Becoming Like Jesus! (Part 32)
© 2008 By Dr. Matthew Lee Smith
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Many of my friends know that I like a good buffet! (After all, in these troubling times we all want to get our money’s worth – it’s just good stewardship!) So when the doctor asked me to do a medical fast for a blood test, I was less than thrilled!
While I have fasted much in my life, I know the difficulties that come from not eating! And only in times of greater need do I seem to be motivated to stop eating (like for a medical test). Jesus reminds us that some people seem to live their spiritual lives so that when they do something sacrificial they want other people to see their sacrifices and honor them for it. Jesus explains to us how fasting really works in Matthew 6.16-18 …
“Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites [literally: actors], with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. Matthew 6:16-18
We become like Jesus when …
• We appear to be fasting to our Father in Heaven alone!
Fasting seeks to carve out time from our busy schedules for prayer because of need. When we get alone with God during normal meal times – without drawing the attention of others to our personal sacrifice – God hears and rewards us in public ways.
I do not know what big need(s) you might have in your life right now … but I do know that life goes by too fast to get enough prayer time in! Let me encourage you to invest the time you would normally spend eating in something much more valuable – prayer. Get alone with God during lunch time and skip the Big Mac so you can spend time with the Master!
God will reward you for your sacrifice.
For those of you who are ‘connected’ on Facebook, Dr. Smith would love to connect with you as ‘friends’ there! You can find him as ‘Matthew Lee Smith.’
PERSONAL PRAYER JOURNAL!
It seems like there are so many things that call our attention to prayer. One person recently told me they were upset with their prayer life because they couldn’t keep all the requests together to pray for. (Recently some one asked if she was still praying for them. Embarrassed, she had to admit she had lost the note and forgot to lift them up.)
The ‘Personal Prayer Journal’ was designed to organize your prayer requests in a single location and by theme. When you intercede for people, carrying them to the Lord is much easier when they are right in front of you.
Set up to make organization simple, there are themes for each day and a location for prayer requests for every day! For more information and ordering instructions, simply follow the link: http://eaglesinleadership.org/resources/.
IN HIS IMAGE!
If you would like to learn more about this great God and His great plan for your life, we suggest you read Pastor Matt’s book, “In His Image”. We know you will want to get your copy (and perhaps a few extras for your friends) today. To order your copy of “In His Image” and to learn more about the ministry and resources of Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, check us out at www.eaglesinleadership.org.
Becoming Like Jesus! is written and published by Dr. Matthew Lee Smith
For more information: www.EaglesInLeadership.org