Monday February 22 – Day 6 – Worship the Lord

 In Lenten Devotional

Monday February 22 – Day 6 – WORSHIP THE LORD

“8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor.  9 “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”
10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”
11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.” – Matthew 4:8-11 (NIV)

I hate to be cynical, but I truly believe everyone can be bought at a price.

I would LIKE to think that if someone offered me 100 billion dollars for my soul that I would have enough integrity and faith to say, “No thanks, my dance card has been filled already”.  But, if I think of the difference that money could make in the lives of not only my family but in the city and around the world, it might make me hesitate and I would “want to dance”.  Eradicating poverty would be an amazing thing, and if I could bring happiness to those around me, I would want to do that.

I wish I wasn’t a people pleaser, but I am.

The more I think about it, if I was tempted to have all of the greatness of the world while I was starving from not eating for 40 days, I would probably say yes just to get something to eat.

I am reminded of the story of Esau and Jacob, the twin brothers.  Esau, the oldest brother trades his birthright to Jacob for a bowl of soup.

Yes, a bowl of soup.

Esau was famished and Jacob made him trade his birthright because Esau thought he was dying of starvation.

What a drama king!

Esau’s birthright had a price: a bowl of pottage, because as Esau said to himself, “What is the use of a birthright if I am going to die anyway?”.

This begs each of us to ask ourselves this question:  What price can I be bought with?  Do I have a bottom line for my soul?”.

Jesus reminds us that we should hold out for the best offer no matter how sweet an alternate deal may seem.  His bottom line with the evil one was simple and straightforward:

““Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”

Jesus KNEW His Father.  Not only did He know His Father, He LOVED His Father.  And because He loved Him, Jesus obeyed his Father’s will no mater what.

We see Jesus make clear that the evil one’s offer is an insult by the tone of His response.  And, as we have seen in the two other temptations in Matthew 4,  Jesus uses the Word of God as a shield.

‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’”

When Jesus was tempted, He also knew that the offer wasn’t completely legitimate.  Sure, the evil one could have given Jesus power, but that was never going to happen.  The evil one knew the value of Jesus and was willing to try using Jacob’s approach with Esau: make a terrible deal that would cheat the one being tempted. Although the evil one knew Jesus’ value, he was not valued.

You are valued by God.

The value of your life is immeasurable.  Do you realize how much God values you?  How He sees you?  God has gone to such great lengths to capture your attention, to give you a life with purpose and significance.  You have been called to a greater story than you could ever imagine.

You don’t wanna be trading THIS for a lousy bowl of soup.

There are days when we can feel unworthy of God’s love.  There are days that we would accept the lousy deal because that is all we feel that we are worth.

Jesus reminded the evil one that we are to Worship God and to serve Him only.  THIS is the beginning of a life filled with purpose and meaning.  To be a part of the greatest story in the universe.

Because we are valued by God, we are of value to Him.

When we value God, we honour Him and amazing things happen.

Never forget that through the act of worship, we are drawn closer to God and blessing upon blessing flows into our world.  Lives are changed.  Lovers of Jesus serve those around them making their lives better because He first served us.

During the season of Lent, find time to worship God in the way that makes your heart sing.  For me, I wish I could be leading us all in worship in the same room, with the presence of the Holy Spirit moving among us.  But for now, leading worship online, singing at home and writing new worship songs have been the ways that I have worshipped.  For some of you, it may be walking the winter wilderness and seeing the greatness of God in nature.  Take the time to worship God and to serve Him, and your faith will deepen and grow.

Glorify Him, and see your life shine like diamonds in the night.

You are loved and you are valued by God.  Continue to live this life that is worthy of Him.

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