What thoughts come to your mind when you think of the word, FREEDOM? Is it the National Anthem? The Constitution? It’s worth noting that none of those things originated in the Kingdom of God. In the Kingdom of God, there is a King, and what He says goes. Jesus is the King of this Kingdom, and if we want to be a part of it, we follow his lead. For instance, we can follow His example of love in action found in Matthew 5:43:44. Have you been withholding compassionate Christ-like love from someone? Take a moment to pray for them and ask the LORD to help you follow in His ways in that relationship.
When we read over Luke 6:46, we are presented with a challenge to do some soul-searching. Basically, Jesus is saying that if what He says is important is not important to us, then we shouldn’t call Him our Lord. It is easy for us to say an empty prayer, show up to church and walk away unchanged, and raise our hands just for show. However, Jesus invites us into a bigger faith—a faith that will challenge, equip, and inspire us for a lifetime! In what areas of your life are you struggling to put your whole trust and confidence in Him? Pray intentionally for the courage to accept Christ’s incredible invitation to a bigger faith!
In His last days, Jesus surrounded himself with His closest friends. Knowing that time was running short, He intentionally set a visual example for those in attendance to understand what the Kingdom of God is like. We see this example in John 13:4-5. Typically, it was the job of the house servant to wash the feet of the guests, but Jesus took the form of a servant and served. Is there someone in your home, community, or workplace that you know would benefit from that Christ-like servanthood? Seek the Lord in prayer as you decide who/how to serve this week and then share what happened after with a trusted friend!
Amid the abundance of commands given in the Bible, Jesus simplifies things and brings us a brand new command found in John 13:34-35. We can spend a lifetime learning what loving like this looks like. We can start by deciding to stand with courageous conviction as we follow Christ. As we do, we will reflect the Kingdom of God that challenges us to live with our eyes open to see the needs around us. Have you made an inward decision to follow Christ with courageous conviction? Have you stuck to that decision when things have gotten difficult? Take a moment right now to pray and refocus your life on that decision.
The kingdom of God is heart-shaped, and our job is to live in it as citizens of that kingdom. Part of belonging in this kingdom is trusting the faithful compassionate grace of King Jesus as He rules it. We must remember that being courageous and walking with conviction will take a lot out of us in this current age. The good news is that the weight of the world is not ours to carry—it belongs to Jesus. Our job is to do what we can, with what we have when we’re able. If there’s any extra emotional or spiritual weight that you are carrying around today, read over Matthew 11:28-30 and in prayer, surrender it all to King Jesus.
TALK IT OVER
- Have you done any/all of your Christmas shopping yet?
- What is it about the Christmas season that most excites you?
- The holidays can be hectic. How are you taking care of your self amid the hustle and bustle?
- What are some things that you think make up “The American Dream?”
- What comes to mind when you hear the word, ‘freedom?’
- Do you know someone who is interested in learning more about Jesus, but struggles to be around Christians?
- Why do you think Jesus made it a point to set the example of feet washing in front of His disciples who knew Him better than anyone else?