Daily Archives: January 7, 2013
If I can keep this up, I’ll try to consolidate my daily devotional reflections at the end of every week.
If I can…
// 1 Jan | Mark 1
In preaching the Gospel and doing God’s will, Jesus must be to me three things: the motivation, the means and the message. For without which, I’d have no purpose, no power and no point.
// 2 Jan | Mark 2
Continuous conversations with and a downright dependence on God remind us that salvation is for those who know they are sinners, not those who think they are righteous.
// 3 Jan | Mark 3
Discipleship 101 according to Jesus:
- Separate the serious from the curious.
- Invite those you want to go with you.
- Wait for willing ones to respond and come to you.
- Appoint them formally and call them your disciples.
- Allow them to follow and accompany you in ministry.
- Enable, empower and send them out to preach the Gospel.
- (Show them where your authority comes from and) provide opportunities for them to exercise their spiritual authority by faith to help others and set them free.
Strangely and stupidly enough, some of us desire to be accelerated to #7 before we accomplish #1 to #3.
For me, #3 is the most important step in discipleship because that’s the trigger point where a congregational believer grows into a committed one by being willing to die to himself and take up the Cross – the marks of a true disciple. #3 is also the only step where discipleship is not determined by the intentionality of the discipler but the initiative of the disciple.
Let us not be too hasty to do God’s work before we even surrender ourselves to His will and way.
// 4 Jan | 1 Peter 4
God-fearing Christians should EXPECT suffering, for God’s purpose in it is to help us IDENTIFY with Christ, and to enjoy the VICTORY that He has already won. Doing GOOD in the face of suffering, especially responding in LOVE to both friends and foes, creates a powerful OPPORTUNITY to share our faith. When we undergo fiery trials knowing that God is both SOVEREIGN and FAITHFUL, we will be RESTED not restless, for He is in CONTROL! God, I entrust my soul to You!!!
// 5 Jan | 1 Peter 4:1-9
On top of expecting suffering as a Christian, I want to EMBRACE suffering for it identifies me with Christ (since He suffered in the physical). But more than that, it allows me to experience the victory over the power of sin that He won on the cross. That is why my internal attitude towards suffering trumps my external ability to withstand it; an attitude of love displays my relationship with Christ, covers my own sin and causes my sins to be forgiven. Lord, help me to embrace suffering with an attitude of love!
// 6 Jan | 1 Peter 4:10-19
The Master has entrusted each of you with at least one spiritual gift (out of a minimum of 19 varieties) to use and manage well for two purposes: 1) serve each other and 2) bring glory to God. So the question isn’t whether you have a spiritual gift or not (because you do), but whether you are using it for its intended purposes, or to serve and bring glory to yourself. Serving with your God-given gift is a privilege; it isn’t something you have to do, but something you get to do.