Did You Know?

Thirteen men and no women have been

executed in the United States in 2017.

The Bible passage for meditation, prayer, and reflection for the week of October 4-10, 2015, is Micah 6:6-8.  Micah, like many prophets, foretold of Israel’s destruction because she had abandoned the way of the Lord, choosing instead to worship false gods and follow the demands of godless leaders.  In this week’s reading, Micah answers a question that many were asking, that many are still asking: What does God want?

 

With what shall I come before the Lord and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, and to love kindness and mercy, and to humble yourself and walk humbly with your God?  (Micah 6:6-8, AMP)

 

What does God want?  Is it a question you have ever asked?  Everyone struggles with this question at some point in their life.  What does God want from me?  Micah’s answer then is still a valid answer today.  As you meditate on, pray over, and reflect upon this week’s verse, consider if you are asking the wrong question.  You know what God wants.  How are you going to give it to Him?

The Bible passage for meditation, prayer, and reflection for the week of September 27-October 3, 2015, is Hebrews 5:11-14.  The author of this letter is unknown, as are the intended recipients.  Those who were receiving this letter were Christians who had formally been Jews.  They were struggling in their faith and considering returning to their Jewish roots.  This letter is one of encouragement and instruction to these Christians.

 

Concerning this we have much to say which is hard to explain, since you have become dull in your [spiritual] hearing and sluggish [even slothful in achieving spiritual insight]. For even though by this time you ought to be teaching others, you actually need someone to teach you over again the very first principles of God’s Word. You have come to need milk, not solid food. For everyone who continues to feed on milk is obviously inexperienced and unskilled in the doctrine of righteousness (of conformity to the divine will in purpose, thought, and action), for he is a mere infant [not able to talk yet]! But solid food is for full-grown men, for those whose senses and mental faculties are trained by practice to discriminate and distinguish between what is morally good and noble and what is evil and contrary either to divine or human law.  (Hebrews 5:11-14, AMP)

  

Have you ever felt like you have hit a plateau in your spiritual growth?  The Christians addressed in this letter had not only stopped growing in Christ, but were starting to fall away.  They were allowing their daily struggles to overwhelm them, forgetting all that the Lord had done.  A relationship with the Lord and living a life pleasing to Him was never promised to be an easy life.  But it is a life that requires dedication and commitment in order to grow.  Meditate on, pray over and reflect upon these verses.  Do you show daily dedication and commitment to the Lord?

The Bible passage for meditation, prayer, and reflection for the week of September 20-26, 2015, is Proverbs 27:1-3.  Most of the book of Proverbs is attributed to King Solomon who was extensively known for his wisdom, which was a gift from the Lord.  Important to remember, however, is that Solomon lacked a solid relationship with Christ, often failing to follow the instructions given by the Lord, which led to Israel’s downfall.

Do not boast of [yourself and] tomorrow, for you know not what a day may bring forth. Let another man praise you, and not your own mouth; a stranger, and not your own lips. Stone is heavy and sand weighty, but a fool’s [unreasoning] wrath is heavier and more intolerable than both of them.  (Proverbs 27:1-3, AMP)

 

Are you a bragger?  Do you let others boast about your accomplishments or do you personally boast?  We are to acknowledge the work we have done, the accomplishments we have made and then move on to our next project.  It can be difficult to discern between acknowledging our work and bragging about our work.  Carefully examine your actions and words this week and seek change if necessary.  Are you a bragger?

The Bible passage for meditation, prayer, and reflection for the week of September 13-19, 2015, is John 21:20-22.  Jesus has risen and once again revealed Himself to His disciples.  During this time, Jesus and Peter have a discussion regarding Peter’s death.  But Peter is not satisfied simply knowing his fate.

 

But Peter turned and saw the disciple whom Jesus loved, following—the one who also had leaned back on His breast at the supper and had said, Lord, who is it that is going to betray You? When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, Lord, what about this man? Jesus said to him, If I want him to stay (survive, live) until I come, what is that to you? [What concern is it of yours?] You follow Me!  (John 21:20-22, AMP)

  

For many, Peter is a very relatable disciple.  He does not always think before he speaks or acts, he speaks when he sometimes shouldn’t, he makes mistakes and learns from them, and he is extremely curious.  In his heart, he truly loves the Lord, even when he makes mistakes, he still loves the Lord.  In this week’s passage, Peter’s curiosity shows once again.  Jesus reminds Peter, reminds us all, that we serve Him in the way that we have been called to serve Him.  We do not need to be overly concerned about the lives and works of others, but show our support for them.  This week, as you mediate on, pray over, and reflect upon the above passage, focus on your service to the Lord.  What are you doing to serve him everyday?  What is your role in serving Christ?

The Bible passage for meditation, prayer, and reflection for the week of August 30-September 5, 2015, is John 13:3-15.  This was Jesus’ final night with His disciples before He was to by handed over and executed.  Even then, He still had lessons to teach His disciples.

 

Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God, rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.” Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.”Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!” Jesus said to him,“The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.”For he knew who was to betray him; that was why he said, “Not all of you are clean.” When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments and resumed his place, he said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.  (John 13:3-15, ESV)

 

What chore do you absolutely despise doing?  Cleaning the toilet?  Bathing the dog?  Washing dishes?  Pick your own!  Now, would you perform this task for the man who you knew was going to lead to your death in a few hours?  Cleaning the feet of guests was a task given to a low-ranking servant.  Feet were sweaty, stinky, and caked in dirt and dust from walking.  Much like the chore you despise, it was not a task anyone normally wanted to perform.  But Jesus did.  He wanted to wash the feet of His disciples.  Through this act, Jesus showed His love for the disciples and set the example they were to follow when He had returned to heaven.  As you meditate on, pray over, and reflect upon this week’s verse, ask yourself how can you follow the example set by Jesus?  What actions are you going to take this week to follow Jesus’ example?

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