Friday, June 12, 2015

June 12, 2015 … “KOKO” In Christ = “<‘KOKO!!><“

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2015 - Day 163

Devotional Song: … GO TO THIS LINK  … Please take the time to take in a video of Phillips, Craig, and Dean singing All Is Well … declaring that no matter how difficult life may, ALL IS WELL in/with/thru Christ. Can we sing that today?

Highlight Passage Galatians 6: 9-10 [NKJV] … 
9 And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith. 
… We must keep on keeping on in Christ, always reaching out to help others - especially fellow Christians.
Highlight Context - Galatians 6: 1-10 [NKJV]USE THIS LINK
… God, thru Paul, exhorting the Church to remain steadfast in their (our) faith, trusting that God has a plan - HIS PLAN for each and every Christian

Reference Passage #1 - Luke 9: 23 [NKJV] … 
15 Then He said to them all (His followers)“If anyone would follow Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. …” 
… Jesus on true discipleship …

Reference Passage #2 - 2nd Corinthians 13: 5 [NKJV] … 
5 Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? — unless indeed you are disqualified. 
 … We must periodically and continually keep examining ourselves in the faith to insure that we abide in Christ and hold on to the disciplines of the faith.

Reference Passage #3 - Philippians 2: 3-4 [NKJV] … 
3 Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. 4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. 
 … No matter what … we must deny self and serve Christ by serving others.

My Journal for Today: Today’s Our Daily Bread author, Keila Ochoa, uses an interesting word picture to illustrate her devotional focus for this ODB entry. Ochoa writes: Cooking can become tedious work when I do it three times a day, week after week. … I get tired of peeling, cutting, slicing, mixing, and then waiting for food to bake, grill, or boil. But eating is never tedious! It’s actually something we truly enjoy even though we do it day after day. And Ochoa implies, it’s always best when we share our cooking skills when we share what we’ve cooked with those we love the most.

 And that’s so true, isn’t it? We love the culinary products of all the tedious work of cooking; but actually doing all the work necessary to share our cooking skills can be very tedious and difficult. Well, that’s God’s is teaching me here today, as was the Apostle Paul’s concern for the dear brothers & sisters in the Church in Asia Minor (i.e., Galatia), which he had planted in that region some time earlier on one of his missionary journeys. [See Galatians 6: 1-10 linked above]

 Paul had learned that those fellow Christians in the region of “Galatia,” who were being persecuted and led astray by false teachings, were falling away from the faith. And so Paul STRONGLY exhorted them in the highlight passage for the day [see link above] to, what I call, "Keep on Keeping On" in the faith. In fact, I have a symbol for this exhortation which I often use to close emails these days.    It is “ <'KOKO!!>< “ … which uses the old fish symbol for Christ; and the symbol I use means “Keep on Keeping On in Christ !!”

 If you take in today’s highlight passage from Paul as well as the other reference passages from Jesus and Paul above, listening to the song linked by Phillips, Craig, and Dean, I think you will see that all Christians need to do an inventory of our faithfulness now and again to assure that we can say that we KEEP ON KEEPING ON in the faith. Here are some questions to help me today with my self inventory; … maybe they’ll help you too.

??? #1 Am I following Christ’s mandate for discipleship in Luke 9: 23?
??? #2  Am I willing to examine my own faith periodically as Paul wrote in 2nd Corinthians 13: 5?
??? #3 Am I reaching out daily to help others, as evidence of my following Christ, as Paul exhorted the Church in Philippians 2: 3-4?

Generally, … I can say “YES” to all of those; but I have to admit I could do more work “cooking” on these … so that the outcomes would be more tasty for Christ.

My Prayer Today: Oh Lord, … Help me to " <'KOKO>< " Amen

Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread, distributed online via email by RBC Ministries. If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you can read/study the ODB blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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