Devotion: Monday, April 23, 2018
A Biblical, Christ-filled word to bless your lives.
Welcome to “Word from The Center” MONDAY, a devotional word from the Center of our faith, Jesus Christ, reflections from His Word. I’m Gregory Seltz. Today’s verse is from John 10:11–18, where Jesus says,
“The thief comes only to steal, kill, and destroy. I have come to give you life and to give it to you abundantly.”
HERE’S REAL LIFE!
G.K. Chesterton is often said to have said, “When people stop believing in God, they don’t believe in nothing — they believe in anything.” In reality, he said that if we stop believing in God we lose our common sense. For many, that’s that same thing. When you deny the one who is “The Way, The Truth, and The Life,” the one who in this text calls Himself the “Good Shepherd,” you don’t replace it with nothing, you tend to replace it passionately with the most absurd “other things.”
Absurd replacements, that seems to be the order of the day, doesn’t it? No longer do we talk about sin and repentance, Grace and mercy, or honor and virtue. They’ve been replaced. And, so much absurdity in this world is passed off as wisdom. In Washington D.C., they become slogans, marches, even policies. We are told that sex unconstrained, just for fun, outside of marriage is the way of progress, yet our broken marriages, our abuses of one another, and our callousness to each other say otherwise. We are told that honoring our Fathers, and our Mothers, esteeming those in authority is the way of the past and yet the present “dishonoring culture” is producing more vitriol and violence than ever before. But the worst of the absurdities today is the belief that we place in ourselves, our technology, our progress (with no honest assessment of the consequences) as if such things can actually replace the power of faith in God and His love for us in Jesus Christ.
Into such absurdities, Jesus’ words are often straight and to the point. He lays it on the line in John 10. He talks of himself as the Good Shepherd, the one who comes to give life and salvation to His sheep. But there’s the rub. For Him to be our Shepherd, we’ve got to be honest about the fact that we are “Sheep in need of one.” Let that humble attitude of repentance be yours today. Don’t let the “thieves of absurdities” steal that opportunity for you. For Faith in Jesus Christ opens you up to the one who loves you with and everlasting love and desires for you to become the person that He created and redeemed you to be. Repentance and Faith, being right with God on God’s terms, that’s the beginning of Abundant life, now and forever. As forgiven sinners, life becomes a walk of Grace eternally. Here’s to Life in His name.
PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for your willingness to confront me with the reality that I need you for my life and salvation. Like sheep who know their shepherd’s voice, give me the kind of faith that listens and follows your every word. AMEN.