Sunday, July 23, 2017

July 23, 2017 … Quiet Service …

Berry Patch Devotions in 2017 - Day 204 

Devotional Song:  … GO TO THIS LINK …  Please take the time to take in a YouTube video of images and lyrics from Steve Green singing … Find Us Faithful … powerfully singing of being faithfully serving Christ ,… not just for human accolades and prizes, … but merely for God’s glory.

Highlight Verse[s]: Colossians [NLT] … 
12 Epaphras, a member of your own fellowship and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends you his greetings. He always prays earnestly for you, asking God to make you strong and perfect, fully confident that you are following the whole will of God. 
… Epaphrus was one of his friends who was with him in prison and one who Paul cited to Christians for his quiet service to God by praying for other Christians.
Highlight Passage [context]: Colossians 4:7-18 [NLT] … USE THIS LINK
… Paul gives honor to a number of quiet servants who had served God by helping Paul in prison. 

Reference Passage #1 [NKJV] : … Luke 9:23 [NLT] … 
23 Then He said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be My follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross daily, and follow Me. …” 
… Jesus clearly declared we are to follow Him by denying our own self interests.

Reference Passage #2 [NKJV] : … Romans 16:22 [NLT] … 
22   I, Tertius, the one writing this letter for Paul, send my greetings, too, as one of the Lord’s followers. 
 … I’ll bet most reading here don’t know or remember the name of Tertius, the man who was the scribe who actually penned the words of the Book of Romans for Paul while he was imprisoned.

Reference Passage #3 [NKJV] : … 1st Corinthians 15:58 [NLT] … 
58 So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless. 
… Paul reminds Christians that any/all work we do for Christ, no matter how obscure, is never wasted.

Reference Passage #4 [NKJV] : … Galatians 6:9-10 [NLT] … 
9 So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. 10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith. 
… What we do for others, and especially for fellow Christians, no matter how quietly, honors God and will ultimately reap a harvest in Heaven.

My Devotional Journal: Today's ODB author, Cindy Hess Kasper, uses an interesting Hollywood behind-the-scenes figure to illustrate how many serve God’s kingdom quietly and with no public accolades. The ODB author wrote: Hollywood musicals were wildly popular during the 1950s and 1960s, and three actresses in particular—Audrey Hepburn, Natalie Wood, and Deborah Kerr—thrilled viewers with their compelling performances. But a huge part of the appeal of these actresses was the breathtaking singing that enhanced their acting. In fact, the classic films’ successes were actually due in large part to Marni Nixon [see photo], who dubbed the voices for each of those leading ladies and who for a long time went completely uncredited for her vital contribution.

Before you read this ODB piece, if I had asked you who Marni Nixon was, would you have been able to answer me accurately. Few of you, I would guess. And in a like way there are probably quite a few fellow Christians in our lives who very quietly serve God behind-the-scenes, almost never being noticed or recognized by fellow church members.

I love the Apostle Paul recognizing a number of his buddies who had served him while he was imprisoned. But even though the name is in the Bible (see Romans 16:22) most of us would not be able to know that one named, Tertius, who actually penned the words to one of the most important books in the Bible as Paul’s scribe. And who do you know who has been named after ”Epaphrus”, the faithful prayer warrior who ministered to Paul by praying in one of his imprisonments in Rome [see highlight passage]?

And if we’ve taken in the linked song, sung by Steve Green, and read the exhortations from God, thru Paul, in 1st Cor. 15:58 and Gal. 6:9-10, I hope we realize that we are not here, as Christians, to be recognized for any of our service to God, other than to receive our rewards in heaven.

So, let’s all serve our Lord, no matter how quietly, knowing that our service will shine His light in a darkened world and honor Him with glory.

My Prayer Today: Abba Father, … King Jesus, … I’m wrapped in Your peace today as I relish in Your truth. … 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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