Daily Devotional August 18, 2020

Every month, I read Consumer Reports from cover to cover.  That proves that I am a certified, grade A, dyed in the wool, geek.

I read Consumer Reports because it takes no advertising money, tests a wide variety of products, and comes up with unbiased, honest reviews that are free of the confusing language used in advertising. 

This month, if you are interested in a new printer, mattress, bread maker, generator, smart phone, or a host of other items, Consumer Reports has the answer as to which it the best, and which is the worst.  Just know, whatever the item is, it has been put through rigorous testing to see if it holds up and reliably does what it was created to do.

I wonder what would happen if Consumer Reports put my Christian beliefs through rigorous testing to see if I held up and reliably did what God created me to do? 

I suspect there would be some days when I knocked it out of the park and Consumer Reports would give me a very high score.  And I know for sure there would be many days when I failed miserably and Consumer Reports would give me the lowest possible score. 

The bottom line is that testing matters.  It matters in Consumer Reports and it matters in the lives we lead.  And while we will never be subjected to the harsh testing Consumer Reports puts products through, we face the harsh tests of living in a world dominated by Covid-19, filled with economic uncertainty, in a society where the culture mores of the past are evaporating before our eyes, where racial disparity, sexism, hunger, poverty, and every sort of abuse imaginable fill the headlines, destroy lives, and perpetuate suffering.  These are our tests.

When we intentionally live our lives loving God, and  loving our neighbors like we love ourselves, we pass these tests with flying colors, get a high score, and most importantly, God smiles.

This is exactly what James meant by saying:  Those who stand firm during testing are blessed. They are tried and true. They will receive the life God has promised to those who love him as their reward.”   (James 1:12)

So, know your day won’t be perfect.  You will face trials in the most unexpected places.  And in the midst of these trials, rely on the One who loves you more than life itself to bring you through.  Always love and you will be on the right track.

Prayer:  Dear Gracious Heavenly God, the trials of this life seem overwhelming.  Help me to trust where I cannot see.  Allow me to hold your hand as you guide me through the trials I encounter.  I want to love you with my whole heart, and love my neighbor like myself.  Help me do this.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

Jesus said:  I’ve said these things to you so that you will have peace in me.  In the world you have distress.  But be encouraged!  I have conquered the world.” (John 16:33)

That’s all we really need to know.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.

Tom Robbins