“Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them; otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. Therefore when thou doest tine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have the glory of men. Verily I say not you, they have their reward. But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: That thine alms may be in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret Himself shall reward thee openly.” Matthew 6:1-4
“For I was an hungered, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Then shall they also answer Him, saying Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or a thirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.” Matthew 25:42-45
Today’s Christian daily devotional
“Today’s Wednesday. You forgot to put the sign out.” Patty’s manager tipped her head towards the front door, glancing around the empty nail salon.
The shop had only been open for a mere thirty minutes.
Patty was delaying on purpose. She knew the minute she put that street sign out; there wouldn’t be too many moments for her to catch her breath.
Unlike her boss, she was enjoying the solace of the slow morning.
The harsh rays of the sun beaming through the glass windows were deceiving. A rush of cold air blew into the small salon as soon as Patty opened the door. Jostling with the metal sign, she pushed the kickstand up placing it in the middle of the sidewalk.
Because she knew what was soon to come, she dug around her coat pockets looking for her last cigarette. Retrieving a button, a few gum wrappers and an old concert ticket, the nail tech resolved to move inside for her second vice: coffee.
The bells on the door jingled as she re-entered the vacant salon; this caused the owner to look up from her magazine and nod disappointedly.
Peering out the window, Patty could see the passerby’s checking out the sign she had just placed out front. It wouldn’t be too long before the rush started.
A hallow pair of bright blue eyes caught her attention. They peeked out from behind a tightly drawn hood of a man in filthy clothes. He milled around the storefront gipping a paper cup, muttering quietly to himself.
Patty continued sipping her coffee watching the shrunken man in silence. Those piercing eyes kept hungrily staring at the miniature shrine just below the sign.
At the beginning of each week, the salon owner would light candles and place fresh fruit on the little plates inside.
“This is how we stay successful.” The owner would beam proudly, the slight hunch in her back straightening a bit. Never once in all the years of working for Mrs. Lee did Patty ever witness her boss forgetting to pay homage to Buddha.
As the wind howled through the cracks of the salon windows Patty locked eyes with the frail stranger. A second later his spotted hand quickly darted for the shriveled tangerines.
The shrill drop of the tiny brass plates instantly caught the Mrs. Lee’s attention.But, she caught the action a split-second too late. That didn’t stop her from jetting out of her chair and out the front door. Swatting the air with her magazine, she shouted her fill of obscenities before huffing back into the serene salon. The jingling bells on the door mocked her.
Both Matthew 6:1-4 and Matthew 25:42-45 are from Jesus’ sermon on the mount.
I love how Jesus reminds us that God doesn’t care about what we do to look good to others. Jesus is quick to point out that prideful ‘good deeds’ performed to impress others doesn’t impress a God who looks beyond the surface, down into the depths of the heart.
In Matthew 25:42-45 Jesus reminds us that how we treat the ‘least’ of our fellow man, is how we will be judged. God loves all men. He expects us to honor all human beings as if we are being hospitable to Christ Himself.
When we do this, we reflect a heart of true humility. Because we can only do this when we truly recognize that each human being has equal worth and value. When we honor Christ’s command to love our neighbor, brother and enemy we are tapping into the supernatural power that only God can give. This principal of love actually goes against our naturally wicked human nature.
How much do you love God? Prove it. Spread the love you claim to have by sharing it with those who least expect or ‘deserve’ it.
In all truth, isn’t this what Christ did for YOU when He died on the cross for your sins? Don’t let Christ’s legacy of love be left at the cross. He was resurrected. He now lives on the inside of you. What are you going to do with that?
“Dear Heavenly Father,
I haven’t seen too many hungry days, yet I still find myself complaining.
I repent of not appreciating all that you have blessed me with. Help me to see like I have never seen before just how blessed I truly am. Give me the sober heart to sit with the gravity of my selfishness.
Lord, open my eyes to see how I can bless others through my abundance. If I have no extra money to give, I can always give my time, an encouraging word or prayer for someone who I know is hurting.
There are items in my home I’m not using that other people would find much joy and blessing from. Show me the needs I can fill and help me to have a generous heart to do just that. Give me the joy of the Lord as I go through my home and search for items that can bless others.
Help me to remember not to take credit for this new and generous heart you are giving me. I want you to get all the glory here.
Lord, I celebrate the new beginning you are bestowing upon me. I refuse to be a selfish, self-serving, self-glorifying Christian.
I will go deeper, because Christ dug down into the depths of Himself to give all that He had for me. The least I could do is follow His lead.
Help me. I cannot do this without you. I have tried in the past and failed. Now, I’m going to try again, this time relying on you to be my strength. In Jesus’ name, we will make a great team, Amen.”
Thank you for reading today’s Christian daily devotional on verses: Matthew 6:1-4 and Matthew 25:42-45
Please check back and see what we have for you tomorrow!
Author: Julia Shalom Jordan