Monday, June 22, 2015
S.O.A.P. Bible Study Method
Earlier this year, I re-introduced the S.O.A.P. Bible Study method. Since then I've been using it myself off and on. I'm still trying to read through the Bible, but there are times when certain things stick with me and seem to need a bit of working through. Other times, I use it to record new insight in my journal. I tend to let my mind wander and the S.O.A.P. method helps me focus in on something specific. When I first started using the S.O.A.P. method, I only used it on one verse at a time. Recently, I've been using it on larger sections of scripture. For example....
(S) Exodus 5, specifically verse 9
Impose heavier work on the men. Then they will be occupied with it and not pay attention to deceptive words.
(O) God sent Moses and Aaron to Pharaoh to ask that the Israelites be allowed to go into the wilderness to make sacrifices to God. Pharaoh said "no" and inflicted heavier labor on them so that, in his words, they would not pay attention to what Moses and Aaron were asking of them (to go make sacrifices to God)
(A) Satan uses this same tactic with us today. It is easy to become so over-burdened with responsibilities and "things to do" that we (I) literally forget to spend time with God. On these days, I fall into bed at night and realize "Oh my goodness! I haven't even prayed today!" If a heavier workload could make the Israelites forget their freedom, it is no wonder that business and a heavy workload distracts me from my time with God. As I've said before, I firmly believe that Satan knows that time spent praying and in God's Word is our best defense against his schemes. It is no wonder it is so easy to get "too" busy. Just like the Israelites were slaves to Egypt, we are slaves to sin; and just like Pharaoh increased their burden, Satan draws us deeper and deeper into sin until our sin is so burdensome that we only feel the weight of sin instead of longing for freedom.
(P) Father God, help me stop and make time for You. Help me to see those things in my life that keep me pre-occupied and distracted, and help me to let go of them. Help me to remember the importance of my relationship with You and the need for time with You each day. Help me to remember that letting even one day pass without consciously deliberately seeking your face allows Satan to gain a foothold in my life. Create in my heart a hunger and a thirst for your Word Lord and don't allow me to be so burdened with the chains of bondage that I no longer long for freedom that You offer.
On a side note, I HIGHLY recommend keeping a journal for your prayers and Scripture reading. There are many reasons for keeping a journal, but that's a post for another day.