The Lord\'s Prayer

This devotional is written by Christine Ntumba. I believe that every person ought to be speaking French. So, I started a revolution with little people who insist on pointing out that I have spaghetti hair.

Matthew 6:9-13

9 'This, then, is how you should pray:

'"Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, 10 your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one."

Hebrews 4:1-16

A Sabbath-rest for the people of God

4 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. 2 For we also have had the good news proclaimed to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because they did not share the faith of those who obeyed. 3 Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,

'So I declared on oath in my anger, "They shall never enter my rest."'

And yet his works have been finished since the creation of the world. 4 For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: 'On the seventh day God rested from all his works.' 5 And again in the passage above he says, 'They shall never enter my rest.'

6 Therefore since it still remains for some to enter that rest, and since those who formerly had the good news proclaimed to them did not go in because of their disobedience, 7 God again set a certain day, calling it 'Today'. This he did when a long time later he spoke through David, as in the passage already quoted:

'Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.'

8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.

12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

Jesus the great high priest 14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to feel sympathy for our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are - yet he did not sin. 16 Let us then approach God's throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Reflection

I found myself obsessing about the fear of the crowd to the point of wanting to quit worship leading.

Paul's letter was written to a group of believers facing increasing opposition and in danger of abandoning their faith. If you ever felt this way, this is for you.

Paul reminds us that nothing is hidden before God. I find it scary and also comforting. This means I can talk to him about my fears, struggles or pattern of behaviours since He already knows about it all. Paul encourages us to remain hopeful by fixing our eyes on Jesus the High Priest who can understand our weaknesses deeply, he who was tempted in every way (v15). Paul is saying that there is no better way to approach Jesus than with boldness (v16). The kind that is expressed when a child storms in a room, locks eyes with their parents and asks for what he may need.

The beginning of the chapter is talking about God's promise that will never go away: entering his rest through faith and not efforts.

When God entered rest on the Sabbath, I like to think that he leaned back to admire and enjoyed the beauty of his accomplished work. He was free from work, strain and activities etc...

And this is the kind of rest accessible to us: the rest of God, freely given to us through faith, allowing God to transform us into his own image by choosing to stand firm on the truth that Jesus is and will always be for us, the compassionate High Priest!

Here are some things I do to experience more of his rest:

•Playing soaking music, surrendering it all and thanking him for the beautiful exchange. •Journaling
•Sharing my struggles and fears with friends
 •Stand firm


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