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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"My Will Not Thine"

July 31, 2011

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"... Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven." Matthew 6:10b (KJV)

One of my good friends is an Irish-Catholic policeman who serves on the Chicago Police Department. It is he who must bear the burden of truth in what I am about to share.

According to my friend, a fellow officer recently saw a motorist rip through a red light.

The officer noted that even though the lady had been given considerable time to stop, she didn't even bother to slow down. Her brake lights didn't flash red -- not even for a second.

When the officer pulled the lady over to discuss the matter, he prepared himself for all kinds of normal excuses. As a long-term veteran of the department, he thought he had heard every explanation possible.

He was surprised to find out otherwise.

The lady's innovative excuse went this way: just that morning she had picked up her car from the mechanic shop. It had been an expensive visit as she had paid for a brake job along with a number of other lesser, but not less costly, repairs. At any rate, she decided she wasn't going to be doing any more braking than was absolutely necessary. She wasn't braking because she didn't want to wear her brakes down.

Over the years I've known a lot of other people who don't want to put any brakes on their lives. Their thinking, their decisions, their actions -- all revolve around one thing: themselves. Everything they undertake is decided on whether they think this is going to be a good thing or a bad thing for them and them alone. They are watching out for number one. All they ever do is watch out for number one.

Jesus told us there is another way, a better way for His people to live their lives. In the Lord's Prayer He tells us we should ask God's will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. Making that petition a little more personal, God's will should be done in our day-to-day living as it is in heaven.

For many people living in harmony with God's will seems to be boring, stifling and altogether unfulfilling. You have to give up so much, people think. "You never are in control," they say. It just wouldn't be any fun, they believe.

When I hear that, I'm not exactly sure how to respond. I can say this: the most enthusiastic, most in-control, most fun-filled people I have ever met in my wanderings have been Christians -- Christians who were doing their best to live in harmony with the Lord.

They found that knowing they were in God's hands as they went through their days was an immensely liberating feeling. No longer did they have to hold a tight rein on everything. God was in control, and they were glad of it.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, Heavenly Father, grant that my life may be brought into harmony with Your will. May I believe and trust that You know what is best and Your plans are right. This I ask in the Name of Jesus who taught me to pray "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." Amen.

In Christ I remain His servant and yours,

Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries

Today's Bible Readings: Psalms 116-118    1 Thessalonians 4

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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