August 19 Jeremiah 45,46,47; Psalms 105; John 21

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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Don’t Do It! | Kim Chipman

S~ Are you seeking great things for yourself? Don’t do it! I will bring great disaster upon all these people; but I will give you your life as a reward wherever you go. I, the Lord, have spoken! Jeremiah 45:5 (NLT)

O~ Baruch was Jeremiah’s scribe, and he was “worn out with trouble”. This is the Lord’s response.

A~ Often I get this way also. Focused on myself. Worn out. Overwhelmed. It usually happens around dinnertime, you know, like just about every single day. I can envision Your response to me as the same response You gave Baruch.

Are you seeking great things for yourself? What are your expectations exactly, Kim? I told you that in this life you would have trouble. Think you deserve some recognition? You know, for the privilege of serving Me and the precious family I’ve entrusted to you? Really!? Are you seeking great things for yourself?? Don’t do it! Don’t focus on YOU, focus on ME! Remember what I did for you? Remember where you’d be without Me? Without My guidance? Without My Word? It won’t be easy, but you can do it! I always give you a way out of the temptation to entitlement. Try flipping the switch to gratitude…there, that’s better…

When I forget – and oh, how quickly I forget Your great mercy and amazing grace – I quickly feel entitled. Like life isn’t fair. Somehow I ‘deserve’ more (?) or better or easier or something. Huh? I don’t get myself sometimes…

Your promises are true and life giving even if they are delayed gratification rather than instantaneous. Just like Your promise to Baruch You promise me LIFE as a reward! Live, and life to the full!

P~ Thank You for the gift of seeing You, hearing You, knowing You. Help me to fix my eyes and thoughts on You, not myself. I love You!

Getting Both my Heart and Mind to Align with You | Michelle Myers

S~ Jesus said to them, ‘Come and eat.’  None of the followers dared to ask him, ‘Who are you?’ because they knew it was the Lord.  John 21:12 (NCV)

O~ This is right after they had gone fishing, caught nothing, and Jesus told them to throw their net on the side of the boat.  Then, they caught more fish than they could handle.  Then they sit down to eat with Jesus.  The above scripture says they knew WHO He was.  However, I wonder if they comprehended the magnitude of it all.  I mean they are sitting and eating with a man that they watched die, a horrible death, a few days earlier.  That is probably surreal enough.  But, to understand what they can not see, what is not right in front of their eyes…..the glory and the power….. that is behind the ONE, and what all of that means; is something that I am still trying to wrap my head around.

A~ I have often asked in prayer, to show me, where my heart is out of alignment with Your will.  It has taken a lot of time with You, to sift through it all.  I mean A LOT of time.  There were things in my heart, that were close to alignment with You.  There was turmoil in my head, that was so far from being aligned with You.  And, I have learned, that You are the only one, who can get me to see, understand, and comprehend WHY I am struggling so much, in certain areas.  So, here is what You have shown me:

Yesterday, tired of the YUK entering my brain and consuming my thoughts, I made a decision to look at, focus on, etc. only the things that represent YOUR goodness.  Purposely did not turn on the tv or get on the internet.  My husband gets up and asks if I saw the message he sent me the night before.  I hadn’t, and thinking it was going to be some loving, gooey thing, or a funny cat post, I looked at it.  It was a video of a sting set up by  parents and this media guy, to test their kids and see if they would meet with someone they met over the internet.  Of course, they did.  Kids whose parents kept track of them, talked to them about the dangers, etc; were now shocked and angry (which probably came mainly from fear) watched at their kids showed up to meet a stranger from the internet.  Not what I wanted to start my morning with!

My husband explained that we needed to show it to our girls and talk with them about it.  I agreed, and was actually proud of him for thinking that way.  I used to be the one who handled that, and his stance was, “It won’t happen to my girls”.  However, I was still frustrated that my morning started off that way.  Now I was dealing with the doom and gloom in my mind again.  Then you stepped in, and showed me what I was not seeing.  I choose to stay home, so I could be a more engaged, alert, and vigilant parent than my mother was.  I did some really dumb things when I was unsupervised and my parents were working.  That was even before cell phones and the internet.  Which, when not used wisely, just increase a child’s opportunity at doing dumb things.  I would hear my school kids talk about what they were doing unsupervised and it scared me.  The benefits that I do see, in front of me, are a more peaceful house and a better relationship with my girls.  In my heart, I knew that there were “hidden” blessings to me being able to stay home, and be a full time parent.  Yet, my head wasn’t getting it.

When an unexpected bill or expense would come about, I focused on the financial “crisis” in front of me.  Even in my heart, I knew it wasn’t a “crisis”.  Still, my head was not getting it.  You stepped in again, and took me through this thought process of my working mom, who, even in the best marital circumstances, never would have supported my decision to not work.  There is no way she would have seen the “hidden” blessings behind it all.  She only saw, a woman who was lazy, a woman who needed a man to take care of her, a woman who was weak, and lost financial potential.  A few days prior to this, You showed me that my family’s ideas and values about marriage, money….well, many things…..did not align with what Your word says and Your value system.

In my heart, much of my families value system, I have known for a long time is messed up, when compared to Yours.  Yet, I didn’t understand that my head, was still struggling with that value system.  Not only in regards to material items, money, marriage, etc.; but also in regards to my own beliefs about myself, my marriage, my failures, my need to strive for perfection, etc. This has caused me to not see a lot of the “good” that is taking place in regards to this season of my life.  It has often, drawn me back to the past, staring at doors You closed and prevented me from entering into ones that You have opened.  It has often prevented me from seeing Your goodness.

You have also shown me, where there are still layers of the world within myself, that need to be peeled and discarded.  I was content and grateful with my life, prior to my husband’s addiction coming out.  We had a modest home.  We had good jobs, and I felt like what I was doing was important.  I didn’t want much.  I was willing to work hard and wait, if I wanted something.  I would often sacrifice to give to others.  I had this belief, that my time will eventually come.  I REALLY thought my heart was right.  Had my “time come” instead of things getting worse and losing all the stuff I was thankful for, including my husband and marriage, I would still think that my heart had been right.  Yet, You showed me, that it wasn’t.  Sacrificing, working hard, etc. was great; as long as things eventually worked out the way I envisioned them, and could keep what I was comfortable and content with, no matter how big or small.  And when it didn’t work out my way, my worldly sense of entitlement came out.  And, when it didn’t work out my way, because of my husband’s lies and deceitfulness, my worldly sense of justice came out.  And, along with these things, a lot of selfishness.   Underneath it all, was a lot of confusion and pain.

Eventually, it got to the point, where I knew, there was no person who was going to be able to fix it or straighten it out for me.  Fixing it financially, was one thing, but I knew I needed some internal healing, some discernment, and wisdom that only You could provide.  And then, there is my own will, that often causes me to fight with acceptance and surrender.  However, little by little, as you work on my mind, and show me where I am not in alignment with You, where the root of it comes from, the blessings it causing me to not see, and the hidden, bigger purpose behind it all; I am starting to make progress in the areas of acceptance and surrender.

P~ Thank you God for Your patience with me.  I have been so angry with You, because in my worldly mind, things have seemed so unfair and down right punishing….from my childhood, in my marriage, in my finances, etc.  But when I go beyond the surface, and allow You to show me, the bigger picture of it all, I am able to see YOUR goodness and glory.  Then, I am amazed.  Out of all of my extended family, why, am I the one you choose, on a deeper level?  As messed up as I can be sometimes, You have not just let me be.  I could be my mentally ill sister, sitting in a trailer all day, smoking cigarettes, watching TV, and unable to raise her son.  It is only because of YOUR grace that I am not.  My heart breaks for my extended family, who is blinded by worldly things, only experiences You on a surface level, and is blind to the consequences, that has brought them in their lives.  But I see those consequences, and I am learning the big picture impact they have had, are having, and if I don’t work with You to help me change them, will have on my girls’ lives.  Please continue to show me and help me.

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Posted on August 19, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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