God can take our impure motives and turn them to His glory!

February 26, 2018

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Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice. Yes, and I will continue to rejoice,
(Philippians 1:18 (NIV))

What does this passage mean to you?

I was given a very interesting point of view of this passage earlier today, and to be completely honest with you, it makes perfect sense!

When this passage was written, Paul was in prison and other people started to preach the Gospel. Some had pure motives while others had selfish motives. Paul recognized the value of both, since spreading the Gospel was his biggest concern. I know that I do this all the time, but let me ask a few questions of you.

Do you think that the people who heard the Gospel from those with false motives knew of those motives, especially if what they preached was true to the Gospel? Let me ask this a slightly different way. If you are channel surfing and come across a television preacher who is preaching the truth, will everyone ignore this preacher simply because they may seek money? Perhaps your church has a guest speaker and they are very eloquent at conveying the truth of the Gospel. Do you stop listening to them because they set up a table to sell the books that they have written?

Let’s be honest with ourselves!

We are all human and we all have motives for doing things that are less than perfect. Does that stop us from doing them? Does that stop us from listening to those who have less than perfect motives? Think about that in relationship to your job. What if you are having a bad day, but you need your paycheck? Do you put on a fake smile and go about your day, or do you storm off? Most people will put on a fake smile. They may have less than a proper motive, but they come across with something that will impact those around them in a positive way.

Think about that in terms of the Gospel!

As long as the truth is being preached, God can and does use that truth to help spread the Gospel. I don’t condone this, but have you ever seen two churches become rivals? They try to do anything and everything to be “better” than their rival. One may take out billboard ads with scripture passages while the other will place ads in local newspapers. One may apply for and receive a license for a radio station, while one may use the internet to broadcast their services. In all of this rivalry, who really wins?

If you say that God wins because the Gospel is being spread, then you are correct.

We are only human and our human motives are less than perfect, but God is perfect. In fact, He is perfection. To use an old saying, “God can take our mess and make a message!” If God can do that, then God can take our impure motives and turn them to His glory!

Copyright 1998 – 2018 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Focus on Jesus in the new year!

January 5, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
(Hebrews 13:8 (NIV))

Nothing is ever the same in this life. It is impossible to ground yourself in anything in this world. Just when you think things are as they should be, something terrible happens and things are a complete mess.

If you base your perspective of life on things worldly, then you are going to be let down many times. If you base your life on things that are of God, with the center of your focus on Jesus Christ, then you will never be let down. With the beginning of the new year already here, keep your perspective clearly focused on Jesus, for He never changes.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Copyright 1998 – 2014 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Whom do you trust?

October 4, 2012

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help,
who rely on horses,
who trust in the multitude of their chariots
and in the great strength of their horsemen,
but do not look to the Holy One of Israel,
or seek help from the LORD.
(Isaiah 31:1 (NIV))

Where do you turn for help? Do you turn to the government and expect the government to be like Egypt was in the time of Isaiah? Do you think that man and all of his feeble creations can save the day when the day looks dark and ominous?

Too many people do just that. They think that man is capable of solving all of the problems that we encounter, or should I say all of the problems that we create. If we create the problems out of our ignorance or our education, how can we solve the problems that we have created? Why do we place our trust in people who are no more capable of fixing economic woes, crime, war and hunger that we are? Our perspectives are limited. We see from a dismally limited and opinionated perspective, yet, human society continues to place our trust in those who are no better off at understanding them or fixing them than we are.

Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.
(Psalm 20:7 (NIV))

In today’s society, this seems like an archaic way of dealing with things, but, it works. Our society has made a mess of the way things are. We have placed our trust in things that shouldn’t even be considered.

We need to turn to God and place our trust firmly on Him who created all things.

It isn’t always easy. It takes a commitment. It takes faith. It takes trust.

Whom do you trust?

Copyright 1998 – 2012 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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