Day #5: The Good Fight

2 Timothy 4:7-8I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.

Nearing the end of his life, Paul reflects on his calling that God gave him. He has fought the good fight. I wonder what fight he was talking about. Was he referring to the arena of the cold dungeon he sang hymns with Silas and saw the Lord continue him in the work? Was he reminded of being hidden in a basket as he fled the perpetrators in Damascus? Was he talking about faith while he was confident during a shipwreck and getting bitten by a snake? Let us respond also to the exhortation to long for his appearing by giving ourselves fully to the work of the Lord.

Prayer: Father God, as you called Paul to fight the good fight, may we also live with that same passion and resolve. May we set the trajectory of our lives towards that award of hearing you say, “well done, my good and faithful servant.” In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Song: Let’s sing to the Lord with the song “Mercies (New Every Morning)” by Matt Redman (click here).



Day #4: Each A Special Assignment

Joshua 1:10-11 NIV – So Joshua ordered the officers of the people: “Go through the camp and tell the people, ‘Get your provisions ready. Three days from now you will cross the Jordan here to go in and take possession of the land the LORD your God is giving you for your own.’”

          “God has called every single Christian to do something special, something mighty, something unique that only he or she can do. God knows your personality. He is the source of all your gifts and strengths. He also knows your great potential to advance his kingdom.”
          “Any special assignment for you and me is, first and foremost, God’s idea. It is not something we concoct by ourselves. For Joshua, the assignment was the long-awaited fulfillment of God’s mighty promise going back more than four hundred years. God had singled out this territory for his people a long, long time ago. Now he would make it happen. Joshua was simply his lieutenant to get the Israelites organized.”
            “Joshua’s invasion force needed soldiers, spies, blacksmiths, cooks, equipment organizers, trainers, and dozens of other jobs. Every army needs a variety of roles, and each one is important. What God calls us to do is just as strategic. The various assignments all add up to a powerful force that can lead us into the Promised Land.”
[Cymbala, Jim, You Were Made for More, Ch. 2 “An Assignment Just for You”]

Prayer: Lord thank you that you have a specific calling for each of us. Help me to be faithful in all the assignments you have for me as I trust in your great plans. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

Song: Let’s sing to the Lord with the song “You Hold All Together” by Maverick City Music (click here).

– MK


Day #3: Abounding in excellence

1 Corinthians 15:10-11 NIV – But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me. Whether, then, it is I or they, this is what we preach, and this is what you believed.

1 Corinthians 15:58 NIVTherefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

The second part, ‘abounding in the work of the Lord always,’ recalls his earlier language describing the Corinthians as the work of God because of the labors of God’s servants. The exhortation ‘to abound’ or ‘to excel’ (περισσεειν , perisseuein) also appears in 14:12 and is connected to building up the church. Putting these two pieces together may shed light on the meaning of the ambiguous phrase ‘abounding in the work of the Lord.’ It would be related to whatever contributes to building up the church.”  [Garland, David E., 1 Corinthians, Kindle Locations 17104-17109]

Prayer: Holy Spirit of God, thank you that you call us into the abundant fullness of serving the Lord. We ask for empowering to do the work of the Lord excellently so that others will know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Song: Let’s sing to the Lord with the song “Rhythms of Grace” by Hillsong (click here).




Day #2: The Work of the Lord

1 Corinthians 15:58 NIVTherefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

“It is not absolutely certain what kind of activity Paul had in mind by the phrase ‘the work of the Lord.’ Minimally, it may refer more broadly to whatever one does as a Christian, both toward outsiders and fellow believers; but along with the next word, ‘labor,’ Paul frequently uses it to refer to the actual ministry of the gospel…That is, there are those kinds of activities in which believers engage that are specifically Christian, or specifically in the interest of the gospel. This seems to be what Paul has in mind here.” [Fee, Gordon D.. The First Epistle to the Corinthians, p. 808]

“The resurrection of the dead serves as a warrant validating not only Christian preaching but also ‘the work of the Lord’ more generally; everything that we do stands under the sign of Christ’s resurrection, and all our actions are thereby given worth and meaning. The resurrection is the necessary foundation for faithful action in the world. Therefore, the Corinthians are urged to remain ‘steadfast, immovable’ in holding the faith and putting it into action. Though the words used are different here, Paul has come full circle back to the theme of verses 1–2: he wants his readers to stand fast and hold firmly to the gospel. Those who affirm the truth of Christ’s resurrection will be given the moral confidence to live in a way that shows that their hope is not in vain.” [Hays, Richard B., First Corinthians: Interpretation: A Bible Commentary for Teaching and Preaching, p. 277]

Prayer: Lord, thank you for the call to do the work of the Lord. We ask for the resurrection power to enable us. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Song: Let’s sing to the Lord with the song “Resurrection Power” by Chris Tomlin (click here).

– MK


Day #1: The Great and the Greatest

Let’s read aloud together.

The Greatest Commandment
Matthew 22:36-40 NIV
“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’  This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

The Great Commission
Matthew 28: 18-20 NIV
Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Let’s pray aloud: Father God, thank you that the gospel is both the foundation and the power to accomplish “loving the Lord and others” and the enabling to make disciples, baptizing and teaching to obey the Lord. May your churches live out the vocation that you have given to each person to do the work of the Lord. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Song: Let’s sing to the Lord with one heart “We Praise You” by Matt Redman (click here).