Gracefully Truthful

Adoration,Daughter,Faith,Fear,Giving,God,Joy

Rest your soul through reflective journaling,
praying Scripture,
and worshiping the Creator who
longs for intimacy with each of us!

This Week's Journeys

John 15:18-20, 25

“If the world hates you, understand that it hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own.

However, because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of it, the world hates you. Remember the word I spoke to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will also keep yours.

[…] But this happened so that the statement written in their law might be fulfilled: “They hated me for no reason.””

Prayer Journal Entry

Yahweh, build in me a faith like Mary’s; like Elizabeth’s; like Miriam’s; like Anna’s. Pour Your strength and love into me until I am overflowing, so I may give it to those around me. Lord, my words fall short today. All I can do is give Your words back to You and wrap myself in the warmth of their love and promise.

“Her mouth speaks wisdom, and loving instruction is on her tongue” (Proverbs 31:26) Lord, let the words that flow from my lips be of praise to You and for the good of those around me.

“Little children, let us not love in word or speech, but in action and in truth” (1 John 3:18) God, please teach me how to reflect Your love through my daily living and not let my faith die within my words.   

“One generation will declare your works to the next and will proclaim Your mighty acts. I will speak of Your splendor and glorious majesty and Your wondrous works.” (Psalm 145:4-5) Yahweh, write within me a praise song that sings of Your greatness to the generation after me, a melody of my own redemption story that glorifies Your love for each of us.

As always, Your words suffice where mine fall short. Hear my heart’s prayer, Lord, and let me become a stronger reflection of You just as the great women of the Bible exemplified.
In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

Worship Through Song

Journal Prompts

JOURNAL ONE


As humans, we are inherently sinful (Psalm 51:5, Romans 3:10-18) Though we may desire to choose righteousness, we still find ourselves falling into pesky traps of sin as we are tempted by the way of sinful desires. (Romans 7:14-15)

One such trap is the lie we can be trusted to run our lives better than God. Control is a lucrative lie! It’s much easier to believe in something we can see with our own eyes rather than the unseen power of the Almighty, so we conjure a convincing illusion that we have control. The reality is, God created everything we can see and everything we cannot see. (Colossians 1:16) He IS life. (Colossians 3:4)

When we focus on the truth of His attributes, we more readily relinquish our façade of control with open hands of total surrender to His goodness. As we head into a new year, maybe you’d like to study the character of God with GT! “Character”, “He”, and “Kaleidoscope” are great options!

When we surrender our false sense of control to the God who calls us by name, we can expend our energy on praise while resting in the joyful life Christ offers.

When facing difficult seasons, we can find encouragement in the narratives of women who practiced regular praise. Consider Sarah, Ruth, Elizabeth, and Miriam to name a few!

Find solace with the Savior through His Word as you replace your sorrows with singing. Christ, who knew suffering would be our reality (John 15:18-25), promised us peace through His victory (John 16:33)!

JOURNAL TWO

On Wednesday, Carol highlighted several important lessons from Mary’s praise-song. (Luke 1:46-55) First, she provides a glimpse of the power of memorizing Scripture. In Mary’s song, she quoted God’s words back to Him, highlighting His sovereignty and never-ending love for His people.

Though Mary was young, the lyrics of her song indicated a childhood immersed in the teachings of God. Regardless of whether we grew up rooted in Scripture, we are presented with the opportunity to read a verse, a chapter, or even a book in the Bible every day. We are given the opportunity to join Mary’s song and pray God’s Word back to Him! (Matthew 4:1-11)

Second, Mary rejoices over her role in bringing about the fulfillment of God’s promises. We each have a role to play, even if it doesn’t look like Mary’s. Will we steward our opportunities with worship?

Third, in death we also find life and Jesus’ death and resurrection ensured that eternal life would be available to each of us if we choose to place our faith on Jesus as the Son of God. Fourth, our heart posture can either bring us closer to God as it did for Mary when she humbly submitted to His will, or it can blind us to who God really is as it did for the Pharisees. (John 8:1-11)

In the end, our heart posture is what God cares about most, so we must be vigilant in centering our hearts on Jesus every single day. (Proverbs 23:26)

JOURNAL THREE

When we consider Mary’s story, it can be easy to overlook the practicalities of her daily life in the beginning. In Mary’s culture, virginity at the time of marriage was the expectation, so Mary and her husband would have endured much ridicule and contempt from a society who likely struggled to believe her story of an immaculate conception.

This illustrates the importance of having a faith community when we face difficult seasons.

We read of Mary’s visit to Elizabeth in the first months of her own pregnancy and last months of Elizabeth’s, a visit that strengthened both women and filled them with encouragement for the battles ahead. Additionally, as we see throughout the Bible, God chooses to raise the lowly and meek so none may boast apart from Him (1 Corinthians 1:26-30), but how loving He must be to have chosen two faithful cousins who could walk their difficult paths together!

We also witness how our own obedience brings blessings to others. In this case, Mary’s obedience offered Elizabeth and her unborn child the opportunity to experience the Holy Spirit, a rare blessing prior to Jesus’ death and resurrection!

Mary showed us the power in humbling ourselves to the point of surrendered obedience just as her Son would do even unto his death upon the cross. (Mark 14:32-42) In her faith, she found the words to her song of praise, leaving behind an example of humble worship for generations to come who would write their own songs of praise.
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