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Left on Crete

Daily Reading: Titus 1

Scripture Focus: This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you. (Titus 1.5)

Devotional Thought: I have a lingering memory from my childhood. With six of us kids in the family, it was quite an ordeal to get everyone out of the house and in the car. Once, I found myself all alone after everyone else had gone. I can see myself just as plain as if it happened this morning, sitting on the stoop with my arm around our dog, Brownie, whimpering, "They forgot me, boy. They left me behind!" Pitiful, right? It was to a 5 year old!

I wonder if sometimes Pastor Titus felt that way. He was on Crete, left there by the Apostle Paul. Crete was a hard place to pastor. The culture was debased and the church was struggling. Paul wanted Titus to know, however, that he wasn't forgotten. Titus wasn't left behind by accident. The same is true for us. Paul's strategy with Titus is an indication of God's strategy for leaving us on our "Cretes." It is...

· Purposeful: "That is why..." God has you here for a reason. Whether it is life in general or a location in particular, God has a plan for you where you are. Stay sensitive, and watch him open the doors to share his hope and peace and love.

· Perfecting: "Put in order..." As part of our delayed departure from "Crete," we are given the opportunity to grow. God is preparing us for our heavenly dwelling. Our sanctification here is preparation for there!

· Pervasive: "In every town..." While we are on "Crete," all areas of our lives are subject to the perfecting grace of God. Let God change you in the most secret places of your heart!

What are you doing on Crete?

Prayer: Lord, as long as I am in "Crete," help me to make use of my time - to discover my purpose, to grow to completion, and to allow you to change every area of my life. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 119.153-160

153 Look on my affliction and deliver me,

for I do not forget your law.

154 Plead my cause and redeem me;

give me life according to your promise!

155 Salvation is far from the wicked,

for they do not seek your statutes.

156 Great is your mercy, O Lord;

give me life according to your rules.

157 Many are my persecutors and my adversaries,

but I do not swerve from your testimonies.

158 I look at the faithless with disgust,

because they do not keep your commands.

159 Consider how I love your precepts!

Give me life according to your steadfast love.

160 The sum of your word is truth,

and every one of your righteous rules endures forever.

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