Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – January 4, 2016
When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home. John 19:26-27
Rita and I sometimes struggle with how and what to teach our four daughters and now their husbands. We instructed our children and teenagers to surround themselves with those they wanted to become like. We encouraged them to spend time with good students, athletes, teachers and coaches who modeled humility, hard work and a strong faith in Jesus. The closer relationships our children built with their classmates and authorities, the more opportunities they experienced to serve others and to grow their own interests. Our adult children still need wisdom, encouragement and grace to best determine God’s will for their lives. Close proximity to Christ and His followers creates the best opportunities.
Jesus knew John was the best choice to care for His mom. Why? The Lord knew first hand his love and compassion for people, but even more so—Christ trusted John to remain faithful when others abandoned their commitment. The beloved disciple was loyal to the end—but Jesus’ brother James could not be found in their family’s greatest time of need. Because John remained close by Christ during His dire moments—Jesus gave him the opportunity to care for His most treasured relationship—His mom, Mary. Proximity to Jesus opens doors to serve the needs of Jesus’ heart.
“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you” (James 4:7-8).
Are you in proximity to people you want to become like? Maybe this next year at work you meet monthly with a work associate who has a particular skill you want to develop. Emotional intelligence, technological savvy or financial astuteness may be a few opportunities for personal or professional growth. Perhaps there is a family at church you would like to emulate. Invite the mom and dad into your home for dinner and ask them about their guiding principles for marriage and parenting. Proximity to quality people helps grow your quality of life.
Most importantly, we stay in proximity to our heavenly Father. We follow Jesus best when we stay close enough to breathe in the dust from His sandals. Proximity to our Savior is self evident through continual prayer. The Holy Spirit seduces a heart surrendered to Him—He romances those whose love affair is faithful obedience to living in the truth. Just like our proximity to a roaring fireplace toasts our cheeks and fingertips, so our close proximity to Christ ignites our faith and warms our soul. Proximity to God creates opportunities from God—with God, for God.
“O Lord, who may lodge [as a guest] in Your tent? Who may dwell [continually] on Your holy hill? He who walks with integrity and strength of character, and works righteousness, And speaks and holds truth in his heart” (Psalm 15:1-2, AMP).
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I draw near to You so You can align my desires with Your’s.
Application: Where is the Lord leading me to be intentional in a relational investment?
Related Readings: Psalm 25:14; John 8:32; Romans 16:13; 1 Timothy 2:4
Post/Tweet this today: Proximity to quality people helps grow our quality of life. #proximitycreatesopportunity #WisdomHunters
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© 2016 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
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