Matthew 6:1-6

Our devotions this Lenten season have been written by members of Faith Lutheran Church.  Today’s devotion is by Peggy Porter. Also, if you would like to join our staff in praying the liturgy for Responsive Prayer/Suffrages just click here.

Beware of practicing your piety before others in order to be seen by them; for then you have no reward from your Father in heaven. So whenever you give alms, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be praised by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your alms may be done in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you. And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.  Matthew 6:1-6

Beware of showing off. If we hope to be praised or to receive honor by our prayers or church attendance, our hearts and attitudes are warped, and our worship praises only ourselves. If our charitable giving is done to see our names on the donor list, then we are only blowing our own horn. This pretense is not pleasing to God.  The only acceptable motive for our prayers and offerings is love for Christ, who has given himself for us as payment for our sin.

True prayers and offerings flow not from pride or self-promotion, but from the grace God pours out upon penitent sinners. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart” (Psalm 51:17). God does not despise a repentant heart, but rather blesses it with his compassion, love, and tender mercy.

Jesus warns against showing off our righteousness for a simple reason; we’re not righteous apart from him.  Perhaps we accept that we’re not perfect. Spending quiet time in a quiet place praying to our heavenly Father offers great refreshment.  Just as we can’t really comprehend how glorious Jesus is, neither can we truly understand how sinful we really are.  We don’t know how deep our sinfulness is; by faith, we believe it!

Let us pray:  Lord Jesus, thank you for being our righteousness. Create in us clean hearts and right spirits.  Amen.

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13 Responses to “Matthew 6:1-6”

  1. Julia C Halford Says:

    YA-A-AY! Love seeing Daily Devotionals re-appear in my in-box. Thanks for your thoughts AND prayers AND presence, Julia

    • Fitri Says:

      For Immediate ReleaseANNUAL JAMES DEAN FESTIVAL WEEKENDThe Actor’s Hometown of Fairmount Celebrates 57 Years Later The small town of Fairmount, Indiana will Commemorate the 57 year anniversary of the uneimtly death of native son James Dean during the weekend of September 28-30 with it’s 37th annual “James Dean Festival”. The event includes a huge Custom and Hot Rod Car Show all weekend and The Grand Parade on Saturday at 2pm along with numerous other activities including Live Entertainment, Carnival Rides, Street Vendors, 1950’s Dance Contest, the James Dean Lookalike Contest, and screenings of the actor’s three major films. All activities are Free to the public and Fun for the whole family. James Dean was born in nearby Marion, Indiana in 1931 and was raised in Fairmount. He graduated from Fairmount High School in 1949 and went on to attend Santa Monica Community College and UCLA before heading to New York to pursue an acting career. He appeared in nearly 40 live television dramas and two Broadway plays before going back to Los Angeles where he starred in three major motion pictures, “East of Eden”, “Rebel Without a Cause”, and “Giant”. On September 30th, 1955 he was killed in a tragic automobile accident at just 24 years old. The annual Memorial Service for James Dean will take place at The Back Creek Friends Church in Fairmount on Sunday September 30th at 1pm, followed by a walking procession to nearby Park Cemetery where the actor is buried.Fairmount offers two museum exhibits dedicated to the famous Hoosier, “The James Dean Gallery” and “The Fairmount Historical Museum”.For further information contact:James Dean Gallery(765) 948-3326Fairmount Historical Museum(765) 948-4555James Dean Run Car Show(765) 948-3853Photos available upon request

  2. Dawne Says:

    Thank you, Peggy. I enjoyed your writing. It reminded me of a sad story of a man who joined our church but only came for a short while. A friend of his is a long-time member of ours and when asked why the man wasn’t coming anymore the friend said that people didn’t greet him warmly enough. He felt people should make a fuss over him each week when he attended. How sad – was he attending to worship God? Doesn’t really sound like it, although we can never know anyone’s true motivation.

  3. Recovery Now Radio Bible Study Says:

    Thank you for blessing us with your words this Ash Wednesday.

  4. Cassandra Says:

    Truly appreciated today’s devotion. It spoke to my heart and my soul today, as I had some of the same thoughts written in the devotion just this morning, reminding us of true worship and true praise

  5. Anonymous Says:

    Ditto,Julia! I have really missed the devotionals and will be looking forward to seeing them again.

  6. Georgene Says:

    Thanks for returning for the Lenten season.

  7. Betty Jean Wehmeyer Says:

    I love the people at Faith Luth. Many have it all together for our God. Love yall but HE loves yall more.

  8. Judy Says:

    Glad to find devotional in my mail box. Thanks for a good message. Looking forward to lent and your daily devotionals.

  9. mary Says:

    thank you for the daily devotions. i havereally missed them, it is wonderful having you back online again. keep up the good works, i really need the prayers, thanks again for the devotions.
    mary eargle

  10. card Says:

    Hi, thanks for sharing

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