Father, none of us want to die before our appointed time and none of us will. The day of our departure is known by You, controlled by You and here we learn that being with You will be far better than any place that we could be.
Help us this day to put on the armor of Light, to yield to the illumination You are offering. What a precarious thing it is to walk in total darkness. We can visualize how difficult it would be to extend our hands and “feel” our way through each day. That is how You portray one who chooses to walk in sin, as one agreeing to walk in darkness.
Father, loving You, as we look at the wonder of Your creation, and learn of Your love for us, seems relatively easy compared to loving each other. We are “in the flesh” far too often, making it difficult for our children, spouses and friends to easily love us.
Is it any wonder Father that Jesus and His angels will come to separate the saints from the sinners? You have extended all power to Him and it is by His shed blood that we will enter into Your presence. You, Yourself Father will judge among the saints, and although that is a comfort, because we will be with You, it reminds us that our salvation was purchased at a great price and that our enthusiastic response of love and obedience is Your expectation.
We no longer stand outside the Holy of Holies, but we are invited behind the veil, right into Your presence and there You call us friends. Picturing that moment is both difficult and sublime. Such truth is too great for us to fully comprehend.
Father, when we read of Peter’s life, prior to the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus, and the gift of the Holy Spirit, he was quite a problem, not in things of faith, but in things of temperament. We too are ill-tempered at times but here we read the words of a Spirit filled Peter, a perfect example of a changed heart and an example of what You can do in the life of a person.
It is not a wonder to us Jesus that You would be extremely disappointed if we intentionally sin. It would be like asking You to return to the cross, repeating the sacrifice, for each of us who consciously choose to sin. We need to walk with You, fully aware of Your presence in all matters.
Father, these verses capture feelings we all have at times. Our “lower nature” is a reality. Temptation is real and persistent. We are born with a “default setting” wherein we can easily be a slave to sin, as described by Paul.
Father, You have called us saints and yet our hearts convict us. Here You tell us to sanctify our hearts, an active process of cleansing and renewal by You, that in good conscience we might provide others with a good defense of our love for You in meekness and fear, avoiding arrogance or the suggestion of appearing judgmental.
Father, we all have the same problem. We dwell in the flesh; we are subjected to temptation on all sides, every day. We know as we seek to be filled with the Holy Spirit, afresh, constantly, that we draw nearer and nearer to You. Yet, perfection awaits; sanctification is a process, not a done deal but a process, one that we seek but do not fully apprehend this side of heaven.