2011-12-21 / Church

Today’s Meditation

The First Thing
From The Upper Room
The World’s Most Widely Read Daily Devotional Guide

Read Psalm 23

Jesus said, “Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. . . . If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, . . . how much more will he clothe you?”

- Luke 12:27-28 (NIV)

My 96-year-old mother lives in a health-care center. Each day she sits near the nurses’ station, waiting patiently for my visit. I try to visit her regularly and bring flowers. When I hand the flowers to her, she thanks me repeatedly and tears of joy come to her eyes.

Mom looks very carefully at the flowers as she holds them in her arms and comments on the fragrance, colors, and shapes of the blossoms. She always reminds me to place them in a certain location on her table so that when she awakens in the morning they will be the first thing she sees. At the end of my visit, we fold our hands in prayer and say the 23rd Psalm.

To me, Mom’s appreciation for the beauty of each flower is almost an act of worshipping God. Her faith and her love for creation have helped me see even more clearly that right relationship with God does not lie in a frenzied, desperate attempt to win acceptance by our performance. We enter and sustain that relationship by humbly accepting the love and grace God offers to us in Jesus Christ.

Al Russell

(Connecticut, USA)

Thought for the Day: Relationship with God rests not on winning acceptance but on accepting grace.

Prayer: O God, help us to accept your grace instead of trying to earn your love. Amen.

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