Daily Devotionals

Get in the Game Week 1: Wednesday

He said to his disciples, "The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields." Matthew 9:37-38

I never enjoyed group projects when I was in school. I always found myself taking on the majority of the work, and I had a difficult time trusting my other group members to complete their part in the project. After all, we all knew people in our classes who did not do their part and leaned on one or two people in the group to complete the project. There were one or two group projects, however, that I loved in school. When each of my group members responsibly completed their projects, and we all did our part to complete our assignment excellently, I had a blast. Something is satisfying and exciting when everyone in a group recognizes their role and plays their part in their assignment. We all have important roles to play. The most critical role we are given is our role in the body of Christ. As Christ-followers, we are given an assignment to share our faith with the people around us. The question is, will we recognize our roles and take that assignment seriously?

Jesus emphasized the importance of every single person taking their roles seriously when it comes to sharing our faith in Matthew 9. In this passage of Scripture, Jesus was teaching to a crowd of people. "The harvest is great," He said, "but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask Him to send more workers into His fields" (verses 37-38). Jesus explained in this passage of Scripture that there are so many people who do not have a relationship with Him, but there are fewer people who are actually sharing their faith with these lost people. So many people are in need, and not enough people have taken on the mission of Christ to share their faith. This trend has to change. Every single follower of Christ must take on this mission to make disciples and make Christ known.

The news that the need is great is grim, but the good news is that it is not too late to pick up the mission Jesus gave us to share our faith. We can be the workers Jesus has asked for! May we all carry Jesus' mission to make His name known all across the world. This, my friends, is the greatest thing that we can do with our lives. May each one of us commit to sharing our faith and making Him known every day of our lives.

Moving toward action

We heard it clearly during the weekend message, "Every person needs to… run." The question is, are you ready to run the play Christ has given you to make Him known and make disciples? What steps can you take to start running your play today? Maybe you can start praying for God to give you a passion for reaching the lost. Maybe you can share your story of the difference Christ has made in your life with someone this week. Maybe you can invite someone to church with you this weekend who needs the hope of Christ. Whatever you decide, start taking that step to run your play today. You have no idea the impact your decision to run the play Christ has given you may have!

Going Deeper

Going Deeper - Matthew 9:1-38

"Jesus climbed into a boat and went back across the lake to his own town. 2 Some people brought to him a paralyzed man on a mat. Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, "Be encouraged, my child! Your sins are forgiven."

3 But some of the teachers of religious law said to themselves, "That's blasphemy! Does he think he's God?"

4 Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he asked them, "Why do you have such evil thoughts in your hearts? 5 Is it easier to say 'Your sins are forgiven,' or 'Stand up and walk'? 6 So I will prove to you that the Son of Man has the authority on earth to forgive sins." Then Jesus turned to the paralyzed man and said, "Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!"

7 And the man jumped up and went home! 8 Fear swept through the crowd as they saw this happen. And they praised God for giving humans such authority.

9 As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at his tax collector's booth. "Follow me and be my disciple," Jesus said to him. So Matthew got up and followed him.

10 Later, Matthew invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners. 11 But when the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with such scum?"

12 When Jesus heard this, he said, "Healthy people don't need a doctor-sick people do." 13 Then he added, "Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: 'I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.' For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners."

14 One day the disciples of John the Baptist came to Jesus and asked him, "Why don't your disciples fast like we do and the Pharisees do?"

15 Jesus replied, "Do wedding guests mourn while celebrating with the groom? Of course not. But someday the groom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.

16 "Besides, who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before.

17 "And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. For the old skins would burst from the pressure, spilling the wine and ruining the skins. New wine is stored in new wineskins so that both are preserved."

18 As Jesus was saying this, the leader of a synagogue came and knelt before him. "My daughter has just died," he said, "but you can bring her back to life again if you just come and lay your hand on her."

19 So Jesus and his disciples got up and went with him. 20 Just then a woman who had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding came up behind him. She touched the fringe of his robe, 21 for she thought, "If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed."

22 Jesus turned around, and when he saw her he said, "Daughter, be encouraged! Your faith has made you well." And the woman was healed at that moment.

23 When Jesus arrived at the official's home, he saw the noisy crowd and heard the funeral music. 24 "Get out!" he told them. "The girl isn't dead; she's only asleep." But the crowd laughed at him. 25 After the crowd was put outside, however, Jesus went in and took the girl by the hand, and she stood up! 26 The report of this miracle swept through the entire countryside.

27 After Jesus left the girl's home, two blind men followed along behind him, shouting, "Son of David, have mercy on us!"

28 They went right into the house where he was staying, and Jesus asked them, "Do you believe I can make you see?"

"Yes, Lord," they told him, "we do."

29 Then he touched their eyes and said, "Because of your faith, it will happen." 30 Then their eyes were opened, and they could see! Jesus sternly warned them, "Don't tell anyone about this." 31 But instead, they went out and spread his fame all over the region.

32 When they left, a demon-possessed man who couldn't speak was brought to Jesus. 33 So Jesus cast out the demon, and then the man began to speak. The crowds were amazed. "Nothing like this has ever happened in Israel!" they exclaimed.

34 But the Pharisees said, "He can cast out demons because he is empowered by the prince of demons."

35 Jesus traveled through all the towns and villages of that area, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 He said to his disciples, "The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields."