Life with a capital L: a small group resource & my blessing

God has been at work in my life. For a second time, God sent me Matt Heard’s message to live life with a capital L.

Twelve days after my Mama stepped into heaven, I reviewed life with a capital L. This book helped me glean the richness of the journey Mama was taking as she lifted one foot toward heaven and eventually, the other, reaching her destiny and true Life with a capital L.

Today marks the one-year anniversary of Mama’s Life in heaven.

I am so glad that Heard created a small group participants’ guide and DVD. The guide can be used in 4, 6, or 12-week sessions with the DVD and the book.

Heard uses every-day examples to illustrate Biblical concepts. For example, he describes the difference between a bucket and a pipe: if you pour water into a bucket, the water stays in the bucket and will eventually become stagnant; however, if you pour water into a pipe, the water flows through the pipe, much like when a Christian serves as a conduit for God’s love, showering it on others, and as a result, God pours more love into that Christian to give the love away.

What’s in the guide

In the participant’s guide, Heard provides the facilitator with tips on how to lead the group. The participant’s guide includes:

  1. Warm-up questions (before the video).
  2. Video reaction prompts.
  3. Word studies (to go deeper in the Bible).
  4. Group discussion questions.
  5. Closing prayer prompts.
  6. After session reflections.
  7. Resolutions (prompts for prayer, reflection and action throughout the week).

Personal reflection

Daddy’s journey to heaven was 15 years before Mama’s. She missed him so much. Often, she would ask me why she was still living. I told her that God wasn’t finished with her, yet, that God had something else for her to do.

I wondered why she had to go through the last few weeks of her life. I know now. In those last few weeks of pain, there were glimpses of heaven. She served as a conduit for God’s grace and love to spill out onto her caregivers and onto her children. She didn’t know the reason for those weeks, nor did I. I’m sure she knows now. I know now.

One caregiver said that she had not seen such peace in a hospice patient. Her conclusion: “She must have her spiritual house in order.”

Without a word, in dying, Mama pointed people to Jesus; Mama lived life with a capital L in her dying.

Final resolution

Matt Heard’s final resolution sums up Life:

I will keep in mind that my ultimate redemption is graciously secured and that Christ will get me home.

I will pay attention to today’s heaven moments – whether physical aches, unfulfilled longings, encounters with beauty, broken experiences, or opportunities to obey – and will hope for the day when Life with a capital L will no longer be diluted by a fallen body and fallen world.

I miss our morning calls, Mama. They were Life.
I miss you, Mama.

My tears are filled with your Life, glimpses of heaven.
I’ll see you in heaven, Mama.

Matt Heard’s message is important. Please share this message.

Make it Yours!

Above all, make it your resolution this week to ask God to show you the
path to living Life with a capital L.
My prayer:

Father in heaven, thank You, again, for Matt Heard and the message You have given him. Bless him as he seeks Your face, Your guidance, and Your future messages. Guide us towards a deeper Life with You. We want to be used by You. We love you, Lord.

More Information

Author Bio

I unexpectedly received a copy of the Participant’s Guide and DVD of life with a capital L: Embracing your God-given humanity from Multnomah Books.

Life with a Capital L … A review

Life cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matt Heard, senior pastor of Woodmen Valley Chapel in Colorado Springs, has given Christians a gift with a capital “G” in his book Life with a capital L.  A moment in the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow forever transformed him. Nikolai Yaroshenko’s painting There is Life Everywhere captured his attention and his mind.

Heard grapples with the statement of Jesus, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10

From C.S. Lewis to Jonny Lang, from Tolstoy to John Lennon, Heard goes deep into what this God-given life we have on earth could potentially become if we were to stop and recognize the fullness of humanity and eternity within us.

Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, …

 

“Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:2, 10

What if in the busyness of life, we stopped to “be still and know” God? Really “know.” Life as a big “L” might spill from our hearts, flood our eyes with rich rainbows, pour unheard tones into our ears, and stream new depth of thought into our minds.

This book came to me as my Mama was walking to heaven. Her journey to heaven was longer and more agonizing than expected. Yet, in her journey, there were glimpses of eternity, reflections of her new home. On her journey, she was experiencing life with the capital “L,” and I was able to recognize that journey in a much richer depth than I think I would have if I had not been reading this book.

I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books for an honest review.

My prayer

Father, thank You for Matt Heard and his insight into the depth of this precious gift You have given to Your people, this Life. Help us in our busyness of going through life to be still and know You, to recognize You as our Great God and Creator and You as our Father who cares about each of our tears and takes us by the hand and leads us. Thank You, Father. I love you.

More Information

Author Bio

Have you chosen a hard life? 3 steps to the good life

Israel

I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants, by loving the LORD your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days, that you may live in the land which the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them. Deuteronomy 30:19-20

I had lunch with a new high school graduate. He told me his immediate plans for the future: get a tattoo, stretch his earlobes, and get a job. There are long-term plans as well. No plans for Jesus. I told him that his plans for his body will limit the type of job he will be able to get. He acknowledged that.

He chose the hard life.

The Israelites listened to the blessings of following God and the curses of disobedience. Blessings brought life and prosperity. Curses brought death and adversity.

3 steps to the good life

  1. Loving the LORD. “Hear O Israel! The Lord our God is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” Deuteronomy 6:4-5
  2. Obeying His voice. “Samuel said, ‘Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.'” 1 Samuel 15:22
  3. Holding fast to Him. “For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end,” Hebrews 3:14

Blessing

Dwelling in the promised land. For the Israelites, the promised land flowed with milk and honey. God had given it to them; they just needed to possess it. For Christians, the promised land is eternal life through following Jesus.

The Israelites took the three steps for awhile and enjoyed the blessing. They turned away and returned many times; each time, experiencing curses or blessings. Ultimately, a remnant will return to the Lord, loving Him, obeying Him, and holding fast to Him. They chose a hard life, but they will enter the good life at the end of this world.

I’m trusting that in this young man’s wanderings, he will find the path to eternal life by becoming a follower of Jesus and learn how to take the three steps that lead to the good life.

Prayer is powerful.

My prayer for you

Father, You have set before us life and death, blessings and curses. Help us to understand how deeply You love us. Your lovingkindness leads us to repentence. Obedience follows. Increase our ability to hold fast to You. Increase our desire for You and Your fellowship. Thank You, Lord. In the nature and name of Jesus, we pray. Amen

What path have you chosen?