We are SO excited to be starting this month with you, and the commitment to grow our faith and study Scripture.
When we think of Fall we think of harvest. Harvest is the process of gathering a ripe crop from a field. We all know that before you can gather your crops, you must start with planting the seeds.
2 Corinthians 9 says,
For God, who gives seed to the farmer to plant, and later on good crops to harvest and eat, will give you more and more seed to plant and will make it grow so that you can give away more and more fruit from your harvest. Yet, God will give you much so that you can give away much, and when we take your gifts to those who need them they will break out into thanksgiving and praise to God for your help.
(2 Corinthians 9:10-12)
God says he will give you more and more seed to plant. The seeds He plants in our hearts is His love, forgiveness, and patience. He is our Farmer, and He stays by our side, caring for us, growing us, and eventually pruning us when we need it.
I have a pomegranate tree in my backyard. It’s in a spot where it gets enough sunlight and I water it several times a week. It will start to bloom little orange flowers, which eventually turn into little buds. These buds grow and grow until they become big pomegranate fruits. Once they’re ripe they we can pick them and enjoy eating them!
We are always in the process of needing something from God – sometimes we need more light like my pomegranate tree. In these times, God can shower us with His Light – His comforting words that brighten our spirits us and remind us to have hope.
As for me, I look to the Lord for help; I wait for God to save me; he will hear me…though I fall, I will rise again! When I sit in darkness, the Lord himself will be my Light. (Micah 7:7)
Other times we need watering, when things feel all dried up, and trails seem to surround us. During these times, Jesus reminds us that He is our living water. Our hearts and minds can be refreshed and renewed from the source of power and truth that comes from Jesus.
“If you only knew what a wonderful gift God has for you, and who I am, you would ask me for some living water!” The water I give becomes a perpetual spring within you, watering you forever with eternal life.” John 4:10,13)
Then there are those times when we need pruning. We’ve gotten too selfish or too wrapped up in things that keep our eyes away from God. During these times God will clip away the things that are hindering us from bearing good fruit. When I clip away the old, brown stems from my pomegranate tree it suddenly becomes fresh again, and quickly begins to sprout new and beautiful blooms. When we read God’s words of wisdom and guidance we are reminded of the things that need to be removed from our hearts.
Don’t you realize that you can choose your own master? You can choose sin (with death) or else obedience (with acquittal). The one to whom you offer yourself – he will take you and be your master, and you will be his slave. Thank God that though you once chose to be slaves of sin, now you have obeyed with all your heart the teaching to which God has committed you. And now you are free from your old master, sin; and you have become slaves to your new master; righteousness. Romans 6:16-18
Finally, there are times when we are so full of God’s Light, Water, and Wisdom that it’s time for us to share the fruit which God has grown in us from the little seed that was once planted. In these times, God often brings the people we can help right in front of us – may we not miss them when we see them.
This is when people rejoice in thanksgiving for the goodness that flows from the seed God planted within you, and spreads out to them in their time of need. We have seen devastation from Hurricane Harvey this past week, but people have come out to help and support their neighbors. The words from 2 Corinthians 9:11 are being fulfilled:
…when we take your gifts to those who need them they will break out into thanksgiving and praise to God for your help.
This month, may you welcome whatever your heart needs from God.
If you need more light, welcome His Light.
If things feel dry and you long for more, be refreshed with His Living Water, which is a continuous stream of peace and hope that can never dry up.
If you strayed off track, make today be a fresh start of living and walking in righteousness with God.
And if your heart is in full bloom right now, share the good crops, which God has planted in your life.
This month we will start SOAPing through the Bible together!
Here are this months chapters to read and SOAP: You decide when you take the time to read these chapters and SOAP in your journals. We will also be SOAPing these chapters here on the blog.
2 Timothy, chapter 2
Isaiah, chapter 35
John, chapter 3
2 John, chapter 1
John, chapter 4
1 Corinthians, chapter 10
SOAP stands for Scripture, Observation, Application, and Prayer. After reading the chapter reading of your choice, write down in your journals:
S ~ Scripture (what scripture spoke to you from this chapter?)
O ~ Observation (what do you observe about this scripture?)
A ~ Application (how can you apply what you observed from this scripture?)
P ~ Prayer (end in prayer)
We will post our SOAP entries a couple times a week. You can subscribe by email to receive each new post directly to your inbox. May this September be full of God’s blessings for you!
~ Cooking Up Faith