August 2 2 Kings 21; 2 Chronicles 33; John 4

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.

Printable reading plan: Life Journal Reading Plan

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Wrestling with God | Tara Wiley

S~ Jacob’s well was there; and Jesus, tired form the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime. John 4:6 (NLT)

O~ Today, my curiosity got me. Why did the Bible decide to let us know this was Jacob’s well Jesus sat beside when He had his famous conversation with the Samaritan woman? So I did a little digging.

The first obvious reason is to signify location – Jesus was in a place where a normal Jew of His day wouldn’t be caught dead, let alone would talk to a local. Samaritans were the outliers with bad theology. Yet again, Jesus shows that His love supersedes man’s tendency to quickly judge and dismiss. He reaches for the heart.

But what really caught me this time was the name attached to the well – Jacob. The one who wrestled with God. When Jesus sat at that well, did He have a flashback to that night of wrestling? Did He remember the heart-change of a man who dared to fight with God? And then, He had an encounter with a woman who dared to challenge Him. And He wrestled with her too: gently, honestly pointing out her need for Him.

A~ I love that God looks at the heart and knows just how to reach a person at their point of need. Some need a good hard man-handling; others a simple truth-telling. My responsibility: to be sensitive to the Spirit’s directing as I lead my children to Christ and seek to be a light in my sphere of influence… with a grateful assurance that God will do what He does best: reach their hearts.

P~ Lord, I love Your Word! I love how each story weaves together to show a bigger picture of who You are and how You relate to us. I love Your creativity and the way You draw near to those who need You. Show me how to reflect You to the people around me. Draw the hearts of those I love close to Your heart through the creative power of Your Spirit. Thanks that I can trust You to do just what is needed – in their lives and mine!

No More Nasty Water | Robin Laney

S~ Jesus answered her, “Everyone who drinks this water will become thirsty again. But those who drink the water that I will give them will never become thirsty again. In fact, the water I will give them will become in them a spring that gushes up to eternal life.” John 4:13-14 (GW)

O~ I love the story of the woman at the well! Here is this woman, drawing water alone in the hottest part of the day. I imagine that her life choices left her ostracized from the community of women in her town. Jesus speaks to her and asks her for a drink. The fact that she was not only a Samaritan but a woman was enough of a reason for a Jewish man to not talk to her, but Jesus also knows her past and her current life situations and he still engages her. He knows she has a bad reputation but he does not blurt it out and demand that she kneel before him, the Son of God. Instead, he reveals himself to her in a way that opens her eyes to him, if only as a prophet at first, and gives her an opportunity to confess her sins. He offers her more than she has at her disposal, living water instead of well water, an eternal supply instead of a temporary provision, hope for something more than what she knows. She expresses belief in a coming Messiah and he shares with her that he is the one she has been waiting for. She goes and tells the town people about her encounter with Jesus and many of them became believers. They moved from merely believing her testimony about him to experiencing him themselves to knowing that he is the Savior of the world.

A~ This woman’s story is my story. I was unworthy of him, yet he spoke to me several times over many years, offering me more than the life I was settling for. He finally revealed himself to me and opened my eyes giving me the opportunity to confess my sins, to believe in him, and to share him with others.

I was living so far from him indulging in a promiscuous lifestyle and alcohol. My sin had overcome me to the point of aborting my child. The life I was living was no life at all. My shame was too great to become involved in a believing community and it was only after I had married and had a child that I felt that I had painted a picture of my life worthy enough to be accepted by people of faith. (This was all of my shame causing this skewed perception of the Church.) I was thirsty for more and I found him. He didn’t beat me over the head or call me hopeless. He revealed himself to me in a way that opened my eyes to all that I had been missing, including forgiveness. He knew me and he still reached out to me and offered me hope for this life and for eternity, living water. I love telling others what he has done for me!

P~ Lord, thank you for saving me from the mess I was in. Thank you for living water instead of the putrid water I was consuming, fullness of life instead of stagnant life. Lord, I pray that by telling others what You have done for me, others will come to see and believe for themselves that You are Savior!

I’m drinking the punch people 🙂 | Nikki Metzger

S~ But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again.  It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.  ~Jesus in John 4:14 (NLT)

O~ Jesus is calling Himself Living Water – once you have Him – it’s all you need.

A~ Yes.  This is true.  I remember my first job out of college, it was tough and the worst possible fit for me.  I was so unhappy, but made a ridiculous amount of money, so I never left.

A co-worker told me that I always seemed to be searching for something.  He was right, I bought every single self help book written.  Some would work for a few weeks, but then I was back searching again.

I was a believer at the time, but Jesus was a check mark that I made on Sunday mornings.  So I didn’t think I was searching for Him.

Time, pressure, stirrings of my soul – I allowed Jesus to be a bigger and bigger spring in me. WOW! WOW! WOW!

I drank Jesus’ punch! I will NEVER be thirsty again!  No more self help books for this lady!  I’ve got Jesus (and His Word!)  I’m freakin’ unstoppable!

P~ I LOVE YOU!  THANK  YOU!

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Posted on August 2, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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