may 20th...

i LOVE LOVE LOVE my Bible study group. i forgot my camera yesterday and had to take these photos with my phone. so they aren’t the best. but these gals are the BEST.

yesterday was our last meeting until fall. and so after our study time, we had a salad luncheon together. we had been doing beth moore’s “when Godly people do ungodly things” (which i think beth might rename “the life and times of lea marshall”). and in the last video yesterday beth explained so well why i LOVE LOVE LOVE my Bible study group...

they don’t throw stones. (to be explained a bit more in a minute, just hold the thought)...

to look at them you might not realize it but most of them are quite a bit older than i am... some of them were my mother’s closest friends and sunday school cohorts. some of them taught me in sunday school back in the day (like the day when i still wore diapers... so up until the 1980’s). the leader is patsy and she is a former high school english teacher. so she makes us do our homework. and she uses words that i have to look up in the dictionary later... like recalcitrant. yes, she used that in a sentence. 

we met this spring at mrs. gardner’s beautiful home. and the lunch yesterday was so gracious and lovely. just like her. mrs. gardner was my mother’s best friend. and her daughter and i taught school together. and went to the ABC store together (ABC school supply, NOT the liquor store). and mrs. gardner and mr. gardner were the only ones waiting outside the hospital room at midnight when the doctor told my dad and i that my mom’s stroke was a really bad one and that she would most likely never recover. i walked out of that hospital room into the arms of mr. and mrs. gardner and began to sob into their laps. there is NO one else that could have been there that would have been a more welcome, comforting, and familiar sight. i will never forget the absolute relief in seeing them and knowing that i could cry into their arms and be held.

anyway, that is who those women are to me. and now onto the “they don’t throw stones” part. beth moore was going over the story of the woman caught in adultery. and she pointed out that as Jesus wrote whatever He wrote into the sand that the crowd, who had previously been ready to stone this woman, began to thin. the older ones leaving  first... 

john 8: 6-9
But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "If any one of you is without sin, 
let him be the first to throw a stone at her." 
Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.
At this, those who heard 
began to go away one at a time, 
the older ones first, 
until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there.

and she pointed out that the older we get, the less likely we are to throne stones. the longer we live, the more we realize that we don’t have a stone to throw. that our house is glass. that if anyone should have been stones... it should have been us. each one of us. and that God could have held the rock. but instead He rolled it away. 

and that is why i LOVE LOVE LOVE my Bible study gals. they don’t throw stones. they accept me. they love me to pieces. and they have lived enough of life to know that they aren’t perfect. that i am not perfect. and that there is only One who is the Righteous Judge. nary a stone thrower in the group. and they make some really good salads. not to mention mrs. gardner’s sour cream lemon tarts for dessert. whoops, sorry to mention it.