Open Heavens Devotional by Pastor E.A. Adeboye
MEMORIZE: “Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised” (Pro. 31:30)
READ: John 10:11-16
Christ ‘for’ you talks about the kind of relationship you have with Him that makes Him want to defend you. Christ ‘with’ you talks of the kind of relationship that makes Him ever present with you. For every child of God, you need both of them. May Christ be for and with you this season in Jesus name.
Another relationship with the Lord can be inferred from Christ ‘before’ you. This speaks of divine guidance. Psalm 23:1-6 paints a beautiful picture of Christ before you. When the Lord is before you, He takes a lead. He steps and you follow. With Christ before you, it becomes difficult for you to miss the path of righteousness or to make any mistake. Romans 8:14 says the ability to receive divine direction marks you out as a child of God, not according to your title or position in the ecclesiastical hierarchy. If Christ is not stepping ahead of you, then you have nowhere to go. Taking steps ahead of God means courting serious trouble. If you find it difficult to receive and follow the leading of the Lord in your day to day activities, your claim to being a child of God needs to be re-examined.
Speaking of spiritual direction, there is need to be extremely careful. Many who claimed to have been led of God eventually discovered that they were led by something else. “Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised” (Proverbs 31:30). Some people are led by materialism. The moment you give them a gift a couple of times, they will begin to think you are the one they have been waiting for. There are some brothers who are stingy but because they want to get a particular sister, they will shower them with expensive gifts. She will discover how ‘benevolent’ he is after the wedding! If you are guided by materialism, you will miss the mark. On the other hand, some others are misguided by beauty. Men who married their wives because she was very beautiful may later realize that they have married a witch. Realizing the mistake hardly helps their plight because they are already stuck. Some ladies were attracted by the wealth of their husbands only to later realize he is impotent, a chronic womanizer or a drunkard. If you are wise, Christ must be before you. He must be given a free hand in the decisions of your life. What is leading you?
When guided by materialism, beauty or wealth, you operate under a blindfold. But when guided by the Lord, you see clearly.
Bible in One year: 1 Chron. 10-13