Mercy Road Daily Prayer & Bible Reading ~ Friday, March 9, 2012

~ Read Exodus 5-6

Lord God,

Throughout history, you demonstrated your love for your people in many ways. You were patient with them when they sinned against you in the garden. You protected them when they were betrayed and abandoned. You guided their thoughts and gave them wisdom. You preserved them when they were they were running out of food. You turned the evil they committed, and suffered into good, and set them free from their bondage and oppression, so they could fulfill the purpose you had for them.

You didn't free them from their slavery in Egypt, so they could indulge their sinful and selfish desires. You didn't set them free, so they could be greedy, or arrogant, self-righteous or envious, bitter, hypocritical or what have you. You set them free to demonstrate your great power and control. You rescued them to reveal your compassion, love, and mercy. You saved them, so they could worship you, and glorify you with their lives, just as you have done with me.

Lord, though I don't always act like it, I know I've been set free for a purpose. I know I'm redeemed for a reason. I understand that I'm redeemed so that I can have a relationship with you, and live my life for your glory. That's why my worship and devotion to you are so important, Lord, because that's the purpose of my life: to glorify you and enjoy you forever. To worship you and honor you with my life. To experience the peace and contentment of knowing that your love for me will never fail.

I confess, Lord God, it's not always easy for me to accept. Though I understand it intellectually, my heart doesn't necessarily follow suit all the time. In fact, sometimes, my heart is hard to the idea that I can't earn your love and forgiveness; because, if I can't earn your love, forgiveness, or grace, then there is nothing I can do to save myself. And if there is nothing I can do to save myself, I'm not in control. And if I'm not in control, I'm totally dependent on you. And if I am totally dependent on you, I don't get to live by my own standard. I don't get to be... selfish.

It's a difficult pill to swallow, Lord, but I know it's for the best. I can't imagine how awful this world would be if everyone did as they saw fit. I can't fathom how ugly it would be if everyone's hearts were hard. Though it's a daily struggle to submit to your will, and recognize I'm not in control, I thank you Lord, that you are.

I thank you for being a sovereign God, who works out his good and gracious will, even when I am being difficult and rebellious. I think you that you are patient and kind with me, when I ultimately deserve your wrath. I thank you for loving me, and setting me free, for redeeming and forgiving my sin. I thank you for softening my heart to your word so that I could live in your truth.

In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.