April 24 1 Samuel 28,29; Psalm 109; Matthew 11

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

Want to walk through the Bible one book at a time? Head over to Discover One Thing Online Study!

Saying One Thing,  Doing Another | Joni Tyner

S~ He asked the Lord what he should do, but the LORD refused to answer him, either by dreams or by sacred lots or by the prophets. Saul then said to his advisers, “Find a woman who is a medium, so I can go and ask her what to do.” 1 Samuel 28:6-7 (NLT)

O~ Saul had initially banned all mediums and witchcraft in Israel, but was nervous that God wasn’t answering his prayers.  He decided to find a medium, (v. 7) and, he decides to go and see her in the middle of the night, in disguise, so that nobody will know!! He is breaking the very law he set!!!

A~ I am still fairly new to reading the Old Testament, I just naturally prefer the New Testament because I think it’s easier and more applicable to my life.  Because of Discover One Thing, I now try (sometimes) to journal from the Old Testament.  I must admit,  I still like the reading about Jesus in the gospels, but,  I am stretching myself to grow in my faith—and that means reading books like 1 Samuel. (still haven’t read Obadiah yet,—maybe this is the year get it read.)

So, as I read 1 Samuel 28 this morning, I about screamed at Saul—what the heck is he doing?  He absolutely knows God has forbidden the use of mediums, witchcraft and other gods—in fact, he was known for enforcing the law to NOT to this.  Why does he go out in the middle of the night, in disguise, and do the very thing he made illegal? …Well, I think that he got desperate because he was living outside the will of God.   I’m guessing he also  lacked integrity in other areas of his life.   Saul’s deception snowballed and lead to disaster.

This is my application.   I have the tendency to do this too.  I know certain behavior is displeasing to God,–yet I tend to go back—again and again.  Things like careless, meaningless talking,  watching TV shows that don’t honor God’s values, slightly exaggerating a story to make it a bit more interesting .

P~ Dear Lord, please forgive me for knowing and then ignoring what your Holy Spirit asks of me.  Help me to control my tongue and please give me discernment in entertainment.  I can so easily give excuses about watching a particular show because I enjoy medical drama.  (hey!!! You gifted me to be a nurse, after all!!)    I ask that Your Holy Spirit to  infuse me with contentment to spend my free time enjoying activities that build up my character and my thought life.  Please help me to live with the highest integrity in EVERY area of my life.

Decisions now, fear later? | Nikki Metzger

S~ When Saul saw the vast Philistine army, he became frantic with fear. Saul fell full length on the ground, paralyzed with fright because of Samuel’s words. 1 Samuel 28:5, 20a (NLT)

O~ These two descriptions of Saul are concerning: frantic with fear and paralyzed with fright.  Saul is 72 years old and pursuing mediums.

A~ When I’m 72 years old, I don’t want my last days to be full of fear.  I want the peace of walking with Jesus, the confidence of trusting Him through the impossible things, and to be pursuing the things of my Savior.  Basically, I want to be opposite of Saul.

Saul started his kingdom close to the Lord and full of Spirit, but it all fell apart.  Why?  I think Saul chose himself over God’s instructions.  Saul did what he wanted to do.  Lots of ways to say it: Saul disobeyed, Saul let his heart astray, Saul did not pursue the Lord, Saul wouldn’t humble himself.

Saul’s decisions in his 30s and 40s affect the end of his life and his legacy.  In Scripture I saw a couple of big decisions that Saul made that opposed what God had said.  But does one go from having the Spirit of the Lord on them one day and the next day turning from God?  Or is it like the song ‘Slow Fade’ by Casting Crowns?

P~ Father, I recognize my decisions, all of them, even the small decision of what I do with an extra hour matter to You.  My decisions put me on a path.  Lord, I don’t want my life to end up looking like Saul’s.  Help me to stay close to You moment by moment so my cumulative decisions bring me closer to You!  I love You!!  I pray this in Jesus’ Name!

God, The Only Reliable Medium | Michelle Myers

S~ Saul then said to his attendants, ‘Find me a woman who is a medium, so I may go and inquire of her.’ 1 Samuel 28:7 (NIV)

O~ Saul saw the Philistine army and was afraid.  He asked the LORD for clarity, but the LORD did not answer him through dreams or prophets, so he went to a medium for answers.

A~ I am learning to go to You for guidance.  Prior to my relationship with You, I listened to what other people had said or what the world was saying, and often it did not turn out well.  Many times, it went against who I authentically am and what I knew in my heart was right.

There have been times that I have gone to You, and like Saul, I didn’t get an answer.  You were silent.  At those times, it is tempting to look for answers from other sources, but I have learned that if I am patient and wait on You, eventually You will give me what I need to clearly understand what You are telling me and where You are leading me.

Then there are the times, that I have tried to play “medium” in my own life.  I once said, “I can never see myself being a stay-at-home mom.”  A few years ago, I became a stay-at-home mom.  I once said, “I could never see myself home schooling.” Well, after this school year, I am going to be home schooling my oldest daughter.

Clearly, my plans and Your plans don’t always match.  I am learning that Your ways are much more successful than mine.  I am learning to rely on You, and You often remind me of this, when the “what ifs” start bombarding my mind and creating anxiety.  You remind me of how You have equipped me for the paths that You lead me down, when I have doubts about my abilities.  My Masters Degree is in Education, with the focus on curriculum and instruction.  I have worked with WAY more challenging kids than my own.  So, regardless of my level of confidence and my insecurities and fears; You have shown me that You know what is best, have not just thrown me out there without preparation, and see things in me, that I myself, am blind to.

P~ Thank you God for giving us these options.  Not all parents are blessed with the ability to stay home; therefore, the option of home schooling isn’t even on their radar.  For many years, it wasn’t on mine.  But, having the ability to provide my child with more of You, a more safe and secure learning environment, and focus on more of her individual gifts and interests, so she can be the best person You created her to be, is truly a blessing.  Please just continue to guide me and give me patience as we process through this big change.

Judgments and Labels | Luisa Penaherrera

S~  For John the Baptist didn’t drink wine and he fasted often, and you say, ‘He’s demon possessed.’  And I, the Son of Man, feast and drink, and you say, ‘He’s a glutton and a drunkard, and a friend of the worst sort of sinners!’ But wisdom is shown to be right by what results from it.  Matthew 11: 18, 19  (NLT)

O~ Jesus points out the opinions people make of other’s actions (specifically of his and of John the Baptist).  He also reminds me here to wait for the results, to persevere in doing what’s right regardless of people’s judgments.

A~ This reminds me how important it is to stay clear minded in things I do, to realize there will be people who have things to say even if what they are saying is not helpful or true.  Jesus kept focus on what God wanted regardless of what others chose to label him as, and I need to do that also.

P~ Dear Father, please remind me to listen to your voice and stay focused on you and what you’re doing.  Please encourage me and help me be an encourager to others in their journey with you.  Don’t let other’s hurtful comments cause harm, but use it for good.

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

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Posted on April 24, 2016, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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