Read Matthew 9:35-38
Jesus is teaching and healing, He is preaching in the synagogues and He is looking out at the people of the crowds, and He feels compassion for them. He has seen their situation and He feels compassion for them.
To understand what is going on here we must understand what this "compassion" means.
Dictionary.com defines compassion as:
a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.
This is one definition, but this word that Matthew is using is so much deeper than this.
Matthew Barkley in his commentary says this, “σπλαγχνίζομαι (spla-gis-o-my) is the strongest word for pity in the Greek language. It is formed from the word splagchna, which means, in the bowels, and it describes the compassion which moves people to the deepest depths of their being. In the gospels, apart from its use in some of the parables, it is used only of Jesus"
This word is not just feeling sorry for someone cause they are hungry, this is much, much deeper.
This word is basically like a mothers compassion for a child.
My wife, understands this much better then I do, almost every time one my daughters is close to falling, or something bad happening, she comments to me how she has chills, and the stress almost is uncontrollable.
This is that pain on the insides that a parent feels for her child. The litteral meaning of the root greek word, is compassion turning in the bowels.
This is a compassion that is so deep so real, it is like stomach pain.
Lets read the vs again.
Jesus looks out on the people and he is moved on the insides with compassion for them.
Jesus looks upon fallen humanity, with so much compassion that he hurts on the inside for us. He hurts on the inside for you.
Do you have a prayer life? Do you pray before you make big decisions? What about when you make small decisions? Being a loving healthy Christian is about connecting. To connect we need to pray.
Look at these two examples or Jesus prayer life.
Luke 6:12-19, Why did Jesus go up on the Mountain to pray? Was he getting ready for something big?
Luke 22:39-46 What is the context? What is about to happen to Jesus?
When big things happen in your life, changes, plans, goals, do you go to God to talk about them?
Prayer: Oh God, help me to rely on you more, in the big and in the small. Help me to bring my needs and decisions before you. Come into my life and be my strength and my guide.
For those of you that read in the mornings, I appologize, my blog this morning did not post like it normally does.
Do you want to know God more? Do you have a desire to understand Him better? Moses did.
Read Exodus 33:17-34:9, as you read keep in mind that when the Hebrew was originally written there were no chapter breaks. In other words, this scene on the mountain all connects.
When God covers Moses where does He put Moses? Who is the Rock? When we come to God who do we have to be covered by?
When Moses says to God show me your glory, he is really asking God to reveal Himself to him. After He passes by God hands Moses the Ten Commandements.
Did you get that? Moses says to God, "Show me your glory, so God passes by, and then gives Moses the ten commandments." If you want to know God, and His character what do you need to have in your life?
Pray: God Show me your Glory. Teach me who you are. Help me to see you through your commandments.
Part of getting closer to God is understanding who He is a little better.
Yesterday we read about being connected to God, and in without Him, we can do nothing.
Today Read John 15:1-15, adding in a few more verses from yesterday. Pay special attention to the last 5 verses.
What makes your Joy full? Why does God want us to be connected to Him? Why does Jesus transition from being connected to ultimate love?
Read 1 John 4:8
Read 1 Corinthians 13
Is this love that God is speaking of romantic love? What is this love about? What is God asking you to do based on these statements of love? What do you have in your life that goes against these principles? Are you a noisy gong?
Prayer: God show me what it means to love, teach me to reflect your image. Help me to love others the way that you do.
It is only by loving others that we can truly learn to connect with God. Being a Christ follower is about so much more than self.
The point of any relationship is the connection, the bond with another person. If we are attempting to be in a relationship with Christ we must bond with Him. We must be connected to Him.
Read John 15:1-11
Now read it again one verse at a time asking these questions through each verse.
God, what do you want me to know?
God, how do you want me to feel?
God, what do you want me to do?
Today spend 5-10 minutes praying about these three questions and how God wants you to understand these verses.
Ask God to give you clarity on this, and then spend 5 more minutes intentionally listening for God. Don't ask Him, just listen.
For me listening to the Holy Spirit is one of the hardest things to learn, I always want to be asking or talking, but it's also one of the most valuable parts of my prayer life.
What separated the greats of the Bible?
Read Hebrews 11:1-39
What did all of those mentioned have in common? What do you have in common with them? Where these great men, or did they trust in a great God? Where these men perfect? Where these men great before God began to work in them?
What could happen if you had more faith? What is faith?
Read Hebrews 11:1-3 Contemplate this verse.
Read Hebrews 12:1-4 What is the author of Hebrews suggesting that this faith journey entails? Do you have endurance?
Pray today that God with increase your faith, and help you to endure.
I believe that in today's world, and in today's church there are not enough people who believe that God can do great things through them. I firmly believe that if you rely on God, if you let Him lead in your life, He can and will do great things through you.
What would you do if Jesus came to you?
Today I want you to Read Luke 19:1-10
Tax collector's where considered to be a traitor to Israel If this story portrays a traitor repentant, what can Jesus do for you?
Read Mark 10:17-27
What is the contrast between this story and the first story of Zacchaeus? What must have been going on in the Rich young ruler's heart that he turned away? Do you have anything in your heart that is keeping you from surrender?
Prayer: God, help me over the next 27 days to surrender my heart and life to you. Help me to realize what I need to do to live for you.
Sundays for me a typically a hard day for devotions because my routine is broken. But not today!
Read: 1 Samuel 17
Ask yourself as you read: What similarities do you have with David? Was David special? Why was he willing to defeat the giant? Are you more like Isreal who didn't fight the giant or David? What is keeping you from facing your giants? Are those giants keeping you from God?
Read: Philippians 4:8-13
Pray: Today spend at least 5 minutes asking God to help you have a trust in Him that will help you get over anything that is keeping Him out of your life.
Spend: 5-10 minutes thinking about all the things in your life that you are thankful for. Give thanks to God for them.
Start in the beginning. What better place to start a walk with God then where He started His walk with you.
Today Read: Genesis 1:1-2:7, John 1:1-14, Jeremiah 1:5, and Psalm 139:1-6
Pray: Spend your first 5 minutes in prayer, praising God for what He has done for you.
Spend at least 5 minutes specifically asking God to guide you, over these next 30 days. Ask Him to lead in your life, and to lead you closer to Him. Pray for 5 specific people today.
Your are giving up your time to get closer to God. He will reward your sacrifice.
I want to challenge you to partake in a challenge I have for you.
Starting tomorrow for 30 days, we will have shortened blog posts.
For 30 days, I am going to post, simple descriptions of what to read and what to pray for.
Starting tomorrow, I want to challenge you to spend time with God like you never have before. Part of the purpose of this blog is to teach people how to have a devotional life. But the reality is, you can't just read what I have to say. You need to read straight from the word of God and spend time in prayer.
Are you up for the challenge. It starts tomorrow.
The first reading and prayer will be up at 6 am, April 22, 2017
If you take this challenge seriously, I guarantee that you will be closer to God, and you will experience more fulfillment in every area of your life. I know it's a bold claim. But God is a bold God. So come back tomorrow in and start your Epic 30 day journey. I will tell you what, "In 30 days, if you are not closer to God, and all around happier I will give you your money back."
How often do we wonder, "Where am I going? or What is my purpose?" In our day to day life, in our inner walk, many of us are looking for a purpose. You may be here because you want answers. You may be here because you truly want an Epic Walk. For whatever your reason, I am glad you are here. Read on. Enjoy our daily homework and hopefully, you can find more purpose, and begin an Epic Walk.