Monday, August 28, 2017

Whoever Welcomes a Child

Today's Reading:
Zephaniah 1:1-3:20 
Mark 9:30-10:12 
Proverbs 27:15-22
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Focus Verses:
Mark 9:35-37 
35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all." 36 He took a little child and had him stand among them. Taking him in his arms, he said to them, 37 "Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me."

Those who are focused on achievement and personal status will not find true greatness. Those whose priority is honoring God and whose joy is serving others will discover true greatness, even though it is not their goal or motivation. The person whose goal is greatness will be too busy with important people and projects to "waste" time with those people or things that are unlikely to serve that goal.

The person who is unconcerned with greatness and accomplishment is more likely to spend an afternoon with a child or serve the needs of someone who has nothing to offer in return. And in that selflessness, such a person will discover what true greatness is all about. Whoever loses his life will find it.

Response and Action:
I will not seek after accomplishment and praise. I will seek to love, know, and honor Christ Jesus with all my heart and soul. I will endeavor to live a selfless life and cultivate a heart and readiness for serving others. I will not think of myself as more important than others. I will share time and my attention with others without thought of personal gain. I will aspire to be unpretentious, unselfish, and unreserved.

O God, thank you for Jesus, who although he existed in the form of God did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself and became a servant. Help me, like him, to reach across barriers, to welcome the weak, to serve, and to look to the interests of others. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: Matthew 25:37-39 
37 "Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'

A Childlike Heart: How to Become Great in God's Kingdom
by Alan D. Wright

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