August 18 – Daily Notes – Amanda

makeup

Isn’t it amazing what God can use? We think of God using those who can preach or those who have a heart for service, but we view other gifts and attributes as fairly neutral when it comes to God’s work. That is a mistake. With Esther, God uses her beauty to get her near the king during a key time in Jewish history. It makes you think, what in you, can God use?

Esther 1:1-3:15:

  • 10-12 – Eunuchs were often assigned to female royalty because they could be trusted to not assault her sexually. It was unheard of, even for the queen, to not obey the king’s commands.
  • 10-11 – Esther and Mordecai were Jews living under a Persian king. Mordecai told Esther, as she entered the king’s harem, not to reveal this part of her identity.
  • 12-14 – After a year’s worth of dolling up, each girl got one sexual encounter to impress the king. If she didn’t, she was relegated to the harem for the rest of their lives.
  • 19-23 – Though the king still didn’t know Esther’s relationship to Mordecai, he still got credit for saving the king’s life.
  • 1-6 – It’s not that Haman didn’t want to harm Mordecai, he didn’t want to hurt just Mordecai. He wanted to go ahead and hurt all the Jews.
  • 12-15 – Haman is given the power to demand the destruction of all the Jews in the land and he even sets a date for it to happen.

1 Corinthians 11:17-34:

  • 23-26 – After Jesus’ death, we see, very early on, Christians participating in communion. Paul is reminding them what it looked like.
  • 27-29 – This is why we have a time of confession before we take communion.

Psalm 35:17-28:

  • 17 – This verse is different from many of David’s psalms in that it recognizes God’s presence but notes that God is failing to act. Most often, David acts as though God has turned his face away and or has forsaken him. Here he recognizes that God sees what is going on.

Proverbs 21:19-20:

  • 20 – The wise man takes care of what he has and keeps it safe. The foolish man uses is frivolously.

February 21 – Daily Notes – Amanda

confession

This may be what comes to mind when you think of “confession”, but today’s psalm is one of confession and is not given through a screen to a priest. Instead, this psalm shows us David pouring out the sins of his hear to God and ultimately remembering God as his hope and salvation. What if we approached confession that way today?

Leviticus 11:1-12:8:

  • Though these eating instructions may seem tedious, it is good for us to have order and design of what we can and cannot do. And, as we’ve said before, following the instructions allowed the Israelites to remain clean and able to be in the presence of God.
  • The differences between clean and unclean are based on what is good for us. This is somewhat reminiscent of when God gave the garden to Adam and Eve but designated one tree as not good for them.

Mark 5:21-43:

  • 28 – Clearly Jesus’ reputation preceded him if she had that much confidence in just touching his garment.
  • 30 – Jesus had great perception of his connection to God and his power that came from him because he knew when any left him.
  • 34 – Faith is often attributed with effectiveness in healing, miraculous acts, etc.
  • 35-43 – The first time we read of Jesus raising someone from the dead. Certainly Jairus had lost hope. Once again, Jesus tells them to keep quiet.

Psalm 38:1-22:

  • A Psalm that is helpful when we need to confess. Note that it still ends in praise addressing God as “my salvation”.