2019 Daily Devo 12.19.19

By December 19, 2019Daily Devotional

Week 50 Day 4

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I. Prayer to enter the Lord’s presence:

Be still for a moment. “Lord, I give the day that is now past to you.  It is yours.  I give the day that is to come to you; help me to see where you are working and to join you there.  Speak to me during these moments.  I commit them and myself to you.”

 II. Prayer of Confession:

“Lord, you are faithful to forgive me and cleanse me of my sin when I confess it to you.  I confess my sin(s) of ______________.  Thank you for forgiveness.” (1 John 1:9)

III. Prayer of Thanksgiving:

Choose to be thankful, speak out loud of what God has done.
“Thank you, Father, for _________________.  Fill my heart and my mouth with gratitude throughout this day.”

IV. Scripture Reflection

Read:

And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. (Luke 9:23-24)

Reflect:

The paradox of the “already, not yet” Kingdom of God confronts us. The Kingdom of God has come in Christ, but it grows up in the midst of the present, evil age, which is under rule of Satan. We find ourselves caught between these two present realities, constantly faced with the decision of whether we will submit to the reign of Christ the King or to the reign of our world, our flesh, and, ultimately, the reign of Satan.

As we face this confrontation, Jesus says we have two options: to try to “save” our lives and, as a result, lose them. Or to willingly “lose” our lives for Christ’s sake and, as a result, save them.

Jesus’ call to self-sacrifice is counter-cultural. The prevailing desire of our culture today is to “save” our lives. If you were to poll a representative segment of Americans as to their goals and values in life, we’d probably end up with a list like this: comfort, freedom, prosperity, success, advancement, authority, individualism, autonomy. Self-sacrifice? No, it probably wouldn’t make the list.

And yet Jesus says that true life cannot be found unless we die to the present age, to self-rule, and to the desires of the flesh. He promises that, in this dying, we will find life. That is the paradox of the “already, not yet” Kingdom of God.

Respond:

Ask God to show you any ways you might be trying to resist His counsel and direction in order to “save” your life. If the Spirit brings something to mind, surrender it to Him and move forward with faith and obedience. If nothing comes to mind, commit to Jesus that you will live to “lose” your life this day, for His sake.

V. Prayer for others:

Pray specifically for the concerns of your life and the lives of others. 

VI. Prayer of commitment:

Lord God, I commit to love you with all my heart and with all my soul and with all my strength and with all my mind and to love my neighbor as myself.  Empower me today to love you and others with everything that I am.”  (Luke 10:27)

This Month’s Scripture Memory:

Isaiah 53:4-6
Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid him the iniquity of us all.

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