October 8 Ezra 9,10; Psalms 131; Luke 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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Fear | Nikki Metzger

S~ The Lord Himself watches over you!  The Lord stands beside you as your protective shade. Psalm 121:5 (NLT)

O~ Isn’t that comforting?  He watches me, He protects me!  I am that important to Him!

A~ I’m nervous!  Two things this week on top of other life stuff.  Really digging into getting healthy.  Making a plan and sticking to it.  Starting today!  And having a bunch of ladies (or two) to my house to start some sort of community based on God’s truth.  Lord, have mercy!  I’m kind of freaking out!

P~ Father, rejection and failure are powerful fear forces that stir in me.  Rejection of people coming over and rejecting me.  Failure of trying to get healthy and not being able to do it yet again. Today, I don’t want rejection and failure to motivate me.  I’d like to be motivated by….actually, I don’t want to be motivated.  I want to be UNSTOPPABLE because of what You have put inside me, of WHO lives in me.  What do I have to fear?  You watch over me, You are my protective shade!  Thank You!  I love You!

Be Still | Luisa Penaherrera

S~ Lord, my heart is not proud; my eyes are not haughty.  I don’t concern myself with matters too great or awesome for me.  But I have stilled and quieted myself, just as a small child is quiet with its mother.  Yes, like a small child is my soul within me. O Israel, put your hope in the Lord—now and always.  Psalms 131  (NLT)

O & A~  There are things that are going to be too big for me to handle and I feel like I’m there now. My thoughts are obsessive now and I keep going over and over in my head things I could have done differently, conversations, guilt, a mess of messy obsessive thoughts.  This verse reminds:
•       To get quiet before you
•       To trust you with what is too big for me by taking it to you
•       To be still before you

P~ Dear Father thank you for this. I need you. Please remind me of this throughout the day.

Set Things Straight | Kim Chipman

S~ Get up, for it is your duty to tell us how to proceed in setting things straight. We are behind you, so be strong and take action. Ezra 10:4 (NLT)

O~ Many Israelites – including some priests and Levites…LEADERS in the community! – had gone against God’s commands and were adopting pagan practices again. Ezra was deeply grieved by this and prayed humbly and was deeply repentant to the Lord. He was weeping and lying face down in front of the Temple of God when others in the community also became convicted and sorrowful about their sin. Then they looked to Ezra for help.

A~ 1. Ezra was deeply grieved by the sin of the people. I’m good at minimizing and justifying my own sin – he was grieved and repentant for someone else’s! I should be so grieved by my sin and return to You in humble repentance.

2. Ezra’s repentance brought others to repentance. He didn’t point out their sin to them or shame them into changing. He was humble and sad and focused on You and that spurred change in others.

3. They didn’t just grieve the sin – they didn’t stop there. They confessed their sin and asked direction for how to restore their relationship with You, to make it right, to actually repent and change not just confess and be sad. This is the power of applying Your Word to my real life. Not only to recognize my sin, but change my thoughts, attitudes and actions to restore my relationship with You…over and over again…be strong and take action to set things straight when I blow it (which is often).

P~ Lord, help me see the sin in my life and – like the Israelites here – choose to “proceed in setting things straight”, not justify, blame, or gloss over my sin. Help me to be strong and take action. I love You!

Amusing Diversions or Meaningful Life? | Kelley Deases

S~ Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap.  Luke 21:34 (NIV)

O~ This passage speaks of not being caught unaware when the end of the age comes and The Great Tribulation is upon us.  But I think its application can easily extend to our own mortality.  Nearly once a week, it seems, I hear of someone, just in my own circle of acquaintance, who died, had a near-death experience, or got a bad medical diagnosis.  However this life draws to a close for us, we need to be ready for that certainty — alert and watching.  How foolish of us to be pursuing our own amusement, escaping through alcohol or something else, or wringing our hands with worry over trivial and temporary things, when eternity hangs in the balance, not just for us but for everyone.  Time is short and there is work to be done.

A~ Dissipation, drunkenness, and the anxieties of life.  These are things Jesus warns can weigh down my heart if I am not cautious.  He and I have made great strides in addressing my anxiety level and He’s helping me learn to better trust Him with my concerns.  Drunkenness is not a huge stumbling block for me either.  But when I looked up “dissipation” in the dictionary (Yes, I had to look it up….and I don’t think this was the first time either) it hit me right between the eyes.  One of the definitions is “mental distraction; amusement; diversion.”  Ouch!  I pretty much rouse my seven-year-old every morning by “selling the day” — telling him what fun outing or activity we have in store.  Another definition hits even harder: “a wasting by misuse.”  While there is a time for relaxing and having fun, and certainly God delights that we take pleasure in our lives and relationships, my focus should not be on amusing diversions but making each day count from an eternal vantage point.

P~ Father, When I check in with You through Your Word daily, You help me avoid getting my heart weighed down in lesser pursuits.  Thank You for showing me my life is more than a series of distractions and petty worries.  We were made for so much more.

Don’t Be Caught Unaware | Robin Laney

S~ Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. Luke 21:34 (NIV)

O~ Jesus is speaking to the disciples of his return in this passage. He is warning them to keep themselves always ready and to not be distracted or drawn away by the things of this world.

A~ This has been so clear to me lately as I read God’s word and hear teachings on the last days. It is so easy to get caught up in fretting about all of the news of the day. With terrorism, shootings, crazy politics, financial woes, and interpretations of prophecies abounding, I can become overwhelmed and lose focus. God is so good at putting me back on track, always pointing me to my purpose here and reminding me to remain in Him and to be steadfast in my faith. If my focus is on anything other than Him, I am not participating fully in what He has for me to do now and I could find myself not prepared to answer when He calls. I want to be about my Father’s business and ready in all ways when He returns.

P~ Father, thank you that You always know how to get my attention when my thoughts stray and my feelings take over. Thank You for the constant reminders of what’s really important and Who/what I need to stay focused on. This world is getting crazy down here, as it has throughout history. I long to keep my eyes on the mission and not the mess, knowing that in the end the victory is all Yours. When You return, I pray You find me faithful.

Our team would love the privilege of praying for you! Please share how we can lift you in prayer at prayer@DiscoverOneThing.com


Posted on October 8, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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