Morning Devotional

A NEW CREATION

 

“Wherefore if any man is in Christ, there is a new creation: the old things are passed away; behold, they are become new.” — 2Co 5:17 (R.V. marg.).

TRUE CHRISTIANITY is very different from much that we see around us, and which is known as such, and is summed up in orthodoxy of creed, in religious service, in gifts and deeds which cost little or nothing. If Christianity is anything, it is self-giving, even to death. If Christianity means anything we must renounce self as the centre of our life and be willing to sacrifice ourselves for others. Nothing will save the world, which is cursed with the spirit of selfishness, but the repetition and filling-up as far as possible of Christ’s sacrifice by those who profess to be His servants and followers. Selfishness is destructive, but the love that gives itself even to blood and tears is constructive.

But we must be sure that the supreme thought of every word and act must be Christ who died and rose again (2Co 5:14-15). Let us not live only for humanity, but for the Son of Man, and as we live for Him the bitter will be sweet and the rough smooth, and we shall find ourselves living for the whole race of men for whom He died.

When this becomes the law of life, we are necessarily a new creation; we live under a new heaven, and walk over a new earth. There is a new aspect upon the most familiar objects of our environment. It is not that they have altered, but that we are changed from self to the spiritual; from the old life of sin to the new life of which the centre is the glorified Saviour. In his book “Grace Abounding,” Bunyan gives expression to this thought of the wonderful change that passes over the face of creation, and the aspect of human life, so soon as the heart is full of the love of God.

Let us notice the emphasis of 2Co 5:18. God was in Christ when He bore the burden of the world’s sin upon the Cross and that we have been brought to know and love Him as of His grace. It is God also who has given us the right to carry the message of mercy and forgiveness to all within our reach. “He hath given to us,” that is, to you and me, “the ministry of reconciliation.” It is for us to go forth into the world, our hearts filled with Christ’s love, telling men and women that this is a redeemed world, and that God is waiting for them to accept His love and mercy. This is the message of Christianity.

PRAYER

O Lord, forgive what I have been; sanctify what I am; and order what I shall be. AMEN.

 

~ F.B. Meyer ~

Morning Devotional

What Do You Want Jesus to Do for You?

Jesus said, “What do you want Me to do for you?” and the blind man said to Him, “Rabboni, I want to regain my sight!”

[MARK 10:51]

I once read a list of the world’s worst questions—or at least someone’s idea of the world’s worst questions. One of them was, “Can I ask you something personal?” (Not a good opener.) Or, “Do you remember me?” (Usually, when someone asks this, I don’t.) But of all the wild, crazy questions I’ve ever heard, few could beat Jesus’ asking a man who’d been blind almost all his life, “What do you want me to do for you?” It seemed obvious. But it wasn’t. Jesus was asking blind Bartimaeus—a man who had asked for alms, bread, and handouts for years—if he was ready to ask for the big thing, the thing he really longed for. When a true miracle worker came his way, would he believe enough to ask for the one thing he needed most?

Counselors will tell you that they meet few clients who seem ready to address their central problem right off the bat. They sort of circle around it until they are comfortable enough to dive in. It takes courage, and a certain level of trust, to say “Here’s what I need more than anything. Can you help?” Jesus was able and willing to give Bartimaeus that for which he asked. I believe He still walks among His people today and asks, “What do you want me to do for you? What do you really need? What is the deepest longing and desire of your heart?” But because of fear or a lack of faith, we ask Him for alms—the small change, the stuff that doesn’t matter much—when what we desperately need is healing.

It is almost as if Jesus is asking, “Do you believe enough to ask for the big thing?” Bartimaeus took the plunge. “I want to regain my sight,” he said. And immediately, Jesus healed him.

~ Dr. Edwin Young ~

Morning Prayer

Lord God,

I not wait until I am afflicted and cannot use them to thank thee for my blessings. Guard me against infirmities that are brought on through indulgences, and help me to control my life. May I never forget that regret will not retrieve the life that is spent, even if it brings forgiveness and hope for the days to come.

Amen.