Devotional January 21: Faith, Hope, and Love (is all you need)
As we think about Marin Luther King this week, we need to consider his earthly reward. For answering the call that God called him to he was beaten, imprisoned, and finally executed. He did not receive glorious riches for his obedience. Instead he received an abundance of faith, hope, and love which carried him through the tough times, made him believe that with God’s help he could accomplish what he was appointed to do, and gave him the ability to trust in the goodness of man. I wrote the following (with a little help from my brother) for my son’s baptism.
What is important in life? Please remember that the most important things are not things you can see, touch, taste, feel, or smell
Have faith in God! Having faith in God will not keep you from having problems and disappointments, but will get you through them. Faith in God’s love and His goodness, and in the fact that He promises not to give us more than we can bear, is a cornerstone upon which we can get through our day. Remember that when life brings your to your knees that you are in great position for prayer! Have faith in your parents! They are striving to do the best they can for you. However, as human beings we are not perfect and there will always be room for improvement. Don’t be a finger-pointer and/or seek to blame all your problems on others.Have faith in yourself! You have a lot to give. Whether you obtain what you want in life, know that happiness is ultimately up to you. True happiness rarely revolves around something you have or don’t have. True happiness usually revolves around your perspective to those things.
Hope in the Lord as He has promised His forgiveness! Be honest with yourself, admit when you have made a mistake and learn the great price that the Lord has paid for us. We hope in the Lord’s words that Heaven is real and worth sacrificing for. Have hope in your parents! Their advice is that they have made a lot of mistakes and like to think they have learned something from those mistakes! Have hope in yourself! The biggest challenge in life is not inventing something, being in some sports event, or something else that is temporary. Rather, the biggest challenge is in getting to know who you are. As you are learning you are going to make mistakes. There is nothing worse in this world than a quitter or someone who takes out his disappointments on other people because he has lost hope. When you make mistakes in life be like Esau and learn from them and then quickly forgive yourself and others. Things are rarely the way you want them to be so learn to laugh at yourself!
Love God and know His love for you! Knowing God’s love and loving God is something that only you can experience for yourself in your heart of hearts. Your mother and your father have experienced it. It is something that is truer and more real than any feeling or any experience that this world can give you. They hope that throughout your life you will know how God expresses his love to you and the rest of the world through studying His Word, going to church, learning from wise men and women, and through your heart. We, your parents love you! Your parent’s love is something that is imperfect yet very real as well. You may not understand how much they love you until you are much older. It may not even be as clear to you until you are ready to have children yourself! God calls us to love our neighbor. Remember to treat especially those people who do you wrong and those that make you feel uncomfortable the way you want to be treated. This is so important and it is closely related to loving God. Learn to love yourself! This is related to both God’s love and your parent’s love, You need to learn to appreciate yourself for all the talents, gifts, and abilities you have been given. Especially important are the everyday aspirations of forgiveness, kindness, joy, patience, and faithfulness. These attributes are most beautiful when you use them in service to God and towards others.
You need to build these attributes in yourself through daily practice.
1 Corinthians 13:13….And now abideth faith, hope and love but the greatest of these is love.