It’s a new book: The Gospel of John: A Simply Bible Study.
The cover says the author is “Carmen Beasley.” Honestly, it should say “God.” I share the story of how this study guide came to be in its introduction, and so I won’t repeat it here.
As many of you know, I used to write about my adventures in China. It’s funny! I do miss those days. First, I miss the people. Then I miss the experiences, like surprising someone in the marketplace by speaking in her mother tongue. Certainly people weren’t expecting Mandarin to flow from a tall, blonde hair, blue-eyed girl. Every day was something new. Every day was an adventure. And I began referring to God as the Adventure God.
So on the way home, that is on the way back to the states from China, I thanked God for the adventures and asked Him to keep me out of my comfort zone.
Was that crazy? I mean, be careful what you ask, right? But in my heart, I knew that through the adventures my faith had grown deeper. In China, God etched in my heart:
“Be still and know I Am God.” Psalm 46:10
Surely, God is a pro at adventure. From Genesis to Revelation, Scripture is full of men and women journeying by faith on His Great Race. Think of Abraham, Moses, David, Daniel, Esther, Ruth, Mary, the disciples, Paul… all were a part of God’s redemptive adventure history.
Three years later, here I am snug as a bug in Northeast Ohio and entering into “empty nest.” I can testify the adventure continues.
A few highlights have included: re-connecting with friends in the US, a mission trip to Mozambique, continuing my education for a masters degree, travel to Europe to visit friends “made in China,” moving across town, gaining a new son as a daughter marries, learning to cycle with my hubby, a mission to Mexico, gaining a new daughter as my son marries (I’m up to seven kids now!) to now serving as the women’s ministry director of my church, The Chapel in Green.
This is an adventure of all adventures!
And like every other adventure this one forces me to my knees. For how can I inspire women to love God and love others if I myself am not loving God and loving others?
Literally, I ponder these things with great trepidation and am often shaking in my boots. For you see, I’m not naturally an adventure kind of gal. Would you believe that I actually think the merry-go-round is fun? Yes! I do! I like its rhythm and safety.
So last night after filming some video teaching with my pioneering friend, Asheritah, I was lamenting to my husband, “That took me way outside of my comfort zone!” Knowing me well, he exclaimed, “Why?! What are you afraid of? Helping women rest in Christ and grow in faith is what you love to do… just be yourself!”
As I walked and prayed this morning, I felt as if Jesus was asking me the same question: “Carmen what are you afraid of?”
With a gleam in His eye and extending a gentle, yet mighty, righteous right hand, I imagine Him calling to His disciples:
Come, follow me. (Mark 1:17)
He calls. He leads. We follow. Jesus is King of kings and that includes being King of Adventure. He is with us. He’s pushing me out of my nest where I must learn to trust.
Hillsong’s Ocean sings this prayer beautifully:
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior
Adventure is meant to be shared. I’d value your company. I learn from you. And I’d appreciate your input to do this better.
Admittedly, I am way more comfortable meeting in person. If you are able, please join me at the church, face-to-face and in person. We’ll sit and chat around tables. For me, this is where the most authentic relationships grow.
However, for my friends in far away places and on the other side of the sea, consider joining us online. My friend, Asheritah, is an online pro. You’ll love her.
I’m an online novice and have much to learn… like how the heck to comfortably summarize a teaching session into a one to two-minute video? That’s difficult for a “queen of gab.” (A dad-given nickname.) I felt stiff in the first round of video. After so many takes, my brain began to fade.
For sure, I am far from polished. You probably already know that about me. But relationships are not about being polished. Relationships grow from the inside out, an authenticity of the heart. And so, I commit to just being myself, sharing, praying with you and for you, and seeking to know Jesus together. I hope you will, too.
Come! Let’s follow Him. Let’s share the adventure together. I’m excited to know Him and know you more.
All you need is the BOOK. (We have plenty of copies at church, but it’s also available through AMAZON.) And then, REGISTER ONLINE, either at church or from the comfort of your own home. If registering for the online study, you’ll receive an invite to join a private Facebook group for the Simply Bible study.
Lord God Almighty, You are the King of kings and the Great Adventure God. Thank You for Your presence. With You, what have we to fear? Please lead us to places where our faith will be made stronger. May we love You more.
Order book HERE.
Register for Bible study HERE.