Daily Devotional: Friday, 13 January 2017

Daily Devotional: Friday, 13 January 2017

By Grace alone – God’s heart for the world

25 At that time Jesus said, ‘I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 26 Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.  27 ‘All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.  28 ‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.’ (Matthew. 11: 25-30)    

Additional Verse: Exodus 34: 6

  God’s heart beats for the world and this is why He sent us his Son Jesus. For God already said to the Israelites in Egypt, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people” (Ex. 3:7). God sees our despair as much today as He did back then: nations torn up by civil wars, exploitation and abuse; people who have lost their homes and so have become refugees. These people painstakingly try to build up a new life for themselves in an unfamiliar land where they are called foreigners, like they are here in Europe. God sees them and suffers with them. His Grace is naturally extended even to those who do not yet know him, for he is always there for people who suffer, regardless of their religion or race. God sees all of our hardships and burdens. He sees all of our faults and failures. He sees the problems we have at work, in our marriages; he sees when we struggle with our kids or in financial disasters, with illness, accidents. “We are all in the same boat”. But sometimes it seems like God is absent. Doesn’t the world seem to be getting worse rather than better? That question comes up a lot. But God really did send his son. He is in the world and he is here for us: Immanuel, “God with us”. And that is why he died on the cross. God has not forgotten us. His grace is meant for us specifically, and that is why Jesus is calling us to him today. He has taken on the world’s burdens as well as each person’s individual needs. “Come to me, those who are weary” (Mt 11: 28). He wants to take our burdens onto his shoulders, which means that we do not need to carry them alone. When we pray to Him, that is when we can share his “yoke”. We become a team with Jesus. That means we are not alone. He is the one who is next to us and with us, carrying all of our burdens, even if we cannot see him or feel him. When we pray to Him, that is when our burden becomes light. Let us now join together in prayer, so that God can carry us.   Prayer focus (Luke 1: 46-55) Thank you:
  • that your heart is open wide for us
  • that we do not have to come up with all of our own solutions, suggestions and plans, but that we are able to just trust in you
  • that with you, we are allowed to fail and do not need to know everything
  • for when we think that you are not here, that you have forgotten us, that you do not care about us
  • forgive us for often relying on our own strength and resources, rather than just coming straight to you
  • strengthen our trust in the fact that you are in command and that you will make sure that everything will have a good end
  • win over the hearts of those in power, so that they strive for good and for justice

Writen by: Magdalena Paulus, Götzis, Vorarlberg

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