May 6 2 Samuel 11,12; Psalms 51; Matthew 23

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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Help or Hinder the Kingdom of God | Vicki Burns

S~ 2 Samuel 1:14 …by doing this you have made the enemies of the LORD show utter contempt,.. (NIV)

Psalm 51:15 Open my lips, Lord, and my mouth will declare your praise. (NIV)

O~ Now David’s hidden sin had been revealed and God showed mercy at his repentance but still there were consequences. God was also offended that David made the enemies of the LORD show contempt. Contempt: the act of despising: the state of mind of one who despises: disdain.  (Webster)

Sin has a way of bleeding into the community around us…even from repented sin! This hinders the kingdom of God.

Repentance: There’s more to the story though. Repentance is a gift. It is purging, cleansing and restorative. There is joy to be had through the grief. II Corinthians 7:10, says, “Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret…” (NIV)

David’s sweet prayer of repentance in Psalm 51: :7 Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. :8 Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice. :9 Hide your face from my sins and blot out my iniquity. :10 Create in me a pure heart, O God and renew a steadfast spirit within me. :11 Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. :12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing heart to sustain me. (NIV)

 A~ I too, can request what I am unable to do for myself, namely, to be washed from a guilty conscience. Only God can do that! It is probable that at least a portion of the angst I feel on any given day is a guilty conscience. I still don’t slow down enough to recognize or address my sin by confession and repentance. However, when I do submit to true repentance I once again hear joy and gladness and my bones that He has crushed will rejoice once more. God creates something new in me out of brokenness…a pure heart and a steadfast spirit; the restored joy of His salvation and even a willing heart to sustain me! I just love how Scripture again and again shows me that I even need to go to God for the “want to” to please Him. In Psalm 51:15 David pleads, “Open my lips, Lord, and my mouth will declare your praise. I want to “want to” praise the Lord. But, I admit to you, I don’t very often. But if I go to Him for that need, I will both want to and WILL praise Him from a pure heart, fervently!

Praise announces truth to the world that the Kingdom of God prevails. Grace and glory are spread through praise and the Kingdom of God is enhanced and expanded.

P~ Make my life pleasing to You, Father. You are glorious and worthy of all praise. Restore to me the joy of Your astounding salvation. And my lips will praise and exalt Your name forever!

Keeping Me In Check | Michelle Myers

S~ In it he wrote, ‘Put Uriah in the front line when the fighting is fiercest.  Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die.’ 2 Samuel 11:15 (NIV)

O~ David, went from being a just and right leader only a few chapters ago to being a deceitful, murder plotting king.  He sleeps with a married woman, while her husband is off fighting in the army.  The woman becomes pregnant. Eventually, David ends up having this man killed, a man who was loyal to him, by sending him back to war, having put on the front lines during the fiercest fighting, and then having his men leave him to fight on his own.

Prior to all of this, David was also the man, who had one man put to death for killing Saul, after Saul had asked him to; because he was going to die anyway from his injuries.  David also had another man put to death for killing a man in his own bed.

David’s sin of orchestrating an innocent man’s death, so he can cover up his other sin of sleeping with another man’s wife and conceiving a child with her, doesn’t really seem much better than the sins of the men he had put to death for murder.

A~ I can easily have my own ethical standards, be prideful, be selfish, etc.; if I am not listening to You and obeying You.  Eventually, You humble me to set me straight.  This is way more painful than if I would just get over myself and humble myself.  There a few things that You are showing me that I need to work on.

First, lately I have not been the most patient driver.  My kids usually call me out on it, which means I am not being a good role model for them.  Even beyond that, I am NOT so perfect that I don’t make errors when driving.  In no way, shape, or form should I be the poster child for driving.  It is by Your grace, that I have not had any accidents that were deemed my fault.

Second, we are working on trying to eat better as a family.  We have been, but as I limit other people’s intake of ice cream and other frozen treats, I struggle at limiting myself.  My family notices, calls me out on it, and jokes about it.  Still it is NOT a good example for my kids.  This again, goes way beyond the physical ramifications of eating too much ice cream.  There is a spiritual side to it.  I am not being good with boundaries, self control, obedience, etc.  There will be consequences, if I don’t get it together and start listening and obeying You.

Third, managing my time.  With your help, I have pretty much worked through the whole binge watching crime shows.  However, I am now struggling with trying to do too much.  On days when my allergies are worse than normal or my back and shoulder pain just make it too hard to move, I end up either pushing through it it, which only makes it worse or I stop participating in some things I know You have told me to do.

My kids have been coming home from school, exhausted.  It isn’t unusual for them to fall asleep around eight. Yet, they are still asking to do extra things, which means when they get home it will be bed time.  You have shown me that I need to be a better example with balance, self care, and realizing just because I can do it or even want to do it, it may not be best for me or You may not be calling me to do it.

P~ Thank you good for getting the wheels turning in my head.  Thank you for showing me how pride is playing a role in it.  Thank you for showing me how it all connects.  Poor balance and time management take my mind and my focus off of You.  It disconnects me from you.  It leads me to impatient driving and bad driving.  It causes stress, and this contributes to me self medicating with ice cream.  And really, how prideful am I that I would even think You called me to do it ALL or that I am the one to do it ALL.  Just please help me be more focused on You and obedient to You.  It helps keep ME in check.

No Such Thing As Secret Sin | Kim Chipman

S~ After the time of mourning was over, David had her brought to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing David had done displeased the Lord. 2 Samuel 11:27 (NIV)

O~ So, David – KING David, a man after God’s own heart – slept with a married woman, got her pregnant, had her husband killed, then married her. All under the radar. Looked good to everyone, “But the thing David had done displeased the Lord.” Secret sin. No such thing. God knows. Sometimes it feels like we can smooth it all over and ignore our sin as long as no one knows.

Proverbs 28:13, Psalm 69:5, Psalm 44:20-21, Psalm 90:8, Jeremiah 16:17-18, Psalm 139:1-7, Luke 12:1-2, Hebrews 4:13, Isaiah 59:1-2, Psalm 66:18-19, Psalm 19:12, 2 Chr 7:14

A~ You know all of me. My thoughts, my choices, every single thing I do or say or even think. Why do I think I can hide from You? Why would I want to? I can’t escape the consequences of sin, but they will be much worse if I don’t repent and return to You. Why does it feel different as long as no people know when I mess up? There is a lie I am believing. You hate sin and You are the only one who matters?

P~ Lord, help me live with complete integrity. There is no such thing as secret sin. You know. I love that You know. I love You!

Honesty | Luisa Penaherrera

S~ But you desire honesty from the heart, so you can teach me to be wise in my inmost being.  Psalms 51:6  (NLT)

O~ It is when I am honest with myself and honest with God that I can learn form him.

A~ There’s a tough conversation that is pending (at least in my head it felt it was going to be tough).  I was ready to share the situation with my sister, but I felt a tug to go to God first and have felt a peace about it since.  Even though since sharing it with God first, I have afterwards shared it with others, the peace still remains.  The conversation is still pending but my heart is at rest knowing that God wants me to be honest with what I can or cannot do, and he will help me to know what to say.

P~ Dear Father, thank you for showing me that honesty is important.  Please remind me in those ‘tough to be honest’ situations to turn to you first and hear what you would have me do about it.

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Posted on May 6, 2016, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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