April 25 1 Samuel 30,31; 1 Chronicles 10; Matthew 12

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 DiscoverOneThingPrayer@gmail.com

Printable reading plan: Life Journal Reading Plan 

Your Strength | Kim Chipman

S~ David was now in great danger because all his men were very bitter about losing their sons and daughters, and they began to talk of stoning him. But David found strength in the Lord his God. 1 Samuel 30:6 (NLT)

O~ David and his men were out fighting and when they arrived home they found the Amalekites had made a raid, carried off the women and children, and burned the city to the ground. David’s soldiers became angry with David, and began to talk of stoning him.

A~ David’s response? He found strength in You. Sometimes it feels like enemy attack is all over the place trying to take me down – like David, I can find strength in You. Sometimes it feels like my own people want to stone me. Like David, I can find strength in You. Life has been overwhelming lately – here I sit, to find strength in You. Like David I want to choose: not to blame, not fear, not ignoring problems, not running away, not being angry or bitter, not doubting myself, not unforgiveness…when people/circumstances/LIFE seems to be against me…I want to make the choice to find strength in You.

As a matter of fact, I want to choose to find my strength in You when things are smooth sailing and pretty good, too. My strength and my way are no match for Your perfect presence.

P~ Lord, help me to choose You. Help my heart and mind to meditate on Your truth regardless of my circumstances. Help me to remember how much I need You and I can find strength in You. I love You!

Divine Appointments | Robin Laney

S~ They found an Egyptian in a field and brought him to David. They gave him water to drink and food to eat— part of a cake of pressed figs and two cakes of raisins. He ate and was revived, for he had not eaten any food or drunk any water for three days and three nights.

David asked him, “Who do you belong to? Where do you come from?”

He said, “I am an Egyptian, the slave of an Amalekite. My master abandoned me when I became ill three days ago. We raided the Negev of the Kerethites, some territory belonging to Judah and the Negev of Caleb. And we burned Ziklag.”  

David asked him, “Can you lead me down to this raiding party?”

He answered, “Swear to me before God that you will not kill me or hand me over to my master, and I will take you down to them.” 1 Samuel 30:11-15 (NIV)

O~ David and his army had just returned home to find their village burned and their loved ones taken captive by the Amalekites. They were devastated. David prayed to God about whether to go after them or not and, upon hearing from God, lead his men out to take back all that was stolen from them. On the way, they found an Egyptian, near death, in a field and he was brought before David. They had compassion on him and gave him food and drink and he was revived; not only bread and water but the good stuff from their limited supply.

They then asked him who he was and he told them that he was an Egyptian slave who had just taken part in the burning of their village. He agreed to lead them to where the raiders were. God saved this man’s life through David’s compassion and generosity and then used this man to rescue the women and children from their captors.

The text before these verses says that the men “wept aloud until they had no strength left to weep.” They were exhausted from their journey, grieving their losses, angry at their leader, David, and seeking revenge on those who had destroyed their lives. They were focused on finding their wives and children. They were limited on supplies as their store had been depleted on their journey and their village had been plundered. Yet, when they saw a man in need they stopped and offered the best of what they had. They served him with compassion even when they, themselves, were suffering greatly.

A~ How many times am I so self-focused or tunnel-visioned on accomplishing a task that I don’t notice those around me who are in need? How often do I just not feel like looking up to smile at those who pass by or think I am too busy to offer a hand? Sometimes, I feel as though my load is so heavy I can’t possibly take on someone else’s hurt or responsibilities. I mean, I have enough on my own plate, right? Often, I take tasks on myself and am so sure I can do them myself that I miss out on the help God sends my way.

When I am in ‘me’ mode, I often don’t stop to consider that the person who has just entered my life, whether my physical space or my knowledge, might have been placed there by God. I am not thinking, at that moment, that I might have something to offer them or that perhaps God is trying to help me through them. Oh, the opportunities I miss out on when I don’t allow the Spirit open my eyes and heart to all that is happening around me each day.

P~ Lord, open my eyes and heart to those you place in my path. Give me compassion for others, even when I think I have nothing to offer. Let me be generous with everything You give me. Thank You for loving me so much that You would pay such close attention to the details of my life to provide all I need through those around me. Help me to be sensitive to Your nudging to provide for others in the same way. Let me see each encounter as a divine appointment.

What Matters the Most | Michelle Myers

S~Saul died because he was not faithful to the LORD and did not obey the LORD. He even went to a medium and asked her for advice instead of asking the LORD. This is why the LORD put Saul to death and gave the kingdom to Jesse’s son David. 1 Chronicles 10:13-14 (NCV)

O~ Saul and David were different in many ways. However, the one difference that seemed to matter the most, was who they went to for guidance.

A~ Since I discovered my husband’s addiction, roughly five years ago, I have struggled to get “good guidance” in regards to what sexual addiction is, what he needs to do to help himself, what I need to do to help and protect myself and our children, etc. I tried books. I tried therapists. I tried family. I tried friends. I tried pastors. And, I got more confusion, more uneducated advice, more jabs at me as a wife, mother, and woman. I got more labels. I got a lot that was neither true, informative, or helpful.

I went to God also, but not in the way I should have. The voices, confusing advice, and lack of true knowledge from all the other “people” I went to, muffled what He was trying to tell me. He was the only one who knew my entire set of circumstances…my childhood, my heart, my efforts, my confusion, my motives, my husband’s heart, other people’s motives,etc……I am now much more cautious about who I listen to, and very reluctant to jump on the “next band wagon” of new and wonderful Christian speakers, authors, churches, etc.

God showed me this morning, that I have always had his guidance, even as a kid. I knew better than my parents at times, who were “good” people for me to associate with and who were not. Yet, not having a valued voice, a rational mother, or a respected point of view, often left me fighting for my own well being. Eventually, I would quit fighting, give in, and “become” friends with whomever, do whatever, etc. This same pattern has played out in my adult life, with multiple people. God showed me this morning that His voice, has often been muffled by the voices of all the other “gods” I have had in my life. This left me confused and second guessing myself, which really was me second guessing the Holy Spirit.

P~ Thank you God for unveiling some personal truths. Thank you for showing me that I have had You with me all along…even before I really knew who YOU were or that I needed a relationship with you. Now, I realize that my one-on-one personal relationship with YOU, is what matters the most. It is what is going to guide me in the right direction, keep the confusion away, sustain peace in all my circumstances, and keep me on a path toward spiritual growth.

Do Good, Not Look Good | Luisa Penaherrera

S~  And he answered, “If you had one sheep, and it fell into a well on the Sabbath, wouldn’t you get to work and pull it out?  Of course you would.  And how much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Yes, it is right to do good on the Sabbath. Matthew 12:11,12  (NLT)

O & A~  I love Jesus’ answer!  Jesus’ answer challenges the Pharisees’ traditions and convictions.  He doesn’t want us to simply live by rules that make us look good, but to do good.

P~  Dear Jesus, thank you for your courage to stand up to what’s right. Help me to live like you did. I love you.

Fruit | Nikki Metzger

S~ A tree is identified by its fruits.  If a tree is good, its fruit will be good.  If a tree is bad, it’s fruit will be bad.  Matthew 12:33 (NLT)

O~ So simple! You know a tree by what it produces, not what it wants to produce.  Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, goodness, self control.  That’s what God would have for me when the Holy Spirit is in charge of my life and not me.

A~ I really desire the fruit in my life to be good.  But it would be impossible for a tree to change itself.  Just like I know how impossible it is for me to change.  Especially regarding self control.  I can’t seem to change myself to have self control, but God can change me!  Nothing is impossible with God!

P~ Thank You Lord for Your word!

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Posted on April 25, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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