Scripture: Matthew 10:21-22 (The Message) "When people realize it is the living God you are presenting and not some idol that makes them feel good, they are going to turn on you, even people in your own family. There is a great irony here: proclaiming so much love, experiencing so much hate! But don't quit. Don't cave in. It is all well worth it in the end. It is not success you are after in such times but survival."
A couple of days ago, I got hooked on a TV reality show called "Flipped out." (It's what teachers on summer vacation do!) The star of the show is Jeff, a wigged out 30-something big-time house-flipper in the
Not likely Jeff. Yes, God is angry with you for bringing in a median and not consulting him first. You're in big trouble. But then, you're the kind of guy who hires someone to "talk" to your pets. I laughed, but this is how much of society thinks and lives today. They have no concept of who the real, living God is, because they haven't read the Bible, and don't believe in what it says anyway. They make up their own religion, because God is a God or rules, and he might not like something in their lifestyle. We don't want to have anything that "feels good" to be taken away. We want to nix anything that is tough on us.
We're really good at making idols and worshiping them. Money, jobs, cars, houses, material goods, sex -- even, gasp, golf! And God forbid anyone should ever criticize us for our idols, because that means you're intolerant and if there's anything we can't tolerate, it's anyone who is intolerant. That pretty much means everyone is intolerant in some way, shape or form. Everybody's mad because no one wants to be held accountable for their actions.
In our hearts, we all know when we sin. God gave each of us a conscience. We just don't want to have to admit it, because then we might realize we should probably give it up for the sake of our emotional or physical health. Jesus reminds us of such times and tells us to stand firm for our beliefs. He warns us it will happen, so don't freak out when it does happen. We are called to be survivors in such times. He tells us to go about our business quietly, so as not to draw attention to ourselves. God wants people to see us because of our Godly virtue, not because of our holier-than-thou attitudes.
How does this apply to my life?
Today’s prayer: Lord, help me to stand firm in my beliefs, but help me to be humble each day. Lord, let my attitude turn people to you, not away from you. Amen.
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Vol. 3, No. 78
This week’s reading plan can be found at http:/www.oneyearbibleonline.com/june.asp?version=51