Monday, 18 April 2011

A Young Woman After God's Own Heart by Elizabeth George

'A Young Woman After God's Own Heart' by Elizabeth George is a study that I've been working on for three years! It is an inspiring book that really guides a girl to live a life that is pleasing to our Savior. Mrs. George uses various verses, characters from the Bible, other sources to present a worthwhile '...guide to Friends, Faith, Family and the Future'.
The book is split into three parts: 'The Pursuit of God', 'The Pursuit of God's Priorities' and 'The Practice of God's Priorities'. However Mrs. George builds a relationship with her young readers as she nurtures them to develop...

1. A Heart Devoted to God:
Here Mrs. George helps us understand the importance of spending time with God, and by using the example of Mary and Martha I learnt to put God first. This chapter resonated the verse: 'Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you.'
2. A Heart That Loves God's Word:
This chapter is just about how our roots are ought to be planted in God's word and not in the world. Like a plant's nutrients nourish it through the roots, so does the soil of our roots. We've got to plant our roots firmly, with God's help into His holy word.
3. and 4. A Heart Committed to Prayer:
Communication is the basis of any successful relationship and we are reminded to renew our communication with our Father in heaven. to be after His heart, we've got to know His divine will, thus we ought to communicate i.e. pray! Mrs. George encourages us not only to offer prayers for our selves but also A LOT of selfless prayers, even for those who despise us.
5. A Heart That Obeys:
'Obedience is better than sacrifice' - I always struggle with this one! We ought to obey not only our parents, but also God. 'I have found David...a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want to do' This clearly depicts that to be able to please our Father and to become a young woman after His heart, we ought to obey Him with the right attitude. It just reminds me of what one of my favorite preachers taught his kids when they were young: 'To obey, is to do what I ask you to do, how I ask you to do it, when I ask you to do it, with the right attitude.' It is in fact easy for us to obey half heartedly, but in this chapter Mrs. George explains the importance of the 'right attitude' bit.
6. and 7. A Heart That Submits:
Submission is closely related to obedience and Mrs. George uses Ephesians 5:21 to encourage us to submit ourselves to Christ and others; submission is the way to honor Christ.
8. A Heart That Loves:
The command 'Love your neighbor as yourself' - runs through this chapter encouraging us to love those around us with the love that Christ first showed us.
9. A Heart That Cares:
If you truly love, you would care! Its easy to say that we care, but Mrs. George encourages to put our words in action by showing our family and friends that we care by simple deeds (which I find extremely challenging)!
10. A Heart That Chooses Wisely:
A big part of our teenage life is our social life, Mrs. George reminds us that we ought to choose these friends wisely: '...no friends is better than the wrong friends!'.  Proverbs 13:20 forms the basis of this chapter and really puts Mrs. George's words in perspective.
11. A Heart That Is Loyal:
Loyalty is vital in our testimony to others as a Christian. Loyalty is important in any relationship and this chapter outlines guidelines that we can follow to become or grow as a loyal, Christian friend.
12. A Heart That Grows:
A massive part of our lives is our education. Using Jesus' example, Mrs. George encourages us to acquire the maximum amount of knowledge and working to our best ability for Christ. She also encourages us to do it joyfully. The vitality of not only worldly knowledge but also Biblical is presented clearly in this chapter -One of my favorites!
13. A Heart That Serves:
Elizabeth George helps us identify the importance of serving God in various aspects of life. She does this by explaining four key steps: 'Learn to Reach Out' 'Learn to Look Out' 'Go to Give' and 'Give in Prayer'.
14. A Heart Marked by Purity:
In today's society the standards of purity are ever decreasing highlighting the detriment of the society itself. However, God's standards of purity never change and are highly significant. Mrs. George shows us how purity isn't a physical matter alone but one that also involves our heart and mind!
15. A Heart That belongs to God:
This chapter is truly self explanatory and presents an emotional ending to the journey we have taken with Elizabeth George, she encourages us to walk in His ways, drawing closer to Him everyday.

This book is an encouraging book that not only helps us get to know Elizabeth George but inspires us to walk in His ways and come closer to Him. With activities for us to do and Bible passages left for us to explore and understand, it really does portray how to become a woman after His own heart. Furthermore, Elizabeth George successfully achieves her goal for this book: '...my goal in writing this book was to look at the major areas of your life as a young woman and then see what God says about each one of them in His word.' I would recommend this book to all the young women out there and would encourage you to read it, trust me, you will not take three years to read it like some one did; you will be challenged and this book will leave you entertained, enlightened and seeking to love our Savior more.

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