Here is a copy of my Dad's daily devotional he sends out to his church. I love these, and I wanted to share this short word as we contemplate this holidays...
More Like Him
Daily Devotional November 26, 2008
"First Baptist Church of Magnolia exists to glorify God by worshipping Him in spirit and in truth, to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ to the unsaved and to lead believers to grow in the grace of God and knowledge of His Word."
1 John 3:16-17
New American Standard Version
16 We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But whoever has the world's goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?
The clearest way for us to understand what love is really all about is to look at the love of Christ that would cause Him to give his own life to save us. Understanding this love, we ought to be willing to give our own lives to love and serve our brothers and sisters in Christ. We show that kind of love when we share the finances and possessions that God has given us with a brother who is in need. If we should see such a brother and have no compassion or desire to help them, how can we think God's love is within us?
"How does this help me become more like Him?"
During this Thanksgiving season, I remember a time a few years ago that was a special time of joy and celebration. There were thirty family members at our home for Thanksgiving lunch and eleven of our fifteen grandchildren stayed for an extended visit. It was a wild, crazy, and absolutely wonderful time. As you might imagine, trying to keep up with eleven grandchildren under ten years of age is a challenge.
We have in our laundry room a water cooler that dispenses chilled or heated water from a five gallon container of purified water. Having pure, clean water to drink from such a dispenser is truly a blessing. However, it can also present a challenge. Twice during the time that all of our family was home, we went into the laundry room to find everything on the floor soaked and water everywhere.
Though we could never catch the culprits "red handed", we strongly suspect that one of the not quite two year old little ones went into the laundry room undetected and held down the spigot on the water cooler and watched it flow unimpeded onto everything around it. Once the giant jug was empty, they sneaked back into the flow of "grandkid chaos" never to be apprehended. I can hardly expect a confession to a crime from a perpetrator who can't talk yet! Oh well, if that's the worst mischief we face as a family, we have nothing to complain about.
In our case, we just get another jug out of the garage and we once again have an ample supply of pure, clean water. We are more blessed than we know. That year, my oldest son, Chris, had recently returned from Liberia, where he and his church were working with Living Water International to install water wells in villages where they have no source of clean water. Children in such villages are dying in record numbers because of diseases that can be prevented with simply the availability of clean water. Not only is Living Water drilling wells to provide water to drink, they are helping to plant churches in these villages so that they can bring the Living Water of Jesus Christ to the thirsty souls of these villagers.
All this is made possible by American Christians who give of their financial resources to help others in Jesus' name who have far, far less than we do. Instead of another indulgence, they are allowing some of the resources that God has given them to be used to save lives and save souls. In reality, this should not be considered especially unusual or noble for any Christian. It is, in fact, what we all should do. If we do not, this passage questions whether or not God's love is really in us. For when His love is in us, it will come out to bless others and meet their needs in His Name.
How should I pray for Him to change my life?
Ask the Lord to give you wisdom to know how to share with others in ways that will bring Him glory and be a blessing to them. Continue to be thankful for all you have received long after the Thanksgiving holiday is just a memory. Pray that He would help you to be a wise steward of all that He has entrusted to you.
Dr. Ed Seay