Mike’s One Year Bible Blog

Filed in ReligionTags: Christianity, Devotions, One Year Bible

Mike's One Year Bible Blog has been added to the OYB blogroll. Welcome!

OYB February 16

Filed in ReligionTags: Christianity, Devotions, One Year Bible

Today´s reading:
OT: Leviticus 1-3
NT: Mark 1:29-45, Mark 2:1-28
Ps: Psalm 35:17-28
Pr: Proverbs 9:13-18

Today´s notable verses:

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.

Mark 1:35 (NIV)

The Secret Place: here Jesus demonstrates for us the secret-place lifestyle. How much more focused and better grounded would we be if we followed this example?

My tongue will speak of your righteousness
and of your praises all day long.

Psalm 35:28 (NIV)

With respect to controlling the tongue, this verse reminds me of the holiness versus not-sinning mentality. Rather than focus on what he should avoid (the line between sin and righteousness), David pursues instead holiness: proclaiming God's righteousness and praises. If we pursue the same thing in how we use our own tongues, would we really even have to worry about "slips" of the tongue?

The One Year Bible Blog notes:

Comments from you & Question of the Day - The image of the boy crying that I posted up in the Psalms section made me wonder this - are you comfortable crying before God? Have you ever cried before God? Do you think it's okay for us to cry before / to God? I just wonder if sometimes we hold back our emotions from God or try to prove to Him (and others?) that we really have it all together - when really we don't? Why do you think that we sometimes try to hide our emotions or hide things from God?

I am absolutely comfortable crying before God. I've probably cried more before Him than anyone else. Why would it not be okay for us to cry before God? One of the most foolish things we can do is to think that we can hide anything from God. He searches and knows our hearts. He reveals what is hidden. He wants us to reveal to Him the innermost parts of our thoughts and emotions.

Of course, I'm one of those people with no ability whatsoever to have a "poker face". I just can't put on a facade. To some, it would be a curse; to me, it's a blessing. People who know me know that what they see is what they get; what they see is who I am. While I reserve sharing certain intimate details with close friends with whom I have established deep levels of trust in the relationship, I never hide my emotions.

Corollary to that transparency is that, by personality and by choice, I am not driven by emotion - mine or others. Recognizing my emotions is an important part of analyzing them and their impact on a given circumstance or decision. In other words, being transparent with my emotions enables me not to allow them to control me; instead, I can recognize and understand what I am feeling, but choose to think and to act independent of those feelings.

Such separation is important when striving to live a life emulating Christ. (Remember Christ in Gethsemane: "Lord if you are willing, let this cup pass from me; yet not my will but yours be done." Christ's emotions compelled him NOT to go through with it, but He chose contrary to his emotions, instead choosing according to God's will.) And the first step in mastering our emotions - and our response to them - is transparency with respect to those emotions. We must be transparent to ourselves first, and we must be transparent to God and to others as well.