9.27.14 7am – family room chair
Father, thank you for your guidance in continuing with this devotion, as I type and reflect on todays passage I ask for your work in me to transform me to your will.
I could technically be finished with this devotion challenge, as I hit the minimum number of entries. But I am really enjoying it. I plan to continue in this format until our next small group meeting, and after I think I will change the format a little. Maybe removing the date and time, and keeping the prayers private.
I decided to keep rolling with Matthew and the Sermon on the Mount. I have always liked this discourse, but as I have discovered with the beatitudes there is a lot I have skipped over without giving much thought.
- You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
I do most of the cooking at our house, and one thing that drives me crazy is when my wife salts her food without tasting it. But what makes it worse if I have to reach across the table for the salt shaker because after tasting my food it turns out she was right. Salt enhances the flavor of bland food and cuts bitterness. Health effects aside, it is a pretty useful seasoning and preservative, and it is essential for human life. As a Christian I should be the seasoning to a bitter world. In lieu of the preceding beatitudes and in light (pun intended) of the following verses, it stands to reason that being salty is expressed in how I live and love. But salt that doesn’t have any flavor isn’t good for anything except making soil infertile. I have met Christians like this. People who claim to be Christian but are not living like Christians. I feel they do more to harm Christianity and make it difficult for any seeds planted to grow.
- You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
If I truly live for Christ, and am truly being transformed by the Spirit, my life should be visible to everyone like a town built on a hill. Everyone who looks will see its lights. If I go along with a crowd, or ignore one of those fallacious internet memes which try to make a case against Christ by taking a Bible verses out of context, I am dimming that light. I feel that if I don’t engage culture, if I don’t associate with pre-believers and live in a Christian bubble I am even further dimming that light, and have become as useless as salt without any flavor. Good deeds in Christianity are not required for salvation, but they are an expected sign of salvation. I don’t think my sign always points in the right direction. Sometimes, and more so since I have read the beatitudes, I wonder if my life is really as reflective of Christ’s as it could be. There are times when instead of humbly reaching across the table for the salt shaker, I try to choke down the bland food in order to prove that I was right and don’t need it. And that is exactly what I do when I remain silent and don’t live like a Christian.
Lord, thank you for challenging me with these devotions. I ask that you give me the courage to let your light shine in me in all situations. Amen!