Charles Stanley – An Opportunity to Show Compassion

 

Luke 10:25-37

Today’s passage records one of Jesus’ best-known parables. It’s an illustration of how to display love for God and others, and though the context is ancient Jewish culture, its lessons reach into the 21st century. The story strips away our rationalizations and excuses until we come face-to-face with our need to show compassion.

No doubt we’d all like to identify with the Good Samaritan, but in reality, we often find ourselves responding more like the priest or Levite. Why didn’t they stop to help the man in need? We aren’t told explicitly but can deduce the answer by comparing their actions with the Samaritan’s.

He saw with eyes of compassion. If we’re busy and preoccupied with our own schedules and plans, we probably won’t see the needs around us. There could be a coworker who’s discouraged, a struggling neighbor, or even a family member who needs our help.

His compassion led him to seize the opportunity to help. It wasn’t simply a matter of feeling bad for another person; the wounded man’s helpless condition moved the Samaritan to action. This is the point at which we often retreat, because stopping to help someone costs us time and effort.

He willingly shared what he had. The Samaritan went the extra mile by taking the injured man to an inn and paying the innkeeper to care for him. God has gifted each of us with abilities or resources that we can use to demonstrate compassion.

Is it possible you’ve missed seeing the needs around you? Ask the Lord to open your eyes and give you His active compassion for those who hurt.

Bible in One Year: Psalm 107-111

 

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Our Daily Bread – What Is God Like?

 

Read: Hebrews 1:1–10 | Bible in a Year: Job 20–21; Acts 10:24–48

The Son is . . . the exact representation of [God’s] being. Hebrews 1:3

To celebrate a special occasion, my husband took me to a local art gallery and said I could choose a painting as a gift. I picked out a small picture of a brook flowing through a forest. The streambed took up most of the canvas, and because of this much of the sky was excluded from the picture. However, the stream’s reflection revealed the location of the sun, the treetops, and the hazy atmosphere. The only way to “see” the sky was to look at the surface of the water.

Jesus is like the stream, in a spiritual sense. When we want to see what God is like, we look at Jesus. The writer of Hebrews said He is “the exact representation of [God’s] being” (1:3). Although we can learn facts about God through direct statements in the Bible such as “God is love,” we can deepen our understanding by seeing the way God would act if He faced the same problems we have on Earth. Being God in human flesh, this is what Jesus has shown us.

In temptation, Jesus revealed God’s holiness. Confronting spiritual darkness, He demonstrated God’s authority. Wrestling with people problems, He showed us God’s wisdom. In His death, He illustrated God’s love.

Although we cannot grasp everything about God—He is limitless and we are limited in our thinking—we can be certain of His character when we look at Christ.

Dear God, thank You for making a way for us to know You. Help us to grow closer to You by looking at Jesus.

Looking at Jesus shows us God’s character.

By Jennifer Benson Schuldt | See Other Authors

INSIGHT

Jesus lived out the mission of revealing the heart and character of His Father to a world that had separated itself from Him. This aspect of Jesus’s incarnation was described in John 1:18: “No one has ever seen God. But the unique One, who is himself God, is near to the Father’s heart. He has revealed God to us” (nlt). In revealing the Father to us, we see the invisible God made visible in Jesus.

Bill Crowder

http://www.odb.org

Joyce Meyer – Trust in Him

 

Do all things without grumbling and faultfinding and complaining [against God] and questioning and doubting [among yourselves]. — Philippians 2:14 (AMPC)

Adapted from the resource Power Thoughts Devotional – by Joyce Meyer

The Scripture above tells us not to complain against God. Since God is our Father, our Provider, and the One Who watches over us, when we complain about anything we are basically saying we don’t like what God is doing, and we don’t trust His leadership in our lives. Even if what is happening in our circumstances is not something God is doing, it is something He can fix if we will trust Him to do so.

We can judge by our words if we are thankful and appreciative of God’s goodness or if we are discontent. If we truly trust God, then we won’t murmur and complain, but instead we will voice our thankfulness to Him for working in our lives and giving us the strength to do whatever we need to do while we are waiting.

Prayer Starter: Father, thank You for the good things You are doing in my life. Please help me to trust You in everything…the good and the bad. Help me to always be thankful—in my thoughts and through the words I speak. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

 

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Campus Crusade for Christ; Bill Bright – Power for Healing

“Is anyone sick? He should call for the elders of the church and they should pray over him and pour oil upon him, calling on the Lord to heal him. And their prayer, if offered in faith, will make him well; and if his sickness was caused by some sin, the Lord will forgive him” (James 5:14,15).

Many years ago the principal of a missionary school in Hong Kong asked me to address the student body the following day. He and others involved in the school had prayed for years for revival to come to the student body and faculty. “God has impressed me,” he said, “that you are to be His instrument for that revival.” God encouraged my heart and gave me such a sense of great excitement and anticipation that I could hardly go to sleep that night.

But early in the morning, some kind of serious amoebic illness struck me and I could hardly get out of bed. Believing that God was going to use me in spite of my illness, though, I claimed His supernatural power and was dressed and ready when the principal arrived to take me to the anticipated meeting. A famous Asian evangelist who, for several years, had been ill with a mysterious disease that even the finest medical specialists were unable to diagnose had also gotten out of his sickbed to be my interpreter.

Here we were, two very sick men delivering a message on revival. However, I had hardly spoken more than a sentence or two when I felt the supernatural healing touch of God upon me. The power was reflected in my message and God did send revival, not only to the students and faculty, but also to this speaker.

Later, as we rejoiced together, the principal asked if I would join in praying for my interpreter who was still very ill. We gathered around and laid hands on him – the principal, his wife and I. By faith we claimed his healing and I went on my way. Within days the man was miraculously restored to the fullness of health and within weeks on his first evangelistic speaking tour in several years, proclaiming the good news of God’s love and forgiveness through Jesus Christ.

Unfortunately, the major denominations have left the emphasis on healing to some who have prostituted this great truth, cheapened it, and made it a laughing matter, not only among evangelical believers, but in the secular world at large. Though many for whom we pray are not healed – else no one would die – we must remember that it is a privilege and power available to believers that we can claim for the glory of our risen Savior.

Bible Reading:James 5:13-19

TODAY’S ACTION POINT: I will pray for those who are ill and claim God’s supernatural healing power in their behalf.

 

 

http://www.cru.org