What follows are the Quiet Times for upcoming youth mission trip to the Impact Church of Christ in Houston, TX. Each morning, before or after breakfast, I ask the kids to take a few moments to read a section of Scripture and then have them do some journaling. The next several posts will be from the Quiet Times that I wrote for our group.
Saturday, June 25, 2011: Day 1
Read: Psalm 23
Food for Thought: Travel Light
Today we left the comfort of our everyday routines, our church building, our towns to travel some 400 miles to a place of familiarity for some of us, and a new, albeit strange place for others. For you veterans to Impact, it is so good to have you back, and for those of our group who are first timers –WELCOME! I pray that you experience what other’s have. This week we are on a journey, figuratively and literally. We have a couple of things in common with David, the author of the 23rd Psalm. David opens Psalm 23 with the familiar words, “The Lord is my shepherd.” Shepherds lead sheep, they protect their flock, they feed their flock, they comfort their flock. Shepherds smell like their sheep. They know their names, and the sheep know their shepherd’s voice. The relationship that is pictured here is of dependence. The sheep need their shepherd. We too, as the Lord’s sheep need him to be our guide, protector, defender, provider, light through the darkness, and leader.
As you packed for this trip, you most likely put clothes, toiletries, etc., into a suitcase, or other some type of luggage. But, there is another type of baggage I want to briefly mention. Baggage that can’t be put into the trailer. I am talking about the issues, problems, pains, hurts, worries, etc., that we are bringing with us this week. One of things I get from Psalm 23 is to travel light. Notice, David is displaying a deep trust in the guidance of the Shepherd as they journey through green pastures, quiet waters, the darkest valley, even the presence of enemies. David is traveling light, he doesn’t seem worried or worked up over the issues that he’s experienced in the past. He is caught up in the moment of being with the Lord as he shepherds him to and from. May we this week do the same. Leave the extra baggage at home. This week is bigger than you, and your wants or needs. So, I am asking you to get in the moment, be present with your kid groups, respect one another, treat others better than yourself. Travel light through the week my friend, God is good.
Each morning this week you will be given a Scripture passage to read, and a notebook to write in. I want you to read and journal together. I will give you and example of a method that will be helpful to you to use to aid your reading this week. The SOAP method. This acrostic helps you remember the elements of how to include Bible Study into your quiet time. You can even use this method alone as a way to study scripture apart from your daily quiet times.
S = Scripture
Complete the “S” by reading the scripture. Don’t just skim through it, but really think about what it means. Imagine what the people involved were experiencing. Write down a verse or two that really stood out to you in your journal.
O = Observation
Complete the “O” by writing down observations about the scripture you just read. You may want to write your own summary of the passage, but more importantly, think about what God has to say to you through this part of his word. This is the who, what, when, where and why? Write it down!
A = Application
Personalize what you have read by asking yourself how it applies to your life right now. Perhaps it is instruction, encouragement, revelation of a new promise or corrections for a particular area of your life. Write how this scripture can apply to you today.
P = Prayer
Pray for God to give you understanding of how He wants to use this Scripture in your heart and life. Ask Him to help you to hear and understand His Holy Word. Pause and listen!!! Ask Him to give you direction for the day, for the week, for your life. “Speak Lord! Your servant is listening!”
*The Soap Method comes from the information in the Daily Life Journal, written by Wayne Coderio our congregation walked through this method a couple of years ago. http://www.ehow.com/how_2324318_use-soap-method-bible-reading.html