This week’s passages and reflections are offered to help us prepare us for our upcoming emphasis on God’s transforming grace. He desires to transform us into, as C.S. Lewis said, “little Christs.” This is an unbelievable invitation, isn’t it?
Monday – Psalm 92.1-3. This psalm was written for remembering and celebrating God’s character and provision. The psalmist proclaims to God that it’s a good thing to recall Yahweh’s love and faithfulness. As you begin this day, reflect on his essence, which is love. At the end of your day, reflect upon his faithfulness to you. You may not have a harp or lyre to use, but try singing or humming a song in praise and thanksgiving to God.
Tuesday – Psalm 92.4-8. The people of God were exhorted to frequently relive God’s deeds in their collective story, such as frequently recounting God’s compassion and provision for them in freeing them from bondage in Egypt. He gave them a new identity as his people. Reflect on biblical stories of God’s faithfulness to us. Prayerfully look back for memories of his faithfulness in your own life. Then, may your remembering his many “deeds” strengthen your identity as his child and ambassador today.
Wednesday – Psalm 92.8-11. The psalmist uses expressions that may be unfamiliar to us today. Horn symbolizes strength and fine oils being poured on me signifies a commissioning for the special purposes of God. How are we to discover strength and purpose? His grace comes to us through connection with our heavenly Father. Begin this day with a simple prayer for his strengthening grace, and for a realization that he has special purposes as you serve him through serving others.
Thursday – Psalm 92.12-15. Here is a word picture that can encourage us. The psalmist depicts flourishing palm trees and growing cedars as examples of what a life given to surrender, trust, and obedience to God is like. As the years pass, the people of God will bear fruit and stay “fresh and green” because of Yahweh’s continued presence in their lives. Today, pray, asking your Heavenly Father to deepen the roots of your tree in him, reflecting his character.
Friday – Revelation 3.1-6. “The letter to the Christian community at Sardis is urgently valuable for us. The problem in that church has been repeated in the lives of God’s people throughout their histories, for all kinds of forces draw us consistently away from a Christ-like lifestyle. This command is like an alarm clock that rings every few minutes: wake up! Strengthen the things that remain but are about to die! Remember what you have received and heard! Obey! Repent!” (Marva Dawn in Morning By Morning) Are you being driven toward Christ?
Saturday – Revelation 3.1-6. Staying in the same passage as yesterday, consider author Marva Dawn’s commentary: “The Christ does not criticize them for any particular sin, but simply for the fact that their deeds are not complete, and the only thing to do about it is to wake up! Our spiritual lives, too, shrink and get flabby without training. When we neglect the means God has provided for us to receive his grace, God’s Word and prayer, the sacraments and forgiveness, his love incarnated in the Christian community, our spiritual lives get weak. Those gifts are given to strengthen what remains.” Let’s pray to wake up, asking for desire for transformation, in and through Christ, and for Christ’s sake.
Posted on Sun, September 4, 2016
by Cheryl Sherrick