Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.
Peter had good reason to question Jesus as he had just told them that it was harder for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven than for a camel to pass through the narrow gate. Many people believed that riches were how God showed favor to a person and that poverty showed his displeasure. There may even be some people today who think the same way. But Peter had forgotten about Job. After all, he had lost everything and his friends kept after him to blame God who had certainly been the cause of all his misfortune and he must have done something to displease God. Just as Job was rewarded, Jesus tells Peter that he, too, would be rewarded for his sacrifice. He could expect persecution, but he would have eternal life. We can also be persecuted for following Jesus.
There are people and practices that are not compatible with living for Christ and the Gospel. A woman I know lost her job because the people she worked for were dishonest with their customers and expected her to cover it up. When she refused, she was fired. Most of us will not have to choose to give up our livelihood for the sake of the Gospel, but perhaps we will have to give up people whose lives are incompatible with our beliefs and who lead us into sin. Living for the sake of the Gospel is not always easy, but life on earth is transitory, eternal life with Jesus is eternal. We need to choose.
God’s protection is around the clock. There is never a time we are removed from God’s presence. He will always protect us and He will never leave us in harm’s way – not even for a second.
Dear God, I thank you that I can trust in you and dwell in you at all times. Thank you, God, for protecting me from the wiles of the enemy. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
We need to live a life that is dedicated to expressing gratitude and attitude of gratitude and praise towards God because time and time again He has shown and proven his faithfulness. God is the God above all. He is mighty in all his ways. He is the one that deserves all the praise.
Dear God, my heart will always rejoice when I think of your love and the Grace you have gifted me with. It is because of your Son, Jesus Christ, I am free from the power of sin and death. I no longer have to fear death and destruction or the threats of the enemy because I am resting and hidden in Christ. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
A little that a righteous man hath is better than the riches of many wicked.For the arms of the wicked shall be broken: but the LORD upholdeth the righteous.
It is far better to be a Christian who does not have much in this world, in comparison to being a wicked person who abounds in wealth and material possessions. There will come a day where all of these earthly things will pass away and we will be faced with what matters the most – our eternity. Those who have believed in God and followed His ways will be given eternal life. Those who have chosen to be wicked will, unfortunately, face eternal damnation.
Dear God, I pray that I will never lose sight of what truly matters in this life. May my mind always be concerned with your Kingdom, Lord, and not in amassing wealth on this earth. I know that everything I attain on earth is temporary. May mind never lose sight of what truly matters – spending eternity with you. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Contentment. It’s what we seek in our everyday lives. To be content with what we have. No matter what it is. It keeps us from being disgruntled, angry individuals. When we are discontented, we become petty and bitter. It causes all kind of problems. Paul tells us in this passage that he has learned to be content in all circumstances. This is accomplished only when we trust in God to take care of our needs. We can be content when we can rest in the promises of God.
People sometimes “bite off more than they can chew.” They want big things, but they don’t prepare to handle the big things. We see this with money. Everyone wants to be rich, but we can’t be trusted as good stewards of the money we have. We want a bigger, better job, but we don’t give 100% to the job we have. We want a newer car, but we neglect the car we currently have. It is ridiculous to think that God will give us more, when we haven’t shown ourselves capable of handling the small things. Here, God–in this parable, the “master”–rewards His servant–us–who has been faithful in the “small thing” by putting him in charge of many things. So God does with us, if we are faithful.
Father, Help me to be faithful in the small things. I desire to make You proud by taking care of the things You have given me. Help me to show myself worthy of great things and help me to be faithful, not only in the “small things” but also in the “many.” Lord, Help me to be content in what I have, no matter where I am. I trust You to take care of my needs, so I am content to bloom where I am planted. Thank You for taking care of me. Amen.
Here Jesus entreats us to seek the kingdom of God above all things. But what exactly does this mean? It means making the things of God a priority. How do you spend your time? Energy? Money? On God things? Or things of the world? Where your treasure is so is your heart. It’s easy to tell if we’re putting God first if we look at our calendars and our bank accounts. Jesus tells us here that if we are faithful to put God first, then all of our needs will be met.
Lord, Help me to seek You above all things. Let me put my energy, time, and money into building Your kingdom, not my own. I trust You to take care of my daily needs as I seek after You. Amen.