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Senior Living - July 30

This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother. --1 John 3:10

John Hess-Yoder, a missionary in Laos, once told this story:

"While serving as a missionary in Laos I discovered an illustration of the kingdom of God. Before the colonialists imposed national boundaries, the kings of Laos and Vietnam reached an agreement on taxation in the border areas.

"Those who ate short-grain rice, built their houses on stilts, and decorated them with Indian-style serpents were considered Laotians.

"On the other hand, those who ate long-grain rice, built their houses on the ground, and decorated them with Chinese-style dragons were considered Vietnamese.

"The exact location of a person's home was not what determined his or her nationality. Instead, each person belonged to the kingdom whose cultural values he or she exhibited."

It is the same with believers. We live in the world, but not of it. Instead, we are children of God's kingdom. Therefore, we are to live according to His holy standards and values in this life.

The Scripture says, "He who does what is right is righteous, just as He is righteous. He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. … No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God's seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God" (1 John 3:7-9).

If you are a believer, it should be easy for others to tell what makes you different from them. Just as the Laotians and Vietnamese could be easily defined according to their cultural values, we as Christians should also always be easily identified as followers of Jesus Christ and His values.

PRAYER CHALLENGE: Ask God to integrate His values, morals, and biblical standards into every area of your life. Pray that you would be easily identifiable to the world as a follower of Jesus.

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