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: Proverbs Chapter 27
2 Let someone else praise you, and not your own mouth;
an outsider, and not your own lips.
Self-praise is a form of pride, and if we’re all honest, I will venture to say we’ve all been guilty of it. Think of the guy who stands up and starts to rattle off all the things he’s done, the one who wants to make sure you know he did them, and without his efforts, you and I would be at a loss. It’s pretty easy to spot this kind of arrogance, and needless to say, we don’t like it. The problem with self-praise is that it’s a form of pride. Remember that we noted in earlier devotions that pride is at the root of sin—all sin. Pride is always on the prowl looking for ways to insert its ugly head into our lives, and self-praise is one way this sin does so.
The example of self-praise given above is easy to spot. But many times, it’s the subtle ways that seem to be the worst. Pride will sneak in unnoticed in small ways. Say you’re at an event and as you look around the room, you begin to “rack and stack” people. You try to get a feel for where you fit in, so you drop a few names of important people you know, places you’ve traveled, and the type of work you do. All of these are not inherently bad, but when we do them to gain an advantage over others or puff ourselves up, we’ve crossed into dangerous territory.
Our single goal should be to bring glory to the Lord. It’s okay to allow others to speak about your accomplishments and abilities (don’t let it go to your head!), but a sincere follower of Christ should not be boastful or overly concerned with what others think about them. Our hearts should desire to be people of high character who focus on doing what’s right and demonstrate a life lived for God’s glory.
Listen to Paul’s words encouraging us to reach forward to God’s goal, “Not that I have already reached the goal or am already perfect, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:12-14 CSB)
Pay attention today to the things you do. Are you quick to fish for self-praise? If so, stop! Let your actions speak to those around you. Make Christ’s glory your goal, not your own.
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 Week’s Scripture Memory:
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.