66 in 52 Challenge

Numbers – Week 4 {66 in 52 Challenge}

This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I plan to focus in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will be posting a summary page with some thought about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey!

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Week 4 - Numbers

Numbers in One Sentence:

“God brings us through the wilderness to prepare us for what’s next.” – From NewSpring Church’s “Everything You Need to Know about Numbers” article

The Big Picture:

The title for this book comes from the two censuses taken in the book, numbering God’s people at that time. In Hebrew the actual title would be translated “In the Wliderness”. This is more descriptive of the narrative as God’s people leave Mount Sinai and make their way to the edge of the land God promised to them. Because of their disobedience the current generation would not get to enter and God had them wander around in the wilderness for forty years. At the end of the book we see a new generation preparing to enter the Land and are being reminded of the laws and guidelines God set out for them so they would find blessing and success when they entered.

Some Key Themes in Numbers:

  • God forgives our sins. There are also consequences in this world for our mistakes. (Numbers 14:20-23; 20:12, 21:4-9)
  • Grumbling never makes anything better. (Numbers 11)
  • “Every number has a name, every name has a story, every story matters to God.” (From “Everything You Need to know about Numbers“; Numbers 1, 26)
  • God is faithful even when we are not.
  • God really does go to any lengths to communicate with us… sometimes animals even talk. (Numbers 22)

A Few Key Verses and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:

Some of us are planning to read through the whole book each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse. This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of Leviticus you want! These are just some ideas.

  •  “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord look upon you with favor and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24-26
    REFLECTION:  This blessing has been prayed over God’s people for thousands of years and still is used in many churches today. What does this blessing mean to you? Who might you be able to pray this over today?
  • God is not a human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?” Numbers 23:19

    REFLECTION:  God, what human characteristics might I be placing on you unfairly? What do you want me to know about you as GOD today?

  • “But since my servant Caleb has a different spirit and has remained loyal to me, I will bring him into the land where he has gone and his descendants will inherit it.” Numbers 14:24)
    REFLECTION:  Caleb and Joshua went against probably over a million people who didn’t trust God was able to help them take over the land. Where in your life right now are you feeling like you’re being called to be different for the glory of God, perhaps even in the face of great opposition?
  • The Lord is slow to anger and abounding in faithful love…” Numbers 14:18
    REFLECTION: Where have you seen this to be true in your relationship with God? In what areas of life might God be calling you to reflect His nature by also being slow to anger or abounding in love?

God’s Grace in Numbers:

The clearest picture of God’s grace in this book is found in the verse just mentioned above. The way the story goes, God has asked Moses to send some people into Canaan to scout it out. The ideas was to find out what land is good or to figure out what they were up against. It was not about deciding whether to go in or not, but rather preparation. However 10 of the spies found themselves afraid at what they found and convinced the entire nation not to follow God’s command to be courageous and enter the land. Only two spies, Caleb and Joshua, got excited about what they saw. They tried to rally the masses saying, “Let’s go up now and take possession of the land because we can certainly conquer it!” (13:30)

But the people refused and even threatened to stone Moses, Aaron, Caleb, and Joshua. This made God mad. He had this huge gift waiting for them and all they wanted was to go back to slavery in Egypt?!? God was ready to destroy them with a plague but Moses petitioning to the gracious character of God saying, “The Lord is slow to anger and abounding in faithful love, forgiving iniquity and rebellion. … Please pardon the iniquity of the people, in keeping with the greatness of your faithful love, just as you have forgiven them from Egypt until now.” (Numbers 14:18-19)

God did pardon them. There were consequences, but also great grace.

Some Other Resources:

The Challenge:

So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!

66 in 52 Challenge

Reflections on Leviticus

Leviticus is hard.

To be honest, I still have some questions that I continue to wrestle with and ask God for insight and wisdom. Some of them I’ve pondered for years and probably won’t understand until Heaven.

It’s easy to focus on a few sweet, beautiful passages about God being their God, making a way for them and try to ignore the rest.

But these are also in the book:

  • “…That person is to be cut off from his people. (19:8)
  • “…they are to be put to death…” (19:20)
  • “…Both of them must be put to death…” (20:10)
  • “…you are to kill the woman…” (20:16)
  • “…They will bear their guilt and die childless…” (20:20)
  • “…They are to be stoned… (20:27)
  • “…she must be burned to death…” (21:9)

It also can feel a bit confusing at times. First we read:

“Do not take advantage of foreigners who live among you in your land. Treat them like native-born Israelites, and love them as you love yourself. Remember that you were once foreigners….” (19:33-34)

But then a few chapters later, I ponder what to do with this:

“You may purchase male and female slaves… purchase the children of temporary residents who live among you… treat them as your property… treat them as slaves…” (25:44-45)

A few months ago I was on a university campus in a forum where students could ask a panel of ministry leaders and pastors questions they had about Christianity. While this is not really my type of thing normally, I sensed that God was calling me to say “yes” to the request to be on the panel. One question that came through was whether each of us really believed every word in the Bible was true and from God. While I don’t know for sure, I’m wondering if these are some of the passages that student was struggling with which prompted the question.

While I can theologically use some “book-smarts” to explain what’s happening with these various moral laws, ceremonial laws, ethics, rules and rituals, my heart still struggles a bit. But, in answer to that student’s question, I still have to believe that God’s Word is true. If I don’t believe any little part of it is true, how can I trust any of it?!?

A related question surrounded how the loving God Christians portray could literally destroy everyone on earth in a flood except one family. This is where the importance of the whole of Scripture comes into play. If I pull out just one little verse here or there, or even one book, I get a completely different picture of God’s character, purpose, and plan.

Do I completely understand God flooding the whole earth? No. But I do know that God’s heart was grieving and it was not a decision he made flippantly.

“So the Lord was sorry he had ever made them and put them on the earth. It broke his heart.” (Genesis 6:6)

Do all of these laws in Leviticus seem “right” in my mind? Not really. But God’s ways and thoughts are far beyond my own.

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.” (Isaiah 55:8)

So how do I see all of this and still desire to follow God? As I said before, it’s because I can read the hard verses within the context of the whole book of Leviticus and I can read Leviticus in the context of all 66 books. I can see where God enacted a perfect plan so all this death and hatred didn’t have to overtake us. I can see where God’s mercy triumphs over judgement. I can see that our God is good and a good God must also be just and fair. Justice must include a punishment, and yes, that punishment is death. Here in Leviticus this was the institution of the sacrificial system. And ultimately now we have a Savior who came to earth, lived, died, and rose again to take that punishment.

Near the end of this book we get a glimpse into that heart of God that grieves over sin so much that he couldn’t just let it be:

“But despite all this, I will not utterly reject or despise them while they are in exile in the land of their enemies. I will not cancel my covenant with them by wiping them out, for I am their God. For their sakes I will remember my ancient covenant with their ancestors, whom I brought out of the land of Egypt in the sight of all the nations, that I might be their God. I am the Lord.” (26:44-45)

He still claims us as his people despite the messes we get ourselves into.

The laws we find in scripture can guide our actions and help us make wise decisions. They serve a purpose in helping us see the ways we don’t measure up and what a huge gift God’s grace is. Sin really is a big deal and God desires 100% complete holiness, however, the laws aren’t to be some burden we carry around in guilt and shame, far from God. They are here so that we can actually be near to Him. They lead the way and show us how to live in FREEDOM, not bondage.

“I will walk among you; I will be your God, and you will be my people. I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt so you would no longer be their slaves. I broke the yoke of slavery from your neck so you can walk with your heads held high.”  (26:12-13)

Yes, what Romans 6:23 says is true and echoes page after page of Leviticus: the punishment for sin IS death.

Praise be to God that the verse doesn’t stop there…

BUT THE FREE GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD!”

That is some truth we can cling to… something worth lifting our head and keeping our eyes on Jesus, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.

Have mercy on us!

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School of the Week, Uncategorized

Kenmore West {School of the Week 17-18}

This week we thank God for and pray for Kenmore West High School!

Fast Facts:

  • Founded 1939
  • Grades 8-12
  • Mascot: Blue Devils
  • Colors: Blue and White

Prayers:

  • Pray for all the students of KenWest, but especially our First Trinity high school students: Ben and Kyle. Ask God to walk with them each day and give them opportunities to live out their faith at school, in extracurricular activities, and in their homes.
  • Pray for their administrators, faculty, and staff.
    Principal: Mr. Dean Johnson
    Assistant Principals: Mr. Daniel Charland, Ms. Dina Ferraraccio, and Mr. Matthew RainesAsk God to give all who lead the students wisdom and grace.
  • Pray for the students who are sports teams or in music programs that they would perform to God’s glory, stay safe, and have fun.

2018-01-14 15.25.44

66 in 52 Challenge

Leviticus – Week 3 {66 in 52 Challenge}

This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I plan to focus in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will be posting a summary page with some thought about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey!

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Week 3 - Leviticus

Fun Fact about Leviticus:

The word “holy” is mentioned more time in this book than any other book of the Bible

The Big Picture:

Leviticus was written by Moses and seems to take place around Mt. Sinai. It seems, as the fact above could attest, that one purpose God has in this book is to remind us, and his people then, of His holiness. It is filled with lots of guidelines and instructions which at times can be overwhelming to read or even lead to a sense of despair realizing we could never live up to such standards. I wonder if that’s kind of the point as it leads us to discover our desperate need for God’s grace and salvation.

Some Key Events/Themes in Leviticus:

  • Leviticus 1-7 – Outlines the laws for various offerings and sacrifices
  • Leviticus 8-10 – The Consecration of Aaron and His sons as priests
  • Leviticus 11-15 – Teachings about clean vs. unclean
  • Leviticus 16 – Institution of The Day of Atonement
  • Leviticus 17-27 – Various Laws, celebrations, and guidelines for the people

A Few Key Verses and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:

Some of us are planning to read through the whole book each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse. This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of Leviticus you want! These are just some ideas.

  • Leviticus 5:6 – “And, as a penalty for the sin they have committed, they must bring to the Lord a female lamb or goat from the flock as a sin offering; and the priest shall make atonement fro them for their sin.”
    REFLECTION: What does it mean to you that Jesus became the Ultimate Sacrifice for our sin, once and for all? How does Hebrews 10 help us understand Leviticus?
  • Leviticus 5:7 – “Anyone who cannot afford a lamb is to bring two doves or two pigeons to the Lord as a penalty for their sin–one for a sin offering and the other for a burnt offering.”
    REFLECTION: This is just one example, but where else do you see God’s grace and mercy in this book that feels so overwhelmingly filled with Law?
  • Leviticus 17:11 – “For the life of a creation is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one’s life.”
    REFLECTION: How do the things we read about in Leviticus connect with what Christ did for us in the New Testament?
  • Leviticus 19:18 – “Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.”
    REFLECTION: Jesus, show me who I need to forgive this week and help me begin that process.

God’s Grace in Leviticus:

To be honest, God’s grace feels a lot harder to find in a book known for it’s focus on laws, guidelines, and rules. When we read things like “anyone who does ____ should be killed”, it’s difficult to even keep reading. However, I believe fully that God’s grace is all over this book. One specific place is in the outlines God gives for the offerings and sacrifices. Our God knew that we can never live up to a perfect, holy standard that is necessary to be in relationship with Him. Yet, He LONGS for us to be in relationship with Him (that’s one main reason He created us in the first place!) The sacrifices and offerings in this book aren’t meant to feel as just one more religious duty they were forced to comply with. No, this was the very way that God could continue in relationship with his people.

A penalty was needed; blood must be shed… God remained just while also being gracious in allowing sacrifices to be made to atone for the sin of the people. We can praise God even more now today that Jesus has come as the perfect Lamb of God, a blameless sacrifice that does not require repeating the rituals day after day, year after year. God’s grace in Leviticus is actually highlighted in Hebrews:

“The old system under the law of Moses was only a shadow, a dim preview of the good things to come, not the good things themselves. The sacrifices under that system were repeated again and again, year after year, but they were never able to provide perfect cleansing for those who came to worship.  If they could have provided perfect cleansing, the sacrifices would have stopped, for the worshipers would have been purified once for all time, and their feelings of guilt would have disappeared.

But instead, those sacrifices actually reminded them of their sins year after year.  For it is not possible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.  That is why, when Christ came into the world… for God’s will was for us to be made holy by the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ, once for all time.” – Hebrews 10:1-5, 10

Some Other Resources:

The Challenge:

So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!

66 in 52 Challenge, Bekah's Heart, Devotional

Reflections on Exodus

It’s easy for me to read through a book like Exodus and kind of wonder: “How couldn’t they see it?!?” God’s provision, protection, and guidance are so clear chapter after chapter. From protecting Moses as a baby to grand things like splitting a sea in two or food appearing out of thin air day after day, God’s action on behalf of the Israelites is obvious. Yet, they complained constantly, thought going back to slavery would be better for them, made idols while God’s presence was still on the mountain in front of them, and blamed God instead of praising Him. How could this be? Couldn’t they see what God was up to?

But when I really stop to think about it… some days I’m no different. God performs a miracle, but we miss it because we were expecting something different. God figuratively splits seas or thunders from a mountain and the next day we’re so caught up in daily life we forget His power. We become immune to daily ‘manna’ falling from the sky in the form of food and shelter and friendships and His love and start to complain. I’d like to think that if I saw some of the miraculous things the Israelites witnessed I would never stop praising, but I’m not so sure I’d be any different.

One verse that struck me came right as God was enacting this great plan to lead them out of Egypt. Pharaoh had finally worn down and they were on the move. Passover had been instituted and God’s people had been spared the death of the firstborn that plagued the rest of the land. They had not yet come upon the Red Sea, but certainly had plenty to praise God for already.

So Moses said to the people, ‘This is a day to remember forever—the day you left Egypt, the place of your slavery. Today the Lord has brought you out by the power of his mighty hand. … On this day in early spring, in the month of Abib, you have been set free. You must celebrate this event in this month each year…” (Exodus 13:3-5 NLT)

Reading this translation struck me… REMEMBER… YOU HAVE BEEN SET FREE… CELEBRATE! It goes on to explain how God wants them to celebrate but the party stops pretty quick as they approach the Red Sea and see that Pharaoh has changed his mind. The army is approaching quickly from behind and the body of water ahead has them trapped.

As Pharaoh approached, the people of Israel looked up and panicked when they saw the Egyptians overtaking them. They cried out to the Lord, and they said to Moses, “Why did you bring us out here to die in the wilderness? Weren’t there enough graves for us in Egypt? What have you done to us? Why did you make us leave Egypt? Didn’t we tell you this would happen while we were still in Egypt? We said, ‘Leave us alone! Let us be slaves to the Egyptians. It’s better to be a slave in Egypt than a corpse in the wilderness!’” (Exodus 14:10-12)

Suddenly they wanted to go back. Their current situation seemed worse than slavery, but that’s because they forgot the powerful mighty hand of their God.

Earlier this month I attended a conference. One of the hosts said this as he wrapped up one of our sessions:

Sometimes we feel like: “God you’ve led me to a place where there’s no where out.”
God says: “That’s only because you haven’t seen a sea parted.” – Ben Stewart

As I thought about this story that I’ve heard many times, as well as my own tenancies to complain and forget what God can do, I wondered if a key piece in all of it was the celebration God instituted the chapter before.

When Moses told the people to remember the day they had been set free, he said, “you MUST celebrate it”.  One way to read this Scripture would imply a focus on trying to please God and so we must praise Him because He deserves it. It’s true, God does deserve our praise, but I wonder if the “must” here is more about God knowing our nature. He “demands” celebration in a sense because He knows we need it. He knows that we MUST celebrate or we will forget. We must celebrate or we will worry. We must celebrate or we will feel trapped and see no way out. We must celebrate because we are free. Without celebration, we find our souls enslaved again.

I don’t know what celebration looks like for you, but find a way to party today. God has done everything to secure our freedom. May we never be slaves again!

2018-01-13 09.05.07

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Bonus Thought: Music is one way I choose to celebrate. Maybe this song by Ellie Holcomb can help you live free today!

So we will sing, to our souls
We won’t bury our hope
Where He leads us to go
There’s a red sea road
When we can’t, see the way
He will part, the waves
And we’ll never walk alone
Down a red sea road” – Ellie Holcomb “Red Sea Road”

 

66 in 52 Challenge

Exodus Intro – Week 2 {66 in 52 Challenge}

This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I plan to focus in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will be posting a summary page with some thought about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey!

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Week 2 - Exodus

The Book in One Sentence:

“God shows how great He is by keeping His promises and rescuing us when we can’t rescue ourselves.” – From Newspring Church, “Everything You Need to Know About Exodus”

The Big Picture:

As Genesis ends and Exodus begins, a change in power was happening. When Genesis ends God’s people were doing pretty well. However, as verse 8 of the first chapter of Exodus tells us, “Eventually, a new king came to power in Egypt…” This king was scared that the people of Israel would rebel. Before they could do that, he made them all into slaves. Throughout the rest of the book we see God’s plan to rescue His people through all different means, and especially through Moses. After their rescue from Egypt, God establishes some rules and guidelines for His people as well as providing a way for them to worship in the creation of the tabernacle.

Some Key Events/Themes in Exodus:

  • The Birth of Moses (Exodus 2)
  • Moses and the Burning Bush (Exodus 3)
  • Moses and Aaron before Pharaoh/The Ten Plagues (Exodus 5-11)
  • The First Passover and Escape from Egypt (Exodus 12-13)
  • Walking through The Red Sea on Dry ground (Exodus 14)
  • God providing Manna and Quail to eat (Exodus 16)
  • God Reveals Himself and Provide Guidelines for the Community at Sinai (Exodus 19-31)
  • The Golden Calf (Exodus 32)
  • Building of the Tabernacle for Worship (Exodus 35-40)

A Few Key Passages and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:

Some of us are planning to read through the whole book each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse. This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse/passage to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of Genesis you want! These are just some ideas.

  • Exodus 3:14  – “God replied to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM. Say this to the people of Israel: I AM has sent me to you.'”
    What does it mean to you that God says his name is “I AM”? Look also at John 8:58-59, and reflect on the connection between these two verses.
  • Exodus 14:14 – “The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”
    What battle do you need Jesus to fight for you today?
  • Exodus 15:2-3 – “The Lord is my strength and my song; he has given me victory. This is my God, and I will praise him–my father’s God, and I will exalt him! The LORD is a warrior; Yahweh is his name!”
    This is a song the people sang after God had rescued them. In what ways do you feel God has brought you out of slavery? How has God been a warrior in your life? What might your song say if you wrote one today?
  • Exodus 20 – The Ten Commandments
    Read verses 1-2 – What is God’s heart behind these commandments? Where do you see God’s love in the commandments? What other characteristics of God are present?
  • Exodus 40:36-38 – “Now whenever the cloud lifted from the Tabernacle, the people of Israel would set out on their journey, following it. But if the cloud did not rise, they remained where they were until it lifted. … This continued throughout all their journeys.”
    We don’t have literal cloud or fire pillars to follow and know where God is leading but what other things, people, or situations has God provided in your life to help you follow Him?

God’s Grace in Exodus:

One of my favorite examples of God’s grace in Exodus (one of the MANY) comes at the end of the plagues as God is just on the edge of helping His people escape. God establishes the Passover (Exodus 12). Pharaoh was not reacting to God’s many attempts to get him to let the Israelites go and knew that something drastic would have to happen, the death of all of the firstborn in Egypt. Because God’s people also were in Egypt, and God is both just and gracious in ways we can’t always mesh in our brains, He needed to provide a way out for those who did desire to follow Him. The Passover was that way. Those that showed their trust in God were spared the death that fell upon all the other firstborn in the land. This Passover continued to be celebrated for hundreds and hundreds of years as a reminder of God’s gracious provision that night. One day, centuries later, a man named Jesus came on the scene, still celebrating this meal, until one year when He became the sacrifice. Sitting around a table, Jesus said, “This is my body; this is my blood”. He was telling all those from that point forward that He had come as the ultimate Passover Lamb … that would rescue us all from the sin that enslaved us our entire lives.

Some Other Resources:

The Challenge:

So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!

66 in 52 Challenge

Reflections on Genesis

Starting off 2018, it was neat to begin my time connecting with Jesus in the book of beginnings. The first things that struck me were reminders of who God designed humans (and therefore me) to be from the beginning of time, before sin entered the picture and muddied things. These reminders of identity are helpful to cover over some of the unhealthy or untrue labels I had put on myself in the days, months, or year past. To begin with a new sense of identity as well as purpose was encouraging.

More than anything as I read through the whole book of Genesis, what stood out to me was various elements of God’s character. Whether delighting in his “very good” creation or grieving the evil in the world before the flood, I enjoyed focusing in on the characteristics that together help us know just a little of our unknowable God.

Here were just a few more that stood out to me:

  • God is creative. – “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” – Genesis 1:1
  • God’s heart breaks over evil. –  “The Lord observed the extent of the human wickedness on the earth, and he saw that everything they thought or imagined was consistently and totally evil. So the Lord was sorry he had ever made them and put them on the earth. It broke his heart.” – Genesis 6:5-6
  • God remembers His people. – “But God remembered Noah…” – Genesis 8:1 — “Then God remembered Rachel’s plight…” Genesis 30:22 —
  • God hears and sees us even when no one else does. – “… You are to name him Ishmael (which means ‘God hears’), for the Lord has heard your cry of distress. … Thereafter, Hagar used another name to refer to the Lord, who had spoken to her. She said, “You are the God who sees me.” … “Have I truly seen the One who sees me?” – Genesis 16:11,13
  • Nothing is impossible for God. – “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” – Genesis 18:14
  • God is merciful. – “When Lot still hesitated, the angels seized his hands an the hands of his wife and two daughters and rushed them outside the city, for the Lord was merciful.” – Genesis 19:16 (Also, later on in this story, I saw God’s patience and mercy again. When the angels told them to go to a certain area they were scared and asked to go to a different city instead. Later on, they ended up fleeing that city to go hide in the area the angels originally told them to go. I can just imagine how the angels shake their heads and laugh at me some days too. 🙂 )
  • God is faithful. – “The Lord kept His word and did for her exactly what He had promised.” – Genesis 21:1
  • God provides eternally and here on earth. – “Abraham named the place Yahweh-Yireh (which means ‘the Lord will provide’). To this day, people still use that name: ‘On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.'” – Genesis 22:14
  • God starts answers prayers before we finish praying them. – “Before he had finished praying, he saw a young woman named Rebekah coming out with her water jug on her shoulder…” – Genesis 24:15
  • He’s a God of abundance! – “When Isaac planted his crops that year, he harvested a hundred times more grain than he planted, for the Lord blessed him.” – Genesis 26:12
  • God sees a promise to the end and is present in the waiting. – “What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.” – Genesis 28:15
  • God works good in the worst of situations and sits with us in the waiting. – “But the Lord was with Joseph in the prison and showed him his faithful love. And the Lord made Joseph a favorite with the prison warden.” – Genesis 39:21
  • God uses what others intend for evil, for good. – “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people” – Genesis 50:20

Whatever pieces of God’s Word you looked at this week, what did God show you in it? How is that impacting your life? How can you use what you learned to impact the world around you?