INTENTIONALITY: WHERE DO I START?
Daily Scripture (Read Ephesians 5)
“So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.” Ephesians 5:15-16
Daily Devotional—Intentionality: Where Do I Start?
“What if the only things you had today were the things you thanked God for yesterday?” My life would be pretty sparse, wouldn’t yours? This was the question used as the discussion starter on the TV program I was watching one morning. As we read Ephesians 5, Paul encourages the reader to make the most of every opportunity (v. 16). What does this mean? Does it mean bringing Jesus up in every conversation? Does it mean running oneself ragged trying to meet the needs of the world? Not necessarily. Instead the verses before and after v. 16 give us insight into how not to live foolishly but how to know God’s will so that we can make the most of every opportunity.
First, live a life of love (v. 1), without a hint of sexual impurity (v.3), void of greed, obscenity, crass talk (v. 4) or gossip (v. 12). Instead, we are encouraged to give thanks three different times in this chapter! We are to speak to each other with hymns, psalms and spiritual songs. (When was the last time I shared the song on my heart with someone else as an encouragement?) We are told to make music in our hearts and submit to one another. Above all, we are to GIVE THANKS! As we seek to live with intentionality, why not start with avoiding the negatives that bring both ourselves and others down, and begin to fill our minds and speech with expressions of gratitude to God. Ask God to put a new song in your heart today and try sharing it with someone else. Perhaps they too will be encouraged by your intentional sharing! Concentrate on living moment by moment in God’s presence with thanksgiving. God will show us His will and give us opportunities to shine for Him. Then we will have opportunities to share about Jesus and to meet needs in the world but with direction from God in exactly how and when. The burden will remain light and so will our hearts as we cultivate gratitude and joy.
For The Team:
- Consider the statement, “What if the only things you had today were the things you thanked God for yesterday?” What would that mean in your life? How does this affect your daily perspective?
- Based on Ephesians 5, what are the things I need to change to live with greater purpose and intentionality?
- Because of this missions experience, what are the most important opportunities you want to seize when you get home?
- Ask God to put a new song in your heart today, and try sharing it with someone else.
- Pray that team members will be able to stay focused and not feel burdened by the concerns of home and family.
- Pray that team members will experience the satisfaction of giving their time to what is important rather than urgent or unfinished.
I must tell you I take terrible risks. Because my playing is very clear, when I make a mistake you hear it. If you want me to play only the notes without any specific dynamics, I will never make one mistake. Never be afraid to dare.