Jan. 14 – (Gen. 4-5) We are going to speed up our reading in Genesis to get a quick overview of history until we get to Joseph and his coat of many colors. Why am I doing this? We will be studying Joseph’s life for about the next month or so at C.A. and it really helps me to do my own study at home at the same time.  It can’t tell you how many times I hear Truths from the preaching that reinforces what God is specifically showing me at home! So here we go!

                Chapters 4 and 5 are about the forming of the first family. It talks about sibling rivalry and what sin may do from the rivalry.  It talks about God’s discipline ((4:10-16). It talks about sin being handed down the family line (5:23-24). It talks about family characteristics or giftings ((4:20-22). Through this reading, I realized though when they were kicked out of the garden, God did not cease from communicating with them. The Lord spoke directly with Cain after he killed Abel (4:9-16). Doesn’t this conversation sound a lot like God confronting Adam after he ate the fruit?  God asks a question giving Cain a chance to take responsibility and ask forgiveness. Cain deflects the question by saying his brother is not his responsibility. Again, how often do we do the same thing? Oh Lord, forgive us and help recognize our responsibility and admit it.  

Jan. 15 – (Gen. 6-8) In these chapters we see what sin will do to man.  It had gotten so distorted that God destroyed all flesh (except Noah and family of course).  As I was reading, I kept wondering why animals were included. It says all flesh was corrupted. I understand now that even animals were corrupted.  That must have been some corruption!  Sometimes we think we are persecuted for our beliefs, but can you imagine being totally surrounded by it like Noah? I wouldn’t want to go outside my house (or whatever they lived in)! God puts us in a time and family and place that is for our good and to show His glory.  I am asking Him to reveal to me, more of what that looks like and how I can fulfill His purpose for my life today.  

Jan. 16 – (Gen. 9-11) In these chapters we have Noah and his family settling into the land after the flood. We have genealogies of Noah’s descendants and then how sin is playing out in their lives yet again. This time God intervenes in a way that prevents man from being wiped out again.  He causes everyone to speak a different language. Now no one can understand what is being said. They are no longer of one mind. Everyone is dispersed, and the building of the city comes to a halt.  Nowadays, people have learned how to again communicate with each other.  Hey, have you seen the new language tutorials? It is called Babbel! Hmm.  Me? I don’t understand many conversations even if they are speaking English but have an accent! I digress. In all of God’s doings, they are for our good and His glory. Selah 

Jan. 17 – (Gen. 12-14) God is beginning to bring His (soon to be called) chosen people to His chosen land.  Terah is led by God towards Canaan and brings his 3 sons (Abram being one of them) and family with him but stops partway there.  I always think of Abram as taking the whole journey but Terah did bring them part way.  Many times, in our lives God calls us to something that we start but many times we don’t complete the journey. It is not ours to complete…only to start or do our part. Others will pick up the baton and do what is next to be done. Will it be done the same way? No. We have not done things that same way those who have come before us did them either! God gives us things to do in a way that will “minister” to those who need Him in some way. The next generation or people group may need to see the same thing in a different light in order to relate to God’s love. Let’s accept our part. Let’s encourage someone else’s part as well. Selah  

Jan. 18 – (Gen. 15-17) In a vision God reminds Abram of His promise.  Abram’s response is distrust because he has not seen what he thought should happen (children) in order for the promise to be fulfilled.  How many times do we think (or know) what God wants for us but our natural eyes aren’t seeing what we think should happen?  I am learning (through experience) that God’s timing is always right. Twice, in knowing God wanted us to move, I wanted to get it done right away.  Both times it took way longer than I expected (2 years and then 1 year). Had we moved quicker on the first move, the house He had for us would not have been built yet.  Had we not bought that house (and really enjoyed it) and then waited a year after we felt God was moving us again, we would not be living in our new house mortgage free! I know without a doubt that this is preparing us for the next step (and I am seeing some things on the horizon about that) and what He has for us to do.  God always goes before us and brings His goodness to us for His Glory.  Waiting on His timing is so important.  Trusting Him in the wait has tremendously increased my faith in His working in our lives! Selah 

Jan. 19 – (Gen. 18-19) Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed because of sin.  Abraham tries to save the city of Sodom by asking the Lord to save it because of the righteous in the city.  As the count goes down to 10 righteous, Abraham stops pleading his case. God did not save the city, He saved 3 from out of the city.  God hardly ever does things as we think it should be done but He does things perfectly.

                Let’s look at Lot for a moment. We see him as selfish (he chose the better land when Abraham gave him a choice).  Why would he want to throw his daughters out to the evil men? What description would you give that? Can you imagine a daughter hearing that conversation? He doesn’t want to cooperate with the direction they are supposed to flee to for safety. He allows his daughters to get him drunk after that and though he’s not aware, he fathers 2 nations that will war against Abraham’s descendants that will be possessing the Promised Land given to Abraham (Moabites and Ammonites). Yet, we see Lot described as righteous (2 Pet.2:7-10)! That gives me tremendous hope that God rescues us even when we are weak. Works will not rescue me. God looks at the heart! Look at the passage in 2 Peter and be encouraged! 

Jan. 20 – (Gen. 20-21) Abraham is trying to protect his own skin again by having Sarah say they are only brother and sister.  I seem to usually get caught up in how God protected Abraham and Sarah in these situations.  What I never considered was that God was protecting His promise that Sarah and Abraham would have a child. God prevented any rumor that Abimelech could have been the father of Isaac by a dream to a godless king.  What God says He will do, He will do, but only in His time and in His way!