Scripture: "Work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.'" (Jeremiah 29:7)
My mother-in-law often tells my 5-year-old daughter that she "did good." Even at her age, she is learning the value of doing good to others, sometimes far from home.
It must have been hard for God’s people to "do good" when Jeremiah instructed them to pray for the welfare of the cities in which they were living. Years of degrading exile from their homeland to Babylon had brought frustration and turmoil. Yet even in tough times, God instructs us to "Bless those who persecute you. Don't curse them"(Romans 12:14).
Did you know that you, as a Christian, are in exile? The world is not our home; we have an eternal one in Heaven! St. Peter wrote to his friends, "I warn you as 'temporary residents and foreigners' to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls. Be careful to live properly amongst your unbelieving neighbors [so] they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God" (1 Peter 2:11-12).So when we Christians "do good," our behaviour is a testimony to God's goodness. We are preaching with our actions!
Doing good isn't always easy. Even Jesus was persecuted -- and He is God’s most important Ambassador! Instead, Jesus tell us, "If the world hates you, remember that it hated Me first. The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world." (John 15:18-19). Instead, we should continue to tell the Good News -- with words and actions. As the Apostle Paul said, "For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, no longer counting people's sins against them. And He gave us this wonderful Message of reconciliation. So we are Christ's ambassadors; God is making His appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, 'Come back to God!' (2 Corinthians 5:19-20).
"All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men'd sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconcilliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.(2 Corinthians 5:18-20)
You are an authorized messeger or representative of Jesus Christ! Your mission is the message of reconcilliation. You have already started to do this by praying for people everywhere, everyday.
Being an ambassador is often associated with a country - a place. This week we expand the focus of our daily prayers to include all places or organizations where you might go during the week. This includes:•Places where you work, play, exercise, or shop;
You are Christ's ambassador and you pray for God's blessing, peace and kingdom - His reconciliation - to come to these places.
We are excited with you to be able to pray for so many people daily. Some of you asked how to expand your prayers beyond praying for peace and blessing. We suggest you pray God's blessing and peace on one or more of the following aspects of people's lives (note the BLESS acronym):•Body - health, protection, strength
Your PRAY NOW Challenge: "Lord, please help me to pray your blessing and peace upon people and places as I live each day, in Jesus' name I pray. Amen."
Tell us how it is going this week. How did you apply this week's prayer teaching? Did you remember to pray for places? Did you apply the BLESS acronym in praying for someone? Share your story with us click here and you will hear from someone shortly!
God wants you to share His Message of salvation with your words and actions. Click to learn more about God's sacrifice and redemption in the Jesus Booklet series.
Do you want to make your behaviour more Christlike ? We have trained followers of Jesus who can help you learn how. Just click here to share your story. You will hear from someone shortly!
Will you pray this week that:
•To thank God that He has a plan for us
•That God will give you chances to "do good"
•That your actions will be a testimony to God's goodness
•That God will deliver you from persecution
•To thank God for sending Jesus as His ultimate Messenger
Where can you go online to discuss how to live for Jesus and serve others while we are here on earth? Visit the GodLife Facebook Page, where we can daily gather to share our stories, to express ourselves, and to pray for one another!