For the summer months, we are reading the minor prophets, starting with Hosea. Our 3-week Hosea reading plan reveals the character of God and comes from the She Reads Truth blog. Click HERE to go to the website for the reading plan and a devotion to go with each reading. You can 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!
|Today’s verse is from last week’s reading and is suggested for memorization.
6 For I desire mercy, not sacrifice,
A Holy Aloneness | Kathy Page
Love for God was the #1 priority for the people of Israel. The whole Law, including the sacrifices and offerings, was to serve as an expression of love for the Lord. A whole love; a love with all of their hearts, souls, strengths and minds. Over time, the Israelites began to worship other gods while continuing the ritual of sacrifice. They “obeyed the law”, but they did not display love toward God and they did not truly know Him. God desired their love over their outward practice of piety, their hypocrisy. He longed for His people to long for Him rather than to simply continue a religious tradition.
As you and I go about serving God, there are many distractions along the way. We go to church, we sing, we pray, we listen to the message. We take the Lord’s Supper. We suppose we have done our duty. But, because of the repetitive nature of these acts, we sometimes go through them without any participation of the heart and mind. God cares more about our love for Him than the things we do in His name. We must not substitute religious traditions for a relationship with God. He longs for our whole hearts. He longs for that aloneness with Him through His Word where He will instruct us, grow us in wisdom and stature. Aloneness with Him in prayer where He takes us deeper into His presence and His power, aligning our hearts with His as we wait, yielded and still. May we never be like those whom Jesus described in Mark 7:6, “These people know me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.”
Father, take me deeper into Your heart. Let me feel Your arms holding me. Let me feel Your breath upon my face. Lord, You have loved me dearly, I earnestly desire to love You above all others. Take me to the secret place with You that we can talk and have fellowship with each other. Separate me from this world and pour out Your love in my heart that I will experience unbroken fellowship with You, my Lord, my God, my Savior. In Jesus’ Name.
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.