August 28 Ezekiel 1,2,3; Revelation 2

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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The Spirit Leads | Luisa Penaherrera

S~  The spirit of the four living beings was in the wheels.  So wherever the spirit went the wheels went, too.  When the living beings moved, the wheels moved.  When the living beings stopped, the wheels stopped.  Ezekiel 1:20, 21  (NLT)

O~  This was a vision Ezekiel had.  The spirit of the living beings moved, the wheels followed. The wheels weren’t leading the way.

A~  I am the wheel here, yet I try to lead the way when I need to be following the leading of the Spirit. I am not meant to run from tough situations, but I can turn to God and let his Spirit lead this wheel.

P~  Dear Father, help me to follow.

My Heart First | Kim Chipman

S~ Then he added, “Son of man, let all my words sink deep into your own heart first. Listen to them carefully for yourself. Then go to your people in exile and say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says!’ Do this whether they listen to you or not.” Ezekiel 3:10-11 (NLT)

O~ The Lord is sending Ezekiel to the Israelites that were captives in exile in Babylon. God wants him to deliver the messages He gives whether they listen or not. God knows they are obstinate, hard-hearted rebels at this point.

A~ I don’t think our call as believers and disciples is different today. I’m certain that MY call is not, especially in my home.

**Let all Your words sink deep into my own heart first, listen to them carefully for myself** I have to sit with You and listen to You for myself FIRST. I cannot listen for anyone else. When I listen carefully for myself and let Your truth sink deep into my own heart I am deeply humbled. I do not have it all together. I am tempted to sin, I choose to sin, apart from You I am nothing. Knowing who You are and who I am in You humbles my heart and positions my perspective in such a way that I can share You and Your truth from a place of common struggle. The foot of the cross is level ground.

Once I listen for myself and my heart is right then I can share Your truth **whether they listen or not**. Often, especially in parenting, but in other relationships as well, I get frustrated when I’m not heard. When I know I’m speaking Your truth in love, for the other person’s good, it hurts to be ignored, tolerated, dismissed. But the freedom here is release from a certain level of responsibility. “Do this whether they listen or not”. Just deliver the message.

P~ Lord, thank You for Your Word. There is such peace and perspective here. I love You!

My Part | Michelle Myers

S~ But I will hold you responsible for their deaths. Ezekiel 3:20 (NCV)

O~ God told Ezekiel that he would hold him responsible for two different groups of people, if he does not warn them.  First, he must warn those who are wicked.  Second, he must warn those who have done good, but have turned away from that ,and are now doing evil.

A~ I have to say, God, at first, I didn’t understand this.  Why is Ezekiel responsible for other people’s choices?  As someone who has had a great deal of responsibility, the lines often become blurred in regards to, where my responsibility begins and ends.  As I read on, You began to show me that Ezekiel was only required to do and responsible for the parts that You gave him to do, and that You were there to help in his part.

Something I have known for awhile now, is that much of what I was given as a child, was not my responsibility.  It wasn’t right for me to be held responsible for other people’s feelings, emotions, failures, etc.  It wasn’t right for me to be responsible for helping people who did not want to help themselves.  This pattern continued into my adult life.  However, now, I realize that not only was it given to me by people, but I foolishly took it on for people, thinking I was helping them.  I am only responsible for doing the part You gave me to do.

God tells Ezekiel, “You, human, don’t be afraid of the people or their words.  Even though they may be like thorny branches and sticks all around you, and though you may feel like you live with poisonous insects, don’t be afraid.  Don’t be afraid of their words or their looks, because they are people who turn against me.  But speak my words to them.  They may listen or they may not, because they turn against me.” Ezekiel 2:6-7 (NCV)

I have lived among thorny branches, sticks, and poisonous insects, whose words and look of disapproval, judgment, and condemnation can be cutting.  Yet, what I got from you last night as I was getting ready to go to bed, and I looked around and thought, “I didn’t get that done today, or that.”  You spoke to my heart, and said, “Why don’t you look at what you have done in a day, instead of what you have not done.  Start looking at your successes instead of failures, no matter how big or small.”

I realized then that I had become my own thorny branch and poisonous insect in my head; and You are giving me the responsibility of changing that.  So, if I have done what You told me to do, and it is all I can do, I need to know that I handled my responsibility, in spite of the words or looks that other people give me.

You also showed me, that how I do it, is just as important as what I do.  This is the revelation I got the other night, when I was in a battle with my daughter, when she didn’t want to do her part.  My guess is, that Ezekiel was someone who struggled with his mouth, when what he was saying was wise, true, and was meant to bring about a good result; and nobody wanted to listen.  It can be frustrating, but You know that, and You were there to help him with his mouth.  You will be there to help me too.

You told Ezekiel, “Also, I will make Your tongue stick to the roof of Your mouth so you will be silent.  You will not be able to argue with the people, even though they turn against me. But when I speak to you, I will open your mouth, and you will say to them, ‘The Lord GOD says this.’  Those who will listen, let them listen.  Those who refuse, let them refuse, because they are a people who turn against me.”  Ezekiel 3:26-27 (NCV)

P~ Thank you God for Your word and clarity on this subject of responsibility for me.  You often hear me say, “What I say doesn’t really matter, because nobody listens.”  There were situations, dangers, and warnings I gave to my parents when I was younger.  They didn’t want to hear it, nor did they want to deal with it.  They didn’t want to listen to wisdom when I was an adult.  The same thing happened with my husband and mother-in-law.  It frequently happens with my own kids.  It is where many of my control issues come from and where much of my frustration comes from.  Yet, You told me last night and showed me here, that what I say and do does matter.  It matters what I say to myself.  It matters what and how I say it to others.  And just doing what You have given me to do, regardless of other people’s responses, matters most of all to YOU.  I am so thankful for what Jesus did on the cross.  I can take peace in knowing, that regardless of how much wisdom is ignored here on earth, because of what Jesus did, it won’t keep us from entering heaven, as long as we believe.

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Posted on August 28, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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