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Living My Best Life Day 8

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Scripture: Mark 10:42-45 Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.  For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.

Devotional: When I was in college, there was a popular t-shirt with a multitude of fish all swimming in one direction, and one ichthus (a fish symbol that represents Christianity) swimming in the opposite direction.  The caption read “go against the flow.”   

In many ways, this image captures the whole of Jesus’ teaching; that to follow him requires upside down thinking.  What seems “normal” to the world is not normal for Jesus followers.  The first will be last; whoever wants to be great must be a servant; to live, you must lay down your life.

This sounds simple enough, but is not easy to live out. For daily, we are bombarded with messages to live for yourself.  Living Your Best Life is not only the name of our current series, but a trendy term that characterizes the pervasive thinking of creating the life you desire.  It’s a popular social media hashtag that typically accompanies self-indulgent activities.   

But Jesus continually emphasizes that to live your best life, you must adopt an upside down, not-so-with-you mentality when compared to what the world deems #bestlife.  It’s about serving others, not yourself.  And in doing that, you actually experience the abundant, contented life that we were created to live.  Jesus says, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10). And when we follow His ways, we truly will experience our #bestlife.

Reflect:

  • What is one #bestlife mentality that you’ve subscribed to? When you think about Jesus’ teaching, is this something that is truly going to bring you contentment and satisfaction?
  • What is one practical way you can begin to adopt a servant mentality?
  • Walk through your day today prayerfully looking for opportunities to serve others – then take action as those opportunities arise.

Living My Best Life Day 7

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Scripture: Acts 1:8  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

Devotional: When you think about being a bold witness for the cause of Christ, have you ever wondered how and to whom you are called to witness? This passage answers those questions.

How are you called?  By the power of the Holy Spirit.  It’s not by might, not by your own power, but by His Spirit that you are able to share the life-giving message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

To whom are you called?  Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the ends of the earth were the geographical areas that Jesus mentioned as He commissioned His disciples after His resurrection.  But these also apply to all followers of Christ.  Jerusalem can represent where you live – your neighborhood, your family, your friends.  Judea might be the extended area in which you travel or commute.  Samaria would include those who are different from you, with whom you would not ordinarily associate.  And the ends of the earth includes ways you are investing in bringing the Gospel to unreached people groups – which may even include people in your community.   

Reflect:

  • How often do you pray for the Holy Spirit to fill and guide you to witness to others? Are you willing to commit to that prayer for the next 7 days?
  • Think about the areas that the “regions” mentioned by Jesus might represent for you. Ask God to show you how you can be more bold in each of these areas. 

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