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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"True Greatness"

February 23, 2007

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Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.” Mark 9:35

Most of us live like the fellow who thought himself indispensable to his family, his work, his church, community, country, and even his universe. As he thought everything depended on him, he felt very, very important. That’s why, when he caught the flu and the doctor told him to stay in bed, he objected most strenuously. He simply had too much to accomplish; too many places to be; too many people to see.

Eventually he was convinced to stay home, at least for a morning. During that time, he fell into a fevered sleep, the kind that is filled with all sorts of strange mental movies. In his case, he dreamed that he had entered the pearly gates of heaven.

The angels were scurrying around; papers were flying. The prayer phone rang on, unanswered, and nobody seemed to be in charge. Our man eventually spotted an angel with a mission. The angel slowly worked his way through the heavenly host, all the way to the Lord. Standing before the throne, He handed God a piece of paper. God’s brow furrowed as He read. He was obviously distraught. Then God arose from His throne, wrung His hands, and said, “Impossible. Unbelievable.” The angels wanted to know: “Lord, what is unbelievable?” God explained, “I don’t know what we’ll do. Our best worker has the flu!”

Most of us live like that fellow who thought himself indispensable to his family, his work, and all those around him. The truth is, Jesus is the only person who can never be replaced. Jesus is the one individual this world has seen who is absolutely unique. How so? He is the only-begotten Son of God. He is irreplaceable because He, out of love for disobedient humankind, stepped down from heaven so that He might be born into this world to save us from our sin.

Jesus is the only person who could live a perfect life and thereby fulfill the laws we had broken. He was the only one who could carry our sins. He was the only one who could die the death we deserved. He was the only one who could rise victorious on the third day. If we are to be saved, and God wishes that to happen, it will be because, by the truth contained in the Holy Word and by the calling of the Holy Spirit, we believe on God’s only Son, our unique Savior.

Excerpt from The Lutheran Hour sermon preached on October 12, 2003

The Prayer: Lord, You are my strength, refuge, provider, joy, and peace. Keep me safe in Your truth. Please forgive me of all my known and unknown sins . In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Today's Bible Readings: Exodus 39-40    Mark 4:21-41

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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