Journal Entries
Every weekday you will find a journal entry here from someone different in our church family. 
 
Click the scripture title and scroll down to see a comments section where you can ask questions, share insights and post your own SOUL Journal entry for the day!
 

Genesis 7

Scripture 

Genesis 7:11-12  In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened.  The rain fell upon the earth for forty days and forty nights.

 

Observation-What does it say? 

The book of Genesis describes the beginning of the world, as well as the beginning of the story of God’s nation.  The stories in Genesis were carried on orally for several generations, and some scholars believe they were not written down until the time of David.  The first eleven chapters of Genesis move quickly from a time when the only thing in existence was God, to the process of the creation of the earth, through the fall of man and the transformation of the world to what we know today. When Noah entered the story, the world had completely rejected God and Noah was chosen to carry on the line of humans.  Noah took the better part of his life to build the Ark.  God caused the animals to enter the Ark and then He caused water to come out from everywhere, from the sky and from the ground, covering up to the highest peaks of the mountains.  In this moment, God displayed the greatness and completeness of His power, proving that He has both the power to create and destroy.

 

Understanding-What does it mean? 

As a young boy, I had the opportunity to go see the Grand Canyon twice.  Both times were brief, but they left an indelible mark in my mind.  The grandeur of the place (pun intended) was almost breathtaking.  On one of these trips, my family took a hike along the rim in a place where there was no guardrail.  As I creeped toward the edge to try and see how deep it really was, I was distracted, and my mom quickly grabbed my arms and gave a tiny little push forward, letting out a startling “Yaahhh!!!”  My heart jumped into my throat, as I felt as though I was being pushed to my death.  When I watched the home video later, I found that I wasn’t that close to the edge and my mom had a solid hold on my arms.  There was no chance of my death on that day.  

Anytime I think about the Grand Canyon now, I think of this verse in Genesis.  While the scientific community would have us believe that it took billions of years to form the Grand Canyon, this verse gives a different idea of the timeline of the creation of the canyon.  When the “fountains of the great deep” opened up,  there was likely a dramatic increase in erosion, much like when you point a hose at one place in the dirt for a period of time.  In fact, this verse affects the way I look at how many of the natural wonders were formed, such as the glaciers, or places like Yosemite valley, which is believed to have been formed by water and glaciers.  Scientists also believe much of the United States was once covered in water, in a region they call the Western Interior Seaway.  How was it that the United States was covered in water unless there was a flood?  In a few weeks, we are taking our boys to the Grand Canyon.  I look forward to seeing the look on their face as they gaze over the grandeur of it all.  I look forward to the opportunity to share the story of the great flood and Noah’s faithfulness.  And, I look forward to scaring the daylights out of one of my kids.


Life Application 

God thank you for the reminders that You have given us of Your great power and authority.  Thank you for the reminders that you will never fail us.  Help me to recall these places when I come to worship you, so I can have a right perspective of my need for you. 
 
-Tyler Galloway      


Genesis_6

Scripture

 

Genesis 6:9 This is the account of Noah and his family.

 

Noah was a righteous man,

 

blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God.

 

Observation

 

The world was in a bad place. Around 2000 years after Yahweh created Mankind, the Nephilim(sons of God as the Bible calls them) came down and hooked up with the daughters of humans.

 

And everything started to get really bad, “every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.” (Gen. 6:5)

 

But…there was one man that caught Yahweh’s attention.

 

 Noah.

 

Understanding

 

Noah means rest and comfort.

 

Righteous means Purity of heart and rectitude of life; conformity of heart and life to the divine instructions.

 

Obedience is compliance with an order, request, law or submission to another’s authority.

 

In the midst of a shaky world, surroundings with conflict, disregard for each other, perverseness, and evil,

 

we can find rest.

 

Obedience to Yahweh, creates righteousness, which leads to rest.

 

He will lift you up out of the darkness and turmoil around you,

 He will keep you safe in His Ark,

He will carry you to fulfill His will,

He will give you rest.

 

Genesis 6:22 Noah did everything just as God commanded him.

 

Life Application

 

Just say, “Yes LORD.”

 

One yes after another. One step toward Him. One step after another, and you will have “walked faithfully with God.”

 

Abba Father, you are Holy and righteous! You sit in the highest heaven and still choose to condescend with man, with little old me. How do I dare to disobey your commands?How do I let my surrounding discomfort and evils in the world deceive me into disobedience? Holy Spirit come, open my eyes to see you that I may walk in your footsteps, open my ears to hear you that I may obey exactly as you have said, open my heart to receive your word and instructions. Holy Spirit fall on us so that we would be “strong and courageous” knowing that You are with us and that You lead us on “paths of righteousness” to find rest. In the name of your son and my savior, Yeshua, Amen!
 
-Deborah Lee

 

Please take a few minutes to listen with the captions on and meditate on His word. Enjoy!

 



Genesis 5

Scripture

‭‭Genesis‬ ‭5:23-24‬ ‬‬

“Enoch lived 365 years, walking in close fellowship with God. Then one day he disappeared, because God took him.”

 

Observation-What does it say?

This chapter gives you an account of all the descendants of Adam and Eve. It tells you their names, how old they were when they had kids, their kids names, and how old they were when they died. But in Enoch’s case, he did not die. God simply took him.

 
Understanding-What does it mean?
 
Enoch was the first example of what will happen during the rapture.
 
It’s an event that is spoken about in the Bible. It’s an event that we Christians look forward to. I’m talking about The Rapture. It’s when the dead in Christ and the ones still living on earth who put their faith in Jesus, almost instantly and simultaneously are caught up and are brought into the presence of God.
 
“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.”-‭‭1 Thessalonians‬ ‭4:16-17‬ ‬‬
 
It’s the next prophetic event to take place on The Church’s calendar. It signifies the End Times and the beginning of the 7 years of Tribulation that the book of Revelation speaks of. It’s when Jesus comes for His people, and rescues them from the upcoming calamities and judgment He will be placing upon the earth for their sinfulness and their rejection of the gospel message.
 
Now the only thing we know about Enoch is what the Bible tells us here in Genesis. He was a man who walked in close fellowship with God. He was one of two people in the Bible who did not experience death (the prophet Elijah being the other one). He was ultimately taken into the presence of the Lord, not having to deal with an upcoming calamity God was going to send in a form of flooding the entire earth. Why did God choose Enoch and Elijah as the only ones to not experience death? Only God knows. All that I can tell you is what will happen to those who choose Christ, and those who reject Him.
 
Life Application
 
Walk in close fellowship with God and encourage others to do so too. 😊
 
Oh how I would love to be like Enoch and Elijah and live a life and not have to experience death. But that is not for me to determine. All I can do is follow their example and live a life in close fellowship with God. How does that look like today? By spending time with Him daily (PB & J-Prayer, Bible Reading, & Journaling), loving those around me, and encouraging them to live a life trusting God and obeying His ways. We who read God’s Word know how it ends. We know what happens to those who choose Jesus, and for those who reject Him. And if we truly have that close fellowship with God like Enoch did, shouldn’t we also have the same heart as God for those lost souls in the world? Shouldn’t we want all to come and know Jesus? Shouldn’t we want to save them from the upcoming calamities and instead be raptured/taken into the presence of God forever and ever? I pray we all are on mission this week. Let us be prepared for Jesus’ coming.
 
-Moses Gaddi
 


1 Corinthians 13

Scripture 

1 Corinthians 13: 1-7

 If I speak in the tongues[a] of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,[b] but do not have love, I gain nothing.

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

 

Observation-What does it say? 

The Apostle Paul is writing to the Corinthian church and in the previous chapter, chapter 12, he was describing all the spiritual gifts. However, this chapter is basically Paul saying that out of ALL the spiritual gifts, LOVE is the most excellent way!

 

Understanding-What does it mean?

Love is absolutely necessary!

What were the first 2 commandments that God gave in the Old Testament? (Hint: You can find them in Exodus 20:2-17 and Deuteronomy 5:6-21.)

In the New Testament, how did Jesus say He would sum up the commandments? (Hint: Matthew 22: 36-40)

 

Life Application

Without love, we’re just wasting our time. They will know we are Christians by our love, NOT our works. 

As I’m writing this, my husband are celebrating 13 years of being married! Today is a celebration of our love commitment, vows and becoming one as husband and wife. This chapter in Scripture was used in our wedding and is very popular for Christian weddings! We made a commitment in front of a total of 200 family, friends, Pastors, ministry leaders, and most importantly God, through better or worse, sickness and health, for richer or poorer and ’til death do us part! Staying faithful to a love commitment like that is only possible through the Holy Spirit and our daily choice to put the Lord and each other first, lots of forgiveness, laughter, serving one another, and continued investment in each other! 

Now, let’s parallel this to church ministry and mission. It doesn’t matter what degree we have, what knowledge of God’s Word we have, what gifts or talents we’ve been blessed with, or what kind of sacrifices we make for the Kingdom like fasting, keeping the Sabbath, giving money to the poor, etc. Without deep love for the people we are trying to minister to, they won’t listen to us and we may actually turn people away from Jesus instead of towards Him.

Let’s continue to be on mission for Jesus, but not forget that the most important ministry to the people is to love them in action and deed, the same way Jesus loves us, His church/bride. What are some ways you can do that? If you need help, I recommend that you watch/rewatch Justin’s message from last Sunday. Here’s the link:

Mission Possible | Desert Streams Church

-Michelle Gaddi



Genesis_3

Scripture

Genesis 3:4-5 NLT

““You won’t die!” the serpent replied to the woman. “God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.””

 

Observation-What does it say?

The serpent (Satan), was up to his old tricks again. Here he was, in the Garden of Eden, deceiving Eve to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The tree that God specifically told both Adam and herself not to eat from. But the serpent was crafty. He twisted God’s Words to trick her into disobeying God.

 

Understanding-What does it mean?

The world is the devil’s playground, and he will use anything in it to bring mankind down with him.

In this passage, Eve was tricked into disobeying God. She let someone/something else influence her into making a very bad decision. Instead of trusting God, and trusting in His commands, she let an outside influence pressure her into disobedience towards her Creator. 

I wonder how many of us get caught up doing the same thing? We let the world influence us into making bad decisions, decisions that aren’t very pleasing to God. Instead of trusting the ways of the only One in this world that is holy and righteous, we let the world determine things that are good and bad. And as Christ Followers, it’s time we need to take a stand in this world for God’s ways over the world’s ways. Because if we don’t, well, just look at the world we are living in now. A world that pushed God out of its schools and government. It is a world doomed for destruction.

 

Life Application

Take a stand for what you believe in!

Isn’t it about time we stand up and fight for what we believe in?! Sure it can be an unpopular choice, but it’s a choice we have to make. We are called to a higher standard as God’s children. Instead of letting the world conform us, it is us as His disciples that should be transforming the world through teaching His ways and His truth.

Father God, I pray that You give me courage today to stand up for what I believe in…to stand up for You! May You help all Your children stand united in bringing back your values and ways into our schools and governments once again. Help us to put You back on the throne where You belong. It is the only way we can make America and this world great again! In Your Holy name Jesus I pray these things, Amen.

-Moses Gaddi 

 



1 Corinthians_11

Scripture 

1 Corinthians 11:33-34  So then, my brethren, when you come together to eat, wait for one another.  If anyone is hungry, let him eat at home, so that you will not come together for judgment. The remaining matters I will arrange when I come.

 

Observation-What does it say? 

At the very beginning of his letter to the Corinthians, Paul wrote, “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.  Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment.” (1 Corinthians 1:9-10)  From here Paul shares his purpose for writing the letter, to encourage unity in Christ and to address issues of division and moral problems.  In chapter 11, Paul addresses issues of order within the church and a misuse of communion during their gatherings.  

People were being selfish when they met together, looking after their own desires, “for in your eating each one takes his own supper first; and one is hungry and another is drunk” (11:21).  At the end of the chapter, Paul reminds the reader to look out for the interests of others first and to focus on seeking God as the purpose of meeting together.  

 

Understanding-What does it mean? 

Henry Ford is often credited with the invention of the assembly line.  But, he only refined the process.  Others preceded him, such as Venetian ship makers in the 12th century who built ships along a canal, or Eli Whitney who perfected the use of interchangeable parts in succession.  Though, the importance of Ford’s contribution was perfecting the process and defining each job of the different steps.  This perfection in the order of building a car made the Ford company the most successful in the early part of the 20th century.

 

God created an order for us, which He defined for us in the Bible.  One of the parts of the order is how our meetings and gatherings are supposed to be, with one of the parts of order placing the needs of others before our own.  In Philippians, Paul plainly states, “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.” (2:3-4)  Our gathering together is a place for us to learn how to serve others and to focus on absorbing the word of God.  When we practice the order of things, it moves us out of the way and makes room for God to do his work.  

 

Life Application   

Jesus, help me not to be in the way of you doing your works.  Help me to look for ways to serve others and help your word go forth.  

-Tyler Galloway



Genesis_1

Scripture – What stood out?

Genesis 1:27

So God created man in his own image,

    in the image of God he created him;

    male and female he created them.

 

Observation – What does it say?

In the beginning, God…The book of Genesis explains how it all began. The first chapter explains God’s work in six days. And the first words of the bible provides the basis for all of it. In the beginning, God…

 

Understanding – What does it mean?

Any non-creatives out there? Do you ever read the first chapter of the bible, look at all that was accomplished and wonder at the level of genius required to create everything you and I know? Forget about the workload, just the sheer amount of “creativity” seems daunting. I have a hard time creating internet passwords!

 

Just as we are all drawn to our own names whether read or spoken aloud, I am drawn to the moment when we (humans) were created by God. Created in his own image.

 

I have sped past this verse so many times in my lust to get another iteration of bible completion under my belt. Yet as I slowed down and read and re-read this verse I have decided to make this verse pivotal to who I am. Here are some things that I know that I know that I know about God-  God is love, God is creative, and God is hard working. And I am created in His image. 

 

Life Application How can I apply this to my life today?

I am going to look into the mirror this morning and tell myself:

“Kenneth, you were created in God’s image. You are loved, You are creative, and You are hard working!”

 

God may I stay true to You. In the name of Jesus do I pray, amen.

 

-kenneth lee

 



1 Corinthians_9

Scripture

1 Corinthians 9: 24-25

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in such games goes into strict training. They do it to get the crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.
 

Observation

Paul continues his letter to the church of Corinth by telling them the rights that he has as an apostle, and then by talking about his freedom in Christ. He ends this section by urging the people who follow his example, to do so with excellence and not halfway.
 

Understanding

Have you ever seen someone get disqualified at the Olympics? It’s pretty heart-breaking… especially because they’ve trained for so long to not even get the opportunity to run the race. They have no chance at a medal, no chance at recognition, no chance to compete. I say all this because I feel like we do this to ourselves sometimes. We disqualify ourselves before the race even begins. But Paul presents a really important idea here: the race needs to be run, no matter the cost. And I want to add onto what Paul says here to: RUN THE RACE, DON’T DISQUALIFY YOURSELF! We train and train, but when the time comes we decide to disqualify ourselves. But that isn’t the point of a race or journey at all.

We do it to get a crown that will last forever… that seems to carry some heavy implications. A race that gives eternal life as the prize, I mean who wouldn’t want to run that race to the best of your ability? When I reach the end of my race I want to hear the words “Well done good and faithful servant.” And that only only comes through full dedication, and choosing to actually run the race.
 

Life Application

So how exactly do we engage in strict training?

  • Have a good trainer (and there is no better trainer than the Holy Spirit)
  • Have a good training manual (the Bible is probably the best instructional you can get)
  • Have a group that holds you to your goals (like a discipleship partner or a group of people you trust with your life)

All these ensure running the race with the utmost effort and honor, and you are sure to win a prize 🙂

-Allison Khan



1 Corinthians___8

Scripture

1 Corinthians 8:1b

But knowledge puffs up while love builds up.

 

Observation – What does it say?

The Corinthian Christ-followers had been struggling with what to do regarding things scripture wasn’t clear about. Can you eat meat that’s been sacrificed to an idol? To some it seemed wrong, as if they would be somehow participating in this idol worship. To others it seemed fine because in their hearts they knew they only worshiped the one true God. Paul sets the stage for how to handle these situations: in love.

 

Understanding – What does it mean?

As Christ-followers, we should be most concerned with building others up in love.

Sometimes it’s better to refrain from doing something you believe to be acceptable, for the sake of other believers who have different convictions. Romans 14 goes into more detail on these issues Scripture isn’t explicitly clear about, saying that we must follow our convictions. If we are convinced something is wrong but do it anyway, we sin. If another person is convinced the same thing is acceptable and they do it, it isn’t sin for them. 

So the point is, we should love others enough to refrain from doing what we’re free to do, if doing it will embolden them to join you and sin. For us, maybe it’s not considering not eating meat sacrificed to idols, but refraining from watching the rated R movie or drinking alcohol when believers who see problem with those things are present.

 

Life Application

God, please fill my heart with your love. I desire love more than knowledge. I desire to deeply carry people in my heart more than my freedom to do certain things. Break my heart! Fill my heart with love! With compassion! With empathy! In Jesus’ name I ask, Amen.
 
– Levi Thompson


Psalm 45

Scripture
 
Psalms 45:10-11 NIV
 
“Listen, daughter, and pay careful attention: Forget your people and your father’s house. Let the king be enthralled by your beauty; honor him, for he is your lord.”

 

Observation-What does it say?
 
This Psalm is a wedding song! It is also “a prophecy of Messiah the Prince, and points to him as a Bridegroom espousing the church to himself, and as a King ruling in it, and for it.” (Reference: Matthew Henry’s commentary on Christianity.com)
 
 
Understanding-What does it mean?
 
Marriage is a picture of Christ’s relationship with the Church.
 

Christ is the Husband (bridegroom) and the Church is the Bride. We forsake ALL others after getting married because after vows, we become ONE flesh and make a commitment for life with our spouse. The same goes with our relationship with Jesus. We need to be ALL in, not just partially in, for our Lord is a jealous God and does not want anyone or anything to come between us and Him.

 
Life Application
 
Have you forsaken all others and things for our Groom (Christ)?
 

Moses and I are taking Pastor and DeLaine’s DSU course, 6 Great Dates! It’s an awesome reminder that we need to keep investing in our marriages and date each other in order to keep the spark alive!

On the flip side with our faith, are we putting the same time and investment into our relationship with Jesus as we did in the beginning?

We need to remind ourselves of the fire in the beginning of our faith and go back to our First Love. We must be reminded of our testimonies to reignite that spark, the same way we need to remember what we love about our spouses in order to keep pressing forward as a couple. This Wedding Psalm is a great reminder of that!

-Michelle Gaddi