Daily Devotional: Psalms 81:1-7
1 Sing for joy to God our strength; shout aloud to the God of Jacob! 2 Begin the music, strike the tambourine, play the melodious harp and lyre. 3 Sound the ram's horn at the New Moon, and when the moon is full, on the day of our Feast; 4 this is a decree for Israel, an ordinance of the God of Jacob. 5 He established it as a statute for Joseph when he went out against Egypt, where we heard a language we did not understand. 6 He says, "I removed the burden from their shoulders; their hands were set free from the basket. 7 In your distress you called and I rescued you, I answered you out of a thundercloud; I tested you at the waters of Meribah.
2 Tim. 4:16-18
16 At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them. 17 But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lion's mouth. 18 The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
When we do what we do out of a heart of love, it is not a chore but a pleasure and brings us joy. This is seen best by the things we do for our children and our grandchildren. We sacrifice our desires, our money, our time and even our health if necessary and do so willingly and not begrudging a moment of it.
While encouraging the Corinthian church to give to help the famine-stricken brethren in Judea, Paul said the Macedonians had given beyond their means because they had first given themselves to the Lord. They did this because they felt compassion for fellow-Christians, even though they had never met any of the recipients. In this same context he said that the Lord loves a cheerful giver.
We must give cheerfully of ourselves because God has given to us. We give our time, our money and our abilities as we serve the Lord. Some of this may involve the church but it should also include all we can do for others around us that have needs. Just one example is that we can assist widows and orphans in their need.
Heavenly Father open my eyes to see the many opportunities you provide for me to give to others. I often pray for those who are shut-in and bed ridden. Give me the motivation to visit them in their loneliness. Use me to encourage those who are struggling to be faithful in their service to you. Give your wisdom and your blessings of strength and patience to the mothers of young children. In the same way, be with those who are taking care of elderly parents and family members. I thank you for your love for me. I pray in the name of Jesus my Lord.