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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Saturday, November 22, 2014
In order to grow, learn the basics of faith
Today’s story in The Upper Room is titled “SPIRITUAL GROWTH” by Pramila Barkataki (Uttar Pradesh, India). I want to share with you a couple of sentences Pramila wrote: “But achieving spiritual maturity requires our effort and intention. Born into God’s family, we begin to grow spiritually when we hunger for God’s word, meditate on it regularly, and apply it in our lives. . .”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – How is my spiritual growth evident to those around me?
Prayer: O God, we want to grow in our faith and in the likeness of Jesus. Help us, we pray. Amen.
Prayer Focus: THOSE WHO HAVEN’T HEARD GOD’S WORD
To read the entire story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
At times we will undergo trials, not because we want to suffer, but because we want to obey God. Let Jesus’ obedience sustain and encourage you in times of trial. You will be able to face anything if you know that Jesus Christ is with you.
Have you ever felt that God didn’t hear your prayers? Be sure you are praying with reverent submission, willing to do what God wants. God responds to his obedient children.
Because Jesus obeyed perfectly, even under great trial, he can help us obey, no matter how difficult obedience seems to be.
Christ was always morally perfect. By obeying, he demonstrated his perfection to us, not to God or to himself. In the Bible, perfect usually means completeness or maturity. By sharing our experience of suffering, Christ shared our human experience completely. He is now able to offer eternal salvation to those who obey him.
These Jewish Christians were immature. Some of them should have been teaching others, but they had not even applied the basics to their own lives. They were reluctant to move beyond age-old traditions, established doctrines, and discussion of the basics. They wouldn’t be able to understand the high-priestly role of Christ unless they moved out of their comfortable position, cut some of their Jewish ties, and stopped trying to blend in with their culture. Commitment to Christ moves people out of their comfort zones.
In order to grow from infant Christians to mature Christians, we must learn discernment. We must train our conscience, our senses, our mind, and our body to distinguish good from evil. Can you recognize temptation before it traps you? Can you tell the difference between a correct use of Scripture and a mistaken one?
Our capacity to feast on deeper knowledge of God (“solid food”) is determined by our spiritual growth. Too often we want God’s banquet before we are spiritually capable of digesting it. As you grow in the Lord and put into practice what you have learned, your capacity to understand will also grow. (NLT)
Hebrews 5:7-14 – While Jesus was here on earth, he offered prayers and pleadings, with a loud cry and tears, to the one who could deliver him out of death. And God heard his prayers because of his reverence for God. So even though Jesus was God’s Son, he learned obedience from the things he suffered. In this way, God qualified him as a perfect High Priest, and he became the source of eternal salvation for all those who obey him. And God designated him to be a High Priest in the line of Melchizedek.
There is so much more we would like to say about this. But you don’t seem to listen, so it’s hard to make you understand. You have been Christians a long time now, and you ought to be teaching others. Instead you need someone to teach you again the basic things a beginner must learn about the Scriptures. You are like babies who drink only milk and cannot eat solid food. And a person who is living on milk isn’t very far along in the Christian life and doesn’t know much about doing what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who have trained themselves to recognize the difference between right and wrong and then do what is right.
Paul wrote, “I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for solid food. Even now you are still not ready.” –1 Corinthians 3:2 (NRSV)
For more Helpful Inspirational Material:
BASICS OF FAITH: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/basics-of-faith/
SPIRITUAL GROWTH: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/spiritual-growth/
PERFECT, PERFECTION: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/perfect-perfection/
SPIRITUAL GIFTS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/spiritual-gifts/
SCRIPTURE, SCRIPTURES: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/scripture-scriptures/
LISTENING, LISTEN: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/listening-listen/
SUFFERING, SUFFER: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/suffering-suffer/
VALUE, VALUABLE: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/value-valuable/
PREPARATION, PREPARED, PREPARING: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/preparation-prepared-preparing/
LEARNING, LEARN: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/learning-learn/
DISCERNMENT, DISCERN: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/discernment-discern/
OPINION, OPINIONS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/opinion-opinions/
May you find comfort, encouragement, guidance, hope, inspiration, love, and peace – https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/. May you also find answers to your question(s) through the Scriptures that address every situation you face, and help with your problems: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-a-g/ ; https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-h-n/ ; https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-o-u/; https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/topics-v-z/