Lent – 40 Days of Spiritual Preparation (Week 2)
DAY 7 – February 25, 2015
There is a common saying to have “childlike faith.” For those with children, you have likely seen this first-hand. For those without, it is a good opportunity to sit with a child and ask them questions about life and to genuinely hear the responses they give. A child hasn’t experienced many events of the world that lead their adult counterparts to judge and make decisions. The demonstrate kindness because they see how the recipient is affected. They perform “random acts of kindness” without the anticipation of a response or reaction will receive. And often that kindness is multiplied as it is spread from recipient to recipient.
Who has recently shown you kindness in works or actions? And how can you continue to the cycle of kindness to those around you?
DAY 8 – February 26, 2015
What is goodness? If you take a look at the dictionary you will see many words that fit the definition: of favorable character; high quality; virtuous; commendable; right; proper. Often we use the word good as a placeholder. How many times have you heard – or even used – the phrase, “That’s good”? But perhaps we should look at it from this perspective – when God was finished creating the world He deemed that it was good (Genesis 1:31)… providing perhaps the ultimate criteria.
Look around today and see where God’s goodness is following you.
DAY 9 – February 27, 2015
Great is Thy faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22)
In a story that was shared by the late George Beverly Shea, he had this to say about faithfulness:
“God is always like the bright sunshine characteristic of midday; there is never a shadow to cloud His complete and perfect faithfulness.
In many ways nature show us that God is faithful. Every sunset is followed by a sunrise. Every winter is followed by summer. Whenever we plant seed, we count of a harvest. In the sky we see innumerable stars all moving in patterns which can be charted by astronomers thousands of years in advance.
I am often reassured by these words of an unknown believer: ‘Fear not tomorrow, for God is already there!’”
DAY 10 – February 28, 2015
Today the world is driven by technology – and immediacy. We have grown accustomed to getting what we want, when we want it, fulfilling our indulgences rather than looking to accomplish what is good, right and will of God. Yet, even Jesus, who could have called on His Father at a given moment to overtake His enemies displayed self-control.
“Then Jesus said to him, ‘Put your sword back into its place. For all who take the sword will perish by the sword. 53 Do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father, and he will at once send me more than twelve legions of angels? 54 But how then should the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must be so?’ (Matthew 26:52-54).”
Jesus had the power to annihilate those who came to arrest Him, yet He didn’t use the power at His disposal so that the great good might be realized. How can you show self-control today to the benefit of others?
DAY 11 – March 2, 2015
PUTTING OTHERS FIRST
“For even the Son of Man did not to be served but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many (Mark 10:45).”
When we talk about putting others first, it often comes to mind with service and charity. But we can also put others first through hospitality. This selfless act not only opens our character in putting others first, but opens our homes in a way that allows guests to see how truly authentic our gesture may be.
DAY 12 – March 3, 2015
Most people think of Lent as a time of spiritual “spring cleaning;” a time to rid our lives of things that hinder a relationship with Christ. For some this takes the form of physically denying oneself of worldly things; for others it’s a time to work on the attitude and position of the heart. Regardless of how it takes form, separating self from stuff is the first step in pursuing “righteousness, faith, love and peace” (2 Timothy 2:22).
What do you need to rid yourself of to grow closer to Christ today?