Grace Moments Devotions - July 4, 2016

July 4

Independence Day

Love Your Country

It’s not too hard to be nice to nice people. It takes Jesus’ love operative in us to choose to be nice to unpleasant people.

In the same way, it isn’t hard to love your country when you like your leaders and approve of their policies. It takes the Spirit’s power to speak and act supportively as a good citizen when you don’t like your government, or worse, when your government is persecuting you.

You might think that the early Christians, hammered as they were between hostile local Jewish authorities and a persecuting imperial government in Rome, would nourish a separatistic and resentful mind-set. The Spirit led the apostles (most or all of whom would suffer persecution) to exactly the opposite counsel: “Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men” (1 Peter 2:13-15).

Non-Christians might assume that Christians will make terrible citizens, since we acknowledge a power higher than an earthly king and claim a heavenly citizenship. The reverse is true. Biblical Christians make the best citizens and can silence critics by working for their communities and showing respect for their government. Today would be a great day to honor yours.

Gay & God: Loving Everyone God Made and Everything God Wrote

Jesus wanted his people to be known for their love. But sadly, love is often the last thing homosexuals find in the church.

This brand-new resource from Time of Grace called Gay & Godshows youthe deep meaning and true significance of Jesus’ words, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”It also teaches you what the Bible actually says on the topic of homosexuality—and empowers you to show practically the love of Christ in a culture where being gay is the new normal.

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