11/23 Matthew 6:16-21
“And when you fast, don’t make it obvious, as the hypocrites do, for they try to look miserable and disheveled so people will admire them for their fasting. I tell you the truth, that is the only reward they will ever get. 17 But when you fast, comb your hair and wash your face. 18 Then no one will notice that you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in private. And your Father, who sees everything, will reward you. 19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.
We don’t hear much about Heaven. People seem to think it is awkward and foolish to think and talk about it. Yet we are encouraged to think about Heaven and to remember that this world is not our home. You think about Heaven. Get your heart and mind focused on that eternal place that is described by Jesus himself. Jesus loves you. Your reward comes directly from Him not from those around us who ooh and aah at our ability to be HOLY! We aren’t Holy-Jesus is and He gives us His holiness so that we can spend time with Him and the Father. Therefore, as you develop your spiritual life, keep it personal, keep it close and serve those around you. Smile. Jesus loves you.
11/22 Matthew 6:9-15
Pray like this: Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy. 10 May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. 11Give us today the food we need, 12 and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us. 13 And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one. 14 “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. 15 But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.
Oh Lord I forgive those who abuse and misuse me and desperately ask for you to forgive me. Every one of us is constantly in need of forgiveness. Forgive me. Help me to see others the way you see me. Forgive them Father.
11/21 Matthew 6:1-8
1 “Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. 2When you give to someone in need, don’t do as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth, they have received all the reward they will ever get. 3 But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. 4 Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you. 5 “When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where everyone can see them. I tell you the truth, that is all the reward they will ever get. 6 But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you. 7 “When you pray, don’t babble on and on as people of other religions do. They think their prayers are answered merely by repeating their words again and again. 8 Don’t be like them, for your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him!
We serve a God who redeems the person and lavishes grace upon grace on them. Jesus is Lord. We are the servant. We are striving for opportunities to bless and help others and to keep ourselves out of the limelight. Every honor is due Jesus. We do it for His glory and for the help of the other. Do what you do and don’t seek honors and recognition for it. As a child of God we are called to help others.
11/20 Matthew 5:38-48
“You have heard the law that says the punishment must match the injury: ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say, do not resist an evil person! If someone slaps you on the right cheek, offer the other cheek also. 40 If you are sued in court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too. 41 If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, carry it two miles. 42 Give to those who ask, and don’t turn away from those who want to borrow. 43 “You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. 44 But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! 45 In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. 46 If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. 47 If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that. 48 But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.
People count with Jesus. He is Lord and we are to act like Him. He forgives we forgive. He cares we care. He loves we love. Really look at the New Testament account of Jesus and model your life after Him. He will be with you and guide you every step. Follow Jesus.
11/19 Matthew 5:25-37
“When you are on the way to court with your adversary, settle your differences quickly. Otherwise, your accuser may hand you over to the judge, who will hand you over to an officer, and you will be thrown into prison. 26 And if that happens, you surely won’t be free again until you have paid the last penny. 27 “You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 So if your eye—even your good eye —causes you to lust, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your hand—even your stronger hand —causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 31 “You have heard the law that says, ‘A man can divorce his wife by merely giving her a written notice of divorce.’ 32 But I say that a man who divorces his wife, unless she has been unfaithful, causes her to commit adultery. And anyone who marries a divorced woman also commits adultery. 33 “You have also heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not break your vows; you must carry out the vows you make to the LORD.’ 34 But I say, do not make any vows! Do not say, ‘By heaven!’ because heaven is God’s throne. 35 And do not say, ‘By the earth!’ because the earth is his footstool. And do not say, ‘By Jerusalem!’ for Jerusalem is the city of the great King. 36 Do not even say, ‘By my head!’ for you can’t turn one hair white or black. 37 Just say a simple, ‘Yes, I will,’ or ‘No, I won’t.’ Anything beyond this is from the evil one.
We are needy. We need the Lord. We need forgiveness. ALL OF US. This puts us in a position of having to depend on Jesus for our daily walk and for our eternal salvation. All we can do is trust HIM. Trust Jesus. He is worthy of all of our trust.
11/18 Matthew 5:20-24
“But I warn you—unless your righteousness is better than the righteousness of the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven! 21 “You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’ 22 But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of hell.
23 “So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, 24 leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God.
As we get to know Jesus we will discover that the first step of obedience once we are a member of the family of God is to forgive. If you have anything against someone, forgive them. True forgiveness starts in your heart and reaches out to the offender and the Father.
11/17 Matthew 5:17-19
“Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose. 18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not even the smallest detail of God’s law will disappear until its purpose is achieved. 19 So if you ignore the least commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys God’s laws and teaches them will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven.
A person who obeys God’s laws and teaches them will be called GREAT. We have our own ideas about what is GREAT and it doesn’t coincide with God’s ideas. Bend the knee to Jesus and walk in His way. That is the secret to being Great!
11/16 Matthew 5:12-16
Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way. 13 “You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless. 14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. 15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
Glorify the Father by the way you act towards His creation. We don’t save anyone but the way we act as Jesus’ hands and feet impact people for the Kingdom. It’s important that we do the best we can where-ever we are. Do the next right thing.
11/15 Matthew 5:1-11
1 One day as he saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, 2 and he began to teach them. 3 “God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. 4God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5 God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth. 6God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied. 7 God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8 God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God. 9 God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God. 10 God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. 11 “God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers.
This is kingdom living. Notice that this kind of lifestyle focuses on loving God and caring for the people He puts us with. Love is the key. We are to love those we are with and love the Lord thy God with all of our heart. Jesus loves you. Now be His hands and feet and love those you can see.
11/14 Matthew 4:18
One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers—Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew—throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living. 19 Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” 20 And they left their nets at once and followed him. 21 A little farther up the shore he saw two other brothers, James and John, sitting in a boat with their father, Zebedee, repairing their nets. And he called them to come, too. 22 They immediately followed him, leaving the boat and their father behind. 23 Jesus traveled throughout the region of Galilee, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness. 24 News about him spread as far as Syria, and people soon began bringing to him all who were sick. And whatever their sickness or disease, or if they were demon possessed or epileptic or paralyzed—he healed them all. 25 Large crowds followed him wherever he went—people from Galilee, the Ten Towns, Jerusalem, from all over Judea, and from east of the Jordan River.
Jesus called twelve and one was a devil. It is important that we work with those we are with. People need the Lord, and we want to witness, and they need you. Be where you are and do what only you can do. Do it now. Do it daily. Do what the Lord has called you to do.