The City

Daily Windows for the week of Nov. 27-Dec. 3

SUNDAY

What would help you to find rest and value in the LORD?

Morning & Midday
You are my hiding place; you will save me from trouble. I sing aloud of your salvation, because you protect me.  [Psalm 32: 7, Good News Translation]

Evening
In the secret of God’s tabernacle no enemy can find us, and no troubles can reach us. The pride of man and the strife of tongues find no entrance into the pavilion of God. The secret of his presence is a more secure refuge than a thousand Gibraltars. I do not mean that no trials come. They may come in abundance, but they cannot penetrate into the sanctuary of the soul, and we may dwell in perfect peace even in the midst of life fiercest storms.  [Hannah Whitall Smith]

MONDAY

What do you want to surrender today – and what do you want to ask for in exchange?

Morning & Midday
God can do anything, you know — far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us. [Ephesians 3:20 The Message]

Evening
Let this one great, gracious, glorious fact lie in your spirit until it permeates all your thoughts and makes you rejoice even though you are without strength. Rejoice that the Lord Jesus has become your strength and your song – He has become your salvation. [Charles Spurgeon]

TUESDAY 

What would help you be more aware of God’s presence today?

Morning & Midday
You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,

defending the fatherless and the oppressed, in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more.  [Psalm 10:17-18]

Evening
Comfort yourself with thoughts of God as often as you can. Lift up your heart to God sometimes when you are at meals or in society; the least little remembrance will always be pleasing to God. There is no need to cry very loudly, for God is nearer to us than we think. [Brother Lawrence of the Resurrection]

WEDNESDAY

What reminds you of all the reasons you have to be grateful?

Morning & Midday
I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.  [Psalm 27:13-14]

Evening
Biblically, waiting is not just something we have to do until we get what we want. Waiting is part of the process of becoming what God wants us to be. [John Ortberg]

THURSDAY

What is the next step of commitment and action for you to join what God is doing in the world?

Morning & Midday
I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers, because I hear of your love and of the faith which you have toward the Lord Jesus and all the saints, and I pray that the sharing of your faith may promote the knowledge of all the good that is ours in Christ. [Philemon 4-6, Revised Standard Version]

Evening
Joy, not grit, is the hallmark of holy obedience. We need to be light-hearted in what we do to avoid taking ourselves too seriously. It is a cheerful revolt against self and pride. Our work is jubilant, carefree, merry. Utter abandonment to God is done freely and with celebration. And so I urge you to enjoy this ministry of self-surrender. Don’t push too hard. Hold this work lightly, joyfully. The saints throughout the ages have witnessed to this reality…. You know, of course, that they are not speaking of a silly, superficial, bubbly kind of joy like that flaunted in modern society. No, this is a deep, resonant joy that has been shaped and tempered by the fires of suffering and sorrow; joy through the cross, joy because of the cross.  [Richard J. Foster]

FRIDAY

What nagging and persistent habits or patterns do you need to confess?

Morning & Midday
My counsel is this: Live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. Then you won’t feed the compulsions of selfishness. For there is a root of sinful self-interest in us that is at odds with a free spirit, just as the free spirit is incompatible with selfishness. These two ways of life are antithetical, so that you cannot live at times one way and at times another way according to how you feel on any given day. [Galatians 5: 16-17, The Message]

Evening
But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard – things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. [The Apostle Paul, in Galatians 5: 22-23, The Message]

SATURDAY

What areas of need are difficult for you to admit?

Morning & Midday
Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord guards the city, the guard keeps watch in vain. It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for God gives sleep to the beloved. [Psalm 127:1-2]

Evening
Every now and again, Our Lord lets us see what we would be like if it were not for Himself; it is a justification of what He said – “Without Me you can do nothing.”That is why the bedrock of Christianity is personal, passionate devotion to the Lord Jesus. [Oswald Chambers]

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