JANUARY 11

Today's Bible Readings
     Genesis 12
     Nehemiah 1
     Matthew 11
     Acts 11
 
MEMORIZE TODAY
''And he moved from there to the mountain east of Bethel, and he pitched his tent with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east; there he built an altar to the Lord and called on the name of the Lord." (Genesis 12:8)
 
A PRINCIPLE OF WORSHIP
            God had called Abram out of Ur of the Chaldees without telling him where he was going and why he was going there. All Abram knew was that he was responding in obedience to the call of God. It is that kind of total abandonment and radical obedience to God that He is looking for in the people He uses.
            Abram didn't wait until he arrived at his destination to enter into worship of the Lord. The Scripture tells us that he ''pitched his tent'' between Bethel and Ai. This illustrates the fact that we are to have a daily quiet time with God. Our intimate relationship with God and worship with Him is not something to do only on Sunday or on special high holy days in our religious walk. We must also ''pitch our tents'' where we will always have quiet times with Him however noisy our time with the world may be.
            Some people seem to believe there are several categories in the Christian life…worship, waiting, and working; and we jump from one to the other like spiritual frogs. It is God's idea that the three should go together as one. They are always together in the life of our Lord and always in perfect harmony. This is a discipline that must be developed in the life of a Christian.
            Bethel was the symbol of fellowship with God; Ai is the symbol of the world. Notice that Abram pitched his tent between the two. It is indeed important that we have that quiet time with the Lord and visit Bethel every day. It is also a necessity that we live in the world. We must never seek to separate the two. I have heard people say about someone they knew, ''he is so heavenly minded, he is of no earthly good." They are wrong - one must be heavenly minded to be of any earthly good.
            Abram's greatest act of worship was being willing to give everything he had, including his family and his life back to God. Are you willing today to give your greatest gifts from God back to Him? I am referring to things like your spiritual gifts, family, health, possessions, time and friends.  If you hoard these things, they will turn into spiritual dry rot as the manna did when it was hoarded. (Exodus 16:20)
            Your spiritual blessings must be given back to God so He can make them a blessing to others. Let's learn from Abram today and pitch our tents between Bethel and Ai.
 
PRAY FOR THE WORLD
Pray today for protection from Satan's attacks against missionaries throughout the world. In many areas, Satan's kingdom has never been challenged before. Powers of darkness are real. Missionaries need discernment and authority to resist attacks the enemy makes through health, the mind, opponents of the gospel, and even some Christian workers. They need the victorious faith that will ''bind the strong man and spoil his goods." Pray for this specific need among our missionaries today.
 
A WORD FOR YOUR WORLD TODAY
''The church that is man-managed instead of God-governed is doomed to failure. A ministry that is humanly excellent but not Spirit-filled works no miracle."
Samuel  Chadwick