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Joy In Christ Summer Study and Online Event

It has been amazing to see how many women are committed to studying Scripture together through the #lampandlight 31 Days of Scripture Challenge. I have had so many women contacting me and letting me know that they have loved the challenge and would love for it to continue. So, starting June 1st I will be leading an online group of women in going through my new Joy in Christ devotional journal. The journal covers the books of Philippians and Colossians.

There will be a private Facebook group that anyone that wants to participate can join, and we will walk through the study and discuss what God is teaching us each day. Accountability and community are so helpful to developing a vibrant walk with Christ. Each participant will go through the journal on their own and each day we will discuss what God has been teaching us.

You can request to join the group here.

If you would like to purchase a journal you can purchase here. We are currently shipping journals out the next business day.

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The other exciting announcement is that I will be hosting a live online event on Monday, May 26th, at 7:00 pm central time. The title is “Cultivating an Intentional Walk With God”, and I will be talking to you guys live about how to study the Bible, make time for being in the Word, and a little bit of my personal testimony! You can go to the event page here, and even click on the Q&A at the top right corner of the video to leave any questions that you would like answered before the event!

I am so excited to be able to go through this journey with you. My hope is that through the live chat and through the summer study group that you will be able to find a community of women that will seek to encourage each other to walk with the Lord, to love His Word and to be more like Him.

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Kelly Ann

How awesome! I’ve gotta work Monday so I’ll miss your live event :(

[…] Other Lovely Reads… DIY Soy Candles How to be an Encouragement to Your Husband 5 Things I Learned From 1 Year of Marriage Inspiring Personal Style Instagrammers Cultivating An Intentional Walk With God – An Online Event […]

caterina brooks

I just received my prayer journal in the mail. It’s like God knew today. We lost a pet Monday, Charlie a kitty. Plus today I realized because of an error on my part I will have to wait til Spring to return to school. I am beyond frustrated. I cannot wait to sit with this book and have some prayer and tea later. Thank you. xoxo Caterina Brooks

Yay! This is so exciting! I can’t wait to get mine! I really need to get back into diving deep into the word on a regular basis and I think that this is just what my soul needs. Thank you for you heart and ministry!

Kathryn Smith

Do I have to have the journal to participate in the FB group? And, if I can’t make it on Monday night like Kelly Ann below me, how can I see the recording later?

Thank you so much Kristin for all you do to encourage women in their faith!

[…] View original post here: Joy In Christ Summer Study and Online Event » Kristin Schmucker […]

[…] Other Lovely Reads… DIY Soy Candles How to be an Encouragement to Your Husband 5 Things I Learned From 1 Year of Marriage Inspiring Personal Style Instagrammers Cultivating An Intentional Walk With God – An Online Event […]

Kristin’s Book List | May 2014

A Steadfast Heart | Elyse Fitpatrick

I have had so many people over the past few years recommend that I should read Elyse Fitzpatrick. This was the first time that I did, and I was not disappointed. This is a book on going through the storms of life, and having a steadfast heart fixed on God. The book walks through Psalm 57. She talks so much about how much we need Christ, and how the sufferings in our life should push us closer to Him. If you are facing a hard time in your life I would definitely recommend this book.

Christ in the Chaos | Kimm Crandall

This is a really short and easy read, but it has so much encouragement about how the gospel changes motherhood. It is for the mom who is in the trenches, doing the things that so often feel like they are meaningless, but the author shows how the little things that we do show the gospel to our children, and point to the grace of Christ. She fills the book with her own personal stories and does not shy away from revealing her own faults and struggles. It is a breath of fresh air for a worn out mama.

Plain Faith| Irene and Ora Jay Eash with Trisha Goyer

Because I grew up in Pennsylvania, and often read Amish fiction as a teenager,  I was excited to get a copy of this book to read and review. This is a  memoir of a young Amish couple that lost two of their daughters in a buggy accident, and eventually chose to leave the Amish faith. The couple faced many things as they went through the grieving process after the loss of their daughters. Because many sects of the Amish faith place an emphasis on a person’s works for salvation, the couple had a great fear that if they did not live a perfect Amish life, that they may not get to Heaven and see their precious daughters again. The book chronicles how they go from a life where they knew a lot about God to a time when they had a personal walk and relationship with God. It gives insight into their plain lifestyle and also to how they transitioned out of the Amish community, including a lot of letters that were written between the couple and other Amish family members and friends. The book is a great reminder of the freedom that we have in Christ, and of the joy that comes from a true relationship with Jesus, that goes far beyond holding blindly to rules and traditions.

Love, Skip, Jump| Shelene Bryan

Love Skip Jump written by Shelene Bryan is the story of a woman who is living a comfortable life while sponsor children in Africa without thinking much about it. The children that she sponsored where no much more than two extra photos that hung on her refrigerator. When someone challenged whether or not the children were real, or whether she had fallen for a scam she made a quick decision to travel to Africa to find out if they were really there. What happened next was a journey that changed her view of everything. She was amazed at what could happen when she chose to say yes to God, and be willing to help the people that she didn’t know much about, but that depended on her each month. The book is full of stories that she encountered in her time in Africa as well as what she did when she got home by starting a foundation that encourages others to “skip” things like a cup of coffee to help those in need. The book was a  funny and encouraging read that talks about how we can really make a difference in this world, though there have been other similar books that I have liked a bit more.

Ex-Muslim| Naeem Fazeel

This book is a great testament to God’s providence and amazing, pursuing grace. It is the story of Naeem Fazeel and His radical encounter with God. Naeem grew up in a Muslim home in the middle east, and when he came to the United States for college he was not expecting the radical changes that would take place in his life. God miraculously found him and got ahold of his heart and this book tells his story. The book provides valuable insight into the life of a muslim family, as well as what it is like for a muslim to convert to christianity. I found myself incredibly fascinated by so many of the stories that are told in this short book. Though I didn’t agree with everything found in the book, I greatly appreciated the passion with which it was written. The book overall was relatable to even believers that have not faced what he has faced, or come from a muslim background. He is open about the trials that he faced and how God used them to grow him in his faith. Naeem who is now a church planter/pastor has a powerful testimony of how God rescued him.

Let’s All Be Brave| Annie Downs

This book was quick to grab my attention because of Annie’s writing style. Reading this book was more like a long chat with a friend over coffee than someone telling you what to do. Annie is real and relatable and not afraid to share her own faults in a way that will encourage you to do the hard things. She talks about her own life experiences in real life terms with no pretense. She doesn’t sugar coat things, but tells things exactly how they were. If you have a big dream or a little one that you are wanting to conquer, but just don’t know if you can, or where you would start, this book is an encouragement to do the hard things in life. She encourages her readers to do the things that they know that they are called to do, but that aren’t necessarily the easiest options. The book is like a pep talk to live a courageous life, and I think it would be great especially for young women trying to figure out what they should do with their lives, or anyone trying to make their life meaningful. Annie encourages readers to push past the mundane and embrace the life that God has called them too.

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Hi Kristin!

I discovered your blog over the weekend and I am sooo happy I did. This year, I’ve challenged myself to read at least 10 Christian books. I’ve been a huge Max Lucado fan since University days and I picked up ‘You’ll Get Through This’ in December.

I was going through a difficult time and it really lifted my spirits and made me look at things a whole lot differently. I devoured it in a couple of days then passed it on to a friend. Highly recommend it.

I’ll be adding A Steadfast Heart and Love, Skip, Jump to my list!

Thanks for sharing,

Donna

Building a Relationship with God, not a Checklist

We are about half way through the May Scripture challenge, and all of your #lampandlight posts are such an encouragement to me each day. There is just something amazing to me about scrolling through my feed and seeing open Bible’s. I see the work that God is doing among women, and how He is giving a love for His Word to so many.

Now that we are about halfway through the challenge though, I want to check in and encourage you guys. It is easy to make studying scripture a “have to” and not a “desire to”. I don’t want this challenge to be a checklist. I don’t want the challenge to be nothing more than one more thing for us to do, I want it to be life breathed into our days, and hope in the hardest times. I also don’t want to see us miss a day and be discouraged and give up on the challenge. This challenge is about so much more than going through a whole month reading Scripture. It is about making habits, and strengthening our relationship with Christ to the point where we desire to be in the Word.

So if you are feeling stuck, if you are feeling dry, ask God to help you. If you are feeling like your Bible Study is just one of a million things on your “to do” list, ask Him to bring His Word to life and show you how the words of Scripture apply to your daily life.

If you are feeling discouraged because you have already missed a day or more on the challenge, start again. Grab your Bible and keep going. Remember that this challenge is not about completing 31 days of reading the Bible without missing one, it is about making God’s Word a natural part of your day. It is about getting to the point where you realize that we need God’s Word to sustain us, just like we need food to get through our days.

If you are just finding the scripture challenge, it is not too late to join!

Don’t forget we are giving away one of Val Marie’s fabulous prayer journals at the end of the challenge! Make sure to read here about how you can enter!

So as a little encouragement to each other, I want to hear how it is going. Let me know in the comments here or on instagram or Facebook what book of the Bible you have been reading, and what the one thing you have felt God showing you? I can’t wait to hear how God is using His Word to transform our hearts.

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Donna S Wysong

I was already in a daily study plan before you started the lamp and light challenge so I thought joining it would be just one extra little step, well it ended up being just the accountability I needed! I cannot wait to get into the scripture each day now and then seeing what everyone else has learned from their quite time! Good Lord always knows what we need before we even know, thank you for allowing Him to use you as a light to others! Love ya!

Susie HoneyBee Henry-Searight

The May Scripture Challenge has been PURE GOLD for my soul! Starting each day in intense study (rather than a devo) has done wonders for my “heart”itude!

The Joy of the Lord is Your Strength

We are currently waiting to get our full shipment of journals in so that we can begin shipping to all of you who purchased the Joy in Christ journal during the presale. We are so excited to get this journal in your hands and see how God will use it.

The journal covers Philippians and Colossians and as I studied while writing the devotional journal I was so impressed with how joy can change things. Paul had such joy even while facing the hardest times in his life. The devotionals written in the journal come from a very raw place for me. God burdened my heart to write this journal just a few weeks after I lost my daughter, and over and over I could feel God showing me, that no matter what I face, I can have joy in Him. Joy changes things.

I thought I would give you guys a little freebie that goes so perfectly with the study, and is just such a wonderful reminder that no matter what we face, the joy of the Lord is our strength. So here is a lock screen or phone background that you can use to remind you throughout your day where our strength is found. Click here to pull up the full size image and then save it to your phone.

 

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Ashlee Faison Wallace

Love this! Thank you so much for sharing! !!!!!

Melissa Miller Everett

Thank you Kristin! This is beautiful!

Ashley Medina

I looks beautiful

I told my gronemathdr how you helped. She said, “bake them a cake!”

3 Months and Mother’s Day

What a week of mixed emotions. This week we launched the Joy in Christ devotional journal, and it has been so exciting to see your orders come in and to think and pray for the women that will study God’s Word using this journal. It is so exciting to see something that I have poured my heart into be out there, and it is my prayer that it will encourage every person that receives it.

At the same time, the weeks has also had a sense of heaviness. Yesterday was 3 months since we found out that Sophia’s sweet heart had stopped beating, and tomorrow will be 3 months since my precious girl was born, and then there is Sunday.

There is such a constant mix of emotions in my heart since losing Sophia, and I can see so many things that God has taught me. Not an hour goes by that my heart does not miss my little girl, which means that not an hour goes by that my heart doesn’t long for Heaven where I know my Sophia is. My heart feels like it is torn in two between my heavenly home, my Savior, and my daughter in Heaven, and my earthly home, with my daughter here, my husband, family, and ministry. I think though it has made me realize that I should have always had that longing for Heaven. It is a delicate balance to yearn for Heaven, and still fulfill my purpose here on Earth.

Three months ago my life completely changed in so many ways. I changed. Any sorrow I feel reminds me of the greatest pain I have ever felt, and every happiness seems to remind me of the one little girl who I wish was smiling with us.

So, this weekend we celebrate Mother’s day. My first as a Mama of two, and my first with a child in Heaven. There will probably be tears, but I can’t help but be thankful for my two little girls, and for the privilege to be their Mama.

I am also so thankful for my Mom, and even extra grateful for her this year. I am so thankful for the way she has loved me, how she has poured her whole heart and her whole life into raising her children. I am so grateful that in the hardest days of my life that she cried with me, prayed for me, and just sat with me. Seeing her hurt for me has just been such a reminder of how much I am loved. And yet, even in her pain, she has pointed me to Jesus, and reminded me that God has a sovereign plan for my life, and He also did for Sophia’s life.

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Praying for you, mama. That you’re watching Christ shine the Gospel through this tragic experience is breathtaking. How marvelous, how wonderful. A friend of mine lost her baby boy four months ago, just as you did. My heart breaks for you and her. Praying so fiercely that you will be comforted by our Lord and Savior.

So sorry, my heart aches for you! I will have you in my prayers over the next few days. I pray God’s peace will surround you!

Jodi Maxwell

All I have to offer is a silent nod of understanding and virtual hug. We were chosen to carry them and then carry on to carry His gospel. Keep Calm and Carry On took on a whole new meaning after that.

Leslie Damore Traube

Oh. Wow