“We live in a culture of distraction,” Melissa Spoelstra told the women gathered at the November 8 IBSA Ministers’ Wives Luncheon. This year’s theme was “Finding Peace in the Purpose of Jesus.”
Any number of things can create distractions and cause harm to your walk with God she warned. “Just like we do physical hygiene, we need to do spiritual hygiene,” she said. “Silence and solitude are needed in order for the Lord to speak to us.”
Spoelstra, the author of seven Bible studies for women and a regular contributor to online devotionals, outlined three ways to break the habit of distraction.
First, she said, “Embrace the humility plan. Recognize that none of us are going to get it right every time.”
Peter denied Jesus three times.
“Where in our lives are we denying Jesus?” she asked. “We can’t outpace his grace. Peter was a kingdom denier and Jesus trusted him with his work. Some of us keep giving Jesus reasons to leave, but Jesus trusts us more.”
The key is in how we respond.
“Look at the difference between Peter and Judas,” she said. “Repentance leads us to turn from sin, remorse often leads us to more sin.”
Second, Spoelstra said, “We can’t do anything for Jesus without being with Jesus.” In John 21:15-17, Jesus had cooked breakfast for his disciples and then told them, feed my sheep.
“We can’t feed the sheep without being with Jesus,” she said. “When you find yourself angry with the sheep that’s when you come back to this verse.”
Third, she told them to “look up instead of sideways.”
“‘Jesus said my sheep listen to my voice and they listen and follow my voice. No one can snatch them away from me.’ The thief wants to steal, kill, and destroy.” She urged the women to make “God’s voice louder than anyone else’s voice in your lives.”
Dara and Greg Whaley of Immanuel Baptist Church in Benton led worship.
The group elected officers to plan and host next year’s luncheon. They are President, Holly Duckworth, Mt. Olive Baptist Church, Dongola; Vice President, Stephanie Lingle, FBC Vienna; and Treasurer, Claudia Tackett, FBC Carterville.
The sponsors of this year’s luncheon were Baptist Children’s Home and Family Services, Baptist Foundation of Illinois, and Illinois Baptist Women.