Use this devo as you are able, in whole or in part. Don’t feel compelled to read it all. Simply read and meditate upon whatever catches your attention. The goal is enjoying time with God through His Word and in prayer. Questions about the devotional elements?
Call to Prayer
In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly. (Psalm 5:3)
Prayer of Confession
Confession is formative. It trains us to recognize the ways our hearts have become de-formed and how Christ is at work bringing redemption in our lives. Pray with this in mind.
Good God, you didn’t turn your back on a world plunged up to its neck in physical and spiritual death but set out to rescue it.
We confess that we often and subtly are drawn back into living as though you have not rescued us by your grace and steadfast love.
We worship you for your resolute goodness and wisdom that sought and found us;
We thank you for the blessing that has come to us in Jesus,
And we pray that our lives may be a blessing to others. Amen.
Take a moment to confess your sins, knowing that he hears you.
This reading plan will help you to develop the habit of being in God’s Word each morning and evening. Come to this time with expectation. Expect God to reveal himself to you. Expect that he delights in you being there, even when you’ve wandered away. Growing a spiritual habit is a slow, patient process. So be kind to yourself as you grow!
Readings are hyperlinked. Simply hover over the passage or click Morning/Evening Reading (email version).
Praying the Psalms: Read slowly. Take note of words and phrases. Bring them before the Lord in prayer and personalize the passage as you pray.
NT Context: “Paul’s Second Letter to the Corinthians was written during a difficult period in his relation with the church at Corinth. Some members of the church had evidently made strong attacks against Paul, but he shows his deep longing for reconciliation and expresses his great joy when this is brought about.” Meditate on the passage, noting a few words or a phrase that stood out. Take them to God in prayer.
OT Context: “The book of Deuteronomy is organized as a series of addresses given by Moses to the people of Israel in the land of Moab, where they had stopped at the end of the long wilderness journey and were about to enter and occupy Canaan…The great theme of the book is that God has saved and blessed his chosen people, whom he loves; so his people are to remember this, and love and obey him, so that they may have life and continued blessing. The key verses of the book are 6:4–6, and contain the words that Jesus called the greatest of all commandments, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.”Reflect on the passage. Who was the original audience, and what was their situation? How is that relevant to you today?
Over the next few months our sermon series will explore who God is and what it means for us as His Creation to know Him. Each day this devo will tread along a variety of paths connected to the week’s theme in Knowing God. Consider this your invitation to come along for the ride as we head into the wilds of coming to know and experience God’s person and grace.
Today’s devotional comes from The Reservoir and explores how we cooperate with God’s grace in our life.
You have never seen people more active than those who have been set on fire by the grace of God. — Dallas Willard
Spiritual growth is not a passive affair. As we saw yesterday, we have been created with human bodies and we can decide how we are going to live in them as we receive God’s grace and the power of the Holy Spirit. In today’s reading, consider carefully the active phrases Paul uses to describe the process of spiritual transformation: “Put to death.” “Get rid of all such things.” “Clothe yourselves.” “Bear with one another.” “Forgive each other.” “Do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God.”
Every phrase shows the role we play in responding to the grace we have received in Jesus. Paul beckons us to respond to and cooperate with God’s gracious work within us.
1. Elsewhere Dallas Willard wrote, “Grace isn’t opposed to effort. Grace is opposed to earning” What’s the difference between cooperating with God (effort) and striving for God’s approval (earning)?
2. Three times in this passage Paul refers to “clothing yourselves.” Why does he use that metaphor? What, practically, does this mean for us?
3. Paul also mentions being thankful multiple times. Take a few minutes now to write down two specific things that you are thankful for from the last month.
Evening Prayer of Examen
Where did you move with or feel close to Jesus today?
Where did you resist or feel far from Jesus today?
Where is Jesus leading you tomorrow? Ask for joy as you follow him.
On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. (Psalm 63:6-7)