Time Alone With God Daily Devotional

Saturday, November 19

Time Alone With God Daily Devotional

Written by Pastor Phil Stout, of JAXNAZ Church

Read: John 12:24

New International Version (NIV)

24 Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.

Start

Consider: As we saw yesterday, we have to grow down to grow up. Scripture and life repeatedly teach this. And sometimes that growing down is the hardest part of life.

Yesterday we talked about the intentional nature of growing by choosing to go deep. That vital work prepares us for the depths we endure that are not of our own choosing.

We know that birth leads to life. But, spiritually speaking, death also leads to life. Death precedes resurrection. I’m not talking about physical death alone, for even as we live in this flesh, we die so that life may flourish.

We know what it’s like to grow through suffering. Journeys though illness, grief, disappointment, betrayal and disillusionment are journeys through death toward resurrection. As we journey through “the valley of the shadow of death” (Psalm 23:4), resurrection is rarely visible. It can only be seen through eyes of faith and hope.

But we don’t simply die the deaths that are imposed on us. We choose death. We choose to kill our pride, our arrogance, our self-will. With the help of God, by the power of his Spirit living in us, we continually present ourselves to him, asking him to do away with the old, false self and to resurrect the life of Christ in us.

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)

Pray: “Lord, I submit my will to you. Though I often fear the death of my old self, I rejoice in the new life you bring. Thank you that, in you, death always leads to resurrection.”

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