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<< Encouragement for Today

Encouragement for Today - Sept. 10, 2008

  • 2008 Sep 10
  • COMMENTS

September 10, 2008

 

Salty, Shiny, Sheep

Luann Prater

 

“You are the salt of the earth.” Matthew 5:13 (NIV)

 

“In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16 (NIV)

 

"I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me.” John 10:14 (NIV)

         

Devotion:

The world fills us with false descriptions of what we should strive to become. An entrepreneur like Bill Gates, a gardener like Martha Stewart, and you know some have stood in front of the mirror dreaming of becoming the next American Idol!

 

Being raised in the 70s, I always wanted to be the girl on the commercial who sang, “I can bring home the bacon; fry it up in a pan; and never ever let you forget you’re a man; ‘cause I’m a WOMAN!” What a lofty goal…ugh and tiring! We wear ourselves out trying to fit the image that Satan has painted.

 

Need a different image to conform to? How about salty, shiny, sheep?

 

Let’s take a look at how Jesus described us. We are salt. Do you know that salt is used in greater quantities and for more applications than any other mineral? It has more than 14,000 known uses! Every living creature requires salt for life and health.

Salt can soften hard water, remove impurities; preserve and cure foods; tan hides and it’s even been used to seed clouds to produce rain.

 

When Jesus refers to us as salt he means that we are essential to every living creature. We have thousands of uses in His hands. We can help soften, heal, separate, remove impurities, fill, preserve, cure and even tan hides!

 

Jesus also tells us that we are to shine like stars in the universe. Have you looked up and seen the stars in the sky? They twinkle at us from the middle of extreme darkness. Likewise, our world is often dark and we are called to brighten up our spot with the light of God’s truth and an attitude of grace.

 

Jesus also called us sheep. I can relate to this metaphor most of all. Whenever I do something brainless, I belt out a “baaa” sound. Like sheep, we wander off, we make the same mistakes again and again, and we mindlessly follow the crowd. Yet Jesus said when He speaks, we are able to recognize His voice – just like a sheep obeying a shepherd.

 

Ok, close your eyes and visualize a salty, shiny, sheep. Now, let’s go live like one!

 

Dear Lord, thanks for giving us clear images that we can relate to. Teach us to be versatile enough to be salty; bold enough to be shiny, and intent enough to listen for Your voice, like sheep In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Related Resources:

Do You Know Him?

 

Pierced by the Word by John Piper

 

Love Your Neighbor as Yourself by Mary Lance Sisk

 

Visit Luann Prater’s blog

 

Application Steps: 

Look for ways to be salt today to those who are hurting.

 

Ask God to show you ways to shine His Light on others.

 

Find some quiet time to listen for the Good Shepherd’s voice.

 

Reflections: 

What keeps me from allowing myself to be poured out like salt?

 

When was the last time my life shined?

 

How can I be intentional when listening for God’s voice?

 

Power Verses:

Mark 9:50 "Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with each other." (NIV)

 

Philippians 2:15 “…so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe.” (NIV) 

John 10:4 “When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice.” (NIV)

 

© 2008 by Luann Prater. All rights reserved.

 

Proverbs 31 Ministries

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