Our Church: Day Nineteen

JANUARY 22ND, 2021      |       This was a lot to read today, but it highlights two very important truths – God intends His house to be full and He will stop at nothing in pursuit of each one of us. Isn’t that beautiful? Taking a closer look at the Luke 14 passage, I see three things: a concern, a caution and a conviction. The concern is that we have eyes to see but not hearts to perceive. Luke 14:1 says, “. . . they were watching Him closely.” That doesn’t mean they were watching Him with admiration; the phrase means to inspect insidiously, scrupulously. The religious elite were watching for a chance to trap Him. Is that ever true of us? The caution is that we keep ourselves at arm’s length and never accept His invitation. In this passage, possessions, careers and relationships kept the people from saying yes to the dinner invitation. The same is true in our world today. What keeps you from saying yes to Him? Maybe for you the invitation isn’t for salvation, but is He inviting you during this season of prayer and fasting to a deeper level of intimacy with Him? The conviction is that God intends His house to be full! Do we share His conviction? Do we invite our co-workers, friends and neighbors to church? If not, why not? Let’s fill the place! Luke 15 is a string of very familiar parables or stories to express the profound truth that God will stop at nothing to find what is lost. He loves all people and desires for everyone to come into relationship with Him through His Son. In our Western view, we see these parables as the lost sheep, the lost coin and the lost (prodigal) son. But if we view them through a Middle Eastern lens, they are known as stories about a good shepherd, the value of one who is lost and a running father. Let that imagery sink in for a moment. Jesus is our Great Shepherd, He sees value in those who are lost and far away, and He is always running toward us with great love and compassion. Do you see Him as running toward you? He is. He loves you, He sees you, He is for you. Turn toward Him now. Feel His embrace and find rest for your soul.

Our Church: Day Nineteen

Luke 14:1, 15-24, Luke 15:1-24

Luke 14:1, 15-24, Luke 15:1-24

This was a lot to read today, but it highlights two very important truths – God intends His house to be full and He will stop at nothing in pursuit of each one of us. Isn’t that beautiful? Taking a closer look at the Luke 14 passage, I see three things: a concern, a caution and a conviction. The concern is that we have eyes to see but not hearts to perceive. Luke 14:1 says, “. . . they were watching Him closely.”

That doesn’t mean they were watching Him with admiration; the phrase means to inspect insidiously, scrupulously. The religious elite were watching for a chance to trap Him. Is that ever true of us? The caution is that we keep ourselves at arm’s length and never accept His invitation. In this passage, possessions, careers and relationships kept the people from saying yes to the dinner invitation.

The same is true in our world today. What keeps you from saying yes to Him? Maybe for you the invitation isn’t for salvation, but is He inviting you during this season of prayer and fasting to a deeper level of intimacy with Him? The conviction is that God intends His house to be full! Do we share His conviction? Do we invite our co-workers, friends and neighbors to church? If not, why not? Let’s fill the place! Luke 15 is a string of very familiar parables or stories to express the profound truth that God will stop at nothing to find what is lost.

He loves all people and desires for everyone to come into relationship with Him through His Son. In our Western view, we see these parables as the lost sheep, the lost coin and the lost (prodigal) son. But if we view them through a Middle Eastern lens, they are known as stories about a good shepherd, the value of one who is lost and a running father. Let that imagery sink in for a moment.

Jesus is our Great Shepherd, He sees value in those who are lost and far away, and He is always running toward us with great love and compassion. Do you see Him as running toward you? He is. He loves you, He sees you, He is for you. Turn toward Him now. Feel His embrace and find rest for your soul.

Responding to the Word

What is the Holy Spirit saying to you from God’s Word?  

How can you apply this to your life?

Prayer

Thank you for pursuing me. I have family and friends who need Your mercy and grace. Right now I pray for . . .

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