust prayer. He’s never wrong after all.

  • Reply Deon A February 23, 2014 at 1:02 pm

    Marietta
    Wes all struggle with understanding God’s plan for our lives and we oftentimes get impatient as well. But know that God is faithful and his plan for us is always better than the plan we have for ourselves. It doesn’t make sense sometimes but it all work out for our Good. Praying your strength my sister and believing that God will open your eyes so that you will see in due season the plan and purpose he has for your life. Be encouraged and know that “he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ”
    Deon

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