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Living Grace Challenge - Week 3

Yesterday we continued in our series titled "Living Grace" and our challenge was to "Live Graciously" and I issued a three part challenge for this week.
  1. Read - Follow along with us this week by reading a chapter a day (Monday-Saturday) starting in Acts 13.
  2. Think about what you talk about. How often do you lift Jesus up during the week?
  3. Do -  share Jesus this week. Here’s one suggestion: During this month of “Thanksgiving Challenges” post online that you’re thankful for the hope you have in Jesus. 
If you need a little help with the daily Bible reading try using the "Daily Reading Journal" page. It helps walk you through a short, reflective, practice that will help you get something to nourish your soul through the day.

Below I'm posting my own reading reflections which are simply my own reflections on the daily readings. These aren't "right" or "ideal" they are simply an example of what this daily reading practice looks like. I would encourage you to go through the daily reading journal practice first and then once your done read over my notes.

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Monday 11/13/17
Acts 13:2, While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”
Worship brings spiritual clarity, because in worship we set our hearts & minds on one thing: God. Here the church had put aside food, time, and energy to give glory to God. In that moment they could see him and his purposes clearly. The old hymn says, “And the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of his glory and grace.” It’s also true that the things of heaven grow "strangely clear" in the same light. May we turn our eyes upon Jesus, focusing on him alone.

Tuesday 11/14/17
Acts 14:17, He has not left himself without a witness in doing good—giving you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, and filling you with food and your hearts with joy.
Nature, the changing of seasons, good food, and joy are all witnesses of God. God is the giver of every “good and perfect gift” (James 1:17) and joy is a natural response to his blessings. Hints and signs of God are everywhere, the sunrise, the laughter of my children, even the smile of a stranger. Let us keep our eyes open searching in wonder for the God who is all around doing good.

Tuesday 11/15/17
Acts 15:39-40, The disagreement became so sharp that they parted company; Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus. But Paul chose Silas and set out, the believers commending him to the grace of the Lord.
God you can use anyone or anything and redeem any situation, even an argument.

Wednesday 11/16/17
Acts 16:7, When they had come opposite Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them.
This verse, along with verse 6 show me that even Paul didn’t always know the right path. Later, we meet a prophetic slave girl who is filled with a demon. Things aren’t always as they appear. What inspires me though is Paul who just keeps going! He is not deterred by getting it wrong, he keeps moving forward for Jesus. May that be true of me.

Thursday 11/17/17
Acts 17:16, While Paul was waiting for them in Athens, he was deeply distressed to see that the city was full of idols.
Earlier in this passage we see that Paul has “turned the world upside down” and here we see why. Paul was consumed with love and concern for the lost. His heart broke at the sight of idolatry and sin. May our hearts be like Paul’s - broken for the lost. Pray and ask God to break your heart for those who don't know him yet.

Friday 11/18/17
Acts 18:26,  He began to speak boldly in the synagogue; but when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained the Way of God to him more accurately.
Here Apollos is preaching powerfully but inaccurately. Up to this point in Acts it would seem right for an apostle to straighten this out but instead it’s Priscilla & Aquilla. These disciples (likely of Paul) knew enough & had enough confidence to correct his preaching. Disciples make disciples and that’s God’s big plan for the church. We aren't called to be superstar Apostles, just a disciple training disciples.