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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He hears me | Trisha Baker
S~ I call on the Lord in my distress, and He answers me. Psalms 120:1 (NIV)
O~ When I need Him, He lets me know He is there and that He hears me crying out to Him.
A~ There have been so many times in my life where I was for sure I would not be able to go on more day because of the horrible things which were going on my life. I do understand that many times, I brought this trouble on myself because of my bad decisions, but that didn’t make living through them any easier. But the day came when I thought that it was the day that would completely undo me. But on this day, I turned to him instead of drugs and alcohol, and He was there. He heard me crying and He held me in His lap and let me cry all of my tears until I didn’t think I had any tears left. And then He let me know that even though the situation looked as though it would undo me, it would not. It would no undo me because I had Him, and as long as I held onto Him I would be ok. Since that time, even when days get tough, I cry out to Him and he reassures me He is right there and He’s got me!
P~ Heavenly Father, thank you for always being there for me when I need you. Thank you so much Jesus for being wonderful daddy you are. I know that as long as I always hang on to you, there will never be anything in this world bad enough to consume me. I love you Jesus. In your precious name, Amen.
God’s wisdom | Joni Tyner
S~ But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It show no favoritism and is always sincere. James 3:17 (NLT)
O~ The author of James is Jesus’s brother. His has a unique perspective of knowing Jesus his whole life, he saw firsthand, Jesus living out the God’s will on earth.
A~ As I think about James writing this scripture, I think of him possibly reflecting on his childhood and the many, many everyday situations he witnessed as Jesus interacted with people. He saw Jesus living a perfect, sinless life. He saw firsthand Jesus’s attitude of being around annoying people, (like family, neighbors, greedy business owners, religious figures) James saw that Jesus sincerely loved everyone. All.the.time. It was how Jesus lived out every day, every hour of his life. I believe James became a believer by seeing love in action rather than hearing Jesus talk about God and scripture.
As I ponder this scripture, I once again feel a renewed sense of upping my Christian walk. I want to focus on sincere and pure love. I also want to be more gentle with others and more willing to yield the need to be right. I desire to have a sensitive heart to the leading of the Holy Spirit—this will grow my Godly wisdom more than doing good deeds.
P~ Dear Lord, this passage is easy to write about, it’s much harder to live out when people bump into my happy or don’t response to me the way I think they should. Please help me to let go of these expectations and give people grace. I can’t control how they respond, Your assignment for me is to love others with sincerity and a pure heart. I ask for a good eye washing to help me see the world through Your lens of love.
Why | Deanna George
S~ What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? James 4:1 (NIV)
O~ What is the real reason for the fight? What desires and feelings are fueling my reason for being an active participant? What do I really want? What would I consider a win? Or is it because he/she is questioning my ability as a parent, Christian, wife, or friend?
A + P~ Lord Jesus, I have never thought about why I am fighting. I just think in the moment and try to get my point across or try to get my way. I don’t think I have really thought about the root of my discord, especially when I am in the moment of reacting to a situation.
Is it… I want to be right? I want to win? I want to be better or smarter? Do I want to point out their flawed views/ideas? What would I consider a win? Does the argument/fight really reflect the issue?
I’m thinking it is a heart issue on my part. I need to know the real reason I am worked up so that I can deal with the issue honestly. Fights/disagreements can go in for a long time if the real issue is left on the back burner. I desire the ability to get to the real issue and deal with that. I need help in the heat of the moment/situation to speak to the real cause of the problem. Please help me to see the “why” of why I am upset. Help me to breath and ask what is the real issue is before I jump in with my gut reaction. I tend to get myself so worked up over little things that don’t really matter because I have put off the real issue in my heart. I need your divine intervention to be able to face and acknowledge the real issue that is going on in my heart. I have to be honest with the other person involved or the issue can’t be resolved. I know you can help Jesus! Be patient with me because I have had many decades of practicing of just dealing with the surface.
Sermon | Scott Beckenhauer
My church is doing a really great series from this portion of James. This sermon is very much worth the time to listen to and reflect on!
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