March 1 Numbers 28, 29; Mark 8

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Compassion In Action | Kelley DeAses

S~ I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. Mark 8:2 (NIV)

O~ Jesus’ motivation for performing the miracle of feeding 4,000 men (not counting the women and children) was not to put on a grand show or draw attention to himself.  In fact, later in this same chapter, the Pharisees, to test Jesus, asked him for a sign from heaven and Jesus denied them their “miracle on demand.”  No, Jesus is quite simply moved  with compassion for this crowd of devout followers who were so eager to hear his message they stayed longer than what their provisions would allow.  Time and again, this is Jesus’ response to those he encounters, be it a hungry crowd, a begging leper, or a humiliated woman seeking water at the well.  He is compelled by a heart of compassion to intervene in people’s lives.

A~ God definitely gave me a heart of compassion.  Maybe not to the degree of a friend I had in high school.  Laura had such a soft spot for other people’s pain that if she came upon a person crying, she would start crying herself….and then ask what was the matter.  While I am daily moved with compassion for others and their sufferings — what I like to think of as having God’s heart — I don’t always follow Jesus’ example to do something about it.  To be inconvenienced.  To spend a few dollars.  To go out of my way.  To invite someone in.

P~  Father, Thank You that You have given me a heart tender toward hurting people.  Help me take my compassion to the next level and let it motivate action on my part.  Inspire ways I can help and ways I can show Your love where it is so desperately needed.

Every Step of The Way |Jill Terry

S~ And Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you discuss the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet see or understand? Do you have a hardened heart? Mark 8:17 (NAS)

O~ The apostles were once again doubting Jesus. He asks them, “Have you not seen my other miracles? Have you not seen Me feed thousands of people twice now and yet you wonder where the bread is coming from? (Mark 8:18-20)

The apostles traveled with Jesus. They witnessed the many miracles performed by Him, right in front of their eyes and yet they still grumble and worry. Jesus even asks them if their hearts are so hard that they are unable to see the miracles.

A~ I have seen the many miracles in my own life and yet I still have moments of doubt. I whine and complain and try to fix everything myself in my own way and later wonder why it didn’t work out. Not long ago, something changed for me. I was whining to my husband about money or the lack of money that we had. I heard the audible voice of God say “Be still and know that I am God.” I asked my husband if he said that and he asked me, “said what?” I relayed to him what I had just heard and asked him if that was a Bible verse. He responded that it is part of one. So, I went looking and found it in Psalm 46:10.

That was the first time I knew for sure that I was hearing from God. It changed me. I know without a doubt that God is on my side. God cares about all of the piddly little details of my life that I continually obsess over. Now, when I begin to fret or worry, I change my mindset and remember that God has it covered and know He is with me every step of the way.

P~ Dear Jesus, Thank you for being their every step of the way with me. Thank you for caring about all the small and all the big details of my life. In Your name I pray, Amen.

Have an Eternal Perspective | Susan Aken

S~ But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. ‘Get behind me, Satan!’ he said. ‘You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.’ Mark 8:33 (NIV)

O~ Jesus has just told his disciples that he will be killed and then rise again in 3 days. Peter takes him aside and rebukes him for saying this and then Jesus gives the above reply.

A~ I am sure that from Peter’s point of view, he was doing a good thing. Of course he didn’t want Jesus to talk about being killed. That makes sense doesn’t it? From our human point of view, we never want people we love to die or suffer. I imagine that Peter was taken back when Jesus rebuked him this way. And to credit it to Satan! He thought he had good motives for what he said. It makes me wonder if I do this sometimes. Do I get so caught up in what makes sense from an earthly point of view that I miss the eternal? Like most people I want my family and friends, all those I love, to be safe, happy and healthy here. But God’s plans concern eternity. I think His plans and purposes for our lives are always pointing to eternity and what is best there. First, what will bring people to be with Him forever and then what will bring us treasure there. I don’t think He is so concerned about making everything pleasant here. I need this reminder every day.

P~ Father, I am sure I would have done the same thing Peter did. I would have been the one saying, “Don’t say that Jesus!” Please help me keep my eyes on what is eternal. Help me remember that this is not my home and that your work in my life and in the lives of those I love is to prepare us to be with you. Help me to live for what concerns you, Lord, not just human concerns.

Hardest thing EVER | Nikki Metzger

S~ But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it.  ~ Jesus in Mark 8:35 (NLT)

O~ This comes right after Jesus telling the crowd to carry their cross.  Such words, many meanings, how do we do this?

A~ I know I’m going to have a difficult work related conversation in the next couple of days.  I messed up and need to face the consequences of that.  I also know the conversation will have all sorts of spiritual meaning. I know going into the conversation God is going to let me ‘give up my life for the sake of the Good News’.  I’m not going to die, but my pride, defending myself, and justifying my actions will need to be given up.

Breathe Nikki, just breathe!

I really want to pick Jesus over myself….but do I really want to in this situation?  Jesus tells me that giving up my life (my right to be right, to be the ‘louder’ one in the conversation, walk away ‘winning’ the talk)…to give that up is to gain life.  Who am I to argue?

P~ Jesus, You know my heart and all those feelings that bubble inside me.  I get so ugly in this situation I’m in.  I want to be different, regardless.  I think I want to be different more than being right.  (Do I?)  Well, could You give me that desire? God, I also desire healthy relationships.  Could You give me that wisdom to lay down my wants for Your kingdom, but in balance to what is healthy. Whatever that means to You, I want that!  I love You and please, please, please let me know Your presence when having that hard conversation!

You’re in Charge | Luisa Penaherrera

S~ If you try to keep your life for yourself, you will lose it.  But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will find true life.  Mark 8:35 (NLT)

O~  Notes in my bible: Jesus wants us to choose to follow him rather than to live a life of sin and self-satisfaction.  He wants us to stop trying to control our own destiny and let him direct us.  This makes good sense because as the Creator, Christ knows better than we do what real life is about.  He asks for submission, not self-hatred; he asks us only to lose our self-centered determination to be in charge.

A & P~  Dear Father, I can trust you with my life.  You made me; you know what’s best for me.  Help me to know when I’m trying to be in charge so I can turn to you.  Help me let go being in charge and let you. Please walk me through this daily. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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Posted on March 1, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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