As I write this I am eating a $1 Sausage Burrito for breakfast from McDonald’s. I just stopped in and off I went. If I am honest I didn’t really think about the process at all until I started to type. The burrito and hot sauce journey to my mouth went something like this.
· I jumped out of my bed that is in my house.
· I got dressed in my clothes and then scraped the windows on my car.
· I drove my car to my McDonald’s and bought my burrito with my money.
· I walked on my legs into my church and went to my office.
· I am now sitting at my desk, typing on my computer while I eat my burrito.
I am hoping that what you received while reading about my “burrito journey” is that on my own I can easily think that I am the owner and creator of my life. This is a problem for all of us as we forget that it is all a provision and that I am not the creator. I am the recipient of the breath I just took, the fact that I can walk, the fact that I have a brain and hands that allow me to type and hold a job. I am blessed by God to have a family and a Church.
My quick breakfast and our petition for this week can bring us back to the basics and we need that every day!
“Give us this day our daily bread.”
I want to point out five key points from this brief sentence in the Lord’s Prayer.
1. We see our total dependence upon God from top to bottom.
Luke 12 22 And he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds!
2. There is an emphasis on TODAY and a freedom that comes through not living in past failures or future concerns.
Psalm 68 19 Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears us up; God is our salvation.
3. A deep confidence in God is at the heart of this simple statement.
Hebrews 4 14 Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
4. Behind the words is a spirit of gratitude.
Deuteronomy 8 10 And you shall eat and be full, and you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land he has given you.
5. Finally, we are united as we recognize our corporate need as well as our call to care for each other.
John 13 34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
So, my $1 burrito has delivered a great deal for us to consider today!
Grace and Peace,
I wish I knew what God was thinking.
God’s primary will and our living toward that truth is revealed in the following passage:
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. -I Timothy 2.1-4
I am quite sure we do know God’s thoughts on a very large number of things. In fact, I am positive that He has fully revealed to us all that we need to know for a “full and meaningful” life. The framework that should guide my life is not hidden at all. The pages of Scripture and Spirit of God that now lives within me shows me the way to go and not to go.
I am invited to live my life confidently in the revealed truth of God. Living in God’s revealed will is not a timid, tip-toeing through life hoping to not make mistakes but it is a life of confidence “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” [2 Tim. 1.7] It is an invitation to live in freedom and assurance as God guides through His Spirit. He will close doors, remove obstacles, affirm through His Church and the desires in our souls. Some of these things we will be quite aware of and other times we can take in inventory as we look back at our lives.
15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 16 Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. 17 Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor.
-I Peter 2.15-17
The reason I want to point this out is so that you are not making life more complicated than it needs to be. We need to be honest that at times we are “looking for a sign” or “seeking God’s will” because we are actually wanting to rely on ourselves or maybe move in a different direction than what God is revealing to us. I’ve done this so I speak from experience. Instead, based on God’s love and faithfulness, trust His leading and worship Him expectantly with our lives.
I appeal to you therefore, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. 2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. -Romans 12.1-2
God is faithful, loving and will give us all we need. Sometimes that comes through very clear leading and other times it come through “steps of faith”. But whichever way it comes to us it is the right way and it is God’s Will for building His Kingdom in and through us. One of the first passages I ever memorized wraps it up pretty well:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. -Proverbs 3.5-6
In Grace and Truth,
I strongly believe that all humans have immense value. I mean all – it doesn’t matter what the age, ethnicity, IQ or any other way in which we can separate people. Nothing actually makes one person more valuable than another. There is an equality naturally built into this belief. This value that I hold is grounded in the way Jesus treated humanity and what the Word of God tells us regarding Jesus’ work to save us – all of us. Even though this has not been lived out perfectly by the church; it has been a driving force behind the mission work of the Church for 2000 years.
I am thankful that the U.S.A. claims to be built upon “That all men are created equal…” but we would need to be either pretty naïve or selective as an information gatherer to believe we have been a total success at this. As a nation, we have failed to do this within our borders and at times we’ve also exalted our value due to our citizenship over the other humans in God’s creation.
I gave you the above context to drive home the fact that the first petition of the Lord’s Prayer stands against universal equality of everything. What? Let me explain. The problem is that there is a vast difference between saying that “everyone has immense value” and “everyone is right."
· There are things that are true and there are things that are false.
· There are things that are good and there are things that are evil.
· There are people helping others and there are people that need to be stopped because they are harming people.
What do we base these decisions upon?
This brings us to back to the first petition of the Lord’s Prayer which is our theme for this Sunday’s message – “Hallowed be your Name”. When we pray this we are saying that God is above all and we are not in any way, shape or form equal with Him. We [all of humanity] are equal in our need for His grace and truth. The problem is that we have been guilty of imposing or applying our “good intentions” of equality and value to God. We have made His commands and promises just one of many voices like Bill O’Reilly or Oprah or our really nice neighbor.
When we do this we have just removed the foundation for truly valuing people. We no longer have a universal place of truth to hold up as the reason for this belief and the actions that flow from that belief. In God’s Word is the right way to live together.
When we “hallow God’s Name” we are worshiping God rightly and seeking His guidance all the days of our lives. When complexities, joys, sorrows, temptations and triumphs come we set them in the framework of living as God’s people. With that as our context, God reveals himself and His perfect ways. We find life!
Hallowed be the Name of God,
Pastor Nick Mundis