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Have You Seen My Keys?

Daily Reading: Matthew 16

Scripture Focus: I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. (Matthew 16.19)

Devotional Thought: When I was 24 years old, I served as the Youth President in our local church. As such, I was on the church board. I still get the shakes when I remember the board meeting right after we moved into our new church building. Keys to the new facility were on the agenda. We spent 45 minutes trying to decide who should and who should not get keys. I noticed that those who had been around the longest got the keys.

In their book Growing Young, the authors (Powell, Griffin and Mulder) talk about how important it is to give away keys, "the capabilities, power, and access to empower young people." If we are willing to entrust our keys to young people, they will trust us with their hearts, their energy, their creativity, and even their friends.

Jesus recognized this. He did not horde keys, but rather gave them away. And, the keys were not to a church building, but to the Kingdom of heaven! Eternal consequences hung on those keychains! Jesus knew that, but he gave the keys away anyway. And, he gives them away to us still today.

With those keys, we can either bind or loose things. We can make things accessible or inaccessible. We can keep things safe or put them in jeopardy. Keys can lock or unlock. It's important to understand this, and to know that when we lock some things up, we may also be locking up things we don't intend to lock up!

May God give us wisdom in using the keys he has placed in our hands, and may we be willing to share them with others so that they too can do the work of the Kingdom!

Prayer: Lord, it is overwhelming that you should entrust to us the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Help us to be wise in opening and shutting, in binding and loosing, the things of eternity. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 91.1-8

1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

3 For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence. 4 He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. 5 You will not fear the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day, 6 nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor the destruction that wastes at noonday.

7 A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. 8 You will only look with your eyes and see the recompense of the wicked.

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