This week's devotional is from Pastor Jeff.
ENCOUNTER: Matt. 6:10; Psalm 86:11
“Your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”
“Teach me your way, LORD, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.”
If you heard my sermon on Sunday, then you would understand the picture above. (If not, you can link here to view it when you get a chance.) The thing about the sunglasses story is that being a Jesus follower all comes down to the question of whether or not I was going to accept God's way of how my life should go, God's way of providing for me, God's way of what is right and wrong, God's way of working, resting, playing. Do I want God's will?
Most of questions of "how do I live?" with which we wrestle might be able to be categorized as some sort of moral battle, but the journey we are on is not really about morals. It is about being willing to submit to our Great God and Savior's will. Our Heavenly Father has a "good, pleasing, and perfect will" that he longs for us to obey and live into. And Jesus said that it matters how we live... That the Holy Spirit possesses us in order to guide us into all truth. So we keep being led back to the question of how willing I am to desire God's way and submit to this leading and be obedient to the Lord.
As God's people, it is a worthwhile effort to check our hearts each day, throughout all the myriad of encounters, choices, emotions, and responsibilities, to see if the Holy Spirit is nudging us about something we have done... or should have done... or are about do. It is a simple and easy prayer discipline to ask many times per day, "Lord Jesus, what is your will here? What is your way? Do I want your way?"
BE A BLESSING:
A way to practice living like this is to look toward a particular encounter or relationship that is on your calendar today, and ask Jesus how he would like you to love and bless them. Maybe it is your spouse or friend that you are connecting with at the end of your work day. Maybe it is a work appointment. Maybe it is a person whose cubicle you walk past on your way to the copier. Maybe it is the neighbor whose house you stop in front of next to your mailboxes. Ask God, "Do I want your way with how this encounter goes? Is there something you want me to do today as an act of obedience to you, God, and as an act of love toward them? Try it and see... He will give you all kinds of leading!
Each week we encourage you with some form of this message: "You grow best when you are connected in a small-er group." As we think about this journey of seeking to understand and be obedient to God's will, it makes total sense that processing what is happening in our lives with others will be immensely helpful. We can help each other see God's movements and recognize our blind spots when we engage in meaningful conversation about our lives. Is there someone you can call today to schedule a coffee and talk about your walks with God?
"Yet not as I will, but as you will."