The Whole Truth - Devotional #1
Welcome to devotional #1!
I am so excited to partner together in this journey growing closer with Jesus.
Early January I attended the SEEK conference where Father Mike gave a compelling talk on Me-ism. What is Me-ism you ask? Me-ism is taking pieces of who Jesus is and making Him into our own version. You're creating the ' Me ' version. I have been sitting with this the past couple of weeks post conference. Thinking to myself... what areas of my life am I shaping Jesus to fit into what I want Him to look like? Where do I tell myself something is ok when Jesus would say differently? When we look in scripture and it blatantly points out characteristics of Jesus we are prideful to ignore them. Below are 3 different characteristics of Jesus that encourage me to implement/discipline myself to live closer to Him.
Characteristic #1 - Jesus values all of us
An amazing example of this is in the story of Zacchaeus. Zacchaeus was a tax collector (strongly disliked at that time). He cheated and robbed people of their money. When Jesus was preaching one day he wasn't able to see Him so he climbed up a tree. Jesus called him out by name and his life changed from that moment on. Jesus calls us all by name and sees our value regardless of those around us. Zacchaeus repented of his sins and started living his life for Jesus. How can we pray or reach those that are disliked/looked over in our community? One way that I have personally felt challenged is by acknowleding homeless people when passing by. They're people too. They have dignity like you and I. A smile can mean the world and change their day.
Characteristic #2 - Jesus is compassionate
Matthew 14:1-21 beautifully highlights this, read below:
At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the fame of Jesus; 2 and he said to his servants, “This is John the Baptist, he has been raised from the dead; that is why these powers are at work in him.” 3 For Herod had seized John and bound him and put him in prison, for the sake of Hero′di-as, his brother Philip’s wife;[a] 4 because John said to him, “It is not lawful for you to have her.” 5 And though he wanted to put him to death, he feared the people, because they held him to be a prophet. 6 But when Herod’s birthday came, the daughter of Hero′di-as danced before the company, and pleased Herod, 7 so that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask. 8 Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter.” 9 And the king was sorry; but because of his oaths and his guests he commanded it to be given; 10 he sent and had John beheaded in the prison, 11 and his head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother. 12 And his disciples came and took the body and buried it; and they went and told Jesus.
Feeding the Five Thousand
13 Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a lonely place apart. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14 As he went ashore he saw a great throng; and he had compassion on them, and healed their sick. 15 When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a lonely place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16 Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17 They said to him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.” 18 And he said, “Bring them here to me.” 19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass; and taking the five loaves and the two fish he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 21 And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.
After loosing a dear friend Jesus could have been frustrated that all these people were putting their needs before his hurting heart. Our savior however had compassion like no other. He saw their needs before his own regardless of the hurt he was going through. How can we see others needs before our own, even in the times where we feel we need the most love ourselves?
Characteristic #3 - Jesus was a servant
This one is hard... relating off the previous characteristic it's easier to put our own needs first. However, Jesus served everyone around Him regardless of His own pain or suffering. A great example being the cross. Jesus being the son of God has all authority in the world, yet he came to serve us through His greatest sacrifice.
So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, "Do you know what I have done to you? You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.
Reflect on areas in your life where you can serve those around you deeper? An important thing to do is to check your heart. Ask yourself "Am I doing this because it makes me look good or because I want to give to those around me".
I hope this short and sweet devotional helped bring you closer to Jesus and reflect on scripture. I will be praying for you and as usual, if you have any prayer requests send them to HippyDoYou@gmail.com