Every Wednesday of every month, I get to come together with my friends for an incredible bible study where a woman of faith shares her testimony or journey with the Lord. My friend Sabrina Harrison started this bible study over a year ago and she called it Equipped by Faith. I remember the very first time I started going to this bible study it completely touched my life just as each month continues to do so. So thankful for this time that I get to listen to such amazing stories and meet other women of God. If you are interested in coming follow @equppiedbyfaith for more information.
This month Cora Jakes Coleman was the speaker and I just could not miss this one! She is TD Jakes daughter, and such an incredible woman of God. I took so many notes because there was so much wisdom pouring out of her. So here is what she spoke to us. She wanted to use the name that Sabrina used for this bible study and she gave us a word for each letter in the word Equipped. What does being Equipped by Faith mean? And how can we be Equipped by Faith? Well, here it goes, most of what I am writing is by Pastor Coleman but some I am adding on to as well.
Elevate: Elevation is necessary. You cannot succeed without it. Basically life and our walk with Christ is like an elevator. It may not always be comfortable, it may sometimes take awhile, but in the end that elevator is going to take us to places that we need to go, that is why this concept is so important.
Questions: I think as Christians we may feel inadequate asking God questions at times. I mean I know I did, I would never dare ask God why I was going through something because I always thought that doing so was questioning the plan He had for my life. However, in the past year I have learned that asking questions is okay. A lot of the times pride will keep us from asking the questions that need to be asked however, in order for us to succeed we MUST ask. Even the Lord says ask and you shall receive. It is okay to ask Why am I sad God? Angry? Going through this pain? God wants to show us the reasoning behind His plans. However, we should never question who He is and His sovereignty.
Understanding: In order for us to grow we must understand the knowledge that will help us grow. Aka the Bible. Just like subjects in school are there for us to learn and understand, the concepts are nothing without someone explaining it to us in a way we can understand. Same way with the Bible, we can’t expect to know what the Bible is saying if we can’t even understand it. Find an easy version such as NIV, The Message, where it’s not a foreign lingo but its in a way you can understand the Bible and what is going on in it.
Intimacy: God is a jealous God, He wants us to spend time with Him. He wants us to pursue Him just like he pursues us. Sometimes God will not give us the things we ask for because He is waiting on us to make Him our everything so we can be completely whole and okay if we don’t have those things. This got me, Pastor Coleman stated, “Sometimes God will not give you a man, if He knows that you’re going to drift apart from Him once you get that man.” Umm… preach. LOL
Process: Everyone is going to go through a process. In that process is where God purifies and cleanses us. That process is hard but we have to keep going through it until we end up at the finishing line. The devil will always try to distract us from the process but its our job to keep going through it so we don’t have to start all over. If the devil distracts you it’s because He doesn’t want you to keep fighting he wants us to quit and give up. When were going through that process we can’t stop fighting, our pain is not bigger than our promise and we must remember that with great callings come great sufferings.
Preparation: How much time do you spend with the Lord? Prepare for the women or men of God you want to be. Read the word, and use the word to equip yourself. Our prayers and words may turn out void, but Gods word never will. So when praying, pray with scriptures. Declare His promises over your life and find scriptures to back up everything you ask for or are praying for.
Empty: You know that phrase ‘we must decrease so He can increase?’ Well its true!! We have to empty ourselves from all the pain, frustration, sadness, rejection, etc. and get through it. We must surrender our ways for His ways. Those things do not have us and we must overcome them to help others heal. You cannot help others if you are still bleeding. So we must forgive, let go of all the things that have hurt us and use those scars so help others.
Discipline: This is necessary in our faith. We must always be consistent with God so He can see that we are trustworthy for the big things He has in store for us. If we can’t be consistent in the small tasks He has called us to do, there is no way He is going to give us bigger tasks to take on. Remember, to who much is given much is required. Do not ask for much when you can’t even be disciplined in what you have now and make time for God. God can’t trust us with bigger blessings when we can’t even take care of the small blessings He has given to us already.
So good right? Pastor Coleman wrote a book called Faithing It! I personally will make this my next book I read after I finish the one I am currently reading. I mean, I think this is something we can go back and read to encourage our faith, but if you need more of her wisdom I truly recommend you get her book.