June 27 - July 2
Monday, June 27 – “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” (Matthew 3:2) “Repent” means to turn around. Why would you turn around right here in the middle of your life? Because the “kingdom of heaven has come near”. Near, meaning that it’s close. But you must do something in order to close the gap. That something is repent meaning turn around. Why didn’t God just make the kingdom of heaven here, instead of near? Because God wants you to want the kingdom of heaven. For want to is so much more powerful than have to.
Tuesday, June 28 – “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 28:19) These are the words of Jesus. Notice that his call is to make “disciples”. A disciple is someone who is being taught. Many people shy away from sharing their faith for they feel that they need to have all the answers, before they can share about anything. If you had all the answers you wouldn’t be a disciple. And, on this side of eternity, you will always be a disciple. Sharing your faith isn’t about knowing everything. Sharing your faith is about being real. Sharing who you are, in this moment in time, with anyone and everyone.
Wednesday, June 29 – “But now in Christ Jesus you who were once far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 2:13) Jesus has already done all of the heavy lifting in this whole salvation thing? All you need to do now is ski in his wake. Hitch yourself to Jesus’ boat and allow him to pull you around. No water skier every tried to ski in front of their tow boat. Why? Because it will never work. Right now, you are laying in the water, waiting. Jesus is right here throwing you a line. All you need to do is reach out and grab it.
Thursday, June 30 – “If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.” (Mark 8:38) Don’t get caught up in “this adulterous and sinful generation”, as if it were a personal jab. Each and every generation, since Adam and Eve, has been and will continue to be “this adulterous and sinful generation”. Be more bothered about the possibility that you are ashamed of Jesus and his words right here, right now. If I accused you of being a follower of Jesus, would there be enough evidence in your life to convict you?
Friday, July 1 – “We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” (Romans 6:4) Baptism is an outward sign of an inward reality. It is a visual, experiential, sign of what happens in your life, when you believe in Jesus. You die to yourself and you are reborn; you live in Jesus. Baptism is something that you can’t do to yourself. You must be baptized by someone. This represents the fact that this transformation of your life isn’t a product of your works, but of God’s love.
Saturday, July 2 – “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” (Colossians 4:2) The big question is always, “Now that I have been baptized, what do I do?” Well, here is where you start – prayer. If you don’t have a prayer life, get one. If you do have a prayer life, make sure it is “watchful and thankful”. May your prayers lead you through the “I don’t know” of life. May your prayers be so much more than simply asking for what you want. May your prayers seek to align your will with God’s will for your life.