New Body — January 26, 2014 (Sunday)

Today’s Verses:

Romans 8:22-23

We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies.

Today’s Questions:

Think of a time when you observed or experienced the pains of childbirth. What was it like just before and then just after the child was born?

Why do you think Paul compares the pain of the anticipation of our adoption to sonship and redemption of our bodies to the pains of childbirth?

What words come to mind when you hear the phrase “redemption of our bodies”?

Today’s Prayer:

Father in heaven, thank you for adopting me and redeeming my body. I am so grateful; any alternative is bleak, with death instead of life as the outcome. Help me to continue to live in this sweet anticipation of birth instead of in the expectation of death. Lord, I long for the end of the labor pains and the beginning of the everlasting life in your presence as your child. Remind me, Father, that any suffering or pain is just temporary and that the goodness and glory that awaits is beyond my comprehension. Open my eyes, Lord, to the tastes of your goodness and glimpses of your glory so I can experience your kingdom and redemption here and now.

Go A Little Deeper:

Read John 16:16-24 to see Jesus’ promise that our grief will turn to joy.

New Body — January 25, 2014 (Saturday)

Today’s Verses:

Philippians 3:18-21

For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

Today’s Questions:

In a typical day, how many of your activities, thoughts, and motivations are driven by the needs or desires of your body?

Is there anything about your body that keeps you from doing things you would love to do?

What do you imagine your transformed body, one like Christ’s glorious body, will be like?

Today’s Prayer:

Father, I long for the day I inhabit my transformed body, one that will be like Christ’s glorious body. No image I can conjure can come close, I know, but I long for wholeness, the disappearance of shame, and healing of all pain and disfigurement. So often, this body betrays me, with its sweat, or awkwardness, or longings. But it is mine, you have blessed me with it and the ability to use it to serve, and love, and experience the world. Help me care for this body well and treat it as the sacred temple in which you dwell while it is mine. Turn my eyes and thoughts to my ultimate home, in heaven, and empower me, Father, not to be defined by the look or desires of this temporary, aging body.

Go A Little Deeper:

Read 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 for God’s view of your body.