Evening Devotional

Cost

Scripture Reading — Mark 14:3-9

She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.

[Mark 14:3]

There have been a few times when our family received very generous gifts. Those were times of financial need for us, and they were more appreciated than I could ever say. But, honestly, it took me a while to accept such generosity. Personal pride got in the way and made me feel guilty about accepting those gifts. But the bottom line was always that the people who felt led to give didn’t do it out of guilt or duty. They did it because they loved our family and knew that God had blessed them to be a blessing to others.

We know that the cost of ­discipleship—following Jesus—involves relying on God and following his calling in our lives. The people who blessed our family were doing just that. The woman in today’s story gave extravagantly to Jesus with no thought about her own needs or agenda. She simply did what she was called to do.

Some of the people who saw this asked why she would do such a thing. That can happen when a person follows God’s leading and shows generosity.

Surely there were other people more needy than our family when we received generous gifts. Surely the money spent on the jar of perfume for Jesus could have helped people in need. But Jesus was the one whom the woman was called to bless at that time. She followed God’s leading in her that day.

What is God leading you to do? Whom is he calling you to bless today?

Father,

Allow us to hear your call and to follow wherever you may lead, no matter the cost.

Amen.

Blessings

When all your people Israel pray and ask for help, as they acknowledge their intense pain and spread out their hands toward this temple,

[2 Chr 6:29 NET]

Solomon comes to experience; he puts his hand upon the right spot. It is knowing his “own sore” and his “own grief.” You may know another man’s; that will not profit you. You may read of experience in books, love to hear experimental ministers, and will hear no others; and yet not know your “own sore,” your “own grief.” Like a physician who may know the symptoms of every malady, and yet not have one malady of his own; so you may hear described every symptom of every disease, and yet be untouched by one.

But the man for whom Solomon’s prayer is, he that knows and feels, painfully feels, his “own sore” and his “own grief,” whose heart is indeed a grief to him, whose sins do indeed trouble him. How painful this sore often is! how it runs night and day! how full of ulcerous matter, and how it shrinks from the probe! Most of the Lord’s family have a “sore,” each some tender spot, something perhaps known to himself and to God alone, the cause of his greatest grief. It may be some secret slip he has made, some sin he has committed, some word he has spoken, or some evil thing he has done. He has been entangled, and entrapped, and cast down; and this is his grief and his sore which he feels, and that at times deeply before God. For such Solomon prays—he casts his net upon the right side of the ship; and says, “Then hear from heaven your dwelling-place, and forgive, and render unto every man according unto all his ways, whose heart you know; for you only know the hearts of the children of men.” Yes; God alone knows the heart; he knows it completely, and sees to its very bottom.

Evening Prayer

OBEDIENCE OUT OF LOVE

[Joshua 1:16; Jeremiah 42:6; John 14:15]

May your heart be filled with a burning desire to follow the Lord your God. May you willingly do what He commands you to do, and go where He commands you to go. May your obedience be out of a deep love for Him. May your love for Him propel you to submit completely to His will, even when circumstances seem unfavorable to you. I pray that you will obey the Lord your God, so that it will go well with you.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Evening Prayer

DILIGENCE OVER IDLENESS

[Proverbs 10:4; 20:13; Hebrews 6:10-12]

I pray that a diligent spirit will be upon you. May you work hard to complete every task given to you and persevere in it. I ask that you will not slack behind in anything that needs to be accomplished. May there not be a hint of idleness in you. I claim God’s promise for you: that the plans of the diligent will lead to profit.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Evening Prayer

FULFILLING YOUR PROMISES

[Proverbs 6:1-5; 22:1]

I pray that you will keep all your promises and be true to your commitment. May you be cautious with your words, so that you will not be trapped by what you say. If for any reason, you are not able to do what you have promised, may you set yourself free by humbling yourself and asking for forgiveness. May you value the integrity of your word so that others may trust you, for a good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Evening Prayer

MEET EACH OTHER’S NEEDS

[Philippians 4:19]

I pray that you will trust in God to meet all your needs. And as you trust in Him, may you be a blessing to others by providing for them. May God use you to meet the needs of others. May you be His channel of blessing to His children. I pray that you will always give thanks for the opportunity to be a blessing. May you be assured that as you meet the needs of others, God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.