Jesus, be my FIRST Love always
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Father, here in this passage exists a variety of messages related to faith under pressure. Guide me in sorting through them and gleaning something for my walk with You today.
PROSPERITY IS NOTHING
“Prosperity is as short-lived as a wildflower, so don’t even count on it…at the very moment everyone is looking on in admiration, it fades away to nothing.”
Lord, let me not become wrapped up in or dependent upon ANY of the good gifts You give me. You have given me MANY friendships and some that are very close or dear. Though You’ve prospered me in the relationship account, help me not to depend on it more than I do You. There are other accounts of my life to which You’ve granted “compounded interest earned” or blessings in abundance; yet, may I not focus on the gift, but rather on YOU, the Giver. Thank You for all things!
PERSEVERANCE IS EVERYTHING
“Anyone who meets a testing challenge head-on and manages to stick it out is mighty [blessed]. For such persons LOYALLY IN LOVE WITH GOD, the reward is life and more life”
Father, I pray that I might be “loyally in love with” You. Make me consistently, evidently Yours–let there be no question Whose child I am. Displace what’s crept into me that’s not of You with those things that overflow from a life devoted to You.
TEMPTATION IS NOT FROM YOU
“Don’t let anyone under pressure to give in to evil say, God is trying to trip me up.’ God is impervious to evil, and puts evil in no one’s way.”
Thank You for making me aware of the “life cycle” of sin:
TEMPTED by own evil desires –> DRAGGED away –> ENTICED.
DESIRE CONCEIVES –>
SIN is given BIRTH –>
SIN GROWS up –>
SIN GIVES BIRTH to DEATH (“separation”–from life, from You).
Guard my heart and mind. Keep me in Your will. Let me not wander away from YOU.
EVERY GIFT IS FROM YOU
“Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light. There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle.” (v 17 MSG)
What a generous Father You are! You heap on blessing after blessing–even in the things that don’t readily seem like blessings. You give what I don’t deserve, extending Your grace to me.
Help me to keep my eyes on You as I persevere through this life, overcoming temptation, receiving Your gifts, and being transformed by You to be just like Jesus. Amen.