Monday, March 28, 2011

Daily Journal for Tuesday 29th of March 2011


S - What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! Romans 7:24-25a

O - The sinful nature was alive and well even in Paul the Apostle. Though he lived a disciplined Christian life a war was being fought within. He felt like a prisioner. He felt like he was living in a body of death. "What a wretched man I am!" was his heartfelt cry. "Who will save me?" The clear answer comes - Paul is delivered from death through Jesus Christ and all the thanks goes to God.

A - There are a number of points of application that come straight to mind from reflecting on these verses...

  1. It's rare today to be wretched. There's not many people like Paul. Today it is rare to find people who wage this war in their bodies with sin. Many have either given up and surrendered long ago or have never tried to fight it because they haven't ever understood who God is and what his law requires. Others have known but prefered to make excuses and justify themselves rather than seek to fight it. 
  2. Even Christians can try to be good when they're wretched. Many Christians have not got to the point of crying out "wretched man that I am!" and realised that before a holy God they are completely ruined and need saving. They instead try to be good and when they fail they pretend that they still are good when they know that they aren't. They console themselves that at least they are better than others and judge and look down on them. This is far from Paul's position.
  3. I am wretched but rescued. I need to constantly remember that I am a wretched man, saved by a wonderful saviour. This, when pondered and delighted in will not only assure me of my new status in Christ but will also compell me to seek to live a holy life, every day, waging war against sin.
- Heavenly Father, thanks a million for sending Jesus. His death has brought me life, forgiveness and a whole new standing. Praise be to you! Amen.

Daily Readings - Leviticus 1-2 & Romans 7:7-25

Monday, March 21, 2011

Daily Journal for Tuesday 22nd of March 2011

More of Your Presence!

S - Then Moses said to him, "If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?" Exodus 33:15-16

O - God's presence is crucial for mission! Moses asked God not to send him without his presence. We need God's presence with us as we do his work in the world. Why? These verses show that Moses wanted God's presence because it would clearly show to everyone who observed them that God was pleased with them. God's presence is a sign of God's pleasure. Also, Moses saw that God's presence would distinguish him and his people from all the other people in the world. They would be unique. They would stand out. They would be clearly seen as different because of God's presence. God's presence causes people to stand out in the crowd.

A - I long for a greater display of God's presence in my life and in our church. Like Moses, I want others to see us and know that God is pleased with us and goes with us. This Easter as people are invited to our gatherings my longing is that people will know God's presence and sense his favour on us. Jesus sent us out with a promise. "Go into all the world" and "I will be with you." He is with us. May this be known and experienced in our people.

I also long that God's presence would distinguish us from all others. I know that it already does, but I long for a holy reverence, an awe in our worship, a purity in our lives and a tangible expectation of God's transforming power when we gather together. I long that we would stand out, along with all the other churches in this region as those who know God and enjoy his presence.

P - Father, I pray for more of your presence. Fill us with your presence so others may see your favour and your people as uniquely yours. This Easter, show your glory! In Jesus name Amen.

Daily Readings: Exodus 33 & Romans 2:17-29