Daily Devotion for November 22, 2020
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.
Our “Virtual Sunday Church” is a contemporary evangelical service featuring the popular group, Third Day.
My life has led me down the road that's so uncertain;
Now I am left alone and I am broken,
Trying to find my way,
Trying to find the faith that's gone.
This time I know that you are holding all the answers.
I'm tired of losing hope and taking chances.
On roads that never seem
To be the ones that bring me home.
Give me a revelation;
Show me what to do.
'Cause I've been trying to find my way.
I haven't got a clue.
Tell me should I stay here
Or do I need to move?
Give me a revelation.
I've got nothing without you.
I've got nothing without you.
My life has led me down this path that's ever winding,
Through every twist and turn, I'm always finding
That I am lost again;
Tell me when this road will ever end.
I don't know where I can turn;
Tell me, when will I learn?
Won't you show me where I need to go?
Let me follow your lead;
I know that it's the only way that I can get back home.
Music by Third Day
Lyrics by Matt Powell
Call to Sunday Worship
O Lord, I beseech you mercifully to hear my prayers, and the prayers of all your people who call upon you; and grant that we may both perceive and know what things we ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to fulfill them; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
Gracious God, our sins are too heavy to carry, too real to hide, and too deep to undo. Forgive what our lips tremble to name, what our hearts can no longer bear, and what has become for us a consuming fire of judgment. Set us free from a past that we cannot change; open to us a future in which we can be changed; and grant us grace to grow more and more in your likeness and image, through Jesus Christ, the light of the world.
Glorious Lord of Life
Most glorious Lord of life, that on this day,
Did make thy triumph over death and sin:
and having harrowed hell, did bring away
Captivity thence captive us to win.
This joyous day, dear Lord, with joy begin,
and grant that we for whom thou diddest die
being with thy dear blood clean washed from sin,
may live forever in felicity.
And that thy love we weighing worthily,
may likewise love thee for the same again;
and for thy sake that all like dear did buy,
and love may one another entertain.
So let us love, dear Love, like as we ought,
love is the lesson which the Lord us taught.
Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honor and glory for ever and ever.
Think of the day ahead in terms of God with you, and visualize health, strength, guidance, purity, calm confidence, and victory as the gifts of His presence.
Psalm 119:157-160 (NKJV)
Many persecute and trouble me,
yet I have not swerved from your laws.
Seeing these traitors makes me sick at heart,
because they care nothing for your word.
See how I love your commandments, Lord.
Give back my life because of your unfailing love.
The very essence of your words is truth;
all your just regulations will stand forever.
Colossians 3:5-17 (ESV)
How a Christian Should Live
ut to death, therefore, whatever in you is earthly: fornication, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed (which is idolatry). On account of these the wrath of God is coming on those who are disobedient. These are the ways you also once followed, when you were living that life.
But now you must get rid of all such things-- anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive language from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have stripped off the old self with its practices and have clothed yourselves with the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of its creator. In that renewal there is no longer Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and free; but Christ is all and in all!
As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom; and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Notes on the Scripture
I remember a coach once telling us the secret to playing great baseball. There is no secret. You win games with “basics and execution.”
Today’s lesson reminds me of what he said. There isn’t much mystery to what Paul is saying and it really doesn’t need a lot of commentary. There is no deep theological web of thought to untangle, no hidden meaning, nothing unclear. It is a matter of basics and execution.
If you want to follow the path of Christ, what you should do is fairly easy to state. Don’t act out of anger. Don’t use abusive language. Be kind. Be humble. And so on — every one of us has a pretty good idea, in theory, of how Christ wants us to behave. The problem, of course, comes when we try to actually do it in our daily lives. The “execution” part is difficult, because our old nature is very strong and often pulls us in the opposite direction.
So it is always helpful to read this passage and try to set our day’s thoughts and actions up against it. This makes for a very good meditation at the end of the day. The most frequent means of avoiding Christian duty is by lying to ourselves and getting confused. If somebody has offended us, for example, our urge to be angry and to get revenge, or at least to nurture our resentment, is powerful! We first try to ignore our Christian duty, and then, find a hundred excuses and rationalizations why we should not follow Christ in this specific instance.
It takes time and prayer, every day, to hold our thoughts and actions up to Christian standards, to see where we have gone wrong, and to ask God for help in overcoming the great power of Satan trying to tempt our human nature into sin.