Devotional - January 23, 2017

Scripture: Mark 7:14-30  

Devotional: Hey Everyone, I hope you guys had a good weekend. I spent some good time with the kids and found a new spot for them to have fun. The place is called My Little town and it is in Kissimmee, FL. It was basically an indoor park for kids with a lot of different activity sections for them. It was cool, something I wish I had available to me when I was a kid. Anyways I was a bit bummed out yesterday with my Packers losing the NFC championship game, but to my surprise I handled the loss good. In years past I would be almost depressed, but this year I knew that my team played their hearts out. We got further than we thought we were going to, so for that I tip my hat off to them and to an incredible year.  

With worship practice, service, then the game I couldn’t read my assigned scripture yesterday, but I caught up today with most of it. I was grabbed by Mark chapter 7 starting in verse 43, it says, 

If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It’s better to enter eternal life with only one hand than to go into the unquenchable fires of hell with two hands.45If your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It’s better to enter eternal life with only one foot than to be thrown into hell with two feet. 47And if your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out. It’s better to enter the Kingdom of God with only one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, 48‘where the maggots never die and the fire never goes out.’49“For everyone will be tested with fire. 50Salt is good for seasoning. But if it loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again? You must have the qualities of salt among yourselves and live in peace with each other.” 

What I grabbed out of this was, whatever is causing you to draw closer to God, break away from it! I know Jesus went further in describing it, but that's how serious he is about this issue. Whatever is causing you to fall back, do what you must do to eliminate it out of your life. This is much easier said than done because for some it might mean cutting away from a relationship. For another it might mean pulling back from a job or career that is going to compromise your faith. Only you know what that is and I encourage you to pray and pray hard, but don't pray long. Act fast because your life depends on it. Your destiny depends on it. Don't compromise your faith for nothing or no one.  

At the end of this time we are all judged alone. We won't be with our spouses, children, family or friends. We will all be alone in front of God and he will ask you one question, "What have you done with what I gave you?". Meaning what have you done with the one life that I gave you to live? I know I am coming out of the gates with some tough questions, but we need to be faced with reality. Jesus says, "For everyone will be tested with fire." Fire is hot and is not comfortable, so to me I see it as life will through you some curve-balls and put you in uncomfortable positions, but it is only to make you better.  

Have you ever tasted something that had no taste? I have and it is not good. The first thing that comes to mind was some fries that I ordered from McDonald's one day. I clearly remember having these fries and having no salt on them. They were the plainness fries I have ever had, but the moment I put salt on them was the moment that the flavor completely changed. We as believers must be the salt of the world. We must make things in and around us better. We cannot lose our saltiness! We must build our lives and make it better. We must build other people's lives and make them better. That is what being salt is all about.  

Prayer: I pray that we find opportunities to be the salt of our homes, communities, churches, jobs, schools, etc. That we not only make our lives better, but other people's lives better as well.   

Challenge: What are some things, people, habits, etc. that you believe you must cut away from because they are stirring you away from God? Write it down, present it to God and let the Holy Spirit lead you in