You might be asking: how do you do devotions? Well, there are various ways on how to do devotions (paano mag-devotion) but in this blog, we will talk about how to do it (paano mag-devotion) using the SOAP method.
Why It’s Important to Do Devotion
It’s not only important to ask “how to do devotions”, but you need to know the WHY behind it. How to do devotions is just second priority compared to the reason why you want to spend time in personal devotion with the Lord.
Before having purposeful and Christ-centered earthly relationships, the most important relationship we should have is out relationship with Christ! This is so important as we have learned through personal experience.
One of the most important ways to enrich our relationship with the Lord is through reading and meditating on God’s Word! Some call it quiet time, some call it personal time with the Lord, some call it devotion. But, no matter what you call it, all that matters is that you are spending time with God and His Word.
When you get into a relationship with someone, for example, don’t you just want to talk to them all the time, listen to them share their thoughts, and get to know them more and more? Similarly, if we have a relationship with God, “listening” to what He wants to say through His Word helps us to learn more about Him and in turn, as we see His goodness and glory, we get to appreciate and love Him all the more.
It’s great to want to know how to do devotions because another purpose is that we get to affirm if what we sense in “our spirit” is God’s leading through the Holy Spirit or just our emotions. If you’ve ever felt a “hunch” or an “inner witness” about a decision regarding something with your career, for example, the best way to confirm that it’s the Holy Spirit speaking is through examining if it is aligned with the principles in God’s Word.
We hope that you are getting encouraged to really discover how to do devotions because the benefits don’t stop there! As we read the Bible and do devotions (whether it’s a SOAP devotion or if you’re using a different method), we get to see more of WHO WE ARE in God’s sight! That’s right–it’s like looking in a mirror! Through meditating on God’s Word, we are able to understand how by ourselves we are sinful, but how through Jesus Christ, we have been made righteous! It is NOT by our efforts and “goodness” that we are saved, but only by believing that Jesus is our only Lord and Savior!
If that fact is news to you, then we suggest that you TAKE THE FIRST STEP before jumping into a SOAP devotion.
TIP: If you’re doing daily quiet time but are using ready-made devotionals, then we want to suggest that you start reading straight from the Bible! Even if you’re a Christian who just started with their relationship with the Lord, you can do a SOAP devotion! And that’s exactly what we’ll do–we will teach you how to do devotions (paano mag-devotion) straight from the Bible and using the SOAP method.
What does SOAP stand for? SOAP stands for Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer.
Before You Do Your SOAP Devotion
I’m sure you’re already wondering how to begin with your SOAP devotion– but, hold tight because there are some steps you need to take before getting started!
1 – Choose a Bible Reading Plan
We recommend that you choose a Bible Reading Plan to help you choose what to read in the Bible daily. If you don’t know how to do that, check out the link below to have a guide on how to pick what to read from the Bible. We’ll also be sharing the Bible Reading plan that we use!
Disclaimer: We are not entirely against not following a plan. Natz (my husband), for example, picks chapters to read from the Bible out of God’s leading to him for the day, or depending on which books he has not read that much yet.
2 – Pray
Before you dive into God’s Word – make sure to pray. Ask God to open your spiritual understanding, and set your heart and attitude to one of worship and a desire to know God No matter how much you know how to do devotions (paano mag-devotion), it is all pointless if the motive is wrong.
3 – Read the Word
Following your Bible reading plan, jump in and read the Word directly from the Bible. If you have the time, it might be better to give the chapters 2-3 reads to make sure you don’t miss anything.
Note: The way of how to do devotions that we are teaching here is one that is anchored on reading the Bible (and not a devotional). That scripture piece is essential, and we’d like to go straight to the source! Again, what does SOAP stand for? It’s SCRIPTURE, observation, application and prayer. And by SCRIPTURE here, we mean full chapters and not just a single verse to read.
How To Do Devotions using the SOAP Method (Paano Mag-Devotion) — with example!
So, how do you do devotions? Let’s dive in!–and as an added bonus, we’ll not only tell you how to do devotions using the SOAP method, but we will even provide an example so you’d know how to actually put your SOAP devotion into practice!
1 – Scripture
To start off your SOAP devotion, write down the passage/s that “jumped off the page” or had an impact on you. You’d be surprised that sometimes even in just re-writing the Bible verses, God can show you something new.
Here’s an example from our Youtube tutorial video. I read the entire chapter of Matthew 21, and then zoomed in on the passage in Matthew 21:21-22 as our base SCRIPTURE for our SOAP devotion.
Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.”Matthew 21:21-22
2 – Observation
From this passage, write down your observations. Be a ‘detective’ and note down things you can glean from the passage you read as part of your SOAP devotion. What do you see? Who is the audience? Who is writing? What was the situation when it was being written? Are there commands mentioned? Are there reminders? Are there promises to claim? Are there sins to avoid? Are there repeated words?
As you get more experienced studying the Word, you’ll have more items to write here. It will also help if you learn how to use a concordance, or get acquainted with the original languages they were written in (Hebrew, Greek). No pressure! Start where you can.
Here’s an example of the OBSERVATION we had from the SCRIPTURE we selected earlier for our SOAP devotion:
– 2 conditions: HAVE FAITH and DO NOT DOUBT!
– Result: What was done to the fig tree (which was relatively smaller) can also be done to a mountain (which is bigger)
– This shows that: NO MATTER HOW BIG, it can be done if we have faith!
– Confirmed in v. 23 – WHATEVER you ask for in prayer (of course, as aligned with God’s will)
– Condition: IF YOU BELIEVE, Result: YOU WILL RECEIVE!
3 – Application
Given the observations you had, note down how this will be applied in your life. What is God saying to me today? What does this mean for me? What changes do I need to make? What action do you need to take? Is there a promise that I should believe more? Is there a character of God that we can get to know more?
We don’t want God’s Word and our SOAP devotion to just be INFORMATION but to cause TRANSFORMATION. It’s not just a matter of “knowing” how to do devotions and even what God says in His Word but actually putting it to practice.
A WORD OF CAUTION! Make sure not to 'twist' the Bible passage to meet the outcome that you want to get. The Bible should be applied to your situation. Not your situation being applied to the Bible. And, take care not to MISINTERPRET and be off from what the Bible really says! It's not just a matter of "how do you do devotions" but making sure that what you learn is TRUTH.
Here’s an example of the APPLICATION we surmised from the passage we selected earlier for our SOAP devotion. Again this is shown as well in our Youtube video.
– When I make requests to God, I can have full faith that I will receive them IF I do not doubt.
– I can practice trusting God more — sometimes I ask for healing from a headache, and just after praying, I will again declare and exclaim that my head is hurting so much. It’s as if I’m not believing that God can heal
– There’s no mountain that’s insurmountable. Everything is possible BY FAITH! I can share God’s Word with my friends, I can pray for others, too!
4 – Prayer
End the SOAP devotion time by writing down your response to what you have heard from the Lord through your Bible reading. Thank Him, praise Him, confess your sin, claim His promise. And continue that communication with God verbally (praying out loud).
An example PRAYER we had for the scripture, observation and application from earlier:
Lord, thank You for Your Word. Thank You for Your Word that helps increase my faith. I have so many times in the past that I “believed” in theory but I had doubts in my heart. Please help me Lord with my unbelief! And thank You that I can be assured that I will receive what I ask for (as long as it is within Your will) because You are a promise-keeping God, and I am already a co-heir with Christ!
I’m already grateful for the healing, the provisions, the favor, and for Your presence being with me day-to-day. I receive all Your promises in the mighty name of Jesus!
We hope that this short and quick guide helped you how to do devotions (paano mag-devotion). It will be challenging at first to get used to doing this daily – but this is a necessity to grow in our spiritual life!
Are you a visual learner? Prefer to watch us explain? Check out this video explaining how to do devotions (paano mag-devotion) in Tagalog / Filipino.
PIN THESE ON YOUR PINTEREST BOARDS!
If you liked this blog post, sign-up via our mailing list to get notified about new posts!