SHEILA ON WRITING THE BOOK
Writing this book "In The Middle of the Mess" is the hardest project I've ever undertaken. Half way through, I almost quit as it felt too raw and a bit too vulnerable. I've always been fairly open about my struggles with depression. But I've never talked about another ongoing battle, a battle with suicidal thoughts. Some things are still never talked about in the Church as there is so much shame attached.Sheila Walsh
Last year however, I spoke at an event with about 5,000 women and as I came to the close of the message I felt the Holy Spirit move me in a direction I've never gone before. I asked the audience if they have ever struggled with suicidal thoughts or if they were cutters to join me at the front. I stood with tears pouring down my face as over 300 women, ages 14 to 73 joined me.
Honestly, I was shocked but it made me realize that this is a dark corner in the Church where we need to shine the light of Christ. We think our secrets keep us safe but the opposite is true, they keep us in bondage.
It's not just suicidal thoughts. There are so many areas where we struggle alone . So many messes. Illness, divorce, job loss, depression and life changes.
Yet James wrote, "Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed." 5:16
The truth is that life is a mess but we are not alone and together, in Christ, we can find strength to live this beautiful, broken life.
Questions and Answers
I can't find my confirmation email with the free downloads. Was it sent?
You should receive the confirmation email within 15 minutes after signing up. If you don’t see it in your inbox, check your spam or junk folders. Look for sender name Study Gateway OBS and sender email address firstname.lastname@example.org. Gmail users, the email may be located in the Promotions tab. If you still can’t find the email, you can try to register again (make sure there are no typos in your email) or contact our customer support team – they’d be happy to help you!
Where do I sign up for the Facebook private group? What's that all about?
Join here on Facebook as a way to engage with other participants in the study! This is the place for individuals who are going through the study to find communuty and receive more daily interaction. Be sure to read the community rules and remember to keep conversations on topic with no soliciting. We’d love to have you be a part of this group!
I want to invite other members of my church or small group to join the study. What is the best way to do that?
It’s easy! Just send the registration page link (https://www.studygateway.com/obs) in an email and they can sign up.
What other ways can we engage with the online participants?
We’re bringing watch parties to OBS! Watch for more information about the weekly watch party dates and times.
I'm already part of a small group at church. How can we do this study with you?
All of the online activities associated with this study are optional. You can still structure your group like a traditional Bible study using the free downloads we’ve provided and the study materials in the book. Feel free to follow our study calendar and meet every week or set up your own schedule and go at your group’s pace.
Is this something I could do via Skype? I am looking for a study to do with my friends , but we are in different cities.
Absolutely! The weekly videos will be available online so you could get on Skype (or Google Hangouts, iChat, or whatever), watch them at the same time, then talk and process through the questions and each week’s reading together. We love this idea! What an awesome way to bond with friends across the miles.
What communication can I expect to receive? I don't want to be inundated with emails.
After sign up you’ll receive an email a week as you’re going through the study. We’ll keep you updated on the assigned reading for the week and where to watch your companion videos.
My Internet connection is slow. Can I buy the DVDs and watch the videos that way?
Yes! The videos that are on the DVDs are the same videos as what will appear online. This is a nice option if you’re in a traditional church setting and don’t have an Internet connection, or if you want to do the study later and go at your own pace! Individuals can purchase the DVD from FaithGateway and save 40% off.
I don't live in the USA and want to do this Bible study. How can I obtain the materials please?
Anyone with Internet access can watch the videos for FREE week by week, and follow along with our weekly emails. If you are outside the U.S., we recommend checking with your local Christian bookstore or online retailer. In Canada and the United Kingdom, for example, the materials are often available from Amazon.
Is this online Bible study just for women?
Everyone and anyone is welcome to join the In the Middle of the Mess online Bible study. Sheila’s studies appeal to women but the Scriptural truths and study of God’s Word are for everyone.