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Daily Devotionals

Day 84 – Issue 37

todayMay 1, 2015 7

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Be Still Know

READ: Matthew 5.8 NLT

‘God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.’

If you have any gold or silver you will know that it is vital that the metal is free from all impurity. If it is even slightly impure it will be worth only a fraction of the value of the pure metal. Here Jesus is saying that the same rule applies to our spiritual lives. We need to be single-minded, keeping our eyes fixed on his Kingdom and not allowing ourselves to be distracted by any lesser objective. It reminds us of Psalm 24 where we learn that the people who were welcomed to worship God in the temple were those who had “clean hands and a pure heart”.

For most of us this will make uncomfortable reading. We can easily understand the desirability of having pure hearts, but we know that our lives are a long way away from that. Even our best efforts can very easily be spoilt by unhelpful motives. When we give generously to help others, we will often feel personal pleasure and pride at what we have given. In fulfilling our roles in our churches it is easy to focus far too much attention on the love and gratitude that we gain from our service. Even in preaching the word of God there is always the danger of self-satisfaction at having preached a wonderful sermon. One day after John Bunyan had just finished preaching a sermon someone came up and told him that he had preached well. He apparently replied, “The devil already told me that as I was coming down the pulpit steps.”

Honesty compels us all to admit that we are a long way away from living lives of complete purity. Much as we might long to live a life of single-minded commitment to God we know that we are easily distracted. However, I don’t believe that Jesus’ words should depress us. As we read the beatitudes we are being shown the beauty and desirability of living a life in complete conformity to God’s will. Inspired by this “gold standard” he then urges us to walk in his footsteps relying completely on his forgiveness and the power of his Spirit.

QUESTIONS: What would help you to live more single-mindedly for God?

PRAYER: Lord God, I confess that I easily get distracted from following your will. I praise you for your forgiveness and for the renewing power of your Spirit. Amen

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Written by: Matt Weet

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