Verse of the Day

Daily Devotion 

By:  Bro. Bob Maynard
 

3 January 2017 Verse of the Day

Colossians 3:15 NASB  Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.

Now that Christmas and New Year’s vacation is over, I believe it is time to get back to Colossians.

Paul is still talking about how each person is to serve the Lord.  Christianity is about personal application of the spiritual truths that Christ has taught us.  It is about living and moving and having our being in and through the Holy Spirit that lives in each born-again individual.  As we come together as a body of local believers we become the Church of the Living God.  The Bible gives us the guide lines to keep us in the will of God. And when we live in the will of God we will experience the peace of Christ.  The peace of Christ is much more that the absence of conflict.  It is the calm assurance that Christ is in control of all the circumstances even in the middle of the war.  It is knowing … that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28 NASB).  I want you to see, know and understand that God is not an observer in the circumstances of a Christian’s life.  No, no.  He is ACTIVELY involved in causing all things to work together for good.  But believe me that without faith it is impossible to please Him …  (Hebrews 11:6 NASB).  If you and I are going to live, move and have our being in Him and please Him in all aspects of life, then we are going to have to live a life of faith.  That means that in everything we are going to have to pray, ask and receive His direction as He burdens our hearts with His thoughts, His ways and His ideas on how to do, what to do and even when to do it.  That is what the scriptures mean when it says … we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5 NASB).

I want you to notice what the VOTD says about the peace of Christ.  Each and every individual is to let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.  What does rule mean?  One of the definitions that Webster’s gives us is: To govern; to control the will and actions of others, either by arbitrary power and authority.  So if we, as believers in Christ and those who are seeking to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, want the peace of Christ to rule in our hearts, we have to have some rules to live by.  Actually it is not rules but it is singular: rule.  Here is the single rule to live your life by.  Live your life in the peace of Christ.  And the rule is if you don’t have the peace of Christ, then find out WHY!!! We as believers know that nothing is impossible with God.  We also know that even as believers, we can do things wrong.  We can sin and do what God does NOT want us to do.  That is why it is so very important to let the peace of Christ rule in our hearts.  And when we don’t have the peace then we need to find out WHY???

So the question is: How do we find out what is wrong and why we don’t have the peace of Christ that we so desperately want?  There is only one way to know.  And that is to ask Him.  He will tell us.  He will reveal to us the problem.  All we have to do is ask and He will let us know.  How do we ask?  In prayer. Prayer is nothing less than lifting your thoughts to Him.  Ask Him.  Time and time again, over and over again.  Just as the Holy Scriptures tell us to “Give thanks in all things”, it also tells us to ask Him.  We need to ask Him, over and over again why we don’t have peace in Christ about some situation or circumstance.  And He will give it to you.  He will direct your heart and mind on what you need to do to simply TRUST HIM.  Maybe the reason you don’t have peace is because your will is not in alignment with His will, just like Peter was not setting his will on the will of God.
Matthew 16:21-23 NASB
(21)  From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day.
(22)  Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.”
(23)  But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”

Once He reveals our problem and the solution to that problem as to WHY we don’t have the peace of Christ, then all we need to do is set our resolve on doing what Christ wants us to do.  Remember: His will is supreme.  His will before our will.  His Holy Word reminds us that: “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts (Isaiah 55:9 NASB).  He has everything in control.  All we need to do is trust Him and follow His leadership and His will for each and every situation.

Lord, what can I say but please forgive me.  So many, many times I have set my mind and will against your will.  I have sought the easy way instead of the way of the cross.  Lord, please help me in the future to always seek your will before any and every circumstance of life.  Lord, I want to please you in all things.  Lord, please help me to be submissive to your will in all things.  Lord, I love you.

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


2 January 2017 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                                    Grace upon Grace in Our Lives

And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for (upon) grace. (Joh_1:14, Joh_1:16)

One of the titles of God, the Son, is the Word. When He, Jesus, became a man, He was God’s incarnate message, His Word to humanity. As the early disciples watched Jesus living His perfect life of godliness, they were looking at the glorious revelation of God’s uniquely begotten (that is, virgin-born) Son. His life was an overflowing demonstration of divine grace and truth.

Jesus showed us the kind of life that God’s grace could be developing in us—a life of truth, a life of godly reality. Jesus came as the One to offer that fullness of grace to all who would trust in Him.

Now, for those who are depending upon Him day by day, life is explained and developed “grace upon grace.” God’s grace received establishes first a layer of forgiveness and spiritual new birth. Then, layers of growth, transformation, fruitfulness, victory, maturing, service, etc., are added as His grace is appropriated by faith. Yes, the Christian life is to be “grace upon grace”—upon grace, upon grace, upon grace—until we stand face to face someday with our Lord of grace!

Wherever we are in our spiritual pilgrimage, our progress has come from receiving by faith from His fullness of grace. Whatever remains to be accomplished must transpire in the same manner, receiving more fully of His fullness. Oh, what fullness is yet available to us in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ!

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, thank You for coming to dwell among humanity. We worship you for the fullness of grace available in You. We appreciate so much the layers of Your grace that You have built into our lives. We reach out to You with expectation for the grace that is yet needed for the days ahead. This we ask in Your holy name, Amen

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


1 January 2017 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                          The Grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich. (2Co_8:9)

God wants us to know His grace. He wants us to learn about it, and then to experience it at work in our lives. Grace has rightly been described as “unmerited favor.” The acrostic, “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense,” catches more of its majesty. Grace is God freely providing for us (as we trust in the work of His Son) all that we will ever need, all that we will ever yearn for, all that He has commanded us to walk in and become, realities that we could never produce on our own, could never earn, and could never deserve. Grace offers what every human desperately needs, but what God alone can provide.

This grace is found only in a person, the Lord Jesus. It is the “grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Thus, it is accessible only through an ongoing personal relationship with Him.

Grace was made available to us by Jesus’ willingness to take our spiritual bankruptcy upon Himself, that we might be able to partake of His spiritual richness. Before coming to earth below, Jesus enjoyed heavenly riches above (“that though He was rich”). He knew the infinitely rich fellowship of the Father and the Spirit. He received the rich worship of angelic beings. He enjoyed the limitless prerogatives of deity.
Then, for our benefit, Jesus voluntarily became poor (“for your sakes He became poor“). He humbled Himself to walk as a man among sinful humanity. He who was adored above became despised below. He who shined forth in glorious divinity in heaven was clothed in humble humanity on earth. He who created all things was slain by those He created. He who always existed in eternity past died in time. He who was holy took our sin upon Himself.

Through these workings of His grace, all who believed in Him would become spiritually rich (“that you through His poverty might become rich“). Now, we whose “righteousness were as filthy rags” (Isa_64:6) have become “the righteousness of God in Him” (2Co_5:21). We “who once were not a people . . . are now the people of God” (1Pe_2:10). Now, we have been “blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Eph_1:3).

Prayer:

Dear Lord, I thank You and praise You for Your great grace toward me. May I increasingly know the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, through a growing relationship with Him. May I become an instrument of Your grace in the lives of others, all for Your glory and honor, in Jesus name, Amen.

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


31 December 2016 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                                             The Manifold Grace of God

The manifold grace of God . . . but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ . . . Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. (1Pe_4:10; 2Pe_3:18 and Gal_6:18)

The manifold grace of God is such an appropriate truth for our concluding meditation. It is both humbling and faith building to be reminded of the majestic diversity of God’s grace.

God’s grace is manifold. It is like a heavenly diamond with innumerable facets. Every vantage point reflects a new insight into the gracious resources of our Lord. From some biblical viewpoints, the justifying grace of God is seen: “justified freely by His grace” (Rom_3:24). Yet, our devotional studies have concentrated upon sanctifying grace, grace for growing. “But grow in . . . grace.” Many scriptural vistas display this sanctifying grace in its manifold beauty. It can be seen stabilizing the inner man. “It is good that the heart be established by grace” (Heb_13:9). It can also be seen in its edifying ability. “I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up” (Act_20:32). From another angle, God’s sanctifying grace can be seen for its strengthening capacity. “Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus” (2Ti_2:1). It can also be observed in its fruit producing role: “and is bringing forth fruit, as it is also among you since the day you heard and knew the grace of God in truth” (Col_1:6). It can also be seen in its ministry developing function. “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me” (1Co_15:10). From still another viewpoint, the sanctifying grace of God can be seen sustaining through the agonies of one’s “thorny impossibilities.” “My grace is sufficient for you” (2Co_12:9). What heavenly riches await us in a lifetime of observing, and appropriating, God’s manifold grace.

What final words would be fitting for us now? The closing benediction in so many New Testament epistles would be perfectly suitable. “Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit” (Gal_6:18). Ultimately and essentially, grace is found in the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and it is experienced through His work in our hearts, as we humbly seek to know Him more and more. “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

Prayer:

Dear Lord of manifold grace, I earnestly yearn to grow in every aspect of Your grace. Lord Jesus, I humbly desire to find increasing intimacy with You. Please work Your grace deeply into my heart and manifest it fully through my life, in Your matchless name, I pray, Amen.

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


30 December 2016 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                        More on Walking with Jesus the Way We Received Him

As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. (Col_2:6-7)

The manner in which we received the Lord is the very same manner in which we are to walk in Him. “As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him.” We received Him by grace, we must walk by grace. We were born again by the Spirit, we must walk by the Spirit. Furthermore, when we first received Christ, He was our only hope. Now, we are to walk with Him the same way.

It is good to recall how Jesus was the comprehensive focus of our beginning with Him. When we received Him and His forgiveness, we knew He had to provide all that was needed for our salvation. We agreed with the word of God that there was no other hope than Jesus. “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me‘ . . . Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Joh_14:6 and Act_4:12). We knew that we could supply nothing ourselves. We were spiritually dead, having no righteousness at all: “dead in trespasses and sins . . . all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags” (Eph_2:1 and Isa_64:6). We had entered the blessed condition of being convicted of our own spiritual bankruptcy. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mat_5:3). Jesus was our comprehensive focus, our only hope.

This is how we are to walk in Him today. We need the Lord Jesus as much now for living the Christian life, as we needed Him at the beginning to be born again into it. For growth and victory and fruitfulness, He is the one we must focus upon. “As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.” We need to be rooted in Him, having our faith reaching out to Him for nutrition and strength, even as the roots of a tree reach into the soil. We need to be built up in Him, having our lives developed by His work in us. We need to be established in the faith, allowing Him to stabilize us through the study of His word. This will lead to lives of overflowing appreciation, grateful that “Christ is all and in all” (Col_3:11). Truly, we need the Lord Jesus as much now for living the Christian life, as we needed Him at the beginning to be born again into it.

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, my all in all, You were my only hope for beginning a new life with You. Today, You are my only hope for growing in this life with You. Please remind me that my need for You never diminishes. It is constant and comprehensive. Thank You for always being available!

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


29 December 2016 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                          Walking with Jesus the Way We Received Him

As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him . . . Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? (Col_2:6 and Gal_3:3)

In this vital matter of relating rightly to the Lord, one common mistake is attempting to develop our Christian walk in a different manner than we began it. Our present verse points us to the proper outlook. We are to build our life with the Lord upon the very same terms that we began that life. “As you have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him.” We are to walk with Jesus the way we received Him.

We received the Lord and His great salvation as gifts of grace. “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! . . . For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God” (2Co_9:15 and Eph_2:8). We must, therefore, walk in Him with a “grace-receiving” mentality. “And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for [upon] grace” (Joh_1:16). We must never attempt to treat the Christian life as something we can manufacture or earn. Sinful, earthly fathers were created with a desire to give beneficial gifts to their children. Even more so, our holy, heavenly Father has a heart to give all that is needed to those who are willing to ask and receive. “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” (Mat_7:11).

Gal_3:3 reinforces the necessity of keeping our pattern for beginning a walk with God the same one we use for developing that walk: “Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?” These rhetorical questions warn of the deadly danger of having our approach to Christian growth differ from how we found spiritual birth. The Holy Spirit alone was able to bring us spiritual birth. The flesh of man could avail nothing. “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit” (Joh_3:6). The Holy Spirit must bring us spiritual progress. The flesh can contribute nothing. “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing” (Joh_6:63). Any change in approach from birth to growth is foolishness. It is doomed to failure.

We began by grace, so we must continue by grace. We began by the Spirit, so we must continue by the Spirit. Yes, we are to walk with Jesus the way we received Him. Any changes in approach are unacceptable, ineffective, impossible.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, You are such a generous giver. You gave me Your Son and His salvation as a gift of grace. You gave me new life by a work of Your Holy Spirit. Now, I want to walk in Christ these same ways, in His gracious name, Amen.

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


28 December 2016 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                            More on an Invitation to Pray at the Throne of Grace

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Heb_4:16)

Seated upon the throne which rules this universe is the sovereign, holy, Judge of all humanity. Yet, He is also the “God of all grace” (1Pe_5:10). All who relate rightly to Him (through humble faith in Jesus Christ) can come boldly to that throne, praying with assurance that mercy and grace will be His response.

Truly, the Lord Jesus is the reason that we can answer the invitation to “come boldly to the throne of grace.” His death on the cross opened the way for us to come into God’s presence, allowing us to talk to Him directly in prayer. It is as though the Holy of Holies is now our family den. God is our Father, who delights to commune with His children as we pray to Him: “Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us” (Heb_10:19-20). This “new and living way” is the new covenant of grace. It is by the Lord’s grace alone that we can come to His throne of grace, that we might live daily by His grace.

At this inviting throne of God, we “obtain mercy.” Mercy is heaven’s wondrous companion to grace. Mercy is God’s provision for holding back from us the awful things that we actually deserve, due to our sin and rebellion. “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the LORD, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon” (Isa_55:7). Now, each day, His children can benefit from the faithful mercies of God. “Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness” (Lam_3:22-23).

Also, at this inviting throne of God, we “find grace to help in time of need.” Our initial need was for the Lord’s saving grace, which brought forgiveness for our ungodliness and made heaven our eternal home “For by grace you have been saved through faith” (Eph_2:8). Our ongoing need would be for transforming grace for the developing of a godly life here on earth. “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age” (Tit_2:11-12). In prayer at the throne of grace, we find God’s continuing supply of grace. That grace is irreplaceable and sufficient to sustain us through, and use us in, the needy situations we encounter daily at home, work, school, church,—wherever.

Prayer:

O Lord, supplier of all mercy and grace, I rejoice that Your mercies are new every day. Have mercy on me, dear Lord! I praise You that Your all-encompassing grace is available through humble, trusting prayer. Pour Your grace out on me, dear Lord!

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


27 December 2016 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                 An Invitation to Pray at the Throne of Grace


Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Heb_4:16)

If we are going to live by grace, we must relate rightly to the God of all grace: namely, by walking in humble dependence. Continual, Spirit-led prayerfulness is the basic way to express humility and faith to the Lord. How fitting it is, then, to consider God’s invitation to pray at the throne of grace.

The throne to which we are invited is the throne of God, revealed to the Apostle John. “Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne” (Rev_4:2). This honored King of the universe is the Creator of everything, exercising His sovereign will by His infinite power. “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and by Your will they exist and were created” (Rev_4:11). This is a throne of everlasting holiness, as declared constantly by angelic creatures. “And they do not rest day or night, saying: ‘Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!’ ” (Rev_4:8). For the godless, this will become a throne of judgment. “Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it . . . And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God . . . And they were judged, each one according to his works . . . And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire” (Rev_20:11-13, Rev_20:15).

If this throne were only characterized by sovereign power, holiness, and judgment, we could never approach it with any expectation of blessing. Yet, for those who will humbly receive eternal life through faith in Jesus Christ, this is a throne of grace. “Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace.” We can approach this throne with spiritual confidence, because Jesus is seated there with the Father. “And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne . . . stood a Lamb as though it had been slain . . . Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!” (Rev_5:6, Rev_5:12). The worthy one, who died for our sins, has opened the door to an intimate relationship with our heavenly Father. “For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, ‘Abba, Father‘ ” (Rom_8:15). Dread of God is replaced with boldness, by the grace of Jesus Christ: “in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him” (Eph_3:12). Now, this throne is to us an altar of prayer for mercy and grace!

Prayer:

Abba, Father, I bow before Your throne, acknowledging You as the sovereign Creator and the holy Judge. Yet, I boldly approach You as my dear, intimate Papa! Although I deserved judgment, now through Jesus, I humbly expect mercy and grace!

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


26 December 2016 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                        More on a Biblical Example of Spirit-led Praying

We . . . do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will . . . being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. (Col_1:9-12)

In our previous meditation, we began to examine a classic illustration of Spirit-led praying. The basic request of this majestic prayer concerned learning about, and walking in, the will of God. We “do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may have a walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him.” Now, we consider more on a biblical example of Spirit-led praying.

A significant aspect of the will of God involves fruitful laboring unto the Lord: “being fruitful in every good work.” The abounding grace of God is able to produce abundant ministry in our lives. “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, have an abundance for every good work” (2Co_9:8).

The very core of God’s will is next: “increasing in the knowledge of God.” Getting to know the Lord is the supreme issue of life. “I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord” (Php_3:8). The corollary prayer in Ephesians has this as its fundamental request: “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him” (Eph_1:17). A key verse for our grace devotionals suggests the connection between God’s grace and knowing Him. “Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2Pe_3:18).

Another vital part of God’s will for us is spiritual empowering: “strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power.” With the Lord of grace Himself as our strength, there is no limit to what we can do. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Php_4:13). Yet, such divine power is often imparted for reasons other than we might imagine: “for all patience and longsuffering with joy.”
The final aspect of God’s will mentioned is gratitude: “giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light.” Since all of these riches are God’s grace available through humble, trusting prayer, no wonder that the Lord concludes with a reminder about grateful hearts.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, I have a deep desire to be fruitful in service unto You. I have a strong yearning to know You more and more. I have a desperate need to be strengthened by You. I am overflowing with gratitude toward You. In humble faith, I cry out to You!

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 


25 December 2016 Verse of the Day

Today’s VOTD comes from Day-By-Day By Grace from the pen of Bob Hoekstra.

                                                 A Biblical Example of Spirit-led Praying

For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may have a walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him. (Col_1:9-10)

As we have seen, the Lord calls us in various ways to pray without ceasing. Every day in every way, every issue of life is to be engaged through continual, Spirit-led prayerfulness: “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit” (Eph_6:18). In addition to this extensive call to prayer, the word of God also gives us heavenly insight concerning the general content of our prayers. Our next two meditations reflect this by offering a biblical example of Spirit-led praying.

The Apostle Paul prayed consistently for the believers at Colossae: “do not cease to pray for you.” God’s will was the primary issue the Holy Spirit impressed Paul to pray about: “to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will.” Such praying will ultimately lead people into the word of God, where the will of God is revealed. “This is the will of God, your sanctification . . . in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1Th_4:3; 1Th_5:18). Truly understanding God’s will requires heavenly insight: “in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.” Of course, this is the ministry of the Holy Spirit. “When He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth” (Joh_16:13).

The Lord does not inform us of His will merely for our curiosity. Knowing God’s will is to lead to living God’s will: “that you may have a walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him.” Our Lord desires that we walk in a manner that is appropriate for identifying with Him and His great gospel of grace. “Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ” (Php_1:27). He wants us to be interested in what pleases Him, not what pleases self or the world: “proving what is acceptable [well-pleasing] to the Lord” (Eph_5:10). The Lord wants to work in us the heart seen in David’s Messianic confession. “I delight to do Your will, O my God, and Your law is within my heart” (Psa_40:8). Bringing the will of God into the heart of man is what the new covenant of grace accomplishes. “I will make a new covenant . . . I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts . . . who also made us sufficient as ministers [servants] of the new covenant” (Jer_31:31, Jer_31:33 and 2Co_3:6). Living in prayerful dependence upon the grace of God will make us true “servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart” (Eph_6:6).

Prayer:

Dear Lord, I want to be fully controlled by Your will, pleasing You in every way. From Your word, grant me Holy Spirit insight into Your will. Teach me to pray in this Spirit-led manner, that Your grace might lead me to do Your will from deep within my heart.

Yours in Christ,
Bob Maynard

 



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