April 11 – Lenten Study Day 37
Lent is the 40-day period before Easter, and it is “a time for reflection, repentance, and renewal when Christians are invited to prepare themselves for the celebration of the Lord’s resurrection.” This Lent, we are doing a 40-day study from the American Bible Society to focus our time in God’s Word and prayer on His renewing power (click HERE for the reading plan). Join our study by reading today’s scripture below and journaling about it using SOAP (click on the “What’s SOAP?” link above to learn more). Below today’s scripture is an example SOAP from our team. Whether it’s your first time reading the Bible or you’ve been doing daily devotions for decades, God will use this One Thing to speak to you. We love hearing from you! Please use the comment section of our website to share your SOAP, thoughts or questions on the reading, or prayer requests. Join us as we build unity and community through God’s Word!
|Lord God, by your Word fill me with a spirit of discipleship and commitment…
The World Hates the Disciples
18 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. 20 Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. 21 They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin; but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 Whoever hates me hates my Father as well. 24 If I had not done among them the works no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. As it is, they have seen, and yet they have hated both me and my Father. 25 But this is to fulfill what is written in their Law: ‘They hated me without reason.’
The Work of the Holy Spirit
26 “When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father—he will testify about me. 27 And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning.
My Advocate | Marianne Toovey
My Bible’s notes outline what it means to be Jesus’ disciple as, “Being like their master in every respect, both in showing love and obedience and in experiencing the antagonism of those who oppose their message. If the darkness is opposed to the light, and if Jesus’ followers are bearers of light in the world, they should expect the world to hate them in the way it hated Jesus. Jesus’ disciples share his separation from and conflict with the world.” In all honesty, that doesn’t exactly sound all that pleasant. But there’s good news. I don’t have to do it alone. I’ve got an Advocate to counsel and protect me, and even give me the words to say as I testify.
I was one of *those* kids growing up. The kind that quit a game of tag when I was “it” and tagging someone else was too hard. How I managed to keep friends who’d play with me when I’d inevitably do that at every recess is beyond me. But what can I say? I’ve always known what I want, and what I want typically involves the easy way. Following Jesus isn’t always easy. But it’s the one game of tag I’ve never quit. I’ve got my own personal cheerleader in my corner, encouraging me along the way. It keeps me going, even when the going gets tough.
Lord God, by Your Word fill me with a spirit of discipleship and commitment. Thank You, oh thank You for the Holy Spirit! For the encouragement to never give up. For giving me the words to say and showing me what to do. I’m sorry I’m so stubborn. I shy away from any kind of negativity. Continue to give me strength and courage to carry on, even when the going gets tough. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
The Discover One Thing main website follows a reading plan that goes through the entire Bible in one year. Click HERE to check out today’s Discover One Thing post.