July 4, 2018 1 Kings 12; 2 Chronicles 10,11; 1 Thessalonians 3:6-13

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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Hearts of my counselors | guest post

S~ The king answered them harshly.  Rejecting the advice of the elders, he followed the advice of the young men… 2 Chronicles 10:13, 14a (NIV)

O~ There is a new king and he sought out advice from two groups: the elders and his friends.  The king chose to follow the advice from his friends and the kingdom went into upheaval.

A~ This decision of following the advice of young men splits a kingdom up.  That decision had some major consequences!  The new king chose to listen to his friends.  His friends were probably very similar to the king himself: probably looked similar, held to the same beliefs, were raised similarly, ran in the same circles, and they probably wanted to assert the authority of their friend, who was now king.

(Side note here:  the new king was the son of Solomon, the wisest man to walk on the planet.  The new king was unwise in listening to the elders, or even learning from his dad.  Being related to someone doesn’t mean anything – choices, beliefs, character is ultimately in the hands of the person, not who they know.)

What advice am I currently seeking out?  There is a lot!  Parenting advice, health advice, career advice, wife advice, academic advice, financial advice, leadership advice, biblical insight, thoughts on the state of our country….

The first thought that came to mind is that Twitter should probably not be where I take my advice from!  It’s ok to learn about others’ opinions, but I don’t know the Twitter poster’s heart behind those opinions.  And the angrier and more demanding and disrespectful the post – that should be a red flag to me that their heart may be consumed by emotions vs. God’s truth.

And as I go online and read articles on parenting, health, finances, leadership, etc – I should be asking questions about the heart behind it.  Are they selling something?  Want me to join a group?  Why did they write the article? What’s their experience?

So where should I be turning to for advice in my life?  It’s the same church answer as always, but doesn’t change the truth behind it.  Jesus, just Jesus.

P~ Father, thank You for Your wisdom!

Standing Firm Through a Tsunami of Suffering | Joni Tyner

S~ So we have been greatly encouraged in the midst of our troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith.  It gives us new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord.   1 Thessalonians 3:7 (NLT)

O~ Paul is writing to the Thessalonians and letting them know he was so encouraged and got “new life” by seeing their faithfulness in troubles and suffering.

A~ My mind immediately went to the faithfulness of a young mom and wife that has been struggling with a cancer diagnosis and the side effects of the treatment for the past 3 ½ years.  I honestly only know a fraction of the suffering she has went through because it isn’t talked about much, she simply chooses to put her focus on remaining strong in her faith.  And her family, they too continue to be strong and seek out the Lord. I saw a picture this past week that her husband snapped of their 12 year old reading the Bible. They continue to go to church and Wednesday night youth activities and remain confident in God’s promises.  I am so very encouraged by their faithfulness in yucky YUCKY circumstances that don’t ever seem to get better.  I am encouraged by their strength.

P~ Dear Lord,  I boldly ask for Your outpouring of healing on Heather this morning.  Dear Lord, I pray that she and Jason and the kids have renewed energy, strength and JOY in this exhausting season of health complications.  I am so thankful to see she is home after months in the hospital and I pray their family can embrace fun summer activities that create laughter and give them a refuge from this tsunami that has parked on top of their family.  Dear Lord, I also ask that you would continue to nudge me and others to continue to cheer them on and come up with tangible ways to encourage them.  I don’t want to be a spectator in this miracle but perhaps a small piece of their journey.  Again, Lord, I pray for You wow us with more than we can think or imagine—I eagerly anticipate seeing this scripture be their testimony…

Look upon the nations and be prepared to be AMAZED!! I am doing something in your days, something you would not believe, even if you were told.”   Habakkuk 1:5 

******p.s. I would like to boldly ask/encourage our readers to pray and do a small tangible act of encouragement for this family.  I think it would be AMAZING to blow up their inbox with emails from all over the world with encouragement and scripture.  Please consider sending something, however small. If you live in the local area, consider perhaps a gift card or something tangible to bless this family.  Thank you for being vessels to love this family for Jesus.   

Our team would love the privilege of praying for you! Please share how we can lift you in prayer at prayer@DiscoverOneThing.com


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