JUL 09  / Sunday – Read Joel 1:1-15 and 2:12-13, 28-29

Overview: From emerald ash borers to Asian carp, there are some critters bent on destroying our world. Is it too late to make things better? Not when God offers an opportunity to change.

10 / Mon – Invasive creatures in Egypt  |  Read Exodus 8:1-32 and 10:1-20

Something becomes invasive when it is located where it does not belong or when it grows to excessive quantities. The Pharaoh refused to obey God and release the Israelite slaves so the Lord allowed plagues of frogs, gnats, flies and locusts to invade Egypt. Only then did Pharaoh agree but once the plague subsided, he changed his mind. (Each plague seemed to correspond to one or more Egyptian gods.) God did give up until Pharaoh bent to His will. Has this ever happened to you? How long before you completely surrendered to the Lord?

11 / Tue – Invasive creatures in Judah  |  Read Joel 1:1-15 and 2:12-13

When life is good, it is easy to slide into complacency, to be more focused on the blessings than on the One who gives them. A swarm of locusts had invaded Judah and eaten everything in sight. In response to this disaster, the prophet Joel called the people to repent and return to the Lord. They demonstrated their heartfelt sorrow through fasting, community prayer, and turning their hearts back to the Lord. What insights from these verses might apply to your life today?

12 / Wed – What is God after?  |  Read Joel 2:20-27 (ESV)

When bad things happen, a person can become either bitter or better. Even if a situation seems hopeless, it is not necessarily so. Judah was devastated; it looked like God’s people would starve. But when they repented, He provided all that they needed in amazing ways. What was His ultimate purpose in allowing this disaster (v 27)? Have you seen God not only provide but even restore what had been lost (v 25) in your own life or someone you know? It’s never too late to return to Him.

13 / Thu – When controlled, good happens  |  Read Leviticus 11:22 / Mark 1:6

The last few days have been focused on the damage locusts can do but did you know locusts are good to eat and have been a part of the human diet in more than 65 countries for thousands of years? Research shows locusts are nutritionally as rich, or in some cases, richer than conventional meats. John the Baptizer’s diet may seem weird to you but it was what God provided. It illustrates how things that seem terrible to you may actually have some positive value. What might happen if you started to look at crazy things in your life from God’s perspective?

14 / Fri – Weeds and thorns  |  Read Mark 4:7, 18-19

Vegetation can also become invasive. When plants grow in the wild, they can look beautiful. The seeds they produce feed birds and wildlife. But what happens if they invade your garden? Jesus used this story to illustrate a spiritual truth. The word of God is like a seed. It has the potential to change your life by producing spiritual fruit. Weeds can choke it out. What are some of those invasives mentioned here? What can you do about any you might find growing in your own life?

15 / Sat – Not forever  |  Read 2 Cor 5:17 (KJV) / Gal 2:20 / Rev 21:1

Because of sin, even nature has been corrupted. What is natural can grow to excessive quantities and invade where it does not belong. Beside vegetation or insects or wild animals, what are some aspects of human nature that could become invasive? What is God’s solution according to these verses? The good news is He’s making you into a new person from the inside out as you cooperate with the Holy Spirit. Someday you will have a new body to go with your new nature and you will live in a new and perfect place with Him. How do these truths give you hope?


The GPS (Grow, Pray, Study) Guide provides Scripture and insights to enhance your journey, whether you’re just starting to explore the Christian faith or are a long-time Christian.

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The GPS (Grow, Pray, Study) Guide provides Scripture and insights to enhance your journey, whether you’re just starting to explore the Christian faith or are a long-time Christian.