Closing the Gap 11.14.18

By November 14, 2018 Daily Devotional

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Week 45 Day 3

Pray:

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

2 Cor. 9:6-8 Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.

Reflect:

What do people spend their money on?  Cars, clothes, food, housing, entertainment?  Yes, but also no. They most often spend their money on their hearts.  “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life” (Pr. 4:23).  The heart is the “real you.” It is the thinking, choosing, feeling, believing you.  From this “inside” place flow all of our “outside” choices. So, we must carefully guard, keep watch, and protect this place because it shapes our lives.  Everything else flows from there. So then, how do we spend our money on our hearts? The heart is the wellspring of life, thus it is what drives our spending or, if we are out of money, our desire to be able to spend.  When the heart is full of faith in Jesus and love for people, then spending patterns flow from there. When the heart is full of need and want and discontentment, then the spending patterns (or desire to spend) flows from there.  Some people, maybe many people, have trained their hearts to find joy and meaning in buying things. Of course, buying doesn’t work very well or very long as a source of joy and meaning, so it is more of a temporary “buzz” than a real source of meaning.  This is why spending can become an addiction, because people will look for the next “buzz” from the next purchase. Some have trained their hearts to find security and significance in saving money. They do not need to actually spend to find meaning; instead, they need to hoard the ability to spend in order to feel safe and powerful.  There are many ways money can hold central place in a human heart. These are just two of those ways. We must act continually and decisively against money going from its rightful place as a neutral “tool” to a non-neutral god in our lives. It is not money, but the “love” of money that is the root of all kinds of evil. Give your money away faithfully and generously as an act of faith, obedience, and heart training.  As you do, keep this important truth in the center of your mind: “God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work” (2 Cor. 9:8). Giving and living in God’s sufficiency go hand in hand or “hand in heart.”

Pray:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

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