Devotional

“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. 3 For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.”  Luke 8:5-8.

Spirituality has become a buzzword in the church. I want to worship with that group across town–they are so spiritual. The devotionals on that website are so spiritual–the small groups are so spiritual–our youth group is so spiritual. But what is it that makes those people and those groups spiritual? What is the criteria? The common answer is that spirituality is the process of becoming more mature in our relationship with Jesus Christ; someone who is growing spiritually will become more and more like Christ. Our spiritual connection with God is the guiding force in our life. It is always there. It is when we are growing spiritually that faith thrives.

But what happens when our minds are occupied? There is the spouse to think about, and the kids, and the job, the bills, the repairs from Hurricane Michael. And it is not just casual thinking: there is planning, strategizing, communication, paperwork about today, next week and next year. How can we ensure that spirituality stays in the forefront without getting lost in all the other things we are dwelling on? 

Computers have a helpful tracking mechanism that enables us to better interact with websites. They are called cookies. Many of us are familiar with “cookies.” For those who are not: when you visit a site that uses cookies for the first time, a cookie is downloaded onto your computer. The next time you visit that site, your computer “knows” that you have been there before, and in some cases, tailors what pops up on the screen to take account of that fact.

What kind of spiritual cookies do I have in my mind? We know what our priorities are, but what would I learn if I could look at a report of these files in my mind?  If so, what do they look like. Would they show that I read my Bible every day? Would they show a desire to grow spiritually? Would the cookies indicate a love for others? Would they show that I long for and strive for holiness? Would I be a frequent seeker after righteousness? 

But God does want us to walk with Him every moment of the day and the recipe for spiritual cookies is to develop the way and means to remain fixed on Him. Begin the day with Him setting aside a few minutes to be alone with God. Pray about things you know you’ll be facing that day, and read a portion of God’s Word, the Bible. Then let that portion of the Bible take root in your soul all day long, remembering it and calling it to mind.

But he’s already made it plain how to live, what to do, what God is looking for in men and women. It’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate and loyal in your love, and don’t take yourself too seriously—take God seriously.” Micah 6:8 (MSG)

Discussion Questions:

  1. What are some “spiritual cookies” that can help us in our walk with God?
  2. What can we do this week to put those “cookies” into action?