Daily Devotion for October 6, 2015
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.
Heaven hear me now.
I'm lost without a cause
After giving it my all.
Winter storms have come
And darkened my sun.
After all that I've been through
Who on earth can I turn to?
I look to you. I look to you.
After all my strength is gone,
In you I can be strong.
I look to you.
I look to you.
And when melodies are gone,
In you I hear a song.
I look to you.
About to lose my breath,
There's no more fighting left,
Sinking to rise no more,
Searching for that open door.
And every road that I've taken
Lead to my regret.
And I don't know if I'm going to make it.
Nothing to do but lift my head.
My levees are broken,
My walls have come
Crumbling down on me.
When rain is falling.
Defeat is calling.
I need you to set me free.
Take me far away from the battle.
I need you to shine on me.
Music and lyrics by Robert S. Kelly
Prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian (350 A.D.)
O Lord and Master of my life, this day, give me not the spirit of laziness, despair, lust of power, and idle talk. But give rather the spirit of sobriety, humility, patience and love to Thy servant.
Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my own transgressions and not to judge my brother, for blessed art Thou unto ages of ages.
For Those Making All Kinds of Journeys
I pray for all who will be making journeys today: For those who are going to a new job and for those who are going to work for the last time today; For the emergency services who will travel at high speed on land, water or in the air, to bring help to others; For those starting a new life as they move into a new home; For those travelling to or from prison; For people who will go into hospital today; For young people on their way to school, college and university; For those who are lost on the journey of life; For those who will die today and make their final journey. I remember all these people now, and ask your blessing upon them, Lord.
[What journey am I making today?]
Oh Heavenly Father, in whom I live and move and have my being, I humbly pray you so to guide and govern me by your Holy Spirit, that in all the joys, occupations, and cares of this day I may never forget you, but remember that I am ever walking in your sight. In Christ's name, I pray,
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
Fear of Others
“We fear men so much, because we fear God so little.”
~ William Gurnall
"I do not accept glory from human beings, but I know you. I know that you do not have the love of God in your hearts. I have come in my Father's name, and you do not accept me; but if someone else comes in his own name, you will accept him. How can you believe since you accept glory from one another but do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?
But do not think I will accuse you before the Father. Your accuser is Moses, on whom your hopes are set. If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?"
John the Evangelist
Notes on the Scripture
"Glory" is not a word used as much as it once was, because it signifies a kind of praise and honor (or worthiness of such praise) not so common in our cynical modern world. It means a distinctly high type of praise, so high that we want to bow down in reverence.
Christ here asks the question, how can we believe in him if we seek glory from others but do not seek the glory that comes only from God? This is vital: belief in Christ is the key to His grace (as He tells us in the preceding verses). So if seeking the glory from men, rather than the glory of God, means we do not truly believe in Christ, we have not come to live within His grace.
Imagine a perfect person, someone who has never done anything wrong. Would such a person not deserve our highest admiration? Of course he would. (And unfortunately, many hypocrites pretend to be sinless just in order to earn the praise of others). But the Bible teaches us that nobody is without sin. Only through Christ's grace can our sins be forgiven, and only thus might we truly find glory ourselves.
Which leads to a dilemma: One of the prime attributes of belief in Christ is seeking after a deep humility, which poses a dilemma. We cannot advertise our "goodness"; we cannot actively seek the praise of men, if we want the true glory that can come only from God.
So Christ says, "if someone comes in his own name, you accept him; how can you believe (if) you accept glory from one another but do not seek the glory that comes only from God?" He does not say that we cannot accept glory from others, or give them glory "in their own name", but He comes awfully close to it. This is especially true when we consider this passage with other of Christ's teachings, e.g. "the meek shall inherit the earth".
The knowledge that both glory and judgment come from God tempers our view of other people. It tempers our praise, because no matter how great their accomplishments, they cannot know true glory by their deeds. But it also tempers our hatred; for nobody but Christ has authority to judge our lives or the lives of others, and it is our Christian duty to temper our revulsion and find forgiveness and love for others. They are God's beautiful and beloved children, no matter how much we dislike them.