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Archive for February 11th, 2021

MEDITATION:

Written by InTouch Ministries, founded by Dr. Charles Stanley.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus made a statement His listeners probably found shocking—He said they wouldn’t enter the kingdom of heaven unless their righteousness surpassed that of the scribes and Pharisees. The Pharisees were considered the definition of righteous: They were the religious elite, who often elevated their own self-worth and standing in the community. Frankly, the righteousness they projected would have seemed tough to surpass. Thankfully, Jesus wasn’t saying to beat them at their own game; He was pointing to a different standard altogether. Godliness isn’t attained by pursuing perfection, dressing a certain way, or by holding positions of influence in society. Rather, we become righteous by making oneness with God the focus and substance of our daily life and boasting only in Him. (See 1 Corinthians 1:18-31).

PRAYER:

Written by Oscar Romero (1917-1980). the 4th archbishop of San Salvador. He spoke out against poverty, social injustice, assassinations, and torture.

It helps, now and then, to step back, and take the long view. The Kingdom of Heaven is not only beyond our efforts, it is even beyond our vision. We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is God’s work. Nothing we do is complete, which is another way of saying that the Kingdom always lies beyond us. No statement says all that could be said. No prayer fully expresses our faith. No confession brings perfection. No pastoral visit brings wholeness. No program accomplishes the Church’s mission. No set of goals and objectives includes everything. This is what we are about. We will plant the seeds that one day will grow, We water seeds already planted knowing that they hold future promise. We lay foundations that will need further development. We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities. We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that. This enables us to do something, and to do it very well. It may be incomplete, but everything is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord’s grace to enter and do the rest. We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the master builder and the worker. We are the workers, not master builders, ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future of our own. May that future be filled with grace, peace, and hope. Amen.

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