September 20 Daniel 5,6; Psalms 130; Luke 3

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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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All my eggs are really in One basket | Nikki Metzger

S~ I am counting on the Lord; yes, I am counting on Him.  I have put my hope in His Word.  ~ Psalm 130:5 (NLT)

O/A~ This song was written for God’s people coming to Jerusalem.  They are returning to the Holy Temple of the Lord.  Coming back to Him.  Depending totally and completely on Him.

So life is life, and it seems like a lot of things are happening around me.  I feel like I’m on unsteady ground in parenting, my faith, my next steps, and the list goes on. One thing that has been really uncomfortable for me to see is my kid’s friends growing up.  Coming over with make up and boobs and awkwardness.  Through social media, I see them going to boy/girl parties and trying to fit in.  But what I really see is the world screaming for their attention and heart, and they are following the world.  If it’s happening to my kid’s friends, then it’s happening to mine. I have NO idea how to parent these kids of mine at this day in time.  I use my words, that makes them angry.  I hug them, they wiggle out of it.  I set boundaries, they laugh.  I have nothing!  I am counting on the Lord; yes, I am counting on Him.  I have put my hope in His Word!

P~ Father, I confess I freak out SOOOOOO much with season of parenting.  Freak out –> worry –> sin.  I’m sinning a lot and not trusting You!  I am sorry!  Worry adds nothing to my life!  I’m counting on You!  I put my hope in Your Word!  Oh Lord, give me Your wisdom to parent these people!

The Writing is on the Wall | Robin Laney

S~ But you have lifted up yourself against the Lord of heaven. And the vessels of his house have been brought in before you, and you and your lords, your wives, and your concubines have drunk wine from them. And you have praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see or hear or know, but the God in whose hand is your breath, and whose are all your ways, you have not honored. Daniel 5:23 (ESV)

O~ Belshazzar, king of the Babylonians, is hosting a banquet for a thousand of his closest friends and in his arrogance, he calls his servants to serve his guests wine in the gold and silver goblets that his father, Nebuchadnezzar, had stolen from the temple in Jerusalem. His father had been given great power and glory by God and had chosen his own way. His pride and arrogance got the best of him and he was stripped of his position. He was completely humbled by God. Belshazzar knew this story and still chose to mock God. For him, the writing was on the wall.

A~ For us, like Belshazzar, the writing is on the wall. Whether we have heard of Jesus through the testimony of others (Romans 10:15), read about Him in His Word (John 14:6), or experienced Him through creation (Romans 1:19-20) we know of Him. The Bible says that everyone has had and will have the opportunity to make a choice for Him or against Him (Matthew 24:14.)

And so, we each have a choice to make. We can choose to believe God, follow Jesus, and enjoy true freedom and abundant life or we can allow our hearts to become arrogant and hardened with pride and suffer the present and eternal consequences of spiritual death. God is not to be mocked.

P~ Lord, you desire that all should come to You and honor You. Thank You for revealing Yourself to me in ways that cannot be denied. Let all my actions and words glorify You. Let me never take Your grace and mercy for granted. Let me never forget the extent of Your power and sovereignty. Because I know what I know about You, pride and arrogance have no place in my heart. Show me my weaknesses and mold me to be more like Your Son.

Disciplined Prayer | Kim Chipman

S~ But when Daniel learned that the law had been signed, he went home and knelt down as usual in his upstairs room, with its windows open toward Jerusalem. He prayed three times a day, just as he had always done, giving thanks to his God. Daniel 6:10 (NIV)

O~ The king issued a decree that no one could pray except to him for 30 days or be thrown in the lion’s den. Daniel prayed to You anyway. He didn’t pay attention to the law, but continued with his disciplined prayers.

A~ There’s no threat of a lion’s den for me, but I certainly don’t have that disciplined of a prayer life. 3x a day Daniel got on his knees, prayed, and gave thanks.

I’m reminded of a day that I was at the hospital with my daughter. I was waiting for an elevator and I watched a man look out the window awhile, remove his shoes and hat and got on his knees face down to pray. It struck me and stuck with me. Like Daniel it was his prayer time so right there in the hospital he was going to do it. I’m setting reminders on my phone right now. Reminders to pray 3x a day and give You thanks, just like Daniel. I know my focus matters. I’m going to work on adopting disciplined prayer.

P~ Thank You for this reminder, again, of what disciplined prayer looks like. Help me to embrace this new discipline so I can grow closer to You and look more like You each day. I love You!

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