Thursday, March 10th
(Continuation from yesterday)
(In preparation for today’s Devotional, read Joshua 24:14 and then check out the “The Deep Six Study” online. Go to www.capecodchurch.com/watch and click on “Discussion Notes.” Under “Message Highlights,” read highlight # 2)
And now the word of the Lord is ringing out from you to people everywhere, even beyond Macedonia and Achaia, for wherever we go we find people telling us about your faith in God. We don’t need to tell them about it, for they keep talking about the wonderful welcome you gave us and how you turned away from idols to serve the living and true God. And they speak of how you are looking forward to the coming of God’s Son from heaven—Jesus, whom God raised from the dead. He is the one who has rescued us from the terrors of the coming judgment. 1 Thessalonians 1:8-10
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
In contrast to our emphasis on “finishing strong” is the emphasis of today’s Scripture on “starting well.” However, there is a significant connection between the two. The probability of “finishing strong” is much greater if one “starts well” and the one who “finishes strong” is likely to have “started well.” You might call the Apostle Paul’s description of the Thessalonians believers in today’s Scripture, a legacy of “starting well.”
These believers turned “away from idols” and turned “to serve the living and true God.”
The responses of “turning away” and “turning to” are crucial when it comes to spiritual things. One does not start well if their “turning away” and their “turning to” is partial. Such partial responses are more often than not the experience of those who come to Christ. This is why living the Christian life is such a struggle for so many Christians. And this perpetual struggle is why so many Christians fail to finish strong with a legacy of victory left behind.
While starting well goes a long way toward being able to finish strong, God’s grace is sufficient for righting the course of any Christian’s life. It all comes down to allowing him to move us from the path of partial “turning from” the world and partial “turning to” Him and onto the path of complete “turning from” the world and complete “turning to” Him. When God truly becomes the centerpiece of our lives (fear the Lord), we will serve him wholeheartedly and we will finish strong with a legacy of victory left behind.
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, show me clearly what complete “turning from” and “turning to” looks like for me and help it to happen in my life. I ask for deliverance and victory so that my life going forward pleases you. Grant that I finish strong and leave behind a legacy that fully glorifies you. Amen!
Posted on Thu, March 10, 2016
by Alan Porter