Lord Over our Spirit and our Stuff: Devotional for April 8, 2022

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Today’s Bible reading from the Five Day Bible Reading Plan: Judges 4-6; Luke 21

Two things I’d like to share with you from Martyn Lloyd-Jones. “Surely praise and thanksgiving are ever to be the greatest characteristics of the Christian life.” Are they a characteristic of ours? He goes on: “Praise distinguishes the Christian particularly in his prayer and in his worship. . . . The highest point of all worship and prayer is adoration and praise and thanksgiving.” He is right–not because he’s Martyn-Lloyd Jones, but because he reflects what the Scriptures say. Thanksgiving to what God has done produces a thanksliving that is a conduit of God’s grace and provision to others.

Years ago, Northwestern University had a life-saving team that assisted passengers on Lake Michigan boats. On September 8, 1860, the Lady Elgin floundered near the campus and a ministerial student named Edward Spencer personally rescued seventeen people. The exposure from that episode so permanently damaged his health and he was unable to continue preparation for the ministry. Some years later when he died, it was noted that not one of the seventeen people he had saved ever came back to thank him.

Dear Christian, Christ has saved you. Do you ever thank Him? Do you ever praise Him for it? If these characteristics aren’t there, you either need to repent of that action, or repent as a sinner and surrender to Christ alone! Does that thanksgiving pour over into thanks-living? Are you a conduit of His grace, or merely a hoarder? Do you see what God has given you, provided for you? Will you give a portion back? In Luke 21, Jesus condemned those who gave much, but out of their surplus, so others would look well upon them. The widow gave only two mites (about 1/5 of a penny), but that was all she had. Christ sacrificed Himself for us, so we sacrifice as well of what He’s given us: time, talents, gifts, resources, everything.

Christ is not just Lord over your Spirit but over your stuff. As He gave, we give, multiplying thanks and praise and glory to Jesus.

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