Note: The AMI QT devotionals from November 7-12 are provided by Cami King. Cami, a graduate of University of Pennsylvania, is about to complete her M.Div. at Gordon Conwell Seminary. She is currently serving as a staff at Journey Community Church in Raleigh.
Devotional Thought for Today
The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing, 24 but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently. 25 Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them. 26 For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens; 27 who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself. 28 For the Law appoints men as high priests who are weak, but the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints a Son, made perfect forever.
Can you guess the odds of winning the lottery? Although the exact numbers change based on various factors, the odds of winning are close to 1 in almost 14 million (if you’re picking six numbers to win the Jackpot). If you play to the Mega Millions lottery, your chances are 1 in almost 176 million. The National Weather service reports that you’re over 20,000 times more likely to be struck by lightening than to win the lottery. And with these odds, people still play the lottery to an alarming degree. Don’t believe me? How much money do you think Americans spent last year trying to win the jackpot? According to the records of the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries, Americans spent $70.15 billion on lottery tickets last year. SEVENTY-BILLION-DOLLARS!
Yet against all the odds, people do actually win the lottery. They take home millions and watch all their dreams come true as they live happily ever after, right? Well, not exactly. While some lottery winners do have positive experiences, more often than not, those who’ve won the lottery point to it as the beginning of great struggle in their lives. Groups that follow past lottery winners connect winning the lottery to subsequent divorce, familial estrangement, suicide, reckless and criminal behavior, drug use, gambling, and even murder. But more so than these dramatic stories, most lottery winners express profound disappointment – that winning the lottery did not do for them what they anticipated. Actor and comedian Jim Carey once said, “I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer.”
We bet on a lot of things. Maybe not the lottery, but we leverage our precious resources (the most precious, being our lives) in pursuit of success, comfort, recognition, acceptance, and sometimes, just plain old stuff… all of which will eventually perish. But we have a sure thing in Jesus, salvation that lasts forever and the promise of His Kingdom. May we bet our lives on that sure thing today and leverage our resources for riches that never fade.
Prayer: Lord, help me to leverage my life for You today. May I use the resources you have so graciously given me – my time, talents, and treasure – in pursuit of Your Kingdom. May the assurance of my salvation provide the foundation for all that I do. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Malachi 3
Lunch Break Study
Read John 10:7-10: So Jesus said to them again, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. 9 I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.
Questions to Consider
- What does Jesus call all the things (other than Himself) that offer us life? What are those things in your life?
- What is Jesus’ promise to those who enter through Him (put their faith in Him)? Spend some time reflecting on this promise. How does His promise encourage you today?
- In the New Testament, the terms “abundant life” and “eternal life” are closely connected. What is abundant life?
- He calls them thieves and robbers because nothing and no one apart from Jesus gives life – they only take it away. God Himself is the source of all life.
- In v. 9, Jesus promises that they will be saved and will find pasture (protection, security, and provision).
- Eternal life and abundant life are connected, because when God promises us eternal life, He doesn’t just mean we’ll live forever. He means we will live forever abundantly – in other words, He is speaking to the quality of our lives. Jesus desires that we have the best quality of life possible. We aren’t truly living, until we’re living with Jesus!
But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you (Mt. 6:33).
“This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent (John 17:3).
Spend time tonight meditating on the verses above. What are the tings you’re seeking that you believe will give you abundant (the highest quality of) life? Jesus says that eternal and abundant life is to know God. How do Jesus’ words speak to you tonight? Spend time talking to God about these things.