S.O.A.P. – “Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer”
The Apostle Paul writes: But in the following instructions, I cannot praise you. For it sounds as if more harm than good is done when you meet together. First, I hear that there are divisions among you when you meet as a church, and to some extent I believe it. But, of course, there must be divisions among you so that you who have God’s approval will be recognized!
When you meet together, you are not really interested in the Lord’s Supper. For some of you hurry to eat your own meal without sharing with others. As a result, some go hungry while others get drunk. What? Don’t you have your own homes for eating and drinking? Or do you really want to disgrace God’s church and shame the poor? What am I supposed to say? Do you want me to praise you? Well, I certainly will not praise you for this! 1 Corinthians 11:17–22 NLT
Our tendency is to avoid quiet and self-examination.
Blaise Pascal said, “The only thing that consoles us for our miseries is diversion. And yet it is the greatest of our miseries. For it is that above all which prevents us thinking about ourselves and leads us imperceptibly to destruction.”
Jesus is not saying, “Pack your bags, we’re going on a guilt trip.”
Does it surprise you that one of the greatest and earliest churches had plenty of unhealthy drama?
What do you think about God’s plan to invite everyone, regardless of their past or financial status or people group, into his family? How is this different from every other family on the planet?
What is one way you can examine yourself healthily rather than be distracted by diversions today?
Lord, it is an extreme privilege to be invited and included in your family. Thank you for judging me according to my forgiven status bought by Jesus at the cross, not by my past or financial situation or people group. Help me be secure in your love for me so I can examine myself clearly, not for the sake of increasing a guilty conscience but for the sake of embracing your power in me to live a new life!