REPOST Today’s AMI QT Devotional, provided by Jabez Yeo, now a friend of AMI, was first posted on May 29, 2015. He is a graduate of University of Pennsylvania (B.S.) and Columbia International University where he studied Islam (M.A.).
Devotional Thought for This Morning
“Getting Rid of the Ring or Keeping It, That’s the Question”
This day I (Moses) call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live 20 and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the Lord is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
In J.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, the protagonist, Frodo Baggins, is given the unenviable task of destroying the One Ring. At first, Frodo is intrigued by the Ring, as it gives him much power. But as his journey progresses, Frodo feels the burden of the Ring grow heavier and longs to get rid of it. In the climactic scene, Frodo is faced with the obvious choice: throwing the Ring into Mount Doom. But instead, he chooses to keep the Ring and the Ring is only destroyed because of intervention from his friend, Samwise Gamgee.
Like Frodo, we, too, can refuse to make even the most obvious of choices. In this passage, the Israelites had just experienced God’s awesome power through the Exodus and the parting of the Red Sea. With their own eyes, they had personally seen Him overcome humanly impossible barriers. So why does Moses implore them to choose life over death (v.19)? Doesn’t choosing the Lord make sense in light of the promises He gives (v.20)? Sadly, the Israelites later rebelled many times, choosing death and facing several calamities as a result.
As Christians today, our own faithlessness and inner rebellion hinder us from also choosing life. As Paul clearly wrote, “Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?” (Romans 7:21-24)
Because of our brokenness, we need to cry out to God for strength to make the most obvious of choices: choosing Him. We know through experience that Jesus is “the way, the truth and the life,” but we cannot turn to Him without His help. God can’t make the decision for us, but He will give us the strength if we ask. Let’s pray for that today.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, help me remember Your goodness and Your mercy that You have shown towards me. Even though You promised and have given me life to the full, I often find myself choosing death and destruction through sin. Please give me the strength to make the obvious choice of choosing You. In Your Name I pray, Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: 2 Chronicles 7
Lunch Break Study
Read Psalm 16:11: You make known to me the path of life, in Your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Questions to Consider
- How has God made known to You the path of life?
- What does the path of life imply?
- How have you experienced His presence and His joy? Be sure to write it down.
- He has given us His Word, which declares how life can be found through His Son, Jesus Christ. He has also give us His Holy Spirit, who is our Counselor, and our respective communities to sharpen and encourage us
- Our lives are a journey! We may stumble and fall several times but we can continually fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith (Hebrews 12:2).
- Personal response
How did you choose to follow God in the several decisions you made today? No matter how things may have gone wrong today, let’s thank God that His love and mercy never end (Lamentations 3:22-23). Let’s remember that so that we can make the obvious choices tomorrow.