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5 Stars Out Of 5
What a wonderful study
October 7, 2015
We have loved going through this study. It is well put together and has a great mix of study, inspiration and challenge. I love the way Joanna really gets to our hearts and is so passionate about the message and truth of Jesus.
I can't wait to share this study with others outside of our current group! A friend and I are currently planning a retreat for the women at our church focused on this study and we know that it will be very impactful for everyone involved. Thank you for putting together such an amazing study!
I love how Joanna invited us into her world! Not only do we get to participate with her family (sister and daughter) in the Bible study (which is packed with wonderful scriptural treasures and applications), we are welcomed into her world. We were allowed to spend time at a local coffee shop with her and her young friends. We were able to sit on the sofa in her living room as part of the Bible study and we also had some privileged glimpses of the the beautiful barn and landscapes around her Montana home. I quite enjoyed feeling like a friend or neighbor with whom she enjoys sharing her heart, love for Jesus, and her world.
This is a really nice study for those that are newer to Bible Studies or the Bible. It covers a lot of the basics of our faith - the importance of spending time with God, coming back to God and God's desire for all that He has to be ours (prodigal son),being free from fear, releasing our burdens to God, justification, sanctification, etc. Joanna Weaver says at the beginning of the DVD that her goal for the study is to foster a deeper relationship with God and with each other in the study. She also states that although sometimes nurturing our spiritual life seems to be one more thing to add to your list of things to do_our relationship is not found in what we do, but in better understanding what Jesus did for us. In order to do that, it is important that we make time to sit at Jesus' feet (like Mary) instead of filling our day only with all the other responsibilities that are on our To Do List (like Martha).
For me personally, I prefer a study with stronger teaching (such as those written by Beth Moore or Priscilla Shirer), but this has some very good aspects for new Christians. I especially liked her tips for helping women memorize scripture and her suggestions for different types of Bible Studies you might be interested in doing (topical, book of Bible, characters of the Bible, etc. ) If you have been studying the Bible for many years, then you probably already know a lot of this information and this isn't the study for you..although you would be certain to find other gems along the way. The other aspect that I liked was the ending section "Make A Plan" to each week's lesson where Weaver challenges the reader to develop some of their own thoughts as to how to implement the lesson into their life during the next week_.which will certainly make one more committed to carrying out the changes.
Although it is not clear from the description of the items, the optimal way to do this study is to have Weaver's book Having A Mary Heart In A Martha World, the Study Guide and the DVD. Each week's lesson in the Study Guide provides instructions for which chapters to read in her book (usually 1 - 2 chapters each week) that correspond to each lesson. There are plans for this to be an 11 or 12 week study depending on how you organize it. Each lesson corresponds to a 20 - 22 minute video session. Though it is nice to see the author and hear the video wrap for each lesson, there seems to be more depth in the book and the reflective questions in the Study Guide.
I received a complimentary copy of this Study Guide and DVD from the Blogging For Books program from WaterBrook Multnomah in exchange for this fair and unbiased review.