Daily Devotion for May 11, 2014
Mothers' Day (U.S.)
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.
Here’s something truly beautiful for us, this Sunday.
1. I am a child of God,
And he has sent me here,
Has given me an earthly home
With parents kind and dear.
Lead me, guide me, walk beside me,
Help me find the way.
Teach me all that I must do
To live with him someday.
2. I am a child of God,
And so my needs are great;
Help me to understand his words
Before it grows too late.
3. I am a child of God.
Rich blessings are in store;
If I but learn to do his will,
I'll live with him once more.
4. I am a child of God.
His promises are sure;
Celestial glory shall be mine
If I can but endure.
Music by Mildred Tanner Pettit, 1957
Lyrics by Naomi Ward Randall, 1957
For the Spirit of Prayer
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, oh Lord. Let your Holy Spirit guide me in my prayer and in thought, and grant me the grace to listen and hear your Word. Soften my heart, that I may be directed by your truth, and not the devices of my body and mind. In the name of Christ I ask this,
[Soften my heart.]
Prayer to the Holy Spirit to be with Me This Week
In utter humility, before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I come before you this morning, Eternal Spirit of God, to offer myself, my soul and body to you. I live in awe of your purity, your justice, and the power of your love. You are the strength and light of my soul, for without you I have neither life nor goodness. I desire never to grieve you by unfaithfulness, and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against you.
Mercifully guard my every thought; and grant that I may always watch for your light, and listen to your voice, and follow your gracious inspirations. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son, to listen first for your voice in everything I may say or do, this day, during the week to come, and always,
Almighty Father; I enter your presence confessing the things I try to conceal from you and the things I try to conceal from others. I confess the heartbreak, worry, and sorrow I have caused, that make it difficult for others to forgive me, the times I have made it easy for others to do wrong, the harm I have done that makes it hard for me to forgive myself. Lord have mercy on me, and forgive for all my sins against you and against others, through the grace of my Lord, Jesus Christ,
Dedication to Faith in Christ
The Almighty Lord, who is a strong tower to all those who put their trust in him, to whom all things in heaven, in earth, and under the earth, do bow and obey; Be now and evermore my defense; and make me know and feel, that there is no other Name under heaven given to man, in whom, and through whom, I may receive health and salvation, but only the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
Proverbs 22:1-2 (ESV)
A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches,
and favor is better than silver or gold.
The rich and the poor meet together;
the Lord is the maker of them all.
Ephesians 1:16-23 (ESV)
The Power of Christ — Human Charity
I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power.
God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come.
And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
Notes on the Scripture
In the first part, Paul prays that we will receive the spirit of wisdom. By our prayer and faith, we are to know some things that we didn't know before. First, hope; we will fully know hope, a hope for something wonderful that will actually come true.
Second, the riches of his inheritance. Christ bequeathed to us a great treasure. Imagine that you have received a billion dollars from a distant uncle; the inheritance that Christ left for us is even better, because a billion dollars cannot buy eternal life, and cannot buy the hope and joy that Christ brings.
Third, knowledge of his power. Understanding and accepting the power of Christ is essential to us. This is not the power that the secular world touts and the media find so fascinating, the power of one person to force other people to do his will. It is the power to motivate the human heart to good.
Christ shows his power on earth every day. It is mostly ignored, because Christ's power so often benefits the poor, the powerless, those the public wants to forget exist. Imagine ABC News, every night, showing a Nigerian child who has gotten a meal because one of Christ's saints, impelled by the spirit and knowledge of Christ, has fed him. If they gave every such child the amount of coverage they give Kim Kardashian, they would fill a thousand channels with praise of Christ's power on earth.
And on the rare news segment where the media do show charity at work, they do not ascribe it to Christ. They simply cannot accept that it is Christ and the Holy Spirit working through men and women; they ascribe it to some inherent goodness in mankind. But where were these actions before Christ lived? They existed only in sporadic instances and usually only to relatives or members of the same tribe.
If you doubt the power of Christ in the attitude of charity towards our fellow men, you need only to look at what happens when such charity is completely divorced from God. Both Russia and China adopted a philosophy whose primary tenets were the equal treatment of all people and the enforcement of absolute atheism. They represented the ultimate total secularization of charity. And in both cases, the result was the murder and starvation of tens of millions of people, and the terrorized misery of hundreds of millions.