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Thursday, September 8, 2016
Everything Comes from God - Our Daily Bread Ministries daily devotional 8 September Thursday
I was 18 years old when I got my first fulltime job, and I learned an important lesson about the discipline of saving money. I worked and saved until I had enough money for a year of school. Then my mom had emergency surgery, and I realized I had the money in the bank to pay for her operation.
My love for my mother suddenly took precedence over my plans for the future. These words in the book Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot took on new meaning: “If we hold tightly to anything given to us, unwilling to let it go when the time comes to let it go or unwilling to allow it to be used as the Giver means it to be used, we stunt the growth of the soul. It is easy to make a mistake here, ‘If God gave it to me,’ we say, ‘it's mine. I can do what I want with it.’ No. The truth is that it is ours to thank Him for and ours to offer back to Him, . . . ours to let go of.”
I realized that the job I had received and the discipline of saving were gifts from God! I could give generously to my family because I was sure God was capable of seeing me through school another way, and He did.
Today, how might God want us to apply David's prayer from 1 Chronicles 29:14, “Everything we have has come from you, and we give you only what you first gave us”? (nlt).
Lord, we know there is nothing that we have that we obtained on our own. It’s all Yours. Help us to have open hands for You to give and take as You please. Increase our faith.
Everything belongs to God.
Today’s reading puts the true object of worship front and center. David’s prayer in 1 Chronicles 29:14–19 appears nowhere else in the biblical account and focuses the reader’s attention on God rather than on the temple or on King David. This makes perfect sense given the timeframe and audience of the book. Although we cannot be certain, Jewish tradition identifies Ezra as the chronicler. And it’s believed he wrote between 450 and 400 bc, with his primary audience being those who had recently returned from exile in Babylonia. The books of 1 and 2 Chronicles are unique in that they are historical accounts written long after the events they describe. About half of Chronicles is material repeated from earlier Old Testament books.