Mission Devotional - July 15, 2017

"The fire shall ever be burning upon the altar; it shall never go out."

Today's Devotional Reading

Leviticus 6:13
Keep the altar of private prayer burning. This is the very life of all piety. The sanctuary and family altars borrow their fires here, therefore let this burn well. Secret devotion is the very essence, evidence, and barometer, of vital and experimental religion.

Burn here the fat of your sacrifices. Let your closet seasons be, if possible, regular, frequent, and undisturbed. Effectual prayer availeth much. Have you nothing to pray for? Let us suggest the Church, the ministry, your own soul, your children, your relations, your neighbours, your country, and the cause of God and truth throughout the world. Let us examine ourselves on this important matter. Do we engage with lukewarmness in private devotion? Is the fire of devotion burning dimly in our hearts? Do the chariot wheels drag heavily? If so, let us be alarmed at this sign of decay. Let us go with weeping, and ask for the Spirit of grace and of supplications. Let us set apart special seasons for extraordinary prayer. For if this fire should be smothered beneath the ashes of a worldly conformity, it will dim the fire on the family altar, and lessen our influence both in the Church and in the world.

The text will also apply to the altar of the heart. This is a golden altar indeed. God loves to see the hearts of his people glowing towards himself. Let us give to God our hearts, all blazing with love, and seek his grace, that the fire may never be quenched; for it will not burn if the Lord does not keep it burning. Many foes will attempt to extinguish it; but if the unseen hand behind the wall pour thereon the sacred oil, it will blaze higher and higher. Let us use texts of Scripture as fuel for our heart's fire, they are live coals; let us attend sermons, but above all, let us be much alone with Jesus. - Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Morning & Evening: Daily Readings

Prayer for the church, for others, for myself

Michael and Kim Essenburg are serving at Okinawa Christian School (OCS), a school for missionary children and children of business and professional people in Okinawa, Japan. This year they are celebrating 30 years of serving in Japan! They ask that you continue to pray for a full staff at their school.

The focus of Navigators International at UT Knoxville is the over 1,000 international students at the University of Tennessee who come from 100+ nations. Spouses and family networks back home multiply the potential for the gospel to spread. Navigator's mission is to advance the gospel of Jesus and His Kingdom to the nations through spiritual generations of laborers living and discipling among the lost. Pray today for the leaders of this ministry as they prepare for the fall semester.