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We Can Pray...

Daily Reading: Matthew 4

Scripture Focus: And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people. (Matthew 4.23)

Devotional Thought: Something happened this past Sunday that gives me cause for great optimism. In Sunday School, I was talking to the children about being stubborn and wanting our own way. I asked, "What can we do to help ourselves be less stubborn?" Anna, one of the older students, said, "We can pray and ask Jesus to help us." She quickly went on to share two other things we can do to help our attitudes: read our Bibles and go to church. If those sound like "Sunday school answers," it is because they are. And, that's why I was encouraged! Anna, along with our other children, are learning to expect the help of Jesus.

Today's culture doesn't leave much room for Jesus, relegating him to a minor position on Sundays. We don't want his presence, his Word, or his values intruding into public life - even when we celebrate his birth or his death! As we have pushed Christ aside, we have seen the moral health of our nation decline. We don't need less of Jesus on the scene. We need more of him!

Today's scripture says, Jesus "went throughout all Galilee." Wherever he went there was truth (teaching), peace (the gospel), and wholeness (healing). That sounds like something we could use more of today!

How about you? Do you need more of his presence in your life? Take the advice of Anna: Pray!

Prayer: Lord, come to me today and teach me your truth. Grant me peace in your presence, and make me whole. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 8 Do not remember against us our former iniquities; let your compassion come speedily to meet us, for we are brought very low. 9 Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us, and atone for our sins, for your name's sake! 10 Why should the nations say, "Where is their God?" Let the avenging of the outpoured blood of your servants be known among the nations before our eyes! 11 Let the groans of the prisoners come before you; according to your great power, preserve those doomed to die! 12 Return sevenfold into the lap of our neighbors the taunts with which they have taunted you, O Lord! 13 But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to you forever; from generation to generation we will recount your praise. (Psalms 79:8-13)

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