Daily Bread can mean different things to different people, and as a new believer I had no clue what this Christianese term meant other than I vaguely recalled it from Christ’s example of prayer, “…give us this day, our daily bread.” I always considered it a simple provision statement, and was so excited when I learned about manna in the Old Testament, and how amazing and faithful that provision is! The thing is though, they had to go out and gather it.
God, in His mercy and love, has provided us all unmeasurable wisdom, peace and LIFE if we would simply gather ourselves around His Word. So this is the intro to my first series, entitled Daily Bread. I touched on it somewhat in my Mother’s Day post, as I encouraged mamas to take care of themselves in order to meet the challenges of motherhood with their full potential. For me, that means carving out time to read and study the bible using a new-to-me journaling method called S.O.A.P.
My initial goal will be to post at least one entry once a week. Right now I don’t have any particular reading plan that I am following because I often get too discouraged when I fall “behind” and it turns into a chore rather than delight. Crazy how articulating that pattern highlights how incredibly foolish it is. I feel “behind” and not “good enough” so to avoid that shame, I avoid the only one who could remind me He loves me no matter what?! So we can see why Cookie needs to be reading more 🙂 For now, I usually just pray and if something a particular verse or topic doesn’t come to mind, I just sorta flip around until I land on something that sticks out to me. To kick things off I thought I might take a deeper look at one of the scriptures that inspired the title of this blog, Hebrews 12:1. I used my Life Application Study Bible for this reading, which uses the New Living Translation (NLT).
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.”
“Let us strip off every weight…” and “the race God has set before us.” The visual image I got as I read that, “to strip off every weight”, just speaks to the way sin clings to us…that it won’t be easy to let go of….and reminds us that our vices are indeed keeping us from our full potential. We are called to run “the race God has set before us”….not the race we want to run, or think we should run, or society insists we run. Perhaps we aren’t as successful in life because we are wearing ourselves out running the wrong race.
Is this blog a race the Lord has set before me? Or is it just something I want to do to escape from my insecurities as a newly wed and first year homeschooling mom? Who do I want to lift up? Who do I want to point to? If this blog simply magnifies the flesh and keeps me looking at the stats for approval, then it just might be the weight I need to cast off in order to focus on my motherhood, wifehood and teacherhood (is that a thing?).
Ok, so if I can’t write to encourage my readers, and glorify God without stressing about “shares” or “likes” then yes…I have to simply end this blog. What stirs me to get focused on numbers in the first place? Blogger how-to posts and groups! Nothing against them…they are super helpful, but I think right now I need to limit my exposure to them and keep my motives in check. I also need to keep my pride in check…I don’t have anything to offer but that which He has given me.
If this IS the race HE set before me, then #1, I don’t need to chase numbers, but rather, exercise discipline to take the slow and steady approach. I get over excited about new things, puff up my expectations, then I feel crushed and like a failure when things don’t meet my projected standards. So maybe He wants me to learn to take things one step at a time and not DO DO DO…but rest in Him and watch what HE can do. #2, This race will not conflict with His Word or other confirmed races I’m running. Blogging should not detract from my roles as wife, mother and teacher, but should compliment and support them.
Heavenly Father, thank you so much for your word and for drawing me unto You as I read and study it. Thank you this journey that has me putting the spotlight on my behavior and choices and causes me to call them into question that I might be able to “strip off the sin that so easily besets” me. Please Lord continue this work which you have begun in me, and help me to more than a hearer of the word but a doer too…that my obedience may be bring healing to my insecurities and health to my relationships and glory unto You. Please grant me the discernment to discover the race you have for me, the clarity to identify that which is weighing me down, and the strength to cast it off. In your Holy Name I pray, Amen
Wow, so there it is, S.O.A.P. journaling for Hebrews 12:1. What elements of that scripture spoke out to you? Is there a weight you realize is bogging you down? Or a race you are running that may not be the one He has set before you? Please feel free to share your thoughts below!