December 15 James 1,2,3,4,5

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These are a few of our SOAP notes from today’s reading. We encourage you to read and journal on your own first, then join us in conversation about what God revealed to YOU today. Click HERE to go directly to the daily reading if you wish. Our team would love the privilege of praying for you! Please share how we can lift you in prayer at

Prodigal  Teacher | Kelley DeAses

S~ [H]umbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.  Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves.  Do what it says.  James 1:21b-22 (NIV)

O~  It has been nearly four years since I first read The Divine Mentor, by Wayne Cordeiro, at the suggestion of a friend.  Upon reading that book, I was compelled by the message and empowered by the profound simplicity of the method to start a new habit of daily devotions.  The benefits I have reaped from sitting at the feet of my Savior day in and day out, year in and year out, have been immeasurable.  My soul finds its rest and its center.  I can process through what is happening in the now in light of God’s eternal perspective.  I am reminded of Gods truth so I can better recognize and reject the distortions this world tries to peddle.

A~ This last week however, while I got up early and even sat with an open Bible, I was doing class preparation in lieu of my personal time with God.  Ironic, really, as the topic of my class was why it is beneficial to spend personal time with God through His Word.  It dawns on me now that the only prep work I would have needed was to “do the thing.”  God could have, and certainly would have, tutored me on how best to convey my message — His message — to those who would attend the adult Sunday school class.  Looks like, after all this time, I needed a refresher course myself!

P~ Lord Jesus, Thank You for Your unending grace and patience with me.  And that, even when I stray, You are still right there ready to greet me with open arms when I finally come back home.

I need wisdom! | Nikki Metzger

S~ For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind. James 3:16 (NLT)

O~ Jealousy and SELFISH ambition are not God’s wisdom or part of His work.  If that is at our center, it will produce disorder and evil.

A~ Sometimes, I just want people to notice me and think highly of me.  But not just anyone, people that I respect and admire.  I am so ashamed that I seek things for my glory and not His.

It usually comes in praise and affirmation by people that I’ve set in my mind as wise.  Today, I’ve read so much!  James 2:1 says, ‘how can you claim to have faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ if you favor some people over others?’

Lord, I’m sorry!

P~ Father, sometimes I live in jealousy and selfish ambition.  When I see the best of someone and it’s my weakness, I desire what they have.  Or I desire praise and affirmation (selfish ambition) from others.  This heart causes disorder and evil in my life, ohhh, just like Your word says!  Honestly, it’s just You, You are my source to be filled up!

God, I need wisdom, You are generous, and You will not get upset when I ask for more wisdom.  Thank You!  I love You!  I ask this in Jesus’ Name!

Humble and Thankful | Michelle Myers

S~ This wisdom is always ready to help those who are troubled and to do good for others. James 3:17 (NCV)

O/A~ I was meeting a friend for coffee at our local grocery store, that also has a restaurant in it. I had used my bank card to purchase coffee and breakfast for myself.  My friend never showed, because she forgot.  So, I ate my breakfast, drank my coffee, and did my Bible study.  After finishing, I went and picked out some fruit to take home.  My total bill was eleven dollars and some change.  I swiped my bank card and typed in my PIN.  The cashier informed me that it was declined due to “insufficient funds”.  Knowing that there was money in there, at least there should have been, and I had just used it to get breakfast, I tried it again.  The same thing happened.  I informed the cashier, who wasn’t really too quiet about the whole incident that I would have to call my bank.  I asked her to put the groceries aside, and I would find out what was going on.  As I was leaving, she started to call for me to come back.  I went back, and she informed me that the guy behind me, said that he would pay for them.  I thanked him a couple of times, and high-tailed it out of there.  Not only was I confused as to why there wasn’t any money in there, I was embarrassed.

The mistake was actually my husband’s.  After a few days of unexpected van repairs came about, the surplus we thought we would have for the month was gone.  We actually had to move items around in our budget.  One bill that my husband thought he had cancelled the auto payment on, didn’t get cancelled.  Eventually, it all got worked out.  I was thankful for the kind man behind me, who paid for my groceries, yet was also surprised at my level of embarrassment and my frustration with God.  I had handled our surplus for the month being gone very well……… no complaining, no panicking with each financial issue that arose.  Plus, the last week had been a difficult one as far as parenting goes.  So, I honestly, at that point felt like God was picking on me.

After a few days of having to work through the incident in my own head; I realized that I had made the incident much bigger than it needed to be, and in doing so, wasted a lot of time and energy.  I had to change my perspective.  Instead of focusing on myself, my pride, and why I am once again going through something embarrassing; I had to focus on the goodness of the wise guy behind me, who was willing to help me out in a time of trouble.

P~ Thank you God for putting caring and giving people in my life.  When the time is right, according to your will, please show me how to pay it forward.  And, of course, continue to work on my perspective and help me change it from selfish and prideful to humble and thankful.

Powerful | Susan Aken

S~ Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. ( or “The effective prayer of a righteous person has great power”) James 5:16 (ESV)

O~ I would say all believers pray to some extent and most pray regularly but how many of us truly realize how powerful prayer is? James emphasizes that the prayer of a “righteous” person (one approved by God; in right standing with God – which can only happen as we believe in and trust the Lord Jesus Christ who makes us righteous before God) so the prayer of a true believer in Jesus Christ has “great power as it is working”. Meaning our prayers are powerful and they are at work, they are effective.

A~ I think one of the reasons we don’t pray more or we lose sight of the power of prayer is that we don’t always “see” this power at work. If we don’t see instant answers or if our prayers weren’t answered in the way we hoped for, it can cause us to give up on prayer. But Hebrews 11:1 says true faith is “the evidence of things not seen.” Faith is holding on and believing in God’s goodness even when we don’t “see” all that He is doing. I think if God suddenly revealed to us all that has happened as a result of our prayers, we would be overwhelmed with thankfulness and would be motivated to pray about everything without ceasing. The prayer of someone who is a follower of Jesus has great power and those prayers are at work, they are effective. This motivates me to pray even more.

P~ Thank you Father for the gift of prayer. Thank you that you would be gracious enough to hear the prayers of people like me. Thank you that you see me through the shed blood of Jesus Christ and that you have given me His righteousness. Thank you for all the prayers you answer every day.

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Posted on December 15, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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