Re:Verse reading–Romans 2:1-29 (day six)

But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God. Romans 2:29

Paul makes it increasingly clear that we are all in trouble. We are idolaters, all of us; and even those of us who look the part, we too have rejected God for the praise of men. He then introduces the type of person that God seeks, one who is concerned more about the affections of their heart, then the one putting on airs. This one doesn’t live for the approval of men, but lives to worship God in all of life. Finally he tells us how such a person takes shape, “by the Spirit.” The Spirit of God does the work of reshaping the human heart through faith in the Gospel. The key to living a life of faith is just that-faith! It is not working harder, or beating yourself up over past sins (penance), it’s not adding another Bible study to your schedule, no, it is none of those things. Live from faith to faith forever resting in God’s approval of you because of the work of His Son! Have faith in the Gospel, and let the Spirit of God do the hard work of reshaping your heart!

Let it go

RE Verse reading–Ephesians 6:5-9; Colossians 3:22-25; 1 Timothy 6:1-2; Titus 2:9-11 (day seven)  “Six days shall you labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God.”–Exodus 20:9-10.  Unless you’ve been on another planet for the past few years, you have heard (or heard of) the Disney movie, “Frozen” and the featured song, “Let it go”.  As Queen Elsa “lets go” of her fears to embrace her strengths, believers “let go” of our fears to discover our strength in union with Christ.  It is a weekly spiritual rhythm called sabbath.  WORK for six days!  This is the command of God.  Get up!  Think! Innovate!  Achieve!  Subdue!  Rule! (see Genesis 1)  But, on the sabbath learn a different skill.  Let it go! Rest!  Pray! Seek His face!  Engage the world with courage, then retreat from it to declare your trust in Something higher.  We are double-sided creations, dual-natured.  God commands us to work, and then to let it go.

Good Work

Re: Verse reading–Ephesians 6:5-9; Colossians 3:22-25; 1 Timothy 6:1-2; Titus 2:9-11 (day six)

“…so that in everything they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior.” Titus 2:10

The Gospel changes both how we think about work and how we do work. Certainly God provides us good work as a means to meet our basic needs, but work also transcends a paycheck. The reality is that God uses our work to both sustain his creation and restore it. That is the work itself is more than a platform or place for ministry, but is a means through which God holds all things together and brings creation back in order. So, truthfully the Gospel restores work into its proper place, as a manifestation of being made in the image of God.

This reclaimed reality changes how we work. We begin to realize that work, either glamorous or mundane, serves God’s purposes; both farmers and lawyers are apart of God’s sustaining work in society. So work hard and with excellence, because you are indeed serving unto the Lord.