Word of God- Day Four
“The word of God hidden in the heart is a stubborn voice to suppress.”–Billy Graham
Obedience is Best!
It’s time to meet with your Jesus! Oh, how He loves you and me! Pray today for God to speak to your heart, and help you to feel His love- the wide and long and high and deep love of Jesus!Ephesians 3:18.
1. Read James 1:22 and write it in your journal. This verse says that it is God’s will for us to not only read the Word of God, He wants us to obey! Is it because God is mean? Is God an overlord who simply wants us to jump when he says jump, or be at his beck and call?
The real reason is that His love for us runs deeper than any ocean, and as our Father, He knows what is absolutely best for us, and we can trust Him with everything in our lives.
2. Read Psalm 131:1-3. What a beautiful passage of Scripture! King David wrote this. I love how he says “I do not concern myself with great matters, or things too wonderful for me.” Even though David was a busy man, a powerful king, he saw himself as a child drawing close to his Father, content with the love of God.
When I read the word of God, it helps me to understand the TRUTH of who I am. I am God’s daughter, a child to Him. He is the Great I Am, I am His little girl.
When He tells me to do something or not do something, it’s for my own good. Just like when we tell our children what to do or not to do, it’s because we love them too. I think that the more that we can think about ourselves in the context of a child with God, the happier we will be in our relationship with Him. We absolutely do not have the perfection aspect of God’s parenting, but we do have a heart that truly loves our children and wants what is best for them like God does.
When our children obey what we tell them to do, it is for their own good. Even with our own human inadequacies, we care about our children and truly desire what’s best for them. We spend hours and hours teaching, loving, instructing, exhorting and of course praying for them, and it’s our heart’s desire that our children obey us, and when they do, they are happier and protected from anything that we may discern as parents that might not be good for them.
It’s the same in our relationship with God. For example, you might be praying about a difficult relationship, and when you read your Bible, you read “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves,” Romans 12:10, or “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” James 4:10. ( By the way, I hear these verses ALL the time when I read my Bible, so I think God may be trying to tell me something:)
I think what God is trying to say to you and me when we are praying over a difficult relationship is this, at least this is what I hear God saying to me, “It’s not all about you Deb. You need to think about other people more than you think about yourself. Stop whining, you are SO blessed! Look at all of your blessings! Okay Deb, tell me 5 of your blessings that you are thankful for,” and it goes on and on.
I am being very vulnerable right now because I want to make a point, God knows what’s best for us! It may not go exactly like this with you, but this is how I hear from God when I pray and read my Bible.
He is God, our Heavenly Father, the Lover of our souls, and He knows what’s best! So we need to listen to what we read in Scripture, write it down, pray about it, and OBEY! We are always happier when we obey, and we receive the peace that passes all understanding.
3. Questions to ponder: Write the answers to these questions in your journal
-If you journal, look back over your past few entries. Do you see a pattern in what God is speaking to you about your situation?
-Write these verses together on a page in your journal. Pray and ask God to help you to understand what He is trying to tell you and to give you the strength to obey what He is telling you to do.
-If you don’t journal, try to remember what Bible verses have spoken to you the most lately. That is the God of the universe speaking to you! Obey what He tells you!
-When in doubt, obey the last thing that God told you to do.
4. Word of God Faith-Filled Idea #4
-Memorizing God’s Word will change your life! Just like today’s quote from Billy Graham says, when you hide God’s Word in your heart, you will be able to obey God easier because you will hear it when you need it, even without your Bible. Record James 1:22-25 on your phone voice recording app. Play this over and over until you learn this passage.
-Talk to your children about how important it is for them to hide God’s Word in their heart so they can obey God too! Let them take turns recording Psalm 119:11 on your phone. Tell about this verse together. When everyone has learned this verse, give everyone a simple reward- play a fun game together, eat a piece of chocolate or candy, etc., or let them stay up 15 minutes past their bedtime. You do you! Whatever works for your family!
Word of God- Day Five
“The study of scripture is to connect our hearts to the One who works wonders. The wonders are to endear us to a world we cannot see.” -Bill Johnson
1. Grab your Bible and journal, a pen, your favorite scented candle and something delicious to drink. God is not someone who is far away and unapproachable, he is always near and loves to experience with you every joy and sorrow. Come as you are, expectant to receive from his pure, life-changing Word!
2. Read James 1:18-27 (The whole chapter is wonderful if you have time).Write verse 18 into your journal.
God’s Word brings Life
Today, I would like to share about a word from the King James version of the Bible that helped me to understand a big truth about God and his word. It is the word begat in James 1:18. It is a small word with an important meaning, so hang in there with me!
“Of His own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.”
It is interesting that the word begat here has the same meaning as in the Old Testament when it is used for records of genealogy (Abraham begat Isaac, Isaac begat Jacob, etc…). Wait. I will try and explain.
The definition is: to bring forth, give birth to, produce.
According to this verse, the Word of God is like a seed that has the ability to bring forth, give birth to, produce. We also know from John 1 that Jesus IS the word who was with God from the beginning! This is a hard to understand, spiritual concept that takes faith to believe. Don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t quite make sense to you. We can always ask the Holy Spirit to reveal his truths to us.
We are familiar with seeds and how they bring life or “begat” in the natural realm. When we take a tiny green bean seed and plant it into our garden, it begins to germinate, sprout and produce many other little green beans plants of its own kind. We can do this with any seed (think corn, snow peas, okra, lettuce…) that God has created, because in itself there is life of the same kind.
So if the Word is a seed that is ALIVE, should it not have the ability to produce fruit after God’s kind when it is planted in us? YES, this is a another great spiritual truth! God gives birth to us through Jesus and His Word. They are ONE.
But how does that happen, how do we plant it? There are a few clues in the next few verses of James that I will pick out and then you can have fun finding some others. In verse 21, we are told to receive God’s word with meekness (gentleness of spirit). I really love that a lot. This takes humility. Often his ways don’t make sense to us, but when we gently receive it anyway, understanding that He knows best, we are letting his Word produce fruit in our lives.
Next, in verse 22 it says that when we hear the Word of God, we should do what it says and not just walk away, forgetting all about it (which is really easy to do sometimes)! For instance, when Jesus said we should be kind to our enemies, that is what we need to do regardless of how we feel. We cannot do this in our own ability, so we ask him to give us the strength and the power to obey.
The key in both of these verses is to truly hear and receive what God has to say as truth, and then do what he says.
We can put this into practice by asking God to open our spiritual ears and eyes so we can hear, see and remember what He speaks to us. Then we take action. It is so simple, yet this is life-changing! As we obey, we give God permission to grow in us and it proves that we are his children. If Jesus’ seed is sprouting in us, then we should begin to resemble him.
Read James 1:18 again and now it should make a little more sense. He wants to “begat us with the word of truth.” or bring forth fruit in us after his own kind.
4. Questions to ponder: Write the answers to these questions in your journal.
1. Think about a time when God spoke to you through his Word, and a seed of Truth was planted and grew in you.
2.What was the fruit of that word? How did it change you?
3. Are you allowing God’s Word to sprout and germinate in your life now?
4. Find more things you can put into practice in James 1:18-27 to show that you are God’s child.
5. Word of God Faith-Filled Idea # 5:
-In Proverbs 18:21, God says that our tongues have the power of life and death. Have you ever thought about that? Just like God’s Word brings life to us, we can bring life with the words that we say. This week, be intentional with your words. Say “I’m sorry” when you need to, “I love you” as much as possible, and “I appreciate you because…” every chance you get. Don’t take your relationships for granted!
Use your words to bring life to as many people as you can this week. Write a couple of encouraging notes. Call you mom and mother-in-law. Don’t be tempted just to encourage the people in your life who you have good relationships with, instead pray and ask God how you can speak life into your challenging ones too. The Lord will help you and bless you for stepping out in faith and choosing to love someone who is difficult to love.
Word of God- Day Six
“When faith ceases to pray, it ceases to live.” ― E.M. Bounds
Creating an All Day Quiet Time with Jesus
1. Find a quiet place where you can be alone and pray for the time you are about tospend with the Lord. Pray against distractions and that your heart will be open to Him today. After all, Jesus wants all of us, every little-hidden part of us.
2. Read Proverbs 3:1-6. Write verse 3 in your journal and really meditate on it.
Isn’t a day started off in the word of God destined to be a great day where we feel powerful, encouraged, and filled up with Christ’s love? I know it is for me. Well, instead of just having a short amount of time each day with God, what if we had a 24-hour quiet time? God doesn’t just want some of us in a specific box when we first wake up or right before we go to bed. He wants all of us. Mark 12:30 says it best. We are commanded to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength.
As busy moms, our days are filled with long to do list and jobs that never seem to end. These things can weigh us down and cause us to become depressed or frustrated easily. God wants us to remember that our day should be framed by him. Your life and day are His, and He deserves our best! Let’s shift our story and our busy life back to God. We have to let that shift happen and open our minds to let God in ALL of the time.
Our day is a constant “dance with God.” We should be moving throughout our day singing praises to Jesus, and whispering prayers of thanks to him and asking him for guidance when something gets our day off track, which, of course, is going to happen with small children running around. Something that we busy moms have to guard against is Satan telling us that our day is ruined. It is not! Things will happen throughout your day where you will have the opportunity to respond with patience or even joy, or you can respond with grumbling. Our children notice our grumbling and pick up on our moods, so resist the urge to give up. Allow your children to see you remaining calm and turning to the Lord in these situations.
Prayer is a vital part to having a 24 hour quiet time with the Lord. Tapping into the power of prayer throughout our day gives us strength and lets us see our self through God’s eyes. He is certainly willing to listen if we are willing to put in the time. Many of us wait for the right time to pray throughout the day, such as first thing in the morning, or right before we go to bed, but God is available and eager to listen all the time. There is a tremendous sense of relief that comes from unburdening ourselves in prayer.
Ken Shigematsu, in his book “God in My Everything,” says, “when we regularly pause from our ambitions and activities, we create space to experience Christ.” Wow! We have to slow down long enough to allow God a space to enter in. Our day should truly be about experiencing Christ in everything. Every day, every moment is His!
3. Questions to Ponder: Prayerfully Answer These Questions in Your Journal:
- Pray and ask God to create a time and space where you can meet with Him if you are not already doing it regularly.
- Ask God to open up your heart to the gifts of His Holy Spirit. All of us could use more peace, patience, kindness, goodness, and gentleness. These gifts will allow you to stay focused on Him more fully throughout your day.
4. Faith Filled Idea:
When your children are taking a nap or doing a quiet time, give yourself a quiet time as well. Open up your heart to Jesus and if you have been in a bad mood or have already lost your temper at your kids or your husband, ask for forgiveness. Confess and release your burdens to Him. Reclaim your day and start anew! I love quiet time because it is usually the halfway point to my day. Here, in the middle of my day, I like to start over and commit the rest of my busyness to Him.