S.O.A.P.  Journaling

Scripture  |  Observation  |  Application  |  Prayer

 

The Holy Spirit wants to mentor you.  

Interested?  To sign up, simply read the Bible with Jesus and do what he says.  We call this practice devotions, because for a few moments we devote our heart to God for him to write on it as a man would write on paper.

 

Writing down those instructions is called journaling.  

The writing of God's word on paper is the first step of writing on our hearts. It's what Moses meant when he wrote about future leaders, “…as king, he must copy these laws on a scroll for himself….” (Deuteronomy 17:18). God's word must become your word.

 

Open your bible like a love letter from God. 

We should pick up the Bible with the anticipation of a love note. 

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." (Jeremiah 29:11-13 NIV)

 

Be aware while you are reading the Bible, the Bible is reading you. 

All other books, we control by turning the pages or putting the volume down. The Bible, however, stands alone for it reads us long after we have stopped reading it.  Let the Bible read you. For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12, NIV)

 

Read the Bible not to know more but to grow more.

For many, the Bible is a book of theories because it has never been applied to life.  The mark of spiritual maturity is not how much of the Bible you understand, but how much you have obeyed.  Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation…  (1 Peter 2:2 NIV)  

 

Your goal in reading the word of God is to meet the Word of God.

Prayer is not just talking; it is also listening. Journaling is how we listen to the Lord, for we should never read the Bible without Jesus. You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life. (John 5:39-40 NIV)

 

Come expectant to hear from the Lord by bringing 5 things to the table. 

  1. A Bible
  2. A reading plan so you read even the parts of the Bible you don't normally read. 
  3. A pen to mark your Bible and write your thoughts.
  4. A notebook to write out your thoughts.
  5. Your “to do list”, so you can write down every distracting responsibility that comes to mind and get back to reading.

 

Journal out your thoughts using the simple acrostic S.O.A.P.

Scripture:  Copy down word for word one or two verses that spoke out to you from the readings.

Observation: Write down what that passage means generally to everyone.

Application: Record how your life will be different because of what you have just read.

Prayer:  Writing out your prayer will help you understand your heart in years to come.

 

Don't journal alone

There is something powerful that happens when you journal with others. Spend 20 minutes reading the passages, 20 minutes writing, and 20 minutes sharing with the group word for word what you have written.