Sunday, August 21, 2011

August 21 (Matthew 27:55-56)

And many women were there beholding afar off, which followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him: Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s children. (KJV)

Who was doing the laundry while these women were watching the crucifixion? Who was tending to the children, preparing the meals, or taking care of the homes? Women in first-century Judea were just as busy as anyone today, yet they had abandoned their duties for something more important.

Does this mean that tending to the basics of life is unimportant? Certainly not. It reminds us, however, that no matter how pressing we may think some things are, there are others that demand our immediate and complete attention to the exclusion of all else. What are the things that seem important to you? What are the tasks that occupy most of your time? Now ask yourself whether those are the most important. Even if they are not, it does not mean you will stop doing them. It does mean, though, that you can view them in a proper perspective.
For what would you be willing to set aside the typical activities of your life?

Father, thank You for the example of these women who saw what was truly important in life. Help me to see my life as You see it, understanding what is important, what is unimportant, and what is truly necessary. May I do all, but only, what You would have me do. In the name of Christ Jesus, my Lord, amen.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

August 14 (Philippians 1:6)

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. (KJV)

What happens when you have gone some distance in your walk with Christ and begin to drift? What happens when you continue to fall into sin? What happens when the blazing joy of first knowing your Lord begins to fade?

One thing that does not happen is that God does not drop you like a hot potato. He does not finally, after giving you so much grace and so many opportunities, wash His hands of you. Whatever He has started in you, He will see through to the end, and Paul says we should be confident about this.

Pause for a moment and let those words sink in and then let the deep truth of those words penetrate your heart. It does not matter if you cannot see God from where you are. He can see you. It does not matter if the fire of your love has cooled. His love for you never wavers. It does not matter if you think you are making no progress in your spiritual life. Your loving, heavenly Father is the one Who will see you through to the end.

O Lord, my God, I am humbled when I think for even a moment about Your boundless love and unshakable promises. I stake my confidence on You, the author and perfecter of our faith, as I face what lies before me. In the name of Christ Jesus, my Savior, I pray. Amen.

Copyright © 2011 by Steven R. Perkins

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August 7 (Mark 1:35)

And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. (KJV)

It is summer vacation, and I have been stuffing myself, just gorging on all my favorite things. I have been going hog wild doing all that I cannot do during the work year. For me this means spending as much time humanly possibly playing with our children, reading, and writing. These are certainly not bad things. In fact, they are quite good, and I have enjoyed going at them full bore, trying to do as much of what I love as I can for as long as summer lasts.

I have, however, allowed my prayer and devotional life to slip. Instead of following my normal schedule of rising early to pray and read Scripture, I have fallen back into praying here and there with no regularity. The same is true with reading the Bible, and I miss it. Or rather, I miss Him. I miss God and the times of intimacy with Him. He, of course, has gone nowhere, but I have drifted.

I am reminded of this verse from Mark, describing Jesus. He never got so caught up in the affairs of the day that He failed to remain in closest communion with His Father. I look forward this week to returning to my normal practice. I look forward to reconnecting with my heavenly Father. How about you?

Father, draw me closer in Your loving arms. Help me to slow down, be still, and know that You are God. In the name of Jesus, our Lord, I pray. Amen.

Copyright © 2011 by Steven R. Perkins