Daily Devotion for December 10, 2012
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
Prayer for the Day (written by Jane Austen)
Give us grace almighty father, so to pray, as to deserve to be heard, to address thee with our hearts, as with our lips. Thou art everywhere present, from thee no secret can be hid. May the knowledge of this, teach us to fix our thoughts on thee, with reverence and devotion that we pray not in vain.
May we now, and on each return of night, consider how the past day has been spent by us, what have been our prevailing thoughts, words and actions during it, and how far we can acquit ourselves of evil.
Have we thought irreverently of thee, have we disobeyed thy commandments, have we neglected any known duty, or willingly given pain to any human being? Incline us to ask our hearts these questions oh! God, to save us from deceiving ourselves by pride or vanity
Give us a thankful sense of the blessings in which we live, of the many comforts of our lot; that we may not deserve to lose them by discontent or indifference. Hear us almighty God, for his sake who has redeemed us, and taught us thus to pray.
Prayer of Repentance (from Psalm 51)
Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin!
For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight. I am full of shame at my sin, and my heart lies heavy.
Purge me and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities. This I ask in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.
May the God of hope fill me and all of us with the joy and peace that comes from believing, so that we may abound in hope, by the power of the Holy Spirit.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
Psalm 135:13-18 (NKJV)
Your name, O Lord, endures forever, Your fame, O Lord, throughout all generations.
For the Lord will judge His people, And He will have compassion on His servants.
The idols of the nations are silver and gold, The work of men’s hands.
They have mouths, but they do not speak; Eyes they have, but they do not see;
They have ears, but they do not hear; Nor is there any breath in their mouths.
Those who make them are like them; As are all who trust in them.
Romans 8:18-25 (NASV)
I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God.
For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees?
But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.
Notes on the Scripture
In the first verse, Paul tells us that our happiness at the revelation of Christ will be greater than the pain we suffer during our lives. This is a wonderful comfort. We often feel that we suffer greatly during our lives. Just realize: no matter how much you have suffered, the joy and happiness that awaits you is greater!
Our struggles to free ourselves from pain are ultimately futile. Through our will and our nature, we make ourselves slaves to the corruption of the world. We are slaves to what we see. But what we hope for, and with the certainty of faith know that we will receive, cannot be seen. That is the very nature of faith and hope. Therefore, we wait for redemption eagerly.
We celebrate our waiting in December, during the season of Advent. Like children waiting for Santa Claus, we celebrate our waiting for the time when Christ will come again. Do you remember being a small child, lying in bed on Christmas Eve, so anxious for Christmas morning that you could hardly stand it? It seemed like forever. And Christmas always came, finally.
Just so, we wait for Christ to come again. Sometimes we wait in terrible pain, but no matter how anxious we become, we cannot force time to move faster. Christ will come when it is God's will for Him to come; we cannot make it happen any faster. We must simply wait and do in this life as Christ taught us, relying for comfort on our knowledge that the day will come. For even for the most anxious child, no matter how long the wait has seemed, Christmas does arrive.