Closing the Gap 12.14.18

By December 14, 2018Daily Devotional

Advent Season

Week 49 Day 5

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:

Matt. 4:13-17 Leaving Nazareth, he went and lived in Capernaum, which was by the lake in the area of Zebulun and Naphtali — to fulfill what was said through the prophet Isaiah:  “Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, along the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles — the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.”

Reflect:

“All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.” (Hebrews 11:13) What good is a promise of the future if you die before it arrives?  The people listed in Hebrews 11 believed the promises of God and lived their lives with expectancy however they died before those promises were realized. Was their faith in vain? No, of course not. The promises they “outlived” were partially fulfilled in their lives and will be fully realized in the age to come.  They were not “cheated” because they did not experience the fullness of the promises in their life on earth, no one does. They were looking “past” this life to the fuller experience of life that God had planned for them. “People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country — a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.” (Hebrews 11:14-16)  This doesn’t mean that their earthly lives were basically a “throw away.” They experienced God personally during their lives of faith on earth. They didn’t get to see all he was going to do, but they did get to experience personal relationship with God.  Ultimately the promises of God all lead to God himself. The full experience of the promises of God will not be something God “does” or “provides” it will be God himself.  We will see him face to face and we will know him as he is.  So while these men and women of faith did not live to see the final fulfillment of God’s promises they did live knowing and experiencing the God of those promises.  They may not have seen the promises fulfilled yet God himself fulfilled them. Today you can experience the God who makes and keeps promises. You may outlive the final fulfillment of his promises in his life but you will not outlive the God who makes those promises. “I have set the LORD always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” (Psalm 16:8)

 

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.

Leave a Reply