“Moreover, when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face; That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly. Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
– Mathew 6:16-21
Thy Father Which Seeth in Secret Himself Shall Reward Thee Openly
This is one very challenging yet highly encouraging words of Jesus. To think that God our dear Father cares about everything I do and he rewards accordingly is both scaring and at the same time awesome of God. I do not need to be occupied with how others think of me as much as how am I doing in front of my God. Everything I do personally matters to God, to the Holy Spirit. Nothing escapes God’s attention. Hence, my life in the spirit is not all about what others think of me and how they see, yet inspiring and edifying others has its place. But even that comes because of being upright and forthright with God in my heart and secret place. I feel encouraged to know that when I do good, I mustn’t be rewarded by man. My Father is so generous that he not only rewards, but rewards openly for others to see. “…
Hallowed Be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom Come. Thy Will Be Done In Earth, As It Is In Heaven.”
From the rising of the sun to the setting of the sun, God’s name must be hallowed. Meaning: every day I awake, my life must be a hallow unto God’s name. A bolt guy once told me (when I told him to either reduce the volume of his secular music or put a Christian music) that he does his prayers two hours in the morning and that’s it for the day. That he is no longer in Church and so don’t have to put on Christian music. “My antenna” stood (my heart was greatly alarmed) because I know that my life must be a hymn of praise to God all day long. And here was a Christian who was fine with the first two hours of the day for God. When God’s name is hallowed through each day, God’s kingdom does come, then his will will be done on earth. With the help and grace of God, I have some stake in letting that kingdom come on earth, as it is in heaven.
Fasting is one of the necessary disciplines of a Christian. And the bible points out that this must be done properly. I spent so many years without fasting and so didn’t give it any value for a long time. But I have now come to see and understand that it is a topic that Jesus even spoke of and it is a spiritual exercise that needs to be done properly. In this year, I have engaged much in fasting and prayers as a way of entreating the Lord and allowing myself to grow spiritually. Fasting is not meant to show to others that I am fasting. It must be done unto the Father in secret. And the manifestation becomes God’s blessing in the open. May my prayers, praise and fasting be acceptable to you oh Lord. Amen. “…
Lay Up For Yourselves Treasures In Heaven, Where Neither Moth Nor Rust Doth Corrupt,…”
Life is a choice. You can lay your treasures where you desire. There is the option to store up treasures here on earth or in heaven. This passage of the bible shows the difference between laying treasures on earth or in heaven. I desire to use my time, resources and energy in storing treasures in heaven and I pray for the guidance and direction of the Holy Spirit in this regard. I must live in this world as one that is in this world but not of this world. As I engaged in the reading of the New Testament from Mathew to Revelation within the month of January, I saw that Jesus was truly in the world but not of the world. And all he did was to build treasures in heaven. He was not carried away by the shows and distractions of the world around him. I also see that Jesus was a very courageous person and spoke to the Scribes and Pharisee with so much confidence, even one that made them want to catch and kill him several times. Jesus was all about doing the will of his Father as his way of storing treasures in heaven. May God help us to live a life that seeks to do the will of the Father just like Jesus did. Amen.
“…Thy Whole Body Shall Be Full of Light…”
This image of the body being full of light speaks to me of the importance of purity and righteousness. A body that is full of light has no darkness in it; no sin, no secret sin and no sexual impurity. The image of a body full of light is like that of an angel that is all white, or the glorious appearance of Jesus which has been described as radiating so much light. This to me also points to purity of thought and a life of holiness. This can only be lived in Christ, because by Christ’s redemption, I have been delivered from sin and hell.
“…For Your Heavenly Father Knoweth That Ye Have Need of All These Things.…”
The counsel here is “Do not worry”. Truly, a good father would not want to see his child worry over what he as a father can provide. Even that would turn off an earthly father. It is great to have a Father who truly cares for my every need, including those needs which I am not even aware of. Besides, this Father is the Lord and Maker of Heaven and Earth. If I cannot trust this All Powerful, All Knowing, All Loving God, the Creator of the Universe, who can do all things, then who can I trust? And then this Father says, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Really? So, I need to focus on seeking God’s face and God’s righteousness and all my needs will be taken care of? I imagine that many people, believers, and unbelievers alike, struggle to honestly believe this. Too good to be true. Yet, it works!
Dear Father, you are indeed gracious. Your benevolence, mercies and kindness are beyond words and beyond comprehension. May I always seek to please you and let you have your way in my life. Give me wisdom of heart, oh Lord, so I may prioritize you in everything and seek you first in all things. May my body be full of God’s light so that I may radiate God’s glory always, in Jesus name. Amen. What an amazing and caring Father you are, oh God! Amen.