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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Thursday, January 21, 2016
Today’s scripture reading:
Jacob made it a habit to do more than was expected of him. When his flocks were attacked, he took the losses rather than splitting them with Laban. He worked hard even after several pay cuts. His diligence eventually paid off; his flocks began to multiply. Making a habit of doing more than expected can pay off. It (1) pleases God, (2) earns recognition and advancement, (3) enhances your reputation, (4) builds others’ confidence in you, (5) gives you more experience and knowledge, and (6) develops your spiritual maturity. (NLT)
Genesis 31:38-42 – “Twenty years I have been with you, and all that time I cared for your sheep and goats so they produced healthy offspring. In all those years I never touched a single ram of yours for food. If any were attacked and killed by wild animals, did I show them to you and ask you to reduce the count of your flock? No, I took the loss! You made me pay for ever animal stolen from he flocks, whether the loss was my fault or not. I worked for you through the scorching heat of the day and through cold and sleepless nights. Yes, twenty years—fourteen of them earning your two daughters, and six years to get the flock. And you have reduced my wages ten times! In fact, except for the grace of God—the God of my grandfather Abraham, the awe-inspiring God of my father, Isaac—you would have sent me off without a penny to my name. But God has seen your cruelty and my hard work. That is why he appeared to you last night and vindicated me.”
We glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. – Romans 5:3-4 (NIV)
Timothy Austin (Istanbul, Turkey) titled his story “HARD WORK, LOW PAY . . .” here is a portion of Timothy’s story:
“As a young man, looking for adventure in the outdoors and not knowing what else to do with my life, I joined the California Conservation Corps. . . .
“. . . As we remain faithful and persevere through difficult circumstances, God is faithful to cultivate in us the character of Christ. By God’s grace, we can emerge from our trials stronger and more conformed to the image of Christ.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Faithful endurance produces godly character.
Prayer: Dear Lord, give us grace to endure adversity, confident that you are at work in us, making us more like Christ. Amen.
Prayer Focus: THOSE WORKING UNDER HARSH CONDITIONS
To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
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