“Hello? Hello? Oops don’t move I think I can hear you… No lost you again!… Nuts!”

My cell phone conversations in the early 90’s typically sounded like this.

The year was 1993 and working for a Communications Company in far North Queensland Australia meant that we were among the first to get our hands on this “new technology.”

While having a mobile phone provided some status in our remote community, the reality was, I had to be in visual sight of the signal tower in order to use the thing and gain clarity!

voice of god

 

Our conversations with God sound much the same

“Hello? Hello? Oops don’t move I think I can hear you… No lost you again!… Nuts!”

The reason? When we take our eyes off our Creator the message becomes distorted and broken. Not because there is a problem with God, but because the issue is on our end.

Pastor Wayne Cordeiro from New Hope Church in Hawaii taught me four letters that have helped me over the years to keep my eyes fixed on my Creator and my heart tuned into the clear sounds of His voice.

These four letters are:

 

S.O.A.P.

That’s right, SOAP! And it is right that it’s called SOAP because it leads us to the One who cleans us from the inside out.

As an executive leader, you know that nothing about the job is as advertised. The decisions you must daily make aren’t made in “clean, safe work environments.” Often you are faced with deals that seek to undermine your integrity, you are faced with conflict and tough decisions in which you want to hear God and know how heaven thinks.

SOAP journaling tunes our hearts back to the sounds of His voice and keeps our eyes focused on Him. SOAP journaling brings realignment of our values to the values system of Heaven.

SOAP stands for:  Scripture.  Observation.  Application.  Prayer.

Here’s how it works:

 

SCRIPTURE

As you prepare to read, pray a simple prayer for Holy Spirit to lead you to the Scripture He wants you to learn from today.

Now take the time to read and listen. Do not rush.  Read and listen for God’s voice.

At some point there is going to be a Scripture verse or word that will jump out. Stop and underline the passage or word that has jumped out and write it in your notebook, because this is the Scripture God wants to speak to you about today.

Having written it down, you now have your “S”.

The next two steps will require you asking a couple of questions.

 

OBSERVATION

The “O” question goes something like this, “What is this Scripture saying about itself?”  The goal of observation is to put the scripture you have been given into your own words, and kept to a paragraph if you can. Keeping things succinct is important, because it causes you to get specific with what God is saying.

Having written down your succinct observation, you are now ready to ask another question.

 

APPLICATION

This question is the laser pointer onto your heart that Holy Spirit wants to impress on you. The question is, “How is my life going to be different today, on the basis of the Scripture I have been given and the observation I have made?” The application should have “I” statements and “me” statements.  After all, this is God speaking to you about how He sees you, not how He sees your church, your spouse, your kids, your business or even the neighbor who ran his keys down the side of your car because you parked in his space again!

 

PRAYER

The “P” is for a prayer of appropriation. It is your time to simply come before God and acknowledge you have heard His voice through the Scripture, Observation and Application and with His help, are going to do something about it today.

We are almost there. The most important part is what follows, because it is the part that unlocks this message to you continually throughout the course of any given day. That part is the title. Read back over your new journal entry and ask Holy Spirit to give you a title for what He has just revealed to you.

Now write your title down several times and put it in places you know you will come across throughout your day. Each time you read your title it will unlock what Holy Spirit revealed to you.

“Hello? Hello? Yes, now I can hear you crystal clear No lost signals anymore!”

 


Mark AppleyardMark and Julie Appleyard have a combined Christian Leadership experience across the world of over 45 years that has included two church plants, turning a small church around to be a community impacting church as well as serving on the Senior Executive of a 3,000 member church with nearly 40 full-time staff.

While still remaining founding Pastors of Crossroads Church, they now also serve as founders of Anothen – a Senior Executive Consulting network. Anothen has been activated to fine tune Kingdom business leaders to think, speak and live from heaven’s perspective–to help them become the most influential spiritual leaders in the world.

Mark & Julie have three children and live in North Carolina.

For more information, please see www.anothen.co.