Every Tuesday morning I haul my cookies out of bed at 4:45. I put on make up, dress in clothing I chose the night before, and use hair product. This has been my regular routine for about a year. It's admitedly over the top, even for me. But this my friends, This. Is. Bible Study morning. What? What's that you say? Sweet Baby Jesus doesn't care how my hair looks or that I am wearing clothes my kids aren't allowed to touch? Oh no, no, no. You apparently haven't experienced the phenomonon called Women's Ministry.
Ah, Women's Ministry - the place where estrogen and encouragement shake manicured hands over fat free, sugar free frothy carmelattes. I fell all warm and huggy just thinking about it. Oh, I may be quirky but I like me some women's ministry, and throw in a Bible verse and BAM! instant Bible study! Whew, I gotta slow down or I'm going to start stitching a Bible cover any second. Deep breath.
We all know that God did not intend for women to study the Bible alone. We can't even pee in public without girlfriend support, let along deciper God's Word. Knowing which group to join, however, can be a serious crap shoot. So, did you ever wish there were a test, brilliantly assembled and say, on a blog somewhere that could help you in this area? Well, isn't that a coincidence. Here I am to help out.
This is the Which Bible Study Should I Take So That I Don't End Up Hating It & Drop Out Half Way Through Test, or the WBSSITSTIDEUHI&DOHWTT 2008. Below you will find a list of questions. Answer each one according to what, hypothetically, would most appeal to you in a study group.
What do you bring with you to your study?
a) Scrapbook supplies, stamping supplies, knitting needles and a Bible
b) KJV, a legal pad, 73 different colored pencils, and a commentary
c) Bartles & James in a Scripture Sipper and an OK! Magazine
What characteristics best describe your study group?
a) An enchanting cornucopia of lip liner, brownies, and Crest Whitestrips.
b) Saved. Sanctified. Sword drills on steroids.
c) This is a study? I thought we were going to Starbucks…
Your group meets:
a) Somewhere with big round tables, floral centerpieces, and glue sticks
b) In the sanctuary. On cold, hard pews, of course. This is a Bible study.
c) Come hell or high water. You haven’t had a moment to yourself since last week.
You miss a week. What happens?
a) You never learn how to decoupage
b) Your leader calls, demanding to know why you were absent. You tell her your uncle died. She quotes “let he dead bury their own dead” and highly suggests you show up next week. Or have your Bible dictionary taken away.
c) Miss a week? And give up free child care? I don’t think so.
If you had to compare your study to a game show it would be:
a) The Price Is Right – We’re giddy with anticipation – somebody’s going to win a door prize!!!
b) A game? Studying the Bible is NOT a game. You heathen.
c) Deal or No Deal – no childcare, no deal
You ask for prayer requests. Your group would most likely say:
a) My Aunt’s neighbor’s friend’s dog has worms. You all know how she just loves that dog. I’m a cat person myself, but anyhoo…
b) The new Metro worship leader. His tattoos are obnoxious and he wears a ski cap - and in the sanctuary of all places. For shame.
c) Heavenly Father, please, please let this meeting run long because my twins are teething.
Typically the women in your group wear:
a) It varys. Patchwork denim jackets, sequined holiday sweaters, handmade jewlery, hair product and acrylic nails...
b) Mandatory skirt and blouse, plus a button that says "Nobody Loves Jesuse More Than Me"
c) Maternity clothes, pregnant or not (ok, I appologize for that)
Your group smells like:
a) Sun ripened raspberries with soft notes of sweet baby Jesus
b) old hymnal, squeaky highlighter and holiness
c) ketchup stains and exhaustion, erroneously masked by Wal-Mart body splash
OK, last one...
In you group you are studying:
a) Chicken Soup for the Soul and different ways to say “bless your heart”
b) The Bible. In Greek. And Hebrew. In context, verse by verse.
c) SCL or SFL on your iPhone while someone lectures about…something.
So, how did you score?
Group A: Happy, Happy Jesus Loves You Hugfest
This group would love to meet you!These women are a shiny, sparkly compound of crafts sticks and Bible promise books. Get a group of them together and let the Jesus flow. They meet in a big room filled with food, conversation and sweater sets. Table centerpieces abound, as does encouragement and high pitched laughter. Forget your Bible? That’s okay, the woman next to you has the entire book of Joshua embroidered on her skirt. Need a hug? Prepare to be smashed to the bosom of everyone in attendance. So jump on board the fellow ship and get ready to ride.
Group B: The Holy Alliance of Hermeneutics (or The HAH)
These girls mean business. They would love to meet you, but only after you have gone through a test to assess your highlighter skills. A formal inquisition to evaluate your commitment level is required. These groups attract devoted academics of God’s Word. Have question about Levitical law but you’re not sure where to look? They can tell you. Don’t even know where Habakkuk is? They do. Have questions about salvation? Justification? Sanctification? Pronunciation? Purification? Perspiration? Alliteration? They can quote you book, chapter, verse, and cross references without missing a beat. Homework, attendance, and skirts are manditory. Every other month head covering is optional. So if you're up for the challenge of in-depth Bible study, daily homework, and panty hose, welcome to The HAH.
Group C: Mommy Group
If you have a child, you're in. It's that easy. Many women have been kept from going completely insane from the pangs of motherhood because of this group. This is a safe haven from stick fingers, diapers, whining, and Dora. In spite of their love for Bible study, this group doesn’t do much homework for obvious reasons. Typically there is a group speaker. Topics might include: “Spanking on a Budget”, “Cook for a Day/Eat Out for a Month”, “Sex? Are You Kidding?”, “Kid’s Benadryl: How To Mix It In Peanut Butter”, or “Potty Training: Just Shoot Me Now”. Oh, and did I mention FREE childcare?
For me I have been a member of all three groups at various times. Right now, my Tuesday ritual revolves around me being a member of Group B, The HAH. It's kicking my tail - a 21 month commitment, memorize 70 verses, 6 hours of homework weekly. I have to be at church, in my study room at 6 am, but I'm not going to complain. It's a good thing for me because I am sucktacular at being disciplined.
So what about you? What kind of group study are you in?
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