The Women Living Well Book Club – Chapter 5 {Never Walk Alone}

Book Club header week 2 chapter 5

Welcome back to the Women Living Well Book Club!

Chapter 5 Discussion

sally clarkson community

Image via Sally Clarkson

In Chapter 5, I list the 4 ways I have found community, accountability and friendship within the church.

1. Women’s Bible Studies – raise your hand if you have been in a women’s Bible study!

Women’s Bible Studies are not all created equally. Depending on the leader, the book choice and the group that attends – experiences can vary.  For me personally, this has been a huge piece of the puzzle of my spiritual growth and connection with other Christian women.  I LOVE Women’s Bible Studies and highly recommend you join one or start one in your home or at your church!

Hebrews 10:24 says, “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.”

2. Mentorship/Discipleship Ministry – When I was in 9th grade I was mentored/discipled for the very first time. I talk about this mentor named Holly in my book.  Holly and I met – one on one –  on a weekly basis for 2 years when I was in high school.  Holly was only 2 years older than me – but she had a huge influence in my life. She held me accountable for my daily Bible reading and walk with God and she listened, counseled and befriended me.  When she left my high school youth group, to attend the Moody Bible Institute – it wasn’t long until I followed in my mentors footsteps and joined her on her dorm floor as a student too!

Holly took the time to invest in me.  Who can you invest in? You are never too young!  And now she is a missionary in the Ukraine {she continues to inspire me through her life} and the last time she was home on furlough – our kids played together – here are some pictures below.

Holly Rist 2011

Holly's visit kids

3. Titus 2 Worshops – connecting with older women - If you are a young woman, the Bible says we NEED older women and if you are older- the Bible says you need to be with the younger women.  We need each other.  We need your wisdom, insight, leadership and example.  Young ones – if you don’t have an older woman to learn off of  – pray for one.

Proverbs 27:17 says “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”

4.  Good Morning Girls – (the background story) When I started the very first Good Morning Girls Group at my home church  (which was previously titled the ‘6AM Club’) in 2007 – it was all about accountability.  I knew I needed accountability for my daily quiet times and that is just what Good Morning Girls provided for me.  This sweet group of 5 ladies emailed each other every.single.day for years and years.

first GMG group

But little did we know that our little group of 5 would one day in August of 2009 – turn into 120 Good Morning Girls here on Women Living Well!  These groups kept on multiplying and multiplying, to the point that I was at 600 women and I needed some on-line help to manage it all.

This winter, GMG enrolled 13,000 women in our on-line Bible Study – Praise God!

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Let’s Discuss:

Here’s a – very brief – 1 minute video of my closing thoughts on this section of the book – “Your Walk with God”.

(if you are reading this in the feed – click here to view the video)

1.)  Tell us about a Bible Study you have  been involved in or a mentor or a Titus 2 Woman in your life, that you have connected with on a spiritual level.  How did that affect your spiritual growth?

2.)  Read Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (posted above), how can you apply this in your life?

For Extra Discussion go to the Forum and click on the thread that says “Chapter 5″

Walk with the King,

Courtney

Comments

  1. Su says

    What do you do if you truly do not have friends? I have acquaintances, yes. But no real Christian I can trust them to talk, friends. thx

    • says

      Su – do you have a church you attend on Sundays? That is where you should start. Try to get involved there serving. Volunteer to help with the children or join a small group – and get to know people that way. If you are already doing these things then take a risk and reach out to someone different than you – maybe a young mom – invite her over for coffee or call an older woman and ask for advice. Many of my Christian friendships have come from me taking an initiative and opening my home or leading a Bible study.

      Saying a prayer for you tonight Su. ((hugs))
      Courtney

  2. Nora says

    I have been involved in several bible studies. I have been involved with different mentors throughout the years. Some of them younger and some of them older than me.

    According to that verse, it is imperative to not do anything alone. You need accountability. You need someone to hold your accountable for your actions. I have learned that God shows His love the most through His Church. Through His people.

    Thanks Courtney, for giving us this wonderful bible study.

  3. Alicia says

    I have not had the opportunity to be a part of many bible studies but I have benefitted from having a godly mentor.

    I can apply this verse by trying to overcome being afraid to reach out others.

  4. Sarah says

    a bible study that i did that i really connected with is “If God is in control, why am I a basket case?” i LOVED this study on colossians! i just really connected with it and learned a lot about myself and about how i should be living my life. a mentor i have, or someone i consider a mentor, is a woman named elaine. she is the mentor for my formerlly MOPS, now IMoms, group. I have known her for 6 years. I actually switched to a different group last year and ended up coming back to my old group this year because I missed elaine so much! she is just so wise and is such a blessing in my life. she encourages me, prays for me, and cheers for me. it’s so wonderful knowing i have someone out there who really cares about my spiritual life and works to improve it.

    we are not meant to walk this walk alone. we are meant for community and fellowship, so by having someone we can share with and grow with, it makes this life so much more rewarding. having a couple close friends you know you can count on at any time is reassuring and a blessing.

  5. Jan says

    Morning Courtney! :)

    1.). This question causes me to be thankful even more for finding this online study, as well as the GMG Intentionally Focused study I’m also doing (along w/ the email group of ladies). I’ve done several studies in groups but never connected or had a mentor… Or was a mentor. It’s been several years since my family has gone to church on a regular basis. With that said, and I hope anyone reading this takes this to heart & understands how serious I am… Just about the time my oldest child was reaching her tween years she began fussing about going to church. We also were in between churches. Missing one Sunday or Wednesday led to many more until it turned into months/years. Please here me when I say not being with other Christians on a regular basis is not an ideal situation to be in when you have kids that are pre-adolescent. We have just begun attending a church we very much enjoy and hope to get involved in more.
    I’m really hoping they have a womens bible study.

    2.) Join a women’s bible study at church or start one.

    • says

      Thank you for sharing this Jan. I’m so glad you found a church to attend together and I am saying a prayer for you and your family now, that God will help you all to connect and grow there.
      Lots of Love,
      Courtney

  6. Latosha says

    The woman of God, who inspired me while growing up has passed on to Glory, but the legacy that she left still touches me today. She was an example of a Titus 2 woman in every way. I have participated and gathered with other women in study and conferences going on 30 years now. I have even led small groups and today have a heart to join in with other women from all over the world as well. Mine didn’t start out online, but I am so thankful that now I can gather with women from all over the world, in Jesus name. Thank you Courtney and many Blessings! :)

  7. Samantha says

    1.) Tell us about a Bible Study you have been involved in or a mentor or a Titus 2 Woman in your life, that you have connected with on a spiritual level. How did that affect your spiritual growth?

    I was deeply involved in two women’s bible studies in my previous church. The first one was great! I learned that I am not alone on this walk. Most of the women in our small group had either been through the same things as me or currently walking through them. I learned a lot through that group. The second group I led, which I don’t think turned out as good. I felt led by God to lead the group but I think I got so caught up and lost in leading that I forgot about worshipping. My previous church also had a lot of older women. I learned a lot through them on a spiritual basis as well as on a homemaking basis. I have not really had a best friend though. No one I can call and just talk to or vent to. I do consider my husband my best friend. (because He is!!!!!) The one study though that I did go through, (not through a women’s group) it was an individual study, was the proverbs 31 study on the good morning girls blog. I read the e-book that Courtney wrote along with it. It helped me to get my life in order the way God intended it to be. I now understand that my job is taking care of the house and my role as wife and mother. So, Courtney, thank you so much for answering the call to write the e-book and the call for the good morning girls group. It has meant a lot to me!

    2.) Read Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (posted above), how can you apply this in your life?

    Like I said above, my husband is my best friend! He does a terrific job at being there to pick me up. But I do want to have that woman friend who understands women things. Let’s face it my husband is not going to have sympathy for that once a month, crazy emotional ordeal. Ok, I have went down the bunny hole. :) I need to pray about having someone to be accountable with.
    Thank you for everything!!!

  8. Crystal Espinoza says

    At our church me and 2 other moms were walking the same path of life…SAHM!! They have 3 kids each & I have 4!! We all needed each other to vent, encourage, cry, laugh, give tips on parenting & housekeeping! We thought, there’s got to be other moms in our church/community that need a support group like this!! So, we created “MOMs Mingle” at our church every Friday night, 7pm in our church Family Room! There, we join together and mingle, challenge each other, pray for one another, keep each other encouraged, have workshops, and really strive to become the women God has created us to be! At our church, our pastor is big on raising up leaders out of our church, so we also help women to step up and step out of their comfort zone so they too can eventually become leaders in some area of their life! It is our dream & a goal to have this ministry reach outside these city walls (Las Vegas)!! Thank you Courtney for being such an inspiration!!!

  9. Emma says

    1. In my younger yrs I had a lovely older Christian Woman at work,who was my spiritual mentor. We had some lovely times studying God’s Word and praying together during our breaks! It made a huge difference in my spiritual walk which I really needed at that time.

    2. Have been doing corporate small group bible studies at church. Then online I am encouraged going
    through with the Good Morning Girls!
    Encourage each other, iron sharpening iron, may see something out of a passage of scripture the other one doesn’t see. Praying for one another!

  10. Amanda says

    1. Our church has a wonderful women’s Bible study that I have really benefited from. One of my favorite parts is that the groups include women of a variety of ages; I have learned so much from the more experienced women who attend.

    2. As an introvert, I have a lot of trouble reaching out to people and initiating contact. I think one way that I can apply is Ecc. 4:9-10 is to pray and intentionally reach out to women I admire and also women who I may be able to help.

  11. Karie says

    I have been involved in a few bible studies but I never really connected with anyone from them. My husband and I were in a small group (family group) for a few years but we were the only family with a small child at that time. After the group ended we lost contact with most of the families . The leaders of the group we still have contact with because they still mentor us. However, I feel I really only talk to her when times are bad for me, which I am to blame for that. My girlfriend and I are reading this book together and we have decided to be each other acceptability partners. We will pray for each other and make sure we are staying on track. We work together so one day a week we are going to have lunch together and talk about our current book and God. We are very excited about this!

  12. Existing on Empty says

    1.) Tell us about a Bible Study you have been involved in or a mentor or a Titus 2 Woman in your life, that you have connected with on a spiritual level. How did that affect your spiritual growth?

    2.) Read Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (posted above), how can you apply this in your life?

    At my old church, I attended the monthly women’s Bible study group. However, I was not only the youngest, but the closest woman to my age was in her late 50s. (I attended because I was the pastor’s wife. I was actually quite bored during them.)

    I was also involved with a MOPS group at a megachurch. It wasn’t bad, but I got the impression that I was not fully included as I did not attend the church. I even tried to be a part of the leadership group, but was never contacted for anything. It was good for my now six-year-old daughter as she did not attend day care and it was a good way for her to go to something without me. (It took a few tries, though.)

    At the church where I am currently a member, there are a few women’s Bible study groups. I’ve attended two of them. Again, they are filled with old women and I am the very youngest. Yawn. There is more or less a MOPS group, but the pastor who orchestrates it and I have not been good at promoting it. Oops.

    Overall, I have been very soured on church and not really interested in it.

    I find it interesting that the Bible claims that women work better with groups and with friends. I’ve been praying for friends for 36 years and am quite alone and lonely. (Oh, I’m 36-years-old.)

    No friends. No mentor. No desire to attend church or Sunday school or a Bible study. (I tried attending the Sunday school class that was doing spiritual gifts. For all intents and purposes, I scored either zeros on categories, or the ones involving leadership and care, very low as the only ones under my leadership and care are my kids and for this thing, it doesn’t really count.)

    Yawn.

    • Jamileh says

      Existing on Empty,
      I am SO thrilled to see you here and to see you that you are plugging along here. I continue to pray for you. Again, I know how you feel because I have been there. I am praying that God would bring you what you need for spiritual growth in your life. I pray that HE would give you all you need to be whole and complete. HE loves you! I am about your age (39 yrs. old)…if you would like to talk and connect more you can email me at jamilehwaid@yahoo.com. Be at peace dear sister, HE is watching over you and HE knows your heart. I am praying for you and lifting you up to the Almighty King!

  13. Angela says

    Our church has a womens group and I was able to be a part of a few studies this past year. I do however find it hard to connect on a more personal level since I am new to the church. I pray to find someone or a small group that I can connect with daily and that will hold me accountable.

  14. Kiley says

    1 – I have not been involved in a mentor/mentee relationship spiritually. I have a mentor in my life and she is amazing and gives tremendous advice. She bases some (but not all of) her advice on scripture. I have joined for the first time the GMG Online Intentionally Focused Bible Study. I am doing it as part of an email group. So far (3 days in) it is going really well for me. As a working mom, I don’t often get my quiet time until I get my daughter to bed each evening. I wish I had more time during the day. I have started putting in earphones (classical music) and doing some work during my lunch break at my desk at work.

    2 – I can apply Ecclesiastes 4:9 to my life by trying to bring my best friend (that attends the same church as me) to join me in this online study. We have been friends for so long (and we haven’t always had a strong relationship with God) I am trying to evolve our friendship and focus more a little more of our time to speaking about/reading/living God’s word.

  15. Tracy says

    I have to honestly admit that this is my first study and I am really enjoying it!!!

    That you should never walk alone in your journies. I have several great ladies in my life that I know are there for a reason and I am so blessed by them. I truly know which ones will support and guide me thru it all.

  16. Amanda S. says

    1. In my previous church, I was fortunate to be part of many Women’s studies, even being a discussion leader for several of them. Since I went to the evening studies, we tended to have a consistent group of women over the few years I attended. One leader wrote her own studies, and she was a great mentor to me for how to study and apply the Bible. I also did W2W Mentoring, and that mentor was so important in my life as I began dating my now-husband. Currently, I have been doing GMG with friend–we get together each week and discuss the Word and other things. We are getting ready to start Jennie Allen’s Restless.

    2. Having read the responses, I am struck by my responsibility to reach out to the women at my church. I never know who needs a friend, but I do know that I am called to be in fellowship with other women.

  17. Dawn C says

    1) I was involved in a Bible study a couple of years ago at the church I attended which I enjoyed alot. All of the women were at least a couple of decades older but I felt that I learned alot from them and their wisdom. However, I have not had a specific mentor.
    Like many others on here, I am desire a few close Christian friends. I have my awesome husband, who is my best friend, but there is a lot he doesn’t understand about being a mostly stay at home mom (I work out of the house 1 day). I also have my mom, but I really seek women closer to my age who I can kvetch with, encourage, support and pray with. I know God will provide this, especially as I seek Him and His friendship.
    2) I can apply Eccl. 4:9-10 by taking the bull by the horns and seeking out other women of God to encourage and rely on. I can pray from them, but I can’t really expect God to deliver them to my front door!

  18. Jen Hartmann says

    1. A friend invited me to bible study fellowship (BSF) 5 years ago, its a non denominational international bible study that has groups everywhere nationwide meet at a local churches mondays or wednesdays. This was my first time to attend one and it has amazingly changed my life for the better, I am a better mom, wife, friend, even stranger :) Life can be hard sometimes and my desire for God hasn’t always been great due to my past hurts and struggles I have had to face, but being in God’s word keeps me accountable for what I know, Romans 3:13. I am still growing and have a long ways to go but my wednesdays are so special to me, I love the ladies I get placed with each year for our small group and always get blessed with the perfect leader to help me grow. They help me grow in my faith through the season of trails I bare for that time and so grateful for their compassion and support.

    After I picked your book up in January and read your suggestions to get into God’s word, I felt my BSF wasn’t enough for me and felt this stronger desire to mature in my faith in my to continue to help me grow through some past hurts that I was and some days, still allow to fester in my heart. I started waking up for quiet time only couple weeks ago, an hr and half before my kids usually wake and I also am doing my first GMG online study. My son Sam who is 3rd in line of 4 was diagnosed with PDD-NOS and it has been a new journey of spiritual growth for sure. I needed to grow in my faith with others who could relate to my situation and found a Facebook group for moms who have kids with special needs and is led by a mom who has a child with autism and the group of ladies I am blessed with there is beyond words. I love how God does take what feels like our itty bitty urge to secure ourselves to him and multiplies our resources beyond measure, we are studying about feeding the 5000 and 4000 in Matthew in BSF right now :)

    2. Eccl 4:9-10 applies to me by needing to make the effort to reach out for support, I like to put on my supermom cape and think I can get through things on my own but in reality I need the support of others to hold me accountable, to remind me what God’s word says, to shine new light onto my struggle since sometimes I am stuck in a dark tunnel and only see things one way. God designed us to be disciples and wants us to build a church together, life was designed for companionship not loneliness.

  19. Jamileh says

    For my entire walk with God I have never been mentored…not even by my mother. Every church we went was just that, church. There was no fellowship with other women, no women’s Bible study, nothing like that. The only thing remotely close to a Bible study was Wednesday night Bible study at church for the adults. Even then it wasn’t a Bible as we weren’t given anything to study. A person would be chosen to do a study on something and then come back the next Wednesday to share…sooooooo. I’ve never been mentored and I’ve never been involved in a women’s Bible study. However I will say this has only strengthened my resolve in God and HIS Word. To really study it, own it and make it mine! Over the past 14 years I have been involved with our family Bible studies and Bible studies with other families but never one with just women. I do my own study and I study with my children. It’s easy since I homeschool. I do however moderate a blog and participate on a blog that is strictly for women. We talk about and study Scripture, raising children, loving our children and husbands, cooking, gardening, homeschooling, prayer support and much much more. There are over 500 women from around the world who participate on this blog and we all learn from each other as well as Scripture in humbleness, humility and love with one another. It’s wonderful!! It’s my fellowship with other women around the world! Absolutely great!
    I can apply Ecclesiastes to my life my being there for other women, praying for other women, mentoring them, and being a friend and companion to them. I can encourage them through Scripture and life experiences. I can stand together with other women through good and bad times all the while looking to God in everything.

  20. Amber says

    1.) Tell us about a Bible Study you have been involved in or a mentor or a Titus 2 Woman in your life, that you have connected with on a spiritual level. How did that affect your spiritual growth?

    My husband and I were in a marriage/parenting bible study for a while and then because we live in a military area most of the group has moved on. I am really looking for a women’s bible study because I know that I need this. I love getting the knowledge and guidance from the women I surround myself with. I feel that this is also a way that I am help accountable for my actions.

    2.) Read Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (posted above), how can you apply this in your life?

    I LOVE this verse! It is so true! I know that I am held to a higher standard if others are watching me and will call me out on certain things… I need that type of accountability to keep me on track! I also have friends who depend on me for this type of accountability and companionship. I will continue surrounding myself with ladies and help to built each other up and hold each other when we fall.

  21. Kim Abbott says

    1 – I have been involved in many studies. I’m currently in a community Bible study and we are studying the book of Matthew.

    2 – Being there for other women, surround myself with others that help build each other up.

  22. Elaine says

    The Bible studies that had the most profound impact on my life were three different “Disciple” studies.
    Each one was 32 weeks long in a small group setting at church. We had homework assignments (Bible readings) six days a week. Not only did I gain an in-depth knowledge of the Bible, but the rigors of the homework established the habit of more Bible reading when the studies were finished. I did my homework in the evenings and when the first study was over, it seemed like there was a void in my evening and that’s when I realized I was missing my Bible reading and started studying on my own until the next study at church. During those three years of “Disciple,” I experienced the most Christian spiritual growth in my entire life. All of the small group members bonded so well together and we always prayed for each other, our families, friends, neighbors, etc. at each session. It was a wonderful feeling of closeness as we all grew spiritually. Your wonderful post today reminded me of that.

  23. Elizabeth says

    1.) Most of the bible studies I have done in the past have either been done on my own or were ones that for one reason or another I wasn’t able to complete. I am currently in a group for the Intentionally Focused bible study and am learning a lot from the women each day! I am looking forward to successfully completing this one. :)
    2.) I love this verse. A lot of the time I think of my husband when I think of this verse. He is my best friend and he is always there to pick me back up when I fall. I am, however, very close friends with 2 women who I feel I can share things with and pray with that offer a different relationship dynamic. Unfortunately, they live about 5 hours away from me so that can sometimes make it difficult – this is where I am thankful for things like Facebook and phone calls / texting because even through the distance we are able to keep up with each other!

  24. Melissa says

    I have thoroughly enjoyed learning from Courtney, Angela, Darlene and others. I went to church when I was younger and attended church camp and everything but as I have gotten older I have lost my focus on God. Within the last year, I have been through quite a bit and am learning more and more about myself and God. My husband has never really attended any church or events but is willing to go to church with me and we have been having more and more conversations about God in our marriage. I am stuck though. Im not sure what type of church to attend. There are several Ive been to and I like many different services. We have friends who attend each church but we cant decide which to choose. We would love to meet new people and maybe get involved in the activities and studies available. We have learned so many things about some of the friends we thought we had and need some positive people in our lives. Any ideas on how to choose a church to attend? Thanks in advance!

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