December 6, 2018 Joel 1-3; Luke 4:14-44

“There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:42 (NLT) The heart of this ministry is to inspire a love for God’s Word and encourage the discipline of daily Bible reading and SOAP journaling. 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.

Printable reading plan: Discover One Thing Reading Plan

Want to walk through the Bible one book at a time? Head over to Discover One Thing Online Study!

The Locusts | Joni Tyner

S~ The Lord says, “Lord says, “I will give you back what you lost to the swarming locusts, the hopping locusts, the stripping locusts, and the cutting locusts. It was I who sent the great destroying army against you.  Once again you will have all the food you want, and you will praise the Lord your God, who does these miracles for you.  Joel 2:25-26  (NLT)

O~ The book of Joel is just 3 chapters.  It’s theme is God’s power and judgment to the unrighteousness. It gives a detailed account of the plague of locusts that covered the land and destroyed crops.  It then goes into the need of repentance and affirming God’s goodness and blessings.

A~ A few years ago I was reading a Francine Rivers book, “Her Daughter’s Dream” and she quoted this scripture.  In the story, the main character had a misunderstood relationship with her mother. There was high expectations with little forgiveness.  The story spans over decades about this family and how sin and its consequences shape our lives.  Towards the end of the book, the daughter and her mom work out the misunderstandings and begin a new relationship.

So many people have suffering and disappointments in life. There are strained relationships.  Life can cause us to miss opportunities through uncontrollable circumstances.  I have a close friend who had an extremely difficult childhood.  Her father went to prison and her mother committed suicide.  Because of these circumstances, she was placed in foster care at age 12 and struggled for many years with trust and close relationships.  She recently sent me an email with pictures of some beautiful vases of flowers—except, she explained,  they weren’t really flowers, they were weeds that many just mow over or take weed killer to.  She saw their potential to be beautiful. She plucked them out of the weed field, took them home and gave them some attention.  She was reminded of the song by Gunder, “You Make Beautiful Things.”   She sees that God can take all of our yuck and give us back what was lost by the locusts.  She praises the Lord for the miracles in her life.

P~ Dear Lord, thank you for this comforting verse.  I too have lost years in relationships that can never be brought back.  Yet, I believe You will give back those years in another way, a beautiful way that I’m yet to see.  I praise You for the hope that is yet to come. Please help to look forward to the future, not sit and ponder regrets over the past, the “what might have been” in my life.

Let His Spirit Speak | Kimi Miller

S~ In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on servants – men and women alike. Joel 2:29 (NLT)

O~ No longer will just prophets receive word through the Spirit, but God promises to pour His Spirit out on anyone who calls to Him.

A~ Sometimes I find myself in situations where I don’t know what to say.  In those moments, I quietly pray and ask the Holy Spirit to speak through me, so that the other person might hear something and know that it was from God – that He is the one who knows exactly where they are and what they need to hear.  Sometimes, I get too worried about saying the right thing – that I might “scare” them by saying too much.  I need to get over myself and just trust that the Spirit will speak through me.

P~ Jesus, Thank you for sending a helper.  Help me to listen more to His voice and not my own. Amen

Ultimate Authority | Kelley Deases

S~ They were amazed at his teaching, because his message had authority. Luke 4:32 (NIV)

O~ Inherent in the words spoken by Jesus in the synagogues is the authority that stems from his being fully God.  What a wonder it would have been to have witnessed a mere man who spoke with the clout of God Himself.  Not as a prophet, agent, or spokesperson, but as Almighty God.

A~ This reminds me to continually avail myself of the discernment of the Holy Spirit within me.  Always when I hear a message, read a text, or discuss the issues of the day, I need to line it up with God’s authoritative Word to assess its truth and relevance.

P~ Father, Thank you for sending Your Son, not just to teach with authority, but to embody the final authority in and over all things.

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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