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John: Day 1

The Word Was God

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Today's Text: John 1:1-50, Genesis 1:1-5, Isaiah 55:10-11, Hebrews 1:1-4

Text: John 1:1-50, Genesis 1:1-5, Isaiah 55:10-11, Hebrews 1:1-4

Gathered around the living room, we remained seated as the doorbell continued to ring. We didn’t need another casserole or vase of sympathy flowers; we needed words.

Void of compassion, the blank document—an unforeseen obituary—stared back at us, wringing all adjectives of their meaning, one after another. Each suggested description seemed to shrink our beloved boy, the one who held the titles of both my best friend and my younger brother, into someone foreign and unrecognizable. The task of fitting all of his life and all of our love into one small newspaper column was exhausting, so we traded our pencils for pillows and gave up for the night.

A few hours later, unable to sleep, I rolled over to see a small beam of light coming from downstairs, and decided to follow it. I found my sleepy-eyed father furiously scribbling notes on a stack of white index cards. Between the light blue lines were favorite stories, memorable quotes, and beloved quirks. My dad handed me a stack, and as the dark sky faded into morning, our collection of cards finally created the outline of something familiar—someone familiar.

I imagine the Apostle John sitting down to translate the encounters he’d had with Jesus into suitable words. To him, Jesus was not a faraway character, but a trusted friend and beloved Savior. Writing these words, this Gospel account, John probably recalled intimate details about Jesus—the way He smelled, what His favorite foods were, the sound of His laugh. He could clearly call to mind the expressions his friend made when feeling tired or excited or somber. Yet, John undertook the task of assembling words to describe the heaven-sent Son of God to those of us who didn’t know Jesus in the flesh.

John must have had a wealth of stories to choose from when deciding how to open his eyewitness account. But, through the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, this dear friend of Jesus begins his narrative with the thing that identified Jesus most:

“In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.”
- John 1:1

After years of witnessing Jesus’ parables, miracles, and interactions firsthand, John presents Jesus as the Word—a tangible love letter from God. Jesus did not come to merely deliver a message from God—He Himself is the message.

“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. We observed his glory, the glory as the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
- John 1:14

The Apostle John’s words are not only the beginning to another chapter in the Bible; they are the beginning to understanding who Jesus is. He is our promised Savior. He is the one who has been with God from the beginning. He is the Word.

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  • Madison

    Reading those verses from John, like others said, brought new understanding. Reading them like a description of a loved one rather than a meaningless text really transforms it’s weight and well meaning.

  • Jesus is our love letter from God, even from the beginning!

  • Reading this devotional today brought me to tears as Sunday celebrates the five year anniversary of my brother going to be with Jesus. I hadn’t thought of the gospels from this perspective.

  • John declared with such boldness that Jesus is God! He is the One who was, and is, and is to come!

  • The other Martha

    The devotion adds a new understanding for me. I recently lost my loving husband and writing the obituary was done by dear loved ones . I was paralyzed and in a fog of grief. I can identify with John in a new way. I cherish his words more now, to think of how he must have felt to sit and write the inspired word of God, the word was God, Life and Light to a very dark world. It makes me value my bible more than ever!!!

  • Wendy Warren

    Also, the book of John reminds me of my beloved minister grandfather. He is now in Heaven but my favorite memory of him remains: him preaching from the book of John. What a Godly man. I hope that at I partake in this study God would continue the work in my own life.

  • Wendy Warren

    I’ve been searching for a new Bible reading plan and I love all the SheReadsTruth lessons. This study of John is particularly special to me as I am currently teaching a Bible Study on it. I’m excited to learn more about the book of John and the WORD made flesh in this book!

  • This was a great start to understanding the relationships that the disciples had with Jesus. It also speaks to the faith that they when they were told who Jesus was and would be to the people of God. They believed 1st and then they followed. Then Jesus confirmed what they believed. Wow! I’m excited!

  • Deborah Rene

    Just started this study, I’m looking forward to the wisdom, knowledge and communication with other studiers.

  • Leah Albright

    I’m a newbie to this study. Great first day, really liked it :-)

  • 48 Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?” Jesus answered him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” 49 Nathanael answered him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” 50 Jesus answered him, “Because I said to you, ‘I saw you under the fig tree,’ do you believe? You will see greater things than these.”

    This is power! You will see greater things!!

  • Fernanda Álvarez

    This is my first day here. What a beautiful way to start!

  • Jesus did not come to bring a message from God…He was and is the message

  • I smiled to myself, “Jesus, what a likable dude….’you will see much greater than that …'”
    He was so magnetic, and I am so thankful for God sharing himself, coming and walking among us, showing us the way.

  • I love this… It brings me into the picture of his love being there and always abiding.

  • “To him, Jesus was not a faraway character, but a trusted friend and beloved Savior.” Thank you for this reminder – that Jesus is not just words in a book, but living and breathing and just as real in this moment.

    • Cheri

      This spoke to me, too! I love the reminder!

    • emi

      this really helped me accept Jesus as not only a far away God but someone who is white me through the good and bad and that i can always depend on him

  • Alexandria

    God spoke the world into existence and He sent the Word of His Son into existence to save us and fulfill all of God’s plans. So amazing!

  • Anna Pope

    Wow! Such a beautiful thing to be able to relate the two so truthfully. It’s so easy to say “when you’re in doubt, run to Jesus. Read his word!” but not actually do it. He is the Word though. So beautiful. Thank you for this!

  • I stumbled across the study today- and am so glad I did! Love the revelation that Jesus didn’t just bring us God’s message He was the message. Thanks

  • Today I started day 1 of the John Study. Have to say I liked the description of John’s relationship with Jesus in “The Word was God”, details only a close friend might know. I think this study will help me get to know our Savior in a more personal way. Thanks.

  • My friend is fighting for joint custody of his son today. He is waiting in the court rooms right now. He is so scared and worried the judge won’t rule in his favour. His ex is a nasty women who won’t let him see his son.

    Please include him in your prayers. He doesn’t make much money right now since he’s trying to get his life back together and she is taking him for everything.
    Please pray for comfort, guidance and for Christ to protect his heart and mind from the horrible things she has accused him of.

    Please pray for strength not to let her get to him. She’s in the courts too and he is stressing a lot. Please please join me in prayer for this

    • Isabella

      I am praying for you! May God grant him peace and wisdom through these times.

  • wow. this devotional hit me hard; really clarified and opened my eyes…Jesus, how real He was to those closest to Him – like John. How real is He to me.

  • I love that Philip found Nathanael and told him they had found Jesus. Then he invited him to come to Jesus. This is such a beautiful picture of how we are to live. Find the lost, tell them about Jesus and invite them to come and see that the Lord is good.

  • Dee Cheri

    I never really thought to think about the John’s actual feelings while he was doing his writings. I only embraced his actual words. Sometimes I believe we forget about the relationships Jesus had with people and the grief they felt writing out their memories of him.

    • Alex A

      That is so true, very thought provoking.

    • The other Martha

      I’ve lost many loved ones recently and been a part of several obituaries. It’s heart wrenching and such a huge responsibility to pen the last written words to represent your dearest love ones. Reminds me of John telling Jesus, I am the one who you love. John understood better than anyone that Jesus loved us first. So incredible!

  • I love that in reading the following passage it reminds me Jesus is not just a ‘study’ or relevant for his time but still working in our lives

    11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
    it shall not return to me empty,
    but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
    and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

  • Keri McCue

    I love the topic of this study! I’m so excited to dive in. I am starting late but catching up today! So pumped to be back in my routine and to join you ladies in another amazing study!

    http://www.littlelightonahill.com

  • kaiya gunsauls

    why does it cost money to get more than the first day ?

  • How do you describe someone you love even in a book… John account of Jesus is fantastic but it seems even more perfect when you add the other accounts Matthew Mark and Luke … together is the true Jesus the Christ. I don’t know the full reason why there are four accounts of Jesus but this helps me think that maybe this is one of the reasons. Not just one person can remember, portray or catch each part of our savior. Amazing … I love when I learn more about the Bible! Thanks be to Jesus for His Word!

  • I have experienced loss in our family and your opening was easy to relate to. Never have I thought of the disciples having this heart wrenching experience or pictured them thinking and remembering all the little things (and big) that are Jesus to them. Thank you for bringing this new insight, for bringing a new reality to it all. It’s rare to see what good has come from the experience of loss in my life but having a deeper knowing and understanding of your words today is definitely a blessing. May God bless you and keep you

  • The Isaiah verse really stuck out to me this morning. Such beautiful imagery describing the life-giving nature of Gods word. When we take the time to read it and live by it- it WILL do what He has purposed it to do, it will nourish us like water nourishes the earth. Praise his name.

  • Catherine

    I have been reading SRT studies for a few years now. I’m a little late starting on this study because I have just moved from my hometown in the USA to London, England for a semester of study abroad. I loved the study before this – “Holding Tight to Permanent” – because it reminded me of the truth in God’s word and the unchanging nature of his promises, regardless of where I am in life. I am still getting settled into life abroad as a student, but the past 2 days have been full of emotion, information, and overwhelming circumstances. I hadn’t expected to be so emotionally and physically tired in addition to really missing my home/parents/friends. But, then I read the scripture and study today from SRT. I immediately felt “at home” again after reading God’s word with my breakfast and favorite cup of tea. I was reminded of God’s greatness and comfort – He is still the same even if everything in my life is changing right now. Thank you for the reminder that Christ is the living word and he is full of grace and truth. I needed this today!

    • Brandi

      Sending lots of love and prayers your ways, Catherine! I also studied abroad for a time in college and I completely agree that the thing that was always most comforting, most like “home” was my well-loved Bible with highlighted scripture and familiar words. Hold tight to Him when you’re anxious and weary. He’s with you and steadfast no matter where you are.

  • I had already determined that my theme verse of the year was John 1:16- embracing “grace upon grace” when I saw the first study of the year by SRT was John and decided that may as well be the Devine sign I needed to actually participate in my first SRT study and not just look in from the outside.

  • Sally Sparrow

    I love this verse “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:5. The last five words- the darkness HAS NOT overcome it. It’s so powerful, a brilliant reminder for tough times that even when it seems dark, the light has not and will put out the light. To me, it’s a verse with such hope and power.

    • Sally Sparrow

      I can’t edit my above post, it’s meant to say “the light has not, and will not be overcome. The dark cannot put out the light.”
      Can we edit original posts?

  • Maria Jones

    I found Jesus after a very traumatic birthing experience with my first baby, it has taken me 19 months to find a place where I can speak with others and feel support through the comfort of my own home. I am unable to attend church with my daughters condition right now but this site is allowing me to be a part of a safe and inspiring group of women. Thank you!

    • skye

      Hi Maria, Glad you found SRT and may GOD bless you, refresh you, heal and encourage you through His WORD, Himself, and through this fellowship. I also pray that He will send another woman to befriend you who can visit with you and give you support and love.

  • This app is an answer to my prayers. I do read my bible, however, I sometimes am not sure what to read. This will keep me focused and in the word regularly. Thank you! :-)

  • stephanie

    I still don’t have day two or three. Am I missing something?

  • What really stuck out to me was John 1:42 where Simon Peter receives a new name (Cephas/Peter) in Christ. I love the picture we get of a new beginning, a clean slate as Peter begins to follow Him. Jesus also fully knew that Peter would be filled with doubts and struggle, and yet still named him Cephas, meaning “Rock”. What a beautiful picture of God’s mercy, grace, and power.

    This verse also reminded me of 2 Corinthians 5:17: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. Behold, the new has come!” I love that we, like Peter, have also been given clean slates and new, eternal identities established in Jesus. I am praying that, at the beginning of a new year, the Lord would remind us that we are no longer shackled to our former, sin-centered selves, but are instead new creations empowered by the indwelling of His Holy Spirit within us!

  • Your personal story of loss- juxtaposed to John’s- really was striking. It helped me read the verses in a new way. Thanks for sharing an intimate story with us. It was a gift.

  • I’m 13 which Bible app should I use for guidance

    • Holly

      I like the YouVersion Bible app :)

    • Betsy P.

      I second Holly’s response–YouVersion is great, and has some guided plans you can follow. The Bible Gateway app has great dictionaries and commentaries that can really help you, too. And, Francis Chan has an app called ReadScripture that walks you through the Bible and offers great videos that explain themes and ideas through Scripture. I hope these help (all of them are free)!

  • Kassi Pool

    Wow, wow, wow. This is my first SRT to purchase and get involved in and I am floored, by simply one day! Reading what the author put after the readings, I’m literally sitting here with my mouth open and jaw on the floor. I think that sometimes we think of Jesus as a far away being and we can’t put him into a tangible being for us but I believe that this study of John is going to do just that and I am beyond excited to journey deeper into the Word and getting to know Jesus. <3

  • Heather Fringer

    Hello ladies! Ever since I came across SRT about a year or two ago I have been begging my husband to get it for me but we were never financially stable enough to. Well Christmas I finally got my subscription to SRT and cannot be any happier!!! The book quality is absolutely beautiful!! I am a born again Christian as of 10-18-15 and love it! This is really going to help me consistently read, learn, and draw close to God and that’s what I long for. I loved day ones read. It really stood out to me about how God created everything and all of the people but the people didn’t know Him. Another scripture that I loved reading was Isaiah 55:11 – “so My word that comes from My mouth will not return to Me empty, but it will accomplish what I please.” it just makes me think that somewhere out there is a purpose for me that I just have not found yet. Lord, lead me to that purpose and I pray that you cast out any dark areas in my life so I only have room for your light and your love to shine through. Please also be with these lovely ladies who are her today and especially the ones who need you the most. Amen.

  • A beautiful description of who Jesus really is… I am so thankful for the SRT community and this study. My prayer for 2017 is to know who Jesus is more fully. Jesus is the Word. The Word was in the beginning, was with God, was God. Then the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. He is The Message. He is grace and truth. He came to save us from our sins. Beautiful. Thank you Jesus, my Savior, my King! ♡

  • The Gospel of John continually invites people to “come and see”. The coming part is about movement–taking a step. Once I take that step there will be something that He wants me to see. The question remains: what step is He asking me to take and how can my obedience lead me to see something extraordinary? I. CANT. WAIT. ❤️

  • I loved the verses in Isaiah! I never connected the Word in that passage to Jesus but it totally fits. He completely accomplished what He was sent to do! Thank you, Jesus, for not returning void but returning with our salvation! ❤️

  • Grace and truth. Hand in hand. Letting this soak in… So excited to be studying this book. Thankful for John’s vivid word pictures of Jesus! May we all know him better this year!

    • Maria Jones

      So true, hand in hand. My word focus for the year is GRACE, I was awed by reading this on the very first day. Everything is a part of His plan <3

  • “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” John 1:17
    I really liked this verse in the reading because not only was Jesus the word, but he gave it beauty through his godly life. What a good reminder of who Jesus is and his sacrifice for us as we start the new year.

  • This is my very first time participating in a SRT study, I also have gotten the physical book which I think is absolutely gorgeous for anyone that has not seen them. I couldn’t imagine the thoughts of John, Andrew, and Simon the very first time they saw Jesus with their own eyes. I think my favorite verse is 1:51 “I assure you: you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man”. I also enjoyed the verses from Isaiah, they are just a wonderful reminder that it is so important for us to represent Jesus not only in our actions but in our words as well because what we do/say is not returned to us but instead received by others.
    ]

  • Thank you for once again helping us seek Him. I also enjoyed the perspective of John writing about Jesus like finding words to describe a dear friend. I often reflect on different friendships over the years and consider how those from childhood create such a tapestry of memories to appreciate. I pray that my knowing Jesus as trusted friend deepens this year for myself as well as my children and each of us ladies here.
    Another random thought I had came from pondering about Jesus being the Word. I am a speech pathologist so I love words :) I conserved if Jesus is the word, the message, the meaning, the lexicons, then God our Father would be like the voice, the power, and Holy Spirit would be like intonation, the music of speech :)

    • Holly

      Thank you for your random thought, Shell! It reminded me of singing in my high school choir. And it was also super helpful for me because I’ve never thought about what Jesus being the Word means for God our Father and the Holy Spirit.

    • Leslie

      Your random thought is a very cool one! Thank you!

  • I’m so excited about the opportunity to join this community of spirit filled young ladies. I look forward to developing a closer relationship with my Lord and Savior. Happy New Year to you and yours!!

  • Victoria Rae

    Also- yes- so excited to start the new year with a new study and to connect with women of faith. We all need GRACE and we have received it!!!!

  • Victoria Rae

    I don’t have day 2 either… when should it show up?

  • So many good verses in such a short segment. Perhaps I am most grateful for the truth in 1:16 “Indeed, we have all received grace upon grace from His fullness.” I need his grace every day! Beautiful study book!

  • My day 2 isn’t showing on either my iPad or iPhone. I wasn’t sure if this is an isolated event for me, or if anyone else is Babi g issues?

  • Jessica Diaz

    Beautiful and poignant. I never thought of the parallel of writing about your most beloved friend. To me this was humbling and profound, thank you.

  • Such a beautiful perspective….I had never thought of John’s account of Jesus as that of a friend! Just joining this community and am excited for all God will reveal to me in in2017! Thank you #shereadstruth

  • Full of Truth and Grace. Oh to learn that balance.

  • I’m so excited to start this new journey and strengthening my relationship and connection with my God. This community is so wonderful and I’m so happy to be apart of it. Thank you for this and thank You, my Lord for just…. everything. <3

  • Ashly Arthur

    I’m so excited to dive into not only John, but I also may read through the other gospels. I believe God is beginning to open my eyes to understand what it looks like to live freely and fully through truly knowing him. Not knowing ABOUT him, or reciting scriptures…but living out of love.

    • Betsy P.

      I love that you pointed out the difference between KNOWING Jesus and knowing ABOUT Him. It is so easy for me to forget this sometimes, but you are so right–it really makes a huge difference in our walk with Him. I think John demonstrates this too. Rather than Jesus simply telling the new disciples about Himself, He invites them to actually walk with Him in relationship. I am praying that the Lord reveals this to all of us throughout this new year, too!

  • How do you know if your comment went through? I don’t know if mine did :/

    • Kimone

      Once you don’t get an error message it should be fine. N it usually appears at the top after you’ve posted. It went through cuz I saw it and I’m responding to this one as well.
      Btw welcome to She Reads Truth. Glad to have you with us and praying you will grow ever closer with God and live out loud for Him.
      PS: I’m not administration lol.
      Love Kimone.

  • I’ve been so looking forward to recommitting myself to another SRT study in the new year. Thank you for providing plans for me to latch onto, and showing me new ways to view the Word.

  • I need this so much. Thank you for helping me seek Truth!

  • Tanya Thurnau

    What a beautiful perspective. I honestly never even thought about those words from that angle before, but it took me to a deeper and more meaningful place. Thank you for that.

  • Happy New Year from Arizona! I am seeking to draw nearer to God through these studies. I’m in awe at how all the passages in today’s study relate. I can’t imagine how John the Baptist felt when he saw Jesus!

    • She Reads Truth

      JoAnn, Happy New Year from Tennessee! So happy to see you here.

      xoxo-Kaitlin

  • Kasey Summers

    I love what my study notes say. “To see Jesus is to celebrate the end of the sacrificial system.” Jesus was the final and perfect sacrifice for us. He secured everything that was needed for our salvation! I also think it’s neat how 40% of John is spent explaining the details of the last week of Jesus’ life bc it is the most important week in the history of the world! Super excited to dig into John with you all!

  • What a fitting description of John’s task of writing about Jesus. Very touching and makes it so real to me today. Thank you for that. <3 I would also like to say that today marks ONE YEAR of being a part of the SheReadsTruth community and I am so thankful for each of you. In all my years of being a believer, I have always struggled with being in the Word daily and consistently. When I learned about SheReadsTruth a little over a year ago, through reading someone's blog, I thought it might be just what I needed and right up my alley. And so it is! Love the devotions, love the beautiful books and all the extras included, and I love the opportunity to connect online with other believers. Perfect fit for me and an opportunity for me to stay in the Word each and every day. So thank you, thank you, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your commitment to presenting the Word with all the attention and beauty it deserves is truly such a wonderful ministry! And as I begin year two of being in this community of believers, please know that I pray for each and every person involved in bringing these wonderful studies to us! Happy New Year! <3 <3

  • I am so thankful today for this study, this Word, and for each one of my SRT sisters who are joining with me today to meet with Jesus. I pray in this new year for the closest relationship with Christ that we have experienced thus far in our lives; to know Him as His bride. Jesus, I ask for restored hope, for healing, for light in all my dark places, and for determination in my pursuit of You. Thank you for this new day, and all the ways you have blessed me and saved my life. Pour out your Holy Spirit in me and on each of these precious women today.

  • So glad to be joining in. Reading these words today is already helping me feel rejuvenated and gain a small bit of peace in my heart that I can only get from slowing down for a minute and listening to Him.

  • Melanie Johnson

    I’ve read this passage in John many times, but this has given me a different perspective of who Jesus is. I’ve constantly overlooked the fact that Jesus is the message, the Word. Thank you, Jesus, for coming to this earth to live the life I should live, for being the example I should follow, for being the message I should listen to, and for being the Word I should cling to.

  • Thank you for this. I don’t have proper words to convey my appreciation. I’m struggling through mental and physical exhaustion due to a trying holiday “break” and forced myself to join the study today. I’m incredibly glad the Spirit pushed me forward and told me to come sit with Him. First few verses and immediately my soul felt the familiar comforts of His presence. Thank you for the vulnerable and beautiful devotional.

    • Anne H

      Brittany, I am going through something similar after a stressful holiday season, and couldn’t agree with you more, sister! This devotional was the perfect pick-me-up to head into the new year with a little more hop in my step. I’m glad I’m not the only one who needed a little push to sit down with Him this morning.

  • I am excited to be reading along with all of you! Happy New Year!

  • The word became flesh -for thousand years prophets had spoken of the coming of a savior. The scribes recorded the prophecies (the written word) and then the words turned to life and Jesus became living breathing flesh walking among us and we are invited to “come and see” to “look” upon him to witness his mighty work of salvation for all -GOD WITH US
    May I this year take the invitation to Come and see, to look upon his face to dwell in his presence to “purpose” my life based on Jesus and not on my feelings, m expectations , my at-a-girls. All that is really insignificant. Writing these words because this is how I see it but to bring it to “life” to actually dwell there can only be a surrendering of myself to the Holy Spirit. Praise God it doesn’t depend on me but His working in me.

  • Thank you for sharing this vulnerable piece of your heart. I’ve read this at least a billion times, but never with the weight of trying to summarize someone into a few words effectively, much less a beloved friend gone home. The fact that these are the words he chose to write is absolutely perfect – another example of God making everything work together for those that love Him. He knew that we would need to know that Jesus WAS God, and believe it. Before one miracle was written about- this foundational belief had to be established. Loved this today- beautiful piece. What a beautiful way to honor your best friend as well. ❤

  • I have been in a cycle of not feeling much towards Jesus despite desiring His grace. I’ve been busy and frantic, yet bored and lonely. I really wasn’t sure if I wanted to read John, which I’ve read many times. Yet, I was taken aback by Hebrews 1:3 “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being, sustaining all things by His powerful word.”
    All the things I will read about Jesus are 100% true about the character of God, here and now. He hasn’t changed and won’t change. He loves and pursues, through Jesus in Biblical times and now as I lay on my bed and ponder this. All of the stories of redemption in the Bible are the same as the redemption He gives me!
    His word will also sustain me despite my feeling of spiritual dullness. His word is active and exciting, and enough to pull my soul away from this pit I’ve chosen to sit in.

    • Kelly

      I read your post and it was like I wrote it. I understand your emotions between being busy, frantic yet bored and lonely. I ordered this John Devo because I wanted to get back to the basics and understand/learn something new about the Gospel I’ve studied for years. After leaning in and reading day 1, journaling what I feel about it and asking God to change me and let me experience Him in a new way in 2017 I feel I am right where I need to be. I pray for you Shelbs that you encounter this newness during this study and it continues after, a deeper relationship with the Lord.

    • J

      Shelbs – Thank you for taking the extra step from reading and spectating to engaging and sharing your thoughts with us. I think so many of us can relate to what you wrote about “not feeling much towards Jesus despite desiring His grace” and the vacillation between being frantic and bored and lonely. I know I can, and I think you described this perplexing and troubling predicament perfectly. I love the way you are choosing to focus on what will always be true in God and His word even when our emotions can vary and change all of the time. It is a process for sure – an active decision to fight against our malaise and feelings with the Lord’s help. You are supported, heard, and prayed over!

    • Rachel

      Shelbs – I so get where you’re coming from with feeling busy and frantic, yet bored and lonely. I know that I can have such a hard time trusting in God, especially with where I am in my crazy student loan situation. Because of it, we’re having to wait more than the 5 years we’ve already waited to start a family. And I keep trying to fix it. I don’t know how long it will be. But, I’m learning to enjoy this precious time with just my husband.

      It’s so comforting to know that no matter what my situation is, He will always be there, right beside me. He was, and is, and is to come. He will never change. I’m struck by the Isaiah 55:11 – “so My word that comes from My mouth will not return to Me empty, but it will accomplish what I please.” I think this has a twofold meaning. First, that scripture will have the impact on those who God meant it to impact in the way He intended. Second, that Jesus, the Word, fulfilled the purpose He was intended for when He came to earth, and continues to do so as He is reflected in each of us.

    • Taylor

      Shelbs, thank you so much for sharing. I have been feeling this same way for a few months now and have not been able to put it into words that make sense. I have not done a SRT study in a little bit either and decided to jump back into the scripture and details with this amazing community of women in hopes to ignite my fire for the Lord once again. Reading your post and the replies just confirms that this is where I need to be right now. Thank you again. God is so so good.

  • I never cease to be amazed by John 1:1…..It is Jesus, son of God, God. He came pieced the darkness and brought me and you light. It brings tears to my eyes. So much love. I need his love to share with
    others every day. That is my New Year prayer.

  • I woke up this morning ready to start this new devotion when I got a text from a friend asking to meet so we could do our devotions together. How sweet it is to have a friend who has fallen hard after Christ. However, the friend I have in Lisa does not compare to the friend I have in Christ. Yet, I treat Lisa with more respect and put more energy into our relationship. I read the introduction to this study, which I normally don’t do, but the Holy Spirit pulled me to it. It spoke to me. Amanda says “The start of any new season is an appropriate time to recall the very foundations of our faith.” And here I was, not even 10 minutes earlier, telling Lisa about the new season I am about to embark on. In this season, I hope to learn how to treat Jesus more like a friend than an acquaintance. My spiritual resolution for 2017 is to be more like him, in that he is filled with grace and truth (John 1:14).

  • Laura Andersen

    I love the invitation to “Come and see” that Jesus extends to the disciples and Nathaniel extends to Philip. I’m excited to spend time with Jesus and watch what He is doing in and around me in the coming year.

  • Thank you

  • I understand estrangement. My mother was hospitalized and I did not know until I was called that she was in a coma. I saw her alive but she passed within hours. My Dad passed away and I didn’t know until the call came to let me know where he he wake was. My sister passed on December 27, 2015 and my husband read it in the newspaper. The why never goes away. Scripture tells us that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess. His daily grace.

    • Jenny

      Your story could comforts me. It makes me feel less estranged. Thank you for sharing.

    • Renee

      Praying for you, Adrienne

    • Kelsie

      Praying for peace and comfort, Adrienne. I recently read about God’s promise with the rainbow. “I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth” -Genesis 9:13. Use this as a sweet reminder that even though you are facing struggles and grief, God will always be there to support and love you. No tragedy will ever be as bad as the flood and we can find hope in God’s love and promise to return.

    • Ruthie

      Prayers for you Adrienne and Jenny.

  • It can sometimes be jarring to me how, after some time in other studies, cutting right to the heart of the nature of Jesus as represented fully and overwhelmingly in John (He is described so incredibly as God and so humbly and “normal” as man that it is so much to take in!) makes me realize how far my heart and mind have wandered. I am overcome with despair in one sense as I realize I have been more like an aloof friend to Him than an intimate disciple and adoring child. I replace my shame with His grace as I draw nearer to the throne today, seemingly as if for the first time. Who are you, Jesus? How much deeper can I and do I dare draw to you today? My heart is filled with expectant hope and excitement as I consider how much fuller and richer life will yet be as I learn the answers to these questions with the help of this study!

    • aisforashleykay

      Love this. It is so true it is easy to become complacent with our relationship with Him. I need to close the gap with a desire to know Him more, always. ❤

    • savedbygrace

      thank you – you spoke my thoughts so eloquently

    • A. Kate

      I could have written these words myself. You have a sister in Christ that echoes these desires and is partnering with you in prayer for a deeper, more intimate walk with Jesus in this new year. Amen!

  • Christina

    Using words to describe the Word. Using words to describe his intimate experiences with the Word. That would seem a daunting task to me, but one to gladly accept when knowing I’d been called to do it, and that the Holy Spirit was directing my every word. It is sometimes hard for me to accept that we are called to use more words to describe THE Word. I feel like it’s been done. How much more is there to say? One of the things I’ve been learning over the past few years is how to pursue truth, beauty and goodness through my words. Apparently, language–words–is very important to our Creator. Think of how He accomplished His will at the Tower of Babel. He separated out languages, caused people confusion over words. Words either build up or tear down. I’m honestly not sure where I’m going with this, but these are just a few of the thoughts I’ve had as I’ve been reading. Father, may my words reflect your truth, beauty, and goodness each day of this year. May they build up and not tear down. May they return to you with the increase for which you send them through me. In Jesus’ Name.

  • John presents Jesus as the Word—a tangible love letter from God. Jesus did not come to merely deliver a message from God—He Himself is the message. I love that we have a person to emulate as we try to live a life that honors God!

  • We recently lost an estranged member of our family. While she knew my husband for many many years, the past nearly 7, she did not at all. We had included her in our lives prior to our estrangement so many times and in so many ways, but she was a bitter woman and her anger seathed in ways that both subconciously and conciously made it incredibly difficult to manage. Our speaking of faith, Christ and forgiveness would land on deaf ears and often times would cause more aggression than not, so much so that in our last days together our children were significantly at risk and this woman literally ran from us, out of our lives forever. We left the door open, sent letters and pictures indicating that upon repentance and conversation we would be open to relationship with her but she never responded and we grieved, long ago and often. When we were told of her death Friday, our pain was different because our massive grief had occurred so many months and years prior … we no longer knew her, nor she us. My heart hurt for the lack of relationship with Christ in her life, it still does, but our life has gone on and our current grief and sadness is different. And while many, my husband’s extended family included, can not understand our position, we must be confident in our position with Christ. The relationship prior to estrangement was one that was rooted so heavinly in hurt, bitterness and habit and as my husband grew in his personal relationship with Christ, this relationship became increasingly difficult. It was one the enemy used to tear my husband down every opportunity possible, and like a curse, constantly putting our family’s position at risk and so it is today, he has to settle any warring in his heart over it now.

    John knew Christ as his family member, someone whose righteousness astounded him (think to his comment regarding he needed baptism at His hands instead) but it wasn’t revealed to him that He truly was Messiah until the baptism and they grew from there. John became closer and their relationship grew in his new knowledge of Christ AS Lord. Just like we have a choice. As we grow hearing about Christ, learning about Him but not truly knowing Him, we have a choice at the time of relationship WITH Him, choose Him and grow further or walk away, it is a matter of “knowing of” versus “knowing”.

    I fell in love with Christ long after my baptism as a babe. I knew of Him, believed Him a real person, but that was the gist. Once I met Him, once He came to me, I fell head over heals for our Lord … I had gone from knowledge to relationship and it has been all the difference.

    I wished and prayed that for our estranged family member. We hoped greatly that she would come to Christ, that her heart would soften but it was not so and in our sadness, regret and grief I am prayerful that this be an area left alone and that the enemy doesn’t use it to war in my husband’s heart again. Any prayers are appreciated. I am beyond words grateful for the work of Christ in our lives. Love to you all!

    • Nads

      I pray for you and your family as you continue to process the death of this woman. I pray that you will continue to find peace and that the Enemy will not find a foothold.

      I pray also for her soul, knowing that Christ’s desire for relationship with each of us is greater than what we could want for each other… Our great, merciful Saviour may have met with her in the end…only He knows.

      God bless you and your hedging of your family in truth and relationship with The Word.

    • candacejo

      Such a sad story, B. Thank you for sharing something so difficult to process. Heartbreaking to think how close she was to being delivered, restored and redeemed but preferred the bitterness and anger over freedom. Praying for your family today! ♥

      • Renee

        Amen! Yes, thank you for sharing. I always appreciate what you have to share. You write so eloquently, too. God bless you and your family for what you endeavoured to do.

    • Heather (MNmomma)

      wrapping you all in prayer <3

    • Beth

      Praying for your family, especially for your husband.
      Christ’s family member John was his cousin, John the Baptist. John the writer of the Gospel of John was John the beloved, the brother of Andrew, the fishermen.

  • Lindsay Sterchi

    What a powerful way to start out the year, studying the life of Jesus. Jesus as the Word, revealing God to us. Jesus as light in the darkness. I love how today’s reading said that Jesus did not come to bring a message from God; HE is the message. May we receive him today and abide with him.

  • Great thoughts. Loved the good hearty chunk of scripture. Keep it coming!

  • Just like Jesus to be what I need, when I need it. I have been feeling down and sad since the holidays- in a dark spot. I went to read SRT and went to Isaiah 55:10-11- just like rain from Heaven gives life to the earth, God’s word gives refreshment to all who choose to take this journey with Him- The Word refreshes the parched ground and causes growth that produces and sustains us. Then to read Hebrews 1: 3&4 and be reminded that Jesus is the radiance of the glory of God- the exact imprint of His nature- upholds the universe by the word of power- wow- Jesus is always enough. I am thankful that our Creator sent His son to us and left a love story for us to discover truths about who He is and how much He loves us

    • Cindy Simpson Wise

      Thank you. I needed these words.

    • Anne H

      I too have been feeling down since the holidays. Praying that His word continues to carry you and bring you peace and joy. You are right, He loves you so much!

    • Leslie

      I loved those passages as well!

    • Julia

      I’ve been going through a rough time too, thank you for sharing this :)

  • Like us– we know “of” Jesus– but do we “know Him personally as our Savior”? Like John, we each are called to accept Him personally! Thank you ladies– welcome to a new year getting to “know” Jesus as our personal savior!!

  • Laura Kane

    So much about Jesus is revealed and proclaimed, and so much is given to those who believe, in this single chapter. Jesus sees us and knows us before we hear His call. He sees me. He sees you. He is preparing us to answer His call, bringing with us others He sees. Who around me is He seeing today?

  • I guess what got me as I was reading the scripture then paired it with the devotional was the humanity of Jesus. Yes, He was the Son of God, but He was also a living, breathing man who came and walked the earth and had friends. I always just take this for granted because He is God’s Son, but the thought of John trying to capture all of who Jesus is, the little moments, it would have to be God inspired. This just hit me on a different level this morning and I’m so thankful to God that He loved us that much.

    • Jen

      So true! I pray that I don’t take for granted the opportunity to read the GOD INSPIRED word. It’s not an opportunity everyone has – to read the word in their own language. I’m headed back to work today after vacation and as I get back into routine, I pray that God will give me the energy and focus to continue to have excitement for His Word and His calling.

      • Elizabeth

        Reminds me of one of my dad’s favorite verses he always shares and prays, “Open my eyes that I might see wonderful things in your law.” Ps 119:18 May that always be a request- that the Lord himself would open our eyes each day to wonderful things in His word!

    • Anne H

      This hit me as well! I’m so thankful for the SRT devotionals. They really help me to see the little details in the stories that I always seem to overlook.

  • The opening verses to this book never fail to remind me that it is all about Jesus! What a great way to start the year off!

  • churchmouse

    So good to begin this new year drawing near to Jesus through His beloved friend John. Don’t we all wonder at times what our friends and family will say about us upon our death, at our funeral? Are we not blessed to have John’s words about Jesus? Are we not blessed that his words are accurate and true because he walked with Him and knew Him so intimately? Are we not blessed that we can trust in John’s account and thus come to know Jesus intimately for ourselves? Oh SRT sisters, it is only January 2 and blessings abound! I’m excited to turn the pages of this study with you all. May we hold each others hands as we reach out and hold on to His. Hope for this new year is in the air and secured in His Word, the Word!

  • I´ve got a question. In v. 31 John the Baptist says about Jesus: ” I myself did not know him”. But actually he and Jesus were cousins. And given their mothers met during their pregnancies and talked about the prophesies regarding their sons, I imagine their sons heard about their respective callings also. So why did he say ” I myself did not know him”?

    • Tangela T Mckinnon

      @Marianne if I may answer your question. John knew him as his cousin but, he didn’t know he “Jesus” as the son of God not until he baptized him and God revealed who he was by the sign of the “dove” rest on him.
      “After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.”
      Matthew 3:16‭-‬17 NLT

      So yes he knew Jesus as his cousin I believe they grew up together, but Jesus wasn’t revealed of who He REALLY was until his baptism.

      Just my opinion.

      • Becky

        Looked at a couple of commentaries and have come up with two different theories…
        1. They didn’t really know each other all that well because they grew up in different towns/areas of the country, especially into their early adult years where John lived in the wilderness and Jesus lived in Nazareth.
        2. Different meanings of the word “know” – John might have known Jesus as a relative but not known/recognized him as the Son of God until after his baptism.
        Not sure which one I’m going with or if it’s helpful at all, but that’s what I was finding.

    • Gina

      I think when John refers to Him with a capital H it takes on a new meaning. John did not know Him in His true calling as God’s Son. He may have known him as a child but it wasn’t revealed to John until later when the Holy Spirit opened Johns eyes to Who He was. Much like our own spiritual walk, we are blind until we see Him for Who He is and that is where the Spirit comes in and opens our eyes to Jesus and then we KNOW HIM. Hope that helped and didn’t add to confusion. :).

    • Beth

      In reference to John, the beloved apostol who wrote this gospel was the brother of Andrew. John the Baptist was a different John, the cousin of Jesus.

  • I never realized that John the Baptist, a blood relative of Jesus, did not know that his cousin was God the Son
    until Jesus’ baptism. All those years as children together, it wasn’t until now that John the Baptist knew as the dove descended on Christ.

    • Marianne

      Oh, I just posted the same question. ;) To be honest, I can´t believe he didn´t know. My guess is, that in the original text says something slightly different. Hopefully someone can enlighten us …

      • Marianne

        Perhaps the dove was the sign for him, that the time Jesus would step into action was NOW. And that this was the fact he didn´t and could´t know beforehand …

        • Leslie

          So many did not know…his own brothers who lived life with him, his disciples, perhaps even his own mother. It took the Holy Spirit’s revelation for John the Baptist to finally get it. This is comforting to me as I look at so many around me who have had God’s blessings , strong biblical teaching and a Christian family but yet still do not know Jesus for who he is.

    • Beth

      John the Baptist and John the beloved (the writer of the Gospel of John) were two different people. John the Baptist was Jesus’ cousin. John the beloved was the brother of Andrew, they were fishermen.

  • So excited to be starting another study with this community. Our church is beginning the year with an emphasis on increasing the amount of scripture we read and getting God’s Word in us daily. I’m looking forward to spending time in God’s Word everyday and growing in my knowledge of Him, my Savior.

    • Jessie

      Our church is beginning the year with an emphasis on getting back to the basics of who God is, what we are called to do, how does he ask us to live, etc. I’m excited to get back to the word. Thank you for posting this sis!

    • Kayla Lusk

      Our church is too!

Further Reading...