January 31, 2017 Exodus 4,5; John 20:19-21:25
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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.
It’s Not Me, It’s You | Robin Laney
S~ Then Moses answered, “But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice, for they will say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you.’” Exodus 4:1 (NIV)
O~ Moses has an encounter with God in which God commissioned him to go to the Pharaoh to answer the prayers of the Israelites to be freed from slavery. Moses believes that he has nothing to offer to God’s people or to the Egyptians that would make them believe that He had sent him. God assures Moses that he will go in His power.
A~ Day two of reading with the purpose of being equipped for the upcoming mission trip to Thailand and Cambodia has yielded a humbling reminder that I am never on mission, whether next door or on the other side of the world, on my own. The work He has to be accomplished is done by His power through me as my will allows. All I have to offer, really, is my ‘yes’ and my testimony (And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Rev 12:11.)
His Spirit feeds me words of Truth and Wisdom to speak. His power allows eyes and ears to open and hearts to yield. His light shines through me to draw in those He seeks. The fruit of the Holy Spirit shows others His character. My willingness to participate, to go, to say, “Yes!” is all He really needs from me. And so I go in His power ready to share the Good News I carry.
P~ Lord, thank You that we are never on mission without Your power, Your Spirit, and Your light. I pray You will speak to me and through me in every situation I might encounter so that people You put in my path might be freed from bondage and saved according to Your great Grace! I pray that people are drawn to You. Make me aware of Your presence every moment.
Not About Me | Luisa Penaherrera
S~ But Moses pleaded with the Lord, “O Lord, I’m just not a good speaker. I never have been, and I’m not now, even after you have spoken to me. I’m clumsy with words.”
“Who makes mouths?” the Lord asked him. “Who makes people so they can speak or not speak, hear or not hear, see or not see? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go, and do as I have told you, I will help you speak well, and I will tell you what to say.” Exodus 4:10-12 (NLT)
O~ If God is sending Moses to speak, he can do it because God will help him. Moses’ inadequacies were so evident to himself he couldn’t see past them, even when God said he would help him.
A~ There is a young married couple in my life that are having issues and the thought of me giving them counsel sends me all kinds of directions. “What if I’m not helpful; what do I say; how will I know what they need” all these thoughts just make me anxious. I need to trust God to give me what to say, trust him to help them and be still before him.
P~ Father, you know what this precious couple needs. Please give my husband and I wisdom and guidance in how to help them.
Leaving Easy Street | Joni Tyner
S~ So Moses took his wife and sons, put them on a donkey, and headed back to the land of Egypt. In his hand he carried the staff of God. Exodus 4:20 (NLT)
O/A~ Moses is an Israelite that was raised as an Egyptian prince. He kills an Egyptian and runs away to Midian where he meets his future wife at the watering well. Her father is the priest of Midian and has Moses work for him. The Bible says he has several flocks of livestock, I’m assuming he was fairly well off since he was the priest of Midian.
Moses doesn’t take comfort over challenges that God sets before him. He twice leaves an easy, non-confrontational life for a bigger purpose that God has given him. Even though he is nervous and makes excuses, “I‘m not good with words, I get tongue-tied” he presses through and shows up for his assignment with God. He gave up status and wealth (as an Egyptian prince) and then the comfort of being unknown and anonymous in Midian to go and fight for the Israelites. He seriously traded chilling in the country for a big fat headache of dealing with about 2 million whiny, high maintenance Israelites that were always mad at him.
When I think about it, I’m pretty sure I would have a lot more excuses than Moses and probably just plain say no to what God asked of him. I hate confrontations and having people mad at me or even thinking negative of me. It crushes me.
P~ Dear Lord, thank you for pointing out to me this morning that Moses had to leave “easy street” to fulfill his purpose. It didn’t look easy—and it wasn’t easy!! He didn’t have popular opinion cheering him on, all he had was You and the reassurance of staff of God. Help me to hold on tight to the Word of God as my comfort as I march on and go places that might be unpopular and uncomfortable.
Humble Submission | Kim Chipman
S~ At a lodging place along the way, the Lord met Moses and was about to kill him. Exodus 4:24 (NIV)
O~ Wait, what!? I’ve never noticed this before. One verse You are giving Moses instructions and the next verse You are about to kill him. He hadn’t circumcised his son, which I assume You knew already. Anyway, his wife got that taken care of and all was well again.
A~ This is so confusing to me on so many levels, but one thing I know is that You want complete obedience before You can use me. I must submit to Your authority before You can use me.
P~ Lord, help me to remain humble and submit to Your authority in my life. I love You!
I am Blessed! | Deanna George
S~ Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” John 20:29 (NIV)
O~ Thomas couldn’t believe that Jesus was alive until he felt the piercing on Jesus’s side and seen his nail marks. It was not enough to hear it from the other disciples.
A~ Oh, I can’t begin to imagine what it was like to see Jesus in person. I get all excited just thinking about it. Once again, Jesus is willing to meet us where we are. He knew exactly what Thomas needed to believe that he rose from the dead and he provided it, without Thomas asking him. The second part of this scripture jumped out at me like never before. It says, “blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” He is talking about me. I believe even though I don’t get to physically see him. Jesus is telling me that I am blessed! I need to remember this. I need to claim this blessing, even when life gets really hard. Do I live my life knowing I am blessed or do I focus on the bad that is in my life? I need to live my life as a blessed person! It’s easy to believe what you can see, but it is a leap of faith to believe what can’t be seen, and Jesus will bless me for that faith.
P~ Lord Jesus, thank you for rising from the dead. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to develop my faith and trust. Thank you for meeting me where I am at. Thank you for reminding me to claim the blessing you provide for having the faith without physically seeing and touching you. I am yours!
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