August 11 Jeremiah 7,8,9; John 13

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Changing and Doing Right | Michelle Myers

S~ You must change your lives and do what is right. Jeremiah 7:5 (NCV)

O/A~ You have been very silent over the last couple of weeks.  I have been reading, but I have not gotten a word from you.  It has been very frustrating and confusing.  Today, it finally came to a boiling point and I exploded.  It felt a lot like so many other times when I was trying to do what was right and not getting any good results.  That seems to be a consistent theme throughout my life. (Of course, I don’t always do right, and some things that I thought were right when I was younger, I now know are so wrong.)  Today, the extended period of silence made me feel alone and abandoned.  The frustration spewed out of my mouth onto my husband, who tried to comfort me and tell me that he is here for me.  Yet, I didn’t want to just vent, and with no intention of pushing him away or rejecting his support, I realized there was going to be NOTHING he could do for me, and I replied, “I don’t want you.  I want God.”  Huge, huge, huge shift in my wanting to “fix” the yuck myself or expecting him to, and realizing that YOU are the only one who can do it. Internally, I did not calm down enough to hear you, until it was late and I had another break down.  Honestly, I wasn’t sure if I would hear from You and that made me not want to risk being more frustrated.  And honestly, even if You were speaking to me earlier, I was probably being too stubborn to hear You.  That tends to happen when I hit this level of frustration.

One of the things that I blurted out to my husband, after reading this verse this morning is, “I WOULD change my life and do what is right, if God was telling me how or what to change and what is right.”  I went on about my life’s theme being “trying to do what is right, but often not getting a ‘right’ result.” This has created a great deal of pain and frustration since I was a child, and has not really gotten any better since I have become an adult.  It can make the boundaries between right and wrong, not so clear to me. Especially now, after so much loss after years of trying, trying, and trying and some pretty significant changing.  It has caused me to ponder, to the point of nearly driving myself crazy, some of the choices I thought were right before.  This is not what you want me to do, I know.  So, please help me with that.

There are times when I clearly know what is right.  Like the guy freaking out, honking his horn, and cussing at me the other day for no apparent reason.  As I am waving to him to go around me, as he had plenty of room, the thought crossed my mind in a moment of frustration to yell back and give him a not so Godly finger gesture.  I didn’t, because I knew it was wrong.  I also knew I had a Discover One decal on my back window, and that held me more accountable in glorifying You with my reaction.

However, there are times, now that I really struggle with knowing what You are telling me is right, especially when it comes to other people who have really hurt me, while I was trying to do right by You and them.  I don’t know if the lines will ever be as clear as I thought they once were.

Yet, what You had to say to me and show me, when I finally did get to a peaceful place, is it isn’t so much about the other person or their response.  You showed me that I can take comfort in knowing and learning from the lessons of the past, so those big issues that resulted in huge losses, aren’t something I will be prone to again.  The issue is more about where my insecurities are and the results they bring into my life.

I tend to be a perfectionist, who tries to avoid mistakes.  Most of this stems from my childhood.  Some if it comes from prior issues in my marriage.  I can often think that you are not going to give me grace, approve of me, or accept me; in the same way  many of the adults did in my family.  This also opens the door for the enemy to mess with my mind and confuse and frustrate the heck out of me.  I mean to the point, I am questioning Your existance and goodness.  Because it is such a crazy making experience and no ‘good’ God would put a person through that.  It isn’t you putting me through it.  It is me and the enemy putting me through it. I won’t be perfect.  You already know that.  You are ok with that.

I also tend to ignore self-care when I get into this trying to be perfect mode and fail.  I don’t eat right or exercise, because I am too busy trying to understand why I failed……again.  This starts to disrupt my sleep cycle.  And, it is not uncommon then, for me to be paralyzed in fear of making a mistake or not getting it right.  Also, I spend time reliving ALL the times in the past I was trying to do right and it didn’t turn out well, in an effort to not relive the negative consequences again.  But I am reliving them in my mind.  This just widens the entry for the enemy.  And, we are back to taking another trip to crazy town AGAIN!  And, there is often a pretty good chance I am trying to bring my husband along for ride.  He has gotten much better about not jumping on that band wagon and just trying to be a more silent, stable source of support.

P~ Thank you God for my husband.  Thank you for finally giving me something.  God, please help me.  I need not be “in my head” so much.  I need to take care of myself.  I need to give myself grace.  I need to keep moving forward, and not become paralyzed with fear of failure.  YOU have to help me with this.  YOU have to heal me of ALL this.  I can’t do it on my own and nobody else but YOU can help me with it, as it comes from the inside out.

Humbled | Jill Terry

S~ Then He poured water into the basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. John 13:5 (NAS)

O~ Jesus knew what was coming, what was going to happen, yet He washed all of the apostles feet anyway. He knew Peter would deny Him. He knew Judas would betray Him. But, Jesus loved all of them so very much that He humbled Himself and washed the feet of the very men who would soon betray Him.

A~ I don’t know if I could do it. If I knew the people closest to me were going to betray me, if I could humble myself enough to bend down and wash their dirty feet.

How I wish I could. I want to be the type of Christian woman who steps out in faith and loves everyone like Jesus did. I want to love everyone and not worry about the potential pain associated with loving people in that way. I suppose that is the purest part of love, stepping out, humbling yourself and loving them anyway, even in the face of potential betrayal and pain.

P~ Lord Jesus, please help me to love like You do, no hesitation just pure unselfish love. Amen

Do As I Have Done | Luisa Penaherrera

S~ I have given you an example to follow.  Do as I have done to you. John 13:15  (NLT)

O~ In this case Jesus was talking about washing each other’s feet.  Jesus’ life was an example to follow.  Here this verse says: do as I have done to you.

Later on in this chapter, verse 34 reads: So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other.  Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.

So how does Jesus love me?

He accepts me

He forgives me

He comforts me

He encourages me to live for God

A~ Jesus is my example to follow in life.

P~ Dear Father, thank you for sending Jesus for me.  Help me to listen closely to you that I may follow as Jesus did.

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Posted on August 11, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Michelle Myers

    Jill, the perspective in your post hit very close to home. Washing the feet of someone close to me, would not have been an issue a few years ago for me. In fact, serving people close to me, was something I didn’t think twice about. Had I known then, what I know now, I don’t know if I could have humbled myself to do it. I did humble myself many times, even when they weren’t giving me much in return, being very loving, didn’t want to do it, etc. Yet, when there is a deep betrayal with someone you have an attachment bond with, it becomes very difficult to humble one’s self in that way. I really think the only way to do it, is with God’s grace, and Him giving you the power to do it, whether you want to or not. There is nothing in our worldly flesh that would make us. What a great example Jesus is, to do it so humbly and gracefully, knowing what was ahead, and how Peter would deny Him.

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