Daily Devotion for September 26, 2021
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.
This beautiful setting of today’s Scripture is written and performed by Stuart Townsend.
For Sunday Morning
Oh heavenly Lord, who decreed that we should take one day of rest, one special day in remembrance of you, today I celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the moment of His glorious victory over death. I add my voice to countless millions of others in thanks, in praise, and in awe of Your sacrifice for us.
Help me, dear Lord, to dedicate these few moments to You completely. You have taught us that we may dwell with you, even while we are caught in this difficult world, and I pray to dwell with you fully now. Guard me against wandering of mind and the intrusion of mundane thought, so that I may be fully present with you, through the power of Your Holy Spirit.
And in the coming week, I pray that my mind may constantly turn to you, so that I may always remember you when I am tempted to anger, to selfishness, to lust for power and the vanities of this world, or any of the myriad temptations that might assail me in the course of life. In the name of Christ and through faith in Him, I pray,
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; and the harm I have done that makes it hard for me to forgive myself. Lord have mercy on me, and forgive me for all my sins against you and against others. And teach the grace to forgive others to all who ask for it, through the grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ,
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 serving You, 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 thus 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. Animate me with Your Spirit in every aspect of my life, today and throughout the week to come.
Now to him who is able to keep us from stumbling and to present ourselves blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever.
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.
Numbers 6:24-26 (ESV)
The Lord bless you, and keep you:
The Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious unto you:
The Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.
Psalm 23 (King James Version)
he Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:
for thou art with me;
Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:
Thou anointest my head with oil;
My cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
Notes on the Scripture
Worry and Anxiety
This famous psalm is most often said at funerals. Yet, it is a message for the living. You have nothing to fear from evil.
When you have chosen to live in God’s house, God Himself will take you under his ultimate protection. Christians (including Christ) certainly suffer the evils of the world: poverty and bankruptcy, violence, loss of loved ones, disease, and death. But we know that, no matter how painful a moment may be, it will end soon enough; there is heaven ahead of us. God prepares a table before us in the very presence of our enemies; even at the moment someone does something terrible to us, God is preparing great happiness for us.
While still on earth, though, we can eat ourselves alive with worry. I remember some time ago, while 59-year-old Greg Norman was — unbelievably — leading after the third round of the British Open, a tournament that he was only grudgingly allowed to play in because of his age. When asked how he could do so well, a commentator gave one of the reasons: “Greg accepts his shots.” The course was very harsh, with high winds and knee-high grass in the rough, but Norman would never worry about the shot he had just made, no matter how badly it had gone. He would concentrate on the task before him, making his next shot. He was able to outplay the world’s greatest golfers in the prime of their athletic vigor, because he did not spend energy bemoaning what had befallen him, or worrying about other players and holes to come.
The Bible tells us, again and again, that “the evil of the day is sufficient unto itself.” We must take David’s psalm deep into our heart. God is going to take care of us. Our cups overflow with wonderful things, if we can just see what we do have instead of what we don’t have. We must set anxiety about the future, and bitterness about the past, aside; our job is to meet the challenges of the day, in full knowledge and utter confidence that God’s reward will come.