Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 3, 2015
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14
My heart aches and breaks for our nation to turn back to God. Our best and only hope is Jesus Christ. The decline of a nation is a moral erosion from within. When religion is marginalized man becomes the focus and secular society cannibalizes itself. I am a hopeful person, but unless the Lord builds up our national consciousness of Christ, our culture will continue to erode morally. Our heavenly Father wants to bless us with a spiritual awakening, but He waits for us to be bless- able. Here are some ways we can prepare ourselves individually, so God can bless us nationally.
Arrogance is absent where humble prayer resides. Athletes, politicians, domestic engineers, teachers, business leaders and students have no place for pride with bowed heads and hearts in prayer. Humble prayers see the Lord high and lifted up, holy and only approachable in reverence, awe and worship. A soul full of humility prays because it has to—not because it wants to. Real communion with Christ is not perfunctory, but necessary and alive. Humble prayers gain heaven’s ear. They position us to receive the grace of God and the Word of God. Prayer is spiritual breathing that gives life to the soul. Humble prayer opens our eyes of faith to see God.
A contrite heart is broken over sin; it’s own sin and that of a nation. Instead of redefining sin, there is an abiding sensitivity to what’s wrong and an aversion to its influence—much less its control. Contrition hurts over hurting another, because of an angry outburst or breaking a promise. A contrite heart deeply desires to be cleansed by Christ, so as a forgiven sinner—we are capable of forgiving others. Until Christians weep in repentance—culture will drift in debauchery. Thus, we cry out to Christ for cleansing. Lord deliver us from pride and fill us with Your Spirit.
Love and Obedience to Christ
We love Jesus when we love each other. We are merciful towards those within the fold of faith and we are compassionate toward those who are strangers to salvation. We desire to be with the one we love. We long to find pleasure in what pleasures our lover, especially the lover of our soul—Jesus. We love God when we love what God loves. Our Lord loves for His children to know Him and make Him known. He loves for the poor and needy to receive our selfless service. He loves for the lost to be saved and the saved to be sanctified. Love is an indicator of intimacy with God.
Generosity gets to the heart of God. He gave His only son—so we could receive life in Christ. Generosity is an attitude motivated by gratitude and fueled by faith. It’s not shy to give because it has received so much. God can trust a generous nation with more when He knows they will give more. One reason America is great is because she is a magnanimous giver. Since we have been given much, we have a responsibility to give much. Our giving is not just to do good works, but to aggressively spread the gospel worldwide. Generous giving qualifies us for God’s favor!
“‘Nevertheless, I will bring health and healing to it; I will heal my people and will let them enjoy abundant peace and security” (Jeremiah 33:6).
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I bow with a humble and contrite heart—heal me and heal our land.
Related Readings: 2 Chronicles 6:20, 27; Isaiah 53:5, 57:18; Luke 6:38; 1 John 5:2-3
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