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Daily Devotion for November 9, 2010
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 Morning
Heavenly Lord, you have brought me to the beginning of a new day. As the world is renewed fresh and clean, so I ask you to renew my heart with your strength and purpose. Forgive me the errors of yesterday and bless me to walk closer in your way today. This is the day I begin my life anew; shine through me so that every person I meet may feel your presence in my soul. Take my hand, precious Lord, for I cannot make it by myself. Through Christ I pray and live,
Prayer for the Gifts of the Holy Spirit
Christ Jesus, before ascending into heaven, You promised to send the Holy Spirit to Your apostles and disciples.
Grant that the same Spirit may perfect in my life the work of Your grace and love.
Grant me the Spirit of Fear of the Lord that I may be filled with a loving reverence toward You.
the Spirit of Piety that I may find peace and fulfillment in the service of God while serving others;
the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and, with courage, overcome the obstacles that interfere with my salvation;
the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know You and know myself and grow in holiness;
the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your truth;
the Spirit of Counsel that I may choose the surest way of doing Your will, seeking first the Kingdom;
Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may aspire to the things that last forever;
Teach me to be Your faithful disciple and animate me in every way with Your Spirit.
The Lord bless us and keep us. The Lord make his face to shine upon us, and be gracious unto us. The Lord lift up his countenance upon us, and give us peace, this day and evermore.
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.
they would have swallowed us alive when their anger flared against us;
the flood would have engulfed us, the torrent would have swept over us,
the raging waters would have swept us away.
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 "remembered us in his will". He bequeathed to us a great treasure. Imagine that you have received a billion dollars from a distant uncle; the inheritance that Christ left for you is even better, because a billion dollars cannot buy you eternal life, cannot buy you the hope and joy that Christ brings.
Third, knowledge of his power. When we hear the word "power", it is often an empty phrase. But understanding and accepting the power of Christ is essential to us. Christ shows his power on earth every day, but the media ignore it, or attribute it solely to the works of man when they do acknowledge it. It is mostly ignored, because Christ's power so often benefits the poor, the powerless, the ignored. 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 Paris Hilton, 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. And in both cases, the result was the murder and starvation of tens of millions of people, and the terrorizing of hundreds of millions.