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Today's reading: Judges 13:8-14; Psalm 25:4-5; Psalm 32:8

After Manoah learns about his wife's encounter with the angel, he prays. And what he prays is revealing about his attitude (humble and yielded) and spiritual condition. Rather than questioning God about the encounter--its validity or its meaning--he prays for teaching, and God hears and responds.

"Then Manoah prayed to the LORD and said, 'O Lord, please let the man of God whom you sent come again to us and teach us what we are to do with the child who will be born.' And God listened to the voice of Manoah, and the angel of God came again to the woman as she sat in the field." (vs. 8-9)

Is asking God to teach you a regular part of your prayers? Why is this important? What's one example of how God responded when you asked for teaching and/or growth through a situation? Tami

Today's reading: Judges 13:1-14

For the next several days we'll be reading about and considering the life of Samson, probably the best-known judge of Israel. But before we turn to Samson, we're going to take a little time first to learn about (and learn from) Samson's parents, whom I like to refer to as Mr. and Mrs. Manoah.

What struck me most about Manoah and his wife was the absence of many of the responses or reactions you might expect to see. Samson's mom was barren, and both she and Manoah knew that, yet when this stranger (whom neither one recognized as being an angel) informs them of Samson's birth, they don't show any signs of disbelief, distrust, doubt, ridicule, skepticism. Instead, they simply believe. Manoah's words to the angel in verse 12 speak volumes.

"Now when your words come true, what is to be the child's manner of life, and what is his mission?"

Imagine yourself in the place of Manoah or his wife. How do think you would have responded to this incredible news? Do you believe that, with God, all things are possible? Tami

25-Year Drift

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Today's reading: Judges 12:8-13:1

Not a lot of activity or intrigue happens in the final verses of Judges 12. That being the case, it's tempting to skim over it... but if we did that, we'd miss something that God most certainly intended for us to know about. There are facts and details here that are important to God, so we should approach these types of passages (and all of His Word) as important as well.

What stood out to me from this passage was the lack of any mention of following after, seeking or looking to God during this 25-year period. That's an indicator that spiritual drift was likely happening again. And thus we see in verse 1 of Judges 13 these disappointing words:

"And the people of Israel again did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, so the LORD gave them into the hand of the Philistines for forty years."

Spiritual drift happens to all of us. It starts slowly and subtly, and then before we know it, we're way off track from God. That being the case, take some time today and do some candid spiritual self-assessing. Here are a few questions you might ask yourself: Am I diligent in seeking God through His Word? Am I in regular communication with God, and what do my prayers look like? How have I grown spiritually over the past months? Tami

Today's reading: Psalm 22:1-31

We've all been there at some point--going through a difficult time when things just don't seem to make sense and what we're experiencing feels awful. One of the best things we can do when we find ourselves in this type of situation is to talk candidly with God--asking Him to help us trust Him and to sustain us as we move forward.

It was comforting to read David's back-and-forth prayerful conversations with God about his circumstances in this psalm. In essence David asks God, "Are You here? Because this seems like craziness. Where are You?" But then David steps back, takes a breath and gathers his thoughts to say, "I know You're still here, God. I know You're faithful and trustworthy, so help me stand strong." "Thank you, David, for this heartfelt example."

Is it your practice to talk openly with God? If not, what holds you back? What encouragement or comfort did you draw from David's communication with God in Psalm 22? Tami

Personal Praise

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Today's reading: Psalm 21:1-13

David is praising God for His power, strength and sovereignty, and in so doing recognizing how God has loved, provided for and watched over him his entire life. Since God loves, provides for and watches over each one of us too, to help me get a better understanding and feel for this Psalm I read back through verses 1-7, but this time I inserted my name wherever David had referred to himself. This made the passage personal for me. I was especially moved when I worked through verse 7 using my name.

I encourage you to make this Psalm personal as well. Go back and read verses 1-7 inserting your name where appropriate. I'd love to hear if there was a particular verse or phrase that impacted you, and why. Tami

About Me

Hi, my name is Tami Weissert, the P4 facilitator and the "voice" behind the blogs. I'm passionate about helping people grow spiritually and actively encourage Bible engagement through conference speaking and writing. I also served as co-host of the Back to the Bible radio program for over 8 years. A little about me. I'm married to Jeff, and we love scuba diving, playing with our 3 dachshunds and going to Husker football games. I also love growing orchids, singing and Diet Pepsi. I hope you'll join in the conversation as we read the Bible and grow together.

About My Blog

I'm passionate about engaging God's Word! And my blog is about just that--giving you opportunities to receive, reflect on and respond to Scripture. Each day you'll find a short passage as well as thoughts, challenges and application questions for you to think about and respond to. I look forward to interacting with you and learning together, so post comments as often as you'd like. You can even sign up to get the blogs delivered to your inbox each day!

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