THIS WEEK'S READINGS

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Parson-Larsen's  
QT 

Notebook

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Power Passages & Prayer! 

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If you use this weekly guide  - you'll cover all of the Bible in just 300 days.   This is sort of a "Cliff Notes" version of the reading plan that Pastor John uses.  But it's more than just learning stuff.  This helps you to communicate with God.  You'll hear Him, and He will hear you..

 

Quick links:

 MON,     TUE,     WED,     THU,     FRI

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Monday

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MONDAY 2/27/2017

Read: Mark 11:12-26, 2 Cor 5, Psa 100, 1 Sam 14

Mark 11:13-14 (GW) 13  In the distance he saw a fig tree with leaves. He went to see if he could find any figs on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves because it wasn't the season for figs. 14  Then he said to the tree, “No one will ever eat fruit from you again!” His disciples heard this.

NOTE: It was normal for the tree to be fruitless.  But Jesus shatters “normal” and expects continual fruit from us.

PRAYER: Lord, I know I have my lazy moments, forgive me.  Empower me to be an ever ready witness for YOU.

Mark 11:17 (GW) 17  Then he taught them by saying, “Scripture says, ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations,' but you have turned it into a gathering place for thieves.”

PRAYER: It’s YOUR house, if YOU want more prayer – we could certainly give YOU more prayer.

Mark 11:23-24 (GW) 23  I can guarantee this truth: This is what will be done for someone who doesn't doubt but believes what he says will happen: He can say to this mountain, ‘Be uprooted and thrown into the sea,' and it will be done for him. 24  That's why I tell you to have faith that you have already received whatever you pray for, and it will be yours.

NOTE: the problem isn’t that I don’t want stuff to happen, it must be that I doubt.

PRAYER: Lord, my mountains aren’t really hard for YOU, are they?!!!  I want to believe, help me with my unbelief.

Mark 11:25 (GW) 25  Whenever you pray, forgive anything you have against anyone. Then your Father in heaven will forgive your failures.”

PRAYER: Wanting YOUR forgiveness I certainly grant forgiveness.

2 Corinthians 5:7 (GW) 7  Indeed, our lives are guided by faith, not by sight.

PRAYER: And I rely entirely too much on my sight,… forgive me. 

2 Corinthians 5:9 (GW) 9  Whether we live in the body or move out of it, our goal is to be pleasing to him.

PRAYER: Amen. I live for YOU.

2 Corinthians 5:10 (GW) 10  All of us must appear in front of Christ's judgment seat. Then all people will receive what they deserve for the good or evil they have done while living in their bodies.

NOTE: A real Christian is still saved by grace (Eph.2:8) but by no means does heaven negate individual achievements nor does it ignore one’s failings (1 Cor. 3:13-15).  Everyone is going to love heaven whether you are in the smaller apartments or the bigger penthouses.

PRAYER: Lord, I realize that my eternal rewards are based on what I do now on this side of eternity.  I can do better.

2 Corinthians 5:14-15 (GW) 14  Clearly, Christ's love guides us. We are convinced of the fact that one man has died for all people. Therefore, all people have died. 15  He died for all people so that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for the man who died and was brought back to life for them.

PRAYER: I exist to serve YOU, our resurrected Messiah.

2 Corinthians 5:17 (GW) 17  Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence.

PRAYER: Help me keep those old habits in the past.  And thank YOU for my new beginning today.

2 Corinthians 5:19-20 (GW) 19  In other words, God was using Christ to restore his relationship with humanity. He didn't hold people's faults against them, and he has given us this message of restored relationships to tell others. 20  Therefore, we are Christ's representatives, and through us God is calling you. We beg you on behalf of Christ to become reunited with God.

PRAYER: I will be a reconciler, a relational connector, and a grace ambassador for YOU, Lord.

Psalm 100:1-2 (GW) 1  Shout happily to the LORD, all the earth. 2  Serve the LORD cheerfully. Come into his presence with a joyful song.

PRAYER: This coming weekend YOU deserve from us happy shouts, cheerful service and joyful signing.

Psalm 100:3 (GW) 3  Realize that the LORD alone is God. He made us, and we are his. We are his people and the sheep in his care.

PRAYER: I am YOUR’s.

Psalm 100:4 (GW) 4  Enter his gates with a song of thanksgiving. Come into his courtyards with a song of praise. Give thanks to him; praise his name.

NOTE: 1st thanksgiving gets you in, then praise takes you deeper.

PRAYER: Lord, I certainly have plenty to thank YOU for. But I also want to praise YOU for ‘who’ YOU are and not just ‘what’ YOU’ve done.

1 Samuel 14:6 (GW) 6  Jonathan said to his armorbearer, “Let's go to the military post of these uncircumcised people. Maybe the LORD will act on our behalf. The LORD can win a victory with a few men as well as with many.”

PRAYER: two plus YOU equals a majority, right?!!

1 Samuel 14:39 (GW) 39  I solemnly swear, as the LORD and Savior of Israel lives, even if it is my son Jonathan {who did it}, he must die.” But not one of the soldiers replied.

NOTE: Just don’t make foolish promises.

PRAYER: Forgive me for foolish  and broken promises.

DEVOTION: the real Jesus follower is marked by fruit, faith, and fight.  We are vocal in witnessing to unbelievers and praise to God.  And big numbers have nothing over smaller numbers of us.

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Tuesday

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TUESDAY 2/28/2017

Read: Mark 11:27-33, 2 Cor 6, Psa 101, 1 Sam 15-16

Mark 11:33 (GW) 33  So they answered Jesus, “We don't know.” Jesus told them, “Then I won't tell you why I have the right to do these things.”

PRAYER: Help me to know when I need to remain silent and when I need to speak up.

2 Corinthians 6:1 (GW) 1  Since we are God's coworkers, we urge you not to let God's kindness be wasted on you.

PRAYER: May YOUR investment in me prove valuable.

2 Corinthians 6:2 (GW) 2  … Listen, now is God's acceptable time! Now is the day of salvation!

QUOTE:

2 Corinthians 6:4-7 (GW) 4  Instead, our lives demonstrate that we are God's servants. We have endured many things: suffering, distress, anxiety, 5  beatings, imprisonments, riots, hard work, sleepless nights, and lack of food. 6  {People can see} our purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit's presence {in our lives}, our sincere love, 7  truthfulness, and the presence of God's power. We demonstrate that we are God's servants

PRAYER: I will not quit.  I will shine for YOU.  I’ll stay clean and sharp, gracious and enduring, loving and truthful.

2 Corinthians 6:14-15,17 (GW) 14  Stop forming inappropriate relationships with unbelievers. Can right and wrong be partners? Can light have anything in common with darkness? 15  Can Christ agree with the devil? Can a believer share life with an unbeliever?... 17  The Lord says, “Get away from unbelievers. Separate yourselves from them. Have nothing to do with anything unclean. Then I will welcome you.”

PRAYER: If I am not influencing them towards YOUR kingdom, give me the wisdom and courage to walk away.

2 Corinthians 6:16 (GW) 16  Can God's temple contain false gods? Clearly, we are the temple of the living God. As God said, “I will live and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people.”

PRAYER: That is so cool!

Psalm 101:2 (GW) 2  I want to understand the path to integrity. When will you come to me? I will live in my own home with integrity.

PRAYER: Help me to “get it” and “live it”.

Psalm 101:3 (GW) 3  I will not put anything wicked in front of my eyes. I hate what unfaithful people do. I want no part of it.

PRAYER: I will protect my eyes from lusting after things of this world (and the internet).

Psalm 101:5 (GW) 5  I will destroy anyone who secretly slanders his neighbor. I will not tolerate anyone with a conceited look or arrogant heart.

PRAYER: YOU don’t like hooty snooty or gossip of any kind.  So I will guard my mouth and heart as well as my eyes.

1 Samuel 15:10-11 (GW) 10  Then the LORD spoke to Samuel: 11  “I regret that I made Saul king. He turned away from me and did not carry out my instructions.” Samuel was angry, and he prayed to the LORD all night.

PRAYER: I hope to stay in YOUR Word and daily apply YOUR Word.

1 Samuel 15:22 (GW) 22  Then Samuel said, “Is the LORD as delighted with burnt offerings and sacrifices as he would be with your obedience? To follow instructions is better than to sacrifice. To obey is better than sacrificing the fat of rams.

PRAYER: In my head some sacrifices seem so reasonable.  But I get it.  Just obey.  Do as commanded. Got it!!!

1 Samuel 15:23 (GW) 23  … Because you rejected the word of the LORD, he rejects you ….”

PRAYER: I pray for all those who keep finding excuses to not read YOUR Word.

1 Samuel 16:7 (GW) 7  But the LORD told Samuel, “Don't look at his appearance or how tall he is, because I have rejected him. God does not see as humans see. Humans look at outward appearances, but the LORD looks into the heart.”

PRAYER: I admittedly have judged many books by their covers. Forgive me.  As YOU look to the heart, help me to see their hearts.

DEVOTION: Real Jesus followers shine bright in good times and bad, at home and in public. They obey God’s Word even when it doesn’t seem to make sense.  

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Wednesday

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WEDNESDAY 3/1/2017

Read: Mark 12:1-12, 2 Cor 7, Psa 102, 1 Sam 17-18

Mark 12:1-6 (GW) 1   Then, using this illustration, Jesus spoke to them. He said, “A man planted a vineyard. … Then he leased it to vineyard workers and went on a trip. 2  “At the right time he sent a servant to the workers to collect from them a share of the grapes from the vineyard. 3  The workers took the servant, beat him, and sent him back with nothing. 4  So the man sent another … They hit the servant …. 5  The man sent another, and they killed that servant. Then he sent many other servants. Some of these they beat, and others they killed. 6  “He had one more person to send. That person was his son, whom he loved. Finally, he sent his son to them. He thought, ‘They will respect my son.'

NOTE: This parable is not really about giving God His ten percent.  But it certainly brings out our selfishness and arrogance.

PRAYER: Lord, forgive me for the times I’ve rejected YOU and not even appreciated all YOU do for me.

2 Corinthians 7:9 (GW) 9  But I'm happy now, not because I made you uncomfortable, but because the distress I caused you has led you to change the way you think and act. You were distressed in a godly way, so we haven't done you any harm.

PRAYER: Help our parents as well as fellow members to exercise discipline in love and because of love.

Psalm 102:17 (GW) 17  He will turn his attention to the prayers of those who have been abandoned. He will not despise their prayers.

PRAYER: Thank YOU for listening to little teeny me and my silly prayers.

1 Samuel 17:26 (GW) 26  David asked the men who were standing near him, “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and gets rid of Israel's disgrace? Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should challenge the army of the living God?”

PRAYER: Oh that I should be as courageous and defensive for YOUR honor.

1 Samuel 17:34-37 (GW) 34  David replied to Saul, “I am a shepherd for my father's sheep. Whenever a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, 35  I went after it, struck it, and rescued the sheep from its mouth. If it attacked me, I took hold of its mane, struck it, and killed it. 36  I have killed lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them because he has challenged the army of the living God.” 37  David added, “The LORD, who saved me from the lion and the bear, will save me from this Philistine.” “Go,” Saul told David, “and may the LORD be with you.”

PRAYER: What faith, what strength, what focus.  I would like to be more like that.

1 Samuel 17:45-47 (GW) 45  David told the Philistine, “You come to me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the LORD of Armies, the God of the army of Israel, whom you have insulted. 46  Today the LORD will hand you over to me. I will strike you down and cut off your head. And this day I will give the dead bodies of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals. The whole world will know that Israel has a God. 47  Then everyone gathered here will know that the LORD can save without sword or spear, because the LORD determines every battle's outcome. He will hand all of you over to us.”

PRAYER: May YOU do something so big in us that people of the world can not help but notice.

DEVOTION: the real Jesus follower is ever appreciative to the Lord, and will defend God’s honor at any cost.

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Thursday

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THURSDAY 3/2/2017

Read: Mark 12:13-27, 2 Cor 8, Psa 103, 1 Sam 19-20

Mark 12:17 (GW) 17  Jesus said to them, “Give the emperor what belongs to the emperor, and give God what belongs to God.” They were surprised at his reply.

NOTE: without denying our debt to the government, we are reminded that really everything belongs to God.  So why do some people struggle with giving God 10% of His own stuff?!!!  

PRAYER: Lord,  I thank YOU for all my blessing.  And my meager tithes and offerings are just token offerings of my gratitude for YOUR provisional role in my life.

Mark 12:25 (GW) 25  When the dead come back to life, they don't marry. Rather, they are like the angels in heaven.

PRAYER: I am excited (and a little nervous) about the grandness of my real home, heaven.  But thank YOU for preparing a spot for me.

2 Corinthians 8:2-3,8 (GW) 2   While they were being severely tested by suffering, their overflowing joy, along with their extreme poverty, has made them even more generous. 3  I assure you that by their own free will they have given all they could, even more than they could afford….  8  I'm not commanding you, but I'm testing how genuine your love is by pointing out the dedication of others.

NOTE: it not about how much money you have, it’s about how much love you have (or maybe who you love).

PRAYER: Lord, I want to be more generous.  Help me to let go of the things of this earth.

2 Corinthians 8:9 (GW) 9  You know about the kindness of our Lord Jesus Christ. He was rich, yet for your sake he became poor in order to make you rich through his poverty.

PRAYER: YOU are my example!

2 Corinthians 8:21 (GW) 21  We intend to do what is right, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of people.

PRAYER: I will be a person of integrity in private and in public. 

Psalm 103:11-12 (GW) 11  As high as the heavens are above the earth— that is how vast his mercy is toward those who fear him. 12  As far as the east is from the west that is how far he has removed our rebellious acts from himself.

PRAYER: Thank YOU for YOUR mercy and grace.

Psalm 103:17-18 (GW) 17  But from everlasting to everlasting, the LORD'S mercy is on those who fear him. His righteousness belongs to their children and grandchildren, 18  to those who are faithful to his promise, to those who remember to follow his guiding principles.

PRAYER: Guide me, direct me.  I commit to reading and doing YOUR Word.

1 Samuel 20:42 (GW) 42  “Go in peace!” Jonathan told David. “We have both taken an oath in the LORD'S name, saying, ‘The LORD will be {a witness} between me and you and between my descendants and your descendants forever.'” So David left, and Jonathan went into the city.

NOTE: Sometimes life is just complicated.  Being a believer doesn’t stop the problems from coming but it certainly depowers them.

PRAYER: Lord, I trust YOU to get me through whatever foolishness may be coming my way.

DEVOTION: Real Jesus followers are givers. They give willingly, in fact enthusiastically, often, and sometimes sacrificially (at great cost).

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Friday

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FRIDAY 3/3/2017

Read: Mark 12:28-34, 2 Cor 9, Psa 104, 1 Sam 21-23

Mark 12:29-31 (GW) 29  Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Listen, Israel, the Lord our God is the only Lord. 30  So love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.' 31  The second most important commandment is this: ‘Love your neighbor as you love yourself.' No other commandment is greater than these.”

NOTE: Mat.22.40 says that all the commands hang on these two.

PRAYER: Lord, I do love YOU, and I’m working on loving everyone else.  I hope to do both all day.

Mark 12:34 (GW) 34  When Jesus heard how wisely the man answered, he told the man, “You're not too far from the kingdom of God.” After that, no one dared to ask him another question.

PRAYER: Lord, as slow as I can me, I am getting it.

2 Corinthians 9:6-7 (GW) 6  Remember this: The farmer who plants a few seeds will have a very small harvest. But the farmer who plants because he has received God's blessings will receive a harvest of God's blessings in return. 7  Each of you should give whatever you have decided. You shouldn't be sorry that you gave or feel forced to give, since God loves a cheerful giver.

PRAYER: Help me to grow a more generous heart.

2 Corinthians 9:8-11 (GW) 8  Besides, God will give you his constantly overflowing kindness. Then, when you always have everything you need, you can do more and more good things. 9  Scripture says, “The righteous person gives freely to the poor. His righteousness continues forever.”10  … God will also give you seed and multiply it. In your lives he will increase the things you do that have his approval. 11  God will make you rich enough so that you can always be generous. Your generosity will produce thanksgiving to God because of us..

PRAYER: Sounds good to me, now if only I could let go of some of my seeds and blessings.

2 Corinthians 9:13 (GW) 13  You will honor God through this genuine act of service because of your commitment to spread the Good News of Christ and because of your generosity in sharing with them and everyone else.

PRAYER: My motivation for giving is not to receive, it is to spread YOUR Good News.   May many lives find YOU because I became a conduit of YOUR blessings.

Psalm 104:33-34 (GW) 33  I will sing to the LORD throughout my life. I will make music to praise my God as long as I live. 34  May my thoughts be pleasing to him. I will find joy in the LORD.

PRAYER: It makes sense, if I’m singing about YOU – YOU become the center of my life and BOOM – I experience joy!!!! Got it!

1 Samuel 22:2 (GW) 2  Then everyone who was in trouble, in debt, or bitter about life joined him, and he became their commander. There were about four hundred men with him.

PRAYER: God send us the depressed, the indebted, the undecided, and the dejected.

DEVOTION: Jesus followers are generous because they are appreciative.  So they give stuff, and money, and love to whomever God sends their way (including the ugly, bad, and unfriendly).

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