Joshua 1, Psalm 120-122, Isaiah 61, Matthew 9
 
 

Joshua 1:3-4
When I read all the territory God promised to give the Israelites, from the Euphrates to the Mediterranean Sea, I wonder why they settled for such a small portion. 
 
Do I, too, settle for less than God promises His children?  I fear I have and do. 
 
I once heard a story about a man who desperately wanted to take a cruise.  It would be the dream of a lifetime.  Unfortunately, a cruise was financially beyond his means.  His desire for the trip was so great, he sacrificed many other things to be able to afford it.  After several years of scrimping and saving, he had money for the ticket, but that was all.  He had nothing extra for any frills.  As he packed for the cruise, he filled one suitcase with food, primarily crackers, peanut butter, sardines and the like. 
 
The cruise was more than he had hoped for, except at meal time.  He heard the other passengers talking about the delicious meals.  But he could not afford them, so when it was time to eat he slipped back into his cabin for the food he had brought. 

 
One of the stewards noticed he was not eating with the other guests.  When asked about not participating, the embarrassed man explained all he could afford was the cruise; he did not have enough money to pay for the meals.  The steward replied, "Sir, when you paid for the ticket, you got everything.  You can participate in all the cruise offers.  Once you are on the boat, it is all yours." 
 
I think some of us as children of God are more like this man than we want to admit.  When Jesus paid the price, we received all the benefits of the children of God.  Do we settle for less?  I fear we don't understand the feast to which we are included.
 
Sovereign LORD God, help Your children comprehend what it means to have You as our portion.  Thank You, Jesus, for paying the full price, so we are included in Your kingdom.  Holy Spirit, please convict us of living in the shallows, settling for less than our Father offers, less than what Jesus paid.  Teach us to live in the deep end of His abiding love. 
 
Matthew 9:18-30
The flow of events in this passage forces me to examine the faith I exhibit in my life.  It is evident the ruler in Matthew 9:18 believed the only thing necessary for his daughter to be raised from the dead was Jesus' touch.  To be healed the woman in Matthew 9:20 believed all she just needed to do was touch His clothes.  Both proved to be right.  The two blind men in Matthew 9:27 believed Jesus could restore their sight.  Jesus' response to them was "According to your faith be it done to you."  When Jesus touched their eyes, they, too, were healed.
 
Reading of these people's confidence of just touching or being touched by Jesus convicts me of my lack of faith.  I know I have received so much more than just a touch from Jesus.  I have been washed white as snow by His blood, received the robe of His righteousness and even now sit with Him at the Father's right hand. 
 
I am so thankful for the gift of faith.  In Ephesians 2:8 Paul says, "For by grace you have been saved through faith.  And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God."
 
Thank You, Father, for the gift of faith.  May the evidence of this amazing gift be obvious in all I do.   Jesus, I know the gift of faith given to me by my Father and Your Father is because of Your perfect sacrifice for my faithlessness.  Thank You. 

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