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.
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Worship | Marisa Tomlinson
S~ And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living sacrifice- the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Romans 12:1 (NLT)
O~ Paul is telling the Roman church that true worship comes from offering your WHOLE self to God. Paul is not just talking about the physical body, but also the mind, spirit, and heart. We worship Christ with our life- all of it.
A~ For most of my life I’ve considered my worship to be singing- on the Worship team, when I’m alone, and especially in the car along with KLOVE. While singing is a great part of worship, it’s not the whole of my being. God’s been challenging me lately to turn EVERYTHING over to Him. I’m stubborn! I know exactly what He’s calling me to do, but it’s HARD. In my mind, I’m a petulant child stomping my feet and saying, “but, I don’t wanna!” My heart is His, my spirit is His, but my mind and body- not so much. I like things my way. I like control. I like to eat. Why is it so hard to surrender when we know that we should? The simple answer is sin. Serving a forgiving God doesn’t give me a free pass. God has been telling me for months- no, years- that it’s time to get healthy. I start a plan, then it gets hard, and I quit. Over and over the pattern repeats. He’s nudging me to lean on Him; trust that He has my best ahead. Giving all I am over to His will is the truest form of worship.
P~ Lord, forgive me for being a stubborn child. Ignoring what you’re calling me to do only leads me further from you. Thank you for continuing to pursue my heart. Thank you for your patience as I learn to lean on You more and more. Thank you for those that you put in my path to support me on this journey. I want to worship You with all that I am, not just in ways that are easy. Thank you for your word that leads me on the path to Your heart. “All to Jesus, I surrender. All to Him I freely give…”
We need each other! | Deanna George
S~ so in Christ we though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. Romans 12:5 (NIV)
O~ God created us to work together. He gave us different gifts so as a team we can accomplish his will. Thank you Lord that I don’t have to be all things to all people!
A~ First I need to learn what my gift is, thank you for it, then use it so it becomes second nature to how I live. AND I need to let God use others through gifts he has given them, instead of me trying to do it all.
P~ Lord Jesus, thank you for knowing that I cannot do it all by myself. You created us to be teammates in life. You desire for us to not be overwhelmed. This can be so hard for me to let go and let others, but it is needed so I don’t become overwhelmed. I do it to myself because I don’t give time for others to step up or I may not like how they do it. Pride seeps in and tells me the lie that I am the only one who can do it. I’m sorry for allowing that and not trusting you. Help me to have a heart of gratitude when others step up to use their gift. Please help my team to be bold for you. Please help my team to be obedient to you. Please help us make an impact for your kingdom. Please give me wisdom when someone new wants to join in and be part of our team to live our lives according to your will. Open my eyes and heart so that I may be a blessing to my teammates and make their load lighter by using my gifts you gave me.
Gifts for the Kingdom | Joni Tyner
S~ We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. Romans 12:7 (NIV)
O~ Paul is the writer of Romans. He is reminding the church that WE ALL have been given gifts, it is nothing we have earned. (again, God’s grace.)
A~ God has gifted me uniquely to live out my life’s purpose. It is my responsibility to embrace these gifts and use them for building up the Kingdom. I believe one of my gifts is to encourage others, both believers and people who do not yet know Christ. I try to listen when people talk and then provide encouragement to their situation. It may be a 2 minute conversation of encouragement with the cashier at Walmart or perhaps making a meal for someone who is having health issues. I have also embraced technology through texting and Facebook to send messages to people to let them know I am praying. There are other times I do acts of kindness to a random stranger such as filling their gas tank or leaving an extra generous tip to an overworked restaurant server. I don’t share these things to get pats on the back by people, but to illustrate that God gifts us all in different ways. I’m not particularly good at prayer, understanding scripture, or singing, but when I encourage others, it feels natural, easy and right.
One last thought, although I feel like encouragement is my strength, I still feel it is my responsibility to strive for excellence in other areas that God asks me to grow in. Areas like reading and understanding the Bible, serving others with humility, being a responsible steward with my finances, praying for others. I don’t feel particularly gifted in these areas, but I do feel like the Bible instructs me to be faithful in these areas.
P~ Dear Lord, I pray my eyes, ears and heart are open to people who You want me to reach out to. I pray for wise time management in my day so that I have consistent margin to see others and respond in a way that gives You glory. I also pray for each reader today. Help them to seek out what Your purpose is in their life, I pray they have a growing sense of excitement and energy to embrace the gifts You have given them. Thank you also for grace when I mess up and don’t accept an “assignment” You give me.
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