Passage of the Day: 1st Timothy 6: 8 [bold/underlined]… 6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.
My Journal for Today: It is so easy, in our fast-paced, techno-informational culture, to lose sight of whom we are (in Christ) and whom we need to be or become as Christians. As I noted in my devotional entry for yesterday, we lose sight of the real meaning of contentment with diminished peace/power in our lives when greed, selfishness, or materialism become our focus.
In today’s passage, the Apostle Paul exhorts his younger protégé, Timothy, and teaching all believers about the basics of life so that we can have contentment, peace, and spiritual power as we live out our lives on this earth. And yesterday I also alluded to the teachings of Jesus (in Matt. 6: 33), where He strongly states that our focus must be on God first with our lives lived for His kingdom.
And using John MacArthur’s Strength for Today again, this learned author and theologian provides us [with some of my own editorial comments added] with five (5) reminders to help Christians focus on what is important and to help us avoid getting seduced into materialism
>>> #1 … Evaluate [i.e., filter] every purpose or temporal decision in the light of Matthew 6: 33. If you’re looking for a “WWJD” [What Would Jesus Do?] filtering mechanism, that verse from Jesus’ own mouth is the best one we have to see if we’re following Him, as He commanded, in this life [see also Luke 9: 23].
>>> #2 … Be thankful for everything because God owes us nothing. If we have a sense of spiritual entitlement or a victim’s mentality because of the challenges of life, we can never be truly grateful for God’s grace and providence [see Phil. 4: 19].
>>> #3 … Recognize needs versus wants. Doing so usually frees up our God-given resources (time, treasure, and talents) for Godly goals [see 2Cor. 9: 6, 7].
>>> #4 … Always spend less than we earn. How much more clear could Godly logic be; … because spending more than we earn leads to debt; and in doing so we become a slave to our indebtedness [see Prov. 22: 7]?
>>> #5 … Live sacrificially for God’s kingdom. … Our goal is to live for Savior rather than for self or the world [see Romans 12: 1-2].
And I personally believe (and have experienced) … if we live by these principles, ever focusing on God’s word for guidance and direction (see Joshua 1: 8), we will be free in Christ, empowered by God’s grace with all that we need in live (see God’s promise in 2nd Peter 1: 3 – 4).
My Prayer Today: I say again, Lord, … You are my all – in – all. Amen