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Mission Devotional - October 30, 2016

Opening Prayer: Lord Jesus, help me not to seek to be first today, whatever that may look like in my life. But help me to seek to be last, for then I will be great in your kingdom. Amen.

Scripture: Matthew 19:23-30

Journal: How do these verses intersect with your life today? What is God trying to say through them? What kind of reordering is God trying to do in you?

Reflection: It is impossible for a camel to make itself small enough to fit through the eye of a needle. And why would it even want to in the first place? That is unless there was some eternal value in becoming small, or last, or least. Then that would change everything, right? But how could that happen? What could possibly be the redeeming value of being last? That's where Jesus comes in. He enters the picture and starts turning life, and the status quo, upside down. That's because he knows that there is something about being rich that makes us big, too big maybe. There is something about trying to be first and great and large that runs contrary to what God really wants to do in us. As a matter of fact, he tells us that the last will actually be first in his kingdom. For his kingdom is not about making ourselves big and great and first, but making him big and great and first. We do this by raising him up, not ourselves. And then it expresses itself in our lives by raising others up, by letting them ahead of us, because of his great love and affection. I mean, how on earth can we ever hope to enter the narrow way if we are too big? That would be like a camel trying to go through the eye of a needle.

Prayer for the church, for others, for myself

Bobby and Teresa LaDage are working with Redeemer City to City (the church planting arm of Redeemer Church in NYC) envisioning, equipping, and mentoring church planters and their wives in order to see gospel-centered churches reach the major cities of Eastern and Central Europe. Recently they have also been asked to become European Regional Leaders for United World Mission. Pray today for Bobby and Teresa as they learn to balance both of these roles.

Homes of Love creates families for orphaned, abandoned, and at-risk children in Southeast Asia and Africa by identifying, training and supporting in-country Christian parents who will raise these children as their own. With access to education, healthcare, and a loving family, Homes of Love children escape the dangers of poverty, abuse, neglect, and sexual exploitation and are freed to pursue healthy, vibrant futures. Pray today that God will provide loving parents for new homes.

Closing Prayer: Lord Jesus, reorder my mind and my heart and make them like your own, so that I might think the way you think and feel the way you feel; in order that I might love the way you love and walk the way you walk. Amen.