Jesus, You taught us that if we do not forgive our enemies You will not forgive us. You said to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. Yet when the enemy attacks we are inclined to take matters into our own hands. Give us the courage, we pray, to display patience when our lower nature tempts us to “get even”, right now!
You are the light, Jesus. As we come to You we are directed and taught, as friends. In seeking You and Your Holy word, fervently, we are voluntarily coming to the light that our lives might be clearly seen as a loving witness of Your presence in us.
Jesus, these verses remind us of the phrase “you strain at a gnat and swallow a camel” wherein we focus on obedience in some small matter, in almost a compulsive way, believing that such obedience earns us points with You.
Father, Your word has a lot to say about our mouths and how they tend to get us in trouble with others and with You. Here we are reminded by You, Jesus, that there are no secrets concerning what we have thought and what we have said. Every thought, word and deed will be revealed.
Even though childhood and youth may be “vanity”, during these wonderful years when their smiles melt our hearts and their innocence charms us, prepare their hearts to serve You and to trust You in all things.
Since You are omniscient Father, knowing all things from the Alpha to the Omega, the beginning and the end, You knew who would place their hand in Yours and become heirs to the kingdom. Yet, in Deuteronomy 31:19, You say: …I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:
How Father shall we adorn the temple? Does it matter if we take care to have the body that houses the temple be clean and presentable? What expectations do You have of us for taking care of the temple? Is body piercing and are tattoos alright? Are we too immodest at times? In what ways might we disappoint You as we present ourselves to the world?
Father God, You have chosen to make us in Your image. We know, for those that love and obey You, that we are not yet what we will become. Life can seem so long when we are hurting yet You have prepared an eternal place of perfection for us all where we will be neither young nor old and certainly not ill. We look forward to something so perfect that it escapes our ability to fully describe it.
Father, Peter tells us a very important fact. We have been given a “living hope”. Yes, heaven awaits, but here we learn that our hope, made evident here and now, by our faith in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, our Savior, is a present reality.