Monday, March 24, 2014

Morning Psalm: 80 | Evening Psalms: 77, 79
Genesis 44:18-34 | 1 Corinthians 7:25-31 | Mark 5:21-43
Have you ever had something stick to you that you can’t get off? Perhaps you were trying on a garment that you thought looked attractive, but then found out was too small (or you were too big). Maybe it is some food that you just love, but after you eat it, you become sick to your stomach. I have had gastric bypass surgery, and when I eat some things that are not on the prescribed diet, I literally get sick.
In First Corinthians chapter seven, Paul warns the Church about becoming too attached to the things of this world. “Those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away” (v. 31). Yes, we live in the world, but we should not be bound to it. Possessions and earthly concerns can cause us to cease looking to heaven and the Kingdom of God, and turn our gaze down at the things of this world.
In this passage Paul specifically addresses how marriage can affect our loves. Marriage is based upon love of one’s spouse. But Paul is concerned that the love of earthly things, even a good spouse, can keep us from focusing on our love for God. Remember what Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount? “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Mt. 6:19-21).
What kind of earthly stuff is stuck on you that binds you to earth rather than leading you to heaven?
Almighty God, as Your Son Jesus Christ came from heaven to earth to set us free from sin, may Your Holy Spirit work in our lives to release us from the things that bind us to earth and set us free to live in Your Kingdom, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.


The Reverend
Robert R. Richard
(MDiv 1979)
Ambridge, PA


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