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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.
Say What? | Kelley Deases
S~ The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;
night after night they reveal knowledge.
They have no speech, they use no words;
no sound is heard from them.
Yet their voice goes out into all the earth,
their words to the ends of the world. Psalm 19:1-4 (NIV)
O~ I consider myself a bit of a wordsmith. I was an English major in college. For almost 20 years, I wrote legal opinions on behalf of several judges, and now, in my second career, I am a grant writer. When I have a free afternoon, you will find me in my favorite chair with a good book and a stack of crossword puzzles. The only game app I indulge in on my phone is “Word Streak,” and a hot date night for the hubby and me is an intense round of Scrabble.
A~ This verse caught my attention this morning as David has written about words and speech. But he observes how the heavens declare God’s glory in a way which transcends language. One need only look and listen and touch and smell and taste to know there is a masterful, intricate, intimate Creator behind it all. His “speech” is beyond anything I could ever hope to write, compose or orate.
But inasmuch as He has given me a gift for the written word, it is my desire to honor Him with it. I am grateful I now have the opportunity to write in order to help fund His work at Heartland Hope Mission — feeding and clothing people in need.
P~ Father, You have used the whole universe as the platform for Your message of love for us. Continue to use me as I use my unique gifts within my small universe to likewise bring glory to You.
What My Soul Needs | Luisa Penaherrera
S~ The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. They are a warning to those who hear them; there is great reward for those who obey them. Psalm 19:7,11 (NLT)
O~ God’s word, his way, his law, revives my soul and makes me wise; gives me warning; is rewarding when I obey.
A~ This is where I belong. I belong in you. Your word is nourishment to my soul.
P~ Father, thank you for sending Jesus for me, thank you for your word. Thank you for Holy Spirit!
Blessings Upon Blessings | Robin Laney
S~ And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. Matthew 19:29 (ESV)
O~ Jesus had just had an encounter with a rich young man who wasn’t willing to give up his riches to follow him. The disciples questioned Jesus, wanting to know if what they had sacrificed to follow him was enough to be saved. Jesus assures them that they will be with him in the end. Then he makes this promise, that those who are willing to leave their lives behind for the sake of the Kingdom will not only receive eternal life but will reap blessings a hundredfold here on this earth.
The disciples did, in fact, meet many people on their journey following Jesus and they were the recipients of much kindness but they also received so much more; incredible graces, fullness of life, intimacy with Christ, insight into the things of God and foresight of the Kingdom to come, love poured out over them, the power of the Holy Spirit working in and through them, eternal life. They received much more than they left behind.
A~ What a sweet gift this was to my heart this morning. I just finished praying for two missionaries that we met on our vision trip to Southeast Asia, one in Cambodia and one in Thailand. I asked God to show me something in my reading that He might need me to know or something to share with someone else today. What a perfect verse to share and to let sink into my own heart! Both women are so far from home and have both given up the comforts of the US and moved halfway around the world from friends and family to serve God. Of course, they have met so many people and love and are loved by those God has put in their paths but the blessings go so far beyond the physical.
I, myself, have been working through my willingness (or lack of) to move away from family if called. After spending time with these incredibly brave and strong women, I was inspired and, at the same time, wondered if I could endure the loneliness they sometimes experience being so far from home. Would I be willing to give up the physical comforts of our life in America? Could I move into and live, long term, in a culture so foreign to everything I know? Would I be willing to leave my friends and family behind? This word was for me, too, today. An assurance that He is faithful to care for those who follow Him in ways beyond what we can imagine.
P~ Father, thank You that not only do You equip, inspire, and call us to Your mission but You recognize the sacrifices made and promise blessings upon blessings in return. Thank You for being a gracious and loving Father, caring for Your children in such tender ways. I pray You would shower my new friends, these faithful women, with blessings today and every day!
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