Monday, April 03, 2017

All Over the World

Today's Reading:
2 Chronicles 14:1-16:14
Colossians 1:1-17
Psalm 115:12-18

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Focus Verses: Colossians 1:3-6
3 We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4 because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints— 5 the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel 6 that has come to you. All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God's grace in all its truth.

The truth of God and the good news of Jesus is bearing fruit all over the world. Christianity is not a private thing or a western culture thing. In fact, there are now more Christians in the southern hemisphere than in the northern. English is not the first language of most Christians.

People all around the globe are putting their faith in Jesus, which is resulting in changed lives. Hope for life and love for others flows out of an understanding of God's grace in all its truth. Hearing about the worldwide response to Christ should make me thankful and move me to prayer.

Response and Action:
I want to be a world Christian who appreciates being part of the global community of faith in Christ. I want to pray for Christians around the world. I want to grow in my own faith as I gain understanding and encouragement from Christians living in other cultures and circumstances. I want to understand and experience God's grace in all its truth.

Dear Lord, thank you for your grace and mercy to all people. Thank you for extending your love to the whole world. Thank you for saving all who put their faith in Christ. Help me to understand and remember that my faith in Christ is not just a personal, individual affair, but is, rather, a reality to be experienced in a global community of believers. Help me to be faithful to pray for Christians around the world. Help all who follow Christ to be a light and witness, that the household of faith will extend to and include people from every tribe, language, ethnicity, and nation. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: Revelation 5:9-10
9 And they sang a new song: "You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. 10 You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth." 

Praying: Finding Our Way Through Duty to Delight
by J. I. Packer and Carolyn Nystrom

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