Scripture: Luke 21:34-36
34 "But take heed to yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a snare; 35 for it will come upon all who dwell upon the face of the whole earth. 36 But watch at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of man."
Meditation: Is there anything holding you back from the joy and freedom which the Lord offers to those who seek him? God wants our hearts for him alone and for his kingdom of peace, joy, and righteousness (Romans 14:17). But our hearts can be weighed down by many different things, with cares and anxieties, and with harmful addictions and sinful habits such as greed, gluttony, drugs, and drunkenness. Jesus, our Lord and Master, offers us true freedom – freedom from the power of sin and wasted life, and freedom from our unruly desires and disordered passions – such as making food, drink or anything else our master rather than our servant. The Lord Jesus wants our hearts to be ruled by one thing only – his love and truth which enables us to choose whatever is good and to reject whatever is evil and harmful for us.
The Lord Jesus also warns us of the temptation to slacken off – to become spiritually indifferent or inattentive to God's word and guidance for our lives. We can fall asleep spiritually if we allow other things to distract us from the reality of God and his kingdom. It is very easy to get caught up in the things of the present moment or to be weighed down with anxious cares and concerns. The Lord knows our struggles, weaknesses, and shortcomings. And he assures us that we do not need to carry our burdens alone nor struggle without his help. He is always very present and ready to give us whatever guidance and help we need to fight temptation and to stay the course which he has set for us. But there is one thing he doesn't tolerate: indifference, an attitude of not caring, and doing nothing! The Lord wants us to cast our anxieties on him and to trust in his guidance and help. Do you seek the Lord and his strength?
Until the Lord Jesus comes again we can expect that there will be troubles, trials, and temptations in this age. Our adversary the devil does not rest in his many attempts to lure us away from God and his will for our lives. If he cannot succeed in getting us to renounce our faith in Christ, he will try, little by little, to distract us from pursuing the things of God, especially prayer and listening to God's Word in Scripture. Ask the Lord Jesus to rekindle in you the fire of his love and the joyful hope of seeing him face to face when he returns again.
"Lord Jesus, rouse my spirit to the truth that this world is passing away. Give me a lively faith, a joyful hope, and a fervent love to see you face to face when you return in glory."
1 O come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make
a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
3 For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.
4 In his hand are the depths of the earth; the heights of the mountains are his also.
5 The sea is his, for he made it; for his hands formed the dry land.
6 O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!
7 For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand.