by Jeff Hagan
(Tacoma, WA, USA)

Micah 6:8, “What does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” (NIV).

Have you ever asked someone for directions to a particular place and they respond with, “Well, it depends on where you're coming from.” It's funny, but it's also true. So, to make it clearer we need to add information such as “North, South, East & West.” When these are added you have fixed and unchanging variables in the equation so that now there can be no question.

I don't know how many of you are familiar with the Doctrines of Grace, but I believe in them and if they could be summed up in a word it would be “Sovereignty.” God has absolute and complete sovereignty over any and every aspect of our lives. However, that does not interfere with the truth that some parts of our lives are a simple matter of choice.

For instance, I don't believe God has necessarily predestined choices such as: what one decides to prepare for dinner, what one decides to wear for the day, whether one chooses a hobby such as Martial Arts, fishing, or football, etc. But for believers, for Christians, there are some values we need to have which are not negotiable. Some of these include honesty, integrity, empathy, compassion, and proper justice.

Jesus calls us to practice compassion and honesty, he tells us to be at peace with others whenever humanly possible, he instructs us to seek righteous and pure justice, and he calls us to be faithful to God regardless of our circumstances. These aspects of Christian living aren't merely options, they are as set and unchanging as North, South, East & West. Jesus lived by these characteristics or standards and he has called us to live by them as well.

Suggested Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, we ask that you help us honor you and live as you taught us and showed us by your example as we seek to live out the prayer pattern which you have given to us: “Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed by thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom and power and glory forever and ever. Amen.” (Matthew 6:9-13).

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