September SOAP Journal

Every Good Thing – 1 Corinthians 10

Hello Wednesday

Today we’re SOAPing 1 Corinthians, chapter 10. Here’s are journal entry…

For the earth and every good thing in it belongs to the Lord and is yours to enjoy. ~

1 Corinthians 10:26

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Observe

The entire chapter of 1 Corinthians is Paul’s encouragement to avoid idol worship of every kind. God has made everything, and every good thing belongs to Him, and He lets us enjoy all the good things He has made.

How we enjoy the good things He gives us turns into proper praise or improper praise.

When we receive the good things around us with an acknowledgment that they are formed by God and given to us from God, then we are properly giving praise to the Creator of all good things.

When we receive the good things God gives us, but use them to give us glory, power, and boost our ego, then we give improper praise where it is not due.

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. ~ 1 Timothy 6:17

This is why it doesn’t matter how much money a person has to God. You can be very rich, but have a heart that constantly praises and gives credit to God, and you can be very poor yet hold on firmly to everything you own as if it’s your source of identity.

Apply 

To avoid allowing “things” or “people” to become an idol to you, remember God made every thing and every person, and they belong to Him. Thank God for the gifts around you, the people who live life with you, and the beautiful nature that surrounds you.

Through Him all things were made, without Him nothing was made that has been made. ~ John 1:3

Create a heart that constantly gives praise and thanksgiving to God who gives such good and wonderful things to you. Give Him glory for the people He places in your life – the ones that help you grow, support you, and encourage you. Thank Him for these people.

Prayer

Lord, every thing I see and everyone I know has been made from Your hands. You created them, you formed them, you know them. And then you placed them here in front of me, to enjoy. Thank you for all the good gifts you have placed in my life. Thank you for the wonderful works of Your hands, that I get to experience. ~ Amen

September SOAP Journal

Healing for the Imperfect

Hello Monday! Today’s chapter to SOAP is Psalm 51. Here is our journal entry…

It is a broken spirit you want – remorse and penitence. A broken and a contrite heart, O God, you will not ignore. ~ Psalm 51:17

 

Observe

God is not waiting on the perfect of heart to shower with His compassion and approval. Instead, He draws near to those who feel broken, lost, imperfect, and incomplete. For it is in them that He can do what He does best – love, heal, restore, and make complete in Him.

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.  ~ Psalm 34:18

The world craves perfection. God craves a heart of remorse and determination to turn back again to the Lord who forgives and forgets. He rejoices in those who are obedient to Him, but He rejoices just the same in those who seek Him for grace over their strongholds, mercy over their imperfect hearts.

“I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite. ~ Isaiah 57:15

Apply

When your heart is broken, when you feel sorrow, when you feel deep regret, God is there waiting to receive your brokenness. In these times, go to Him, in prayer and in spirit, and receive His healing over you.

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. ~ Psalm 147:3

3 Ways to Receive God’s Healing:

~ Pray, and ask God to heal you, forgive you, restore you

~ Read scripture over God’s healing and forgiveness

~ Welcome God’s love and forgiveness into your heart

~ Be patient. Healing takes time. Strongholds are strong, but God is stronger. Give Him the time it takes to work in your heart and remember, God uses time to heal.

Prayer

In the words of David, “don’t keep looking at my sins – erase them from your sight. Create in me a new, clean heart, O God, filled with clean thoughts and right desires. Restore to me again the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. O my God, you alone can rescue me. Then I will sing of your forgiveness, for my lips will be unsealed – oh, how I will praise you.” ~ Amen

*We’re so glad you’re here to SOAP scripture with us! Keep up the good work! 

SOAP Reading Plan ~ September

9/18 – Psalm 51

9/19 – John 4

9/20 – 1 Cor. 10

9/21 – Psalm 62

9/22 – Isaiah 50

9/23 – Proverbs 20

9/24 – Rest & Reflect

9/25 – Matthew 24

9/26 – Philippians 2

9/27 – 2 Thessalonians 3

9/28 – Exodus 33

9/29 – Deuteronomy 8

9/30 – Romans 8

September SOAP Journal

Walk in Truth

SOAP John, chapter 2 (that’s the entire book of John 2!)

Scripture 

Since the Truth is in our hearts forever,

God the Father and Jesus Christ his Son will

bless us with great mercy and much peace, and with truth and love. ~ John 2:1

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Observe

These are the gifts of Truth ~

mercy

peace

truth

love

Apply

These four gifts are always available to us. We simply need to look away from ourselves and look into the direction of God to receive the gifts of mercy, peace, truth, and love.

Prayer

May you walk in God’s mercy over you today. Walk in peace, truth, and love in whatever you do, and whoever you are with. Let the example of Christ be your guide in the decisions you make and in your relationships with others. ~ Amen

John, September SOAP Journal

Choosing a Path to Take ~ John 3:19

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Scripture ~

The Light from heaven came into the world, but they loved the darkness more than the Light, for their deeds were evil. ~ John 3:19

Observation ~

This scripture is telling us that there is a distinct choice we make while living on this earth: We either embrace God’s Light and walk in it, or we embrace the world and it’s selfish and sinful ways and walk in that path instead.

  • The mistreatment of others to gain financial wealth.
  • Parents neglecting to nurture their children and their needs, and instead live a life that brings them pleasure.
  • The obsession with the Internet and all it offers – news, social media, opinions and debates of others.
  • Easily neglecting marriage and giving up vows out of boredom or desires for someone else.
  • Ignoring the way God intended marriage and gender to be, and instead allowing anything and everything as acceptable.

All of these above statements are what the world holds and clings to right now. There is nothing to debate or question, it is simply a matter of God says one thing about these issues, and the world claims another way. It is a fact that the tangible Bible that we hold commands a path for holy living, which is opposite from the world’s path, which commands self-centered living.

Application ~

It’s clear that you can’t take both paths – God’s path and the world’s path. I guess in a way you could, by picking and choosing a little bit from God’s path and a little bit from the world’s path, but this makes one lukewarm in everything they do.

So here’s the choice we’re given –

Walk in the Light or walk in the darkness.

Walk along God’s path or walk along the world’s path.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

 

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

~ Robert Frost

I can apply John 3:19 to my life by choosing to walk in the Light. To choose to cling to God’s way and His Word instead of clinging to the self-centered standards of worldly living. To literally cling to God, knowing I don’t know all the answers and I’m not perfect, but I can choose what I cling to, what I hold on to, what fill my time and attention to.

I can’t control what path anyone around me chooses, and sadly, some who are closest to me choose not to walk in the path of Light. All I can do is choose the path I will take, and do the best I can do in my walk. Hopefully, through example and prayer, some who are not on God’s path will cross over eventually.

Prayer ~

Lord, your way is narrow. Not many walk along your calm and peaceful path – little distraction. simplicity. love. truth. selfless ambition. shutting out the world’s noise and embracing your quiet wisdom. But I choose to walk along this path you’ve paved for me. A path that shines with Light above and grace below. May You keep me on Your path. This treasured, less traveled path. ~ Amen

*Can you believe we’re already in the second week of September! That means we’re half-way through SOAPing September’s chapters. I get so much out of the SOAP method, I hope you are too!

We’ll be back next week to continue reading through God’s Word with you!

Psalms, September SOAP Journal

Refreshed ~ Psalm 126

Scripture ~

May we be refreshed as by streams in the desert. ~ Psalm 126:4

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Observe ~

Every time I read the Bible I feel refreshed. A peace comes over me that I don’t find when reading anything else. Psalm 126 is about when God brought back the exiles to Jerusalem, and the joy they felt, but every time God brings me into His Word I feel this same sense of joy and refreshment.

Picture God bringing you out of one situation and into another – like He brought the Israelites out of slavery and into freedom. It could be big or small.

Out of distractions – into His Word

Out of anxiety – into prayer

Out of despair – into hope

Every time He brings us out of a situation and into His love, His Word, His care, His Spirit there is refreshment within our souls that takes place.

Apply ~

Sometimes we forget to allow God to bring us into His holiness to escape a situation because we think it’s too much work. It’s easier to grab onto something close by and tangible.

But today’s scripture reminds me that every time I step into God’s Word and presence I will be refreshed unlike anything else I could experience in this world. It’s a refreshment that takes me out of a situation and into an experience with God Himself.

Prayer ~ 

Lord, let me experience more refreshment and peace every time I enter into Your Word and presence so that I come back to You over and over again to get more of Your living water that is so refreshing to our hearts, souls, and minds. ~ Amen

More Scriptures When You Need to be Refreshed in Christ

  • Psalm 19:7
    The law of the Lord is perfect,
        refreshing the soul.
    The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy,
        making wise the simple.

 

  • Psalm 23:1-3
    The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
        He makes me lie down in green pastures,
    he leads me beside quiet waters,
       he refreshes my soul.
    He guides me along the right paths
        for his name’s sake.

 

  • Philemon 1:20
     I do wish, brother, that I may have some benefit from you in the Lord; refresh my heart in Christ.

 

Read all of Psalm 126 in during your own quiet time…what do you observe?