September 24

TODAY IS…

an excellent day to ask, “Can I really refuse or reject Jesus?”

“He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for Me.”  Matthew 25:45 NIV

Wouldn’t it be an incredible honor to have Jesus standing right in front of us?

There is probably nothing that He could ask of us that we would refuse to do. Let’s face it, if the Son of God asked us to get Him a drink of water, or a little something to eat, we would do it instantly, right? We would wait on Him hand and foot. We would probably offer to wash His feet because we read in the Bible that He did it for others to serve them and we would want to serve Him and demonstrate that we learned the lesson He was teaching.

Why, then do we cross the street when we see some poor, unfortunate soul up ahead who appears to be begging for money?

Why do we roll up windows at the stop light when the filthy, crazed-looking person with the “will work for food” sign approaches our car?

Why do we turn the page in the newspaper or magazine when an article featuring starving children stares at us?

Why do we pretend we are not aware that volunteers are needed to help feed, clothe, and house those less fortunate than ourselves?

How can we say ‘no’ to Jesus Christ? How can we refuse Him? How can we reject Him?

What? Reject or refuse Jesus?

“I would never do that,” we cry.

Unfortunately, when we turn away from the unpleasantness of the unfortunate, we are definitely rejecting and refusing Christ. Would we slap Christ in the face? We would all certainly like to think that we would not, but rejecting, avoiding, or refusing to help people who are broken is the same as slapping the Son of God, the Messiah, the One who died so we all may live, right across the face.

The message of Christ is clear: We are to love one another, and we are to help one another. We are to put others before ourselves.

“There is a judge for the one who rejects Me and does not accept My words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day.” (John 12:48 NIV).

There is no better day than today to reach out to those who are less fortunate than we are.

We must all pitch in and do something more than just say that we believe. We must show that our heart is behind our words and if our heart is true, then our actions will speak out and we will see the face of Christ in every human being. We will look for opportunities to help the helpless, to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, and to help heal the sick.

These are the things that Christ wants us to do, and we simply cannot refuse to do them.

*******

September 25

TODAY IS…

the day to understand where true happiness comes from.

“Joyful are people of integrity, who follow the instructions of the Lord.”  Psalm 119:1 NLT

Many of us are familiar with the song that tells us to “Don’t Worry, Be Happy!” While it is a wonderful song, as well as a very good idea, happiness proves to be elusive for many people.

Psalm 119 is the longest Psalm of all, but it is also the longest chapter in the Bible. Contained within that Psalm are clear signs that point us to where true happiness can be found.

In a world where material wealth is held up before us in unrelenting displays everywhere we look, there lies a very real danger of succumbing to the temptation to believe that we can only be happy if we, too, are surrounded by everything we see on television, and in newspapers, magazines, and on the internet. The allure that is possessed by many of these meaningless things becomes too great for many of us to resist.

Unfortunately, in order to obtain many of these things, we wind up compromising our integrity, and we damage our relationship with God because we have chosen the wealth of this world over the joy of knowing God better.

Certainly, many of us have known people in unfortunate relationships that are based on the material things that are possessed, rather than on love for each other. How sad to think that anyone would prefer the temporary, false pleasure that a new piece of jewelry or a new car can offer over the happiness that fills our heart when we live our lives for God and follow His instructions for serving others and living honest, loving, and compassionate lives.

Each one of us should ask the Lord to “Give me understanding, that I may observe Your law and keep it with all my heart.” (Psalm 119:34 NASB). We need to also ask Him to “Make me walk along the path of Your commands, for that is where my happiness is found.” (Psalm 119:35 NLT).

When we realize that our only hope for true happiness begins with putting our trust in God and following His instructions, we will find that He is there for us when the pressures of this world bear down on us. “Trouble and distress have come upon me, but Your commands are my delight.” (Psalm 119:143 NIV).

The important thing to remember – the only thing to remember – is that true happiness cannot be found in a new watch, a new car, new clothes, or a new television. True happiness can only be found in a relationship with the Lord which will fill our hearts with joy. Not as flashy as a new car, perhaps, but infinitely more valuable.

*******

Taken from “TODAY IS….A Gift From God”, (C) 2013 Tony Casson

About Tony Casson

" For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11 NLT)
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