A great man I know has a blog dedicated to sharing his devotions (shoutout to Phil, at http://dedicatedtothecross.wordpress.com/).
To me, devos are pretty personal, as they are basically my prayers and thoughts and how I process stuff with God… I guess it’s like a journal, which is why I’m so impressed that Phil puts his up for all to see!
I love his humility and openness, and have now accepted the challenge and taken up the baton. Phil planted the thought in my mind to do the same thing, and so here it finally is: one of my very own devotions.
I was taught a few years back a pretty easy way to do these, using the acronym SOAP:
- Scripture – the particular verse(s) that stand out in a passage
- Observation – background info, context, thoughts on what was going on etc
- Application – how am I going to apply this lesson to my life?
- Prayer – can you guess? 😉
As you can see, it’s pretty self explanitory. Just thought I’d give clarification first, so you can follow more easily if you haven’t heard of S.O.A.P. before.
Zechariah said to the angel, “How can I know that what you say is true? I am an old man, and my wife is old, too.”
The angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand before God, who sent me to talk to you and to tell you this good news. Now, listen! You will not be able to speak until the day these things happen, because you did not believe what I told you. But they will really happen.”
– Luke 1:18-20 (NCV)
The previous verses talk about how Zechariah was a priest, and truly did what the Lord said was good … he and Elizabeth were without fault in keeping God’s law.
Interesting, then, that when an angel of God appeared to him in the temple he didn’t believe! I would have imagined that a priest – a man who lived with his whole life dedicated to God, didn’t believe it when angel appeared to him. I would have thought that he of all people would trust!
If an angel appeared to me and promised marvellous things from God, would I question, too? I surely hope not!! I want to grab hold of the crazy awesome promises and blessings God has and not give Him any reason to change His mind haha!
I kind of like how instead of answering Zechariah’s doubt, Gabriel ‘punishes’ him! No time is spent on entertaining his questioning, giving proof that the promise will come true, or even acknowledging the huge evidence against it – and age is generally a pretty deciding factor for having a baby!
Gabriel seems almost frustrated, and is pretty blunt: “Now, listen!”.
I sure hope that if I ever come face to face with an angel I don’t question him. And yet, how many promises do I have straight from God that I don’t wholeheartedly trust in already? Or how many times do I answer the Spirit with my human reasoning – even if my arguements are completely ‘logical’?!
I must confess… I do this a lot. More than I like to admit (even to myself). But now that I’ve acknowledged this problem, I can come against it and live in faith!
Lord, I again come before You and ask for Your forgiveness.
I know that You created this awesome world, and I fully believe that You are a God of miracles and more than I can even comprehend! Yet time and time again I doubt, try to do life in my own strength, or answer Your great promises with questions of “When?”, “Why?”, or “How?”. Sometimes I find myself even completely forgetting them, and stressing out or falling into anxiety!
You are so good to always reassure me and grant me peace; bringing me back into Your arms and helping get me back on track.
Thank You for Your patience.
Keep molding me; I am Yours.