TODAY'S WORD FOR Wednesday, December 26, 2018:
Fragmented; overwhelmed; suffering from great sorrow or mournful dejection; weakened in spirit; broken heartedness.
A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance, but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
Have you ever thought that God’s requirement for maximum usefulness for Him is brokenness? So often, Christians struggle to get to whatever they perceive as the top. But what most Christians do not understand is that God is not looking for a long list of accomplishments when you arrive in heaven.
What God is looking for in us is a broken spirit and a contrite heart. If the attitude of our heart isn’t right, we can never please God no matter how great our accomplishments or how good we try. A broken spirit and a contrite heart is the result of recognizing we are lost sinners and being truly sorry for those sins. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” Psalm 51:17
God never accepts us on the basis of what we have done but He receives us because of what Christ has done for us on the cross. Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us to stop depending on what we can accomplish and instead rely on Him. This is not only for our salvation but for every aspect of our life. He wants our heart broken.
When our children were corrected for doing wrong and were truly sorry, they usually shed some tears and they would draw near looking for a hug and reassurance that they were still loved. Their tears showed their brokenness and their contrite heart. They desired to get back into our good graces. This is what a broken spirit and contrite heart does. It makes us want to run back to the one who will love us and comfort us and reassure us.
God wants us to repent for our sinful habits, self-reliance, and prideful desires until we can say, “All that I am and all that I have is God’s. He is in me and I am in Him, and that is all that matters.” When one arrives at this position, this is the brokenness that God requires of us for maximum usefulness to Him.
It is through our brokenness that God most often shapes us to conform to what He wants us to be and makes us useful for special service to others. Most believers have experienced some brokenness. It is a painful process but be encouraged; God is accomplishing His purpose to make each and all of us useful to Him.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Luke 2:16.
And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger.
It is my prayer today that You would break my spirit to the point that I will come to You with a contrite heart and say all that I am and all that I have is God’s. Help me to walk daily close to You listening to Your Holy Spirit guide and direct me as I walk through life’s valleys and climb life’s mountains to do what is right.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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