DAY 21 – A REFRESHING, JOYFUL RESPONSE
A RICH AND SATISFYING LIFE
WEEK 3 THEME – RESPOND TO GOD’S LOVE
I live in the South where summer days propel us to befriend any body of water we can find: the ocean, a lake or nearby pool. That’s what makes me love how close we live to waterfalls like this one. There’s something about the sound of rushing water playfully splashing over the rocks that cools you just hearing it. I believe God inserted these opportunities of refreshment to remind us of the desire He has to refresh our spirits with His presence.
Not only does He provide refreshment through nature, but He also gives us the wonderful gift of refreshment through loving acts of others. One of my favorite scriptures is the short proverb: “A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” (Proverbs 11:25NIV) In God’s wonderful math, giving is not a win/lose proposition. He alone can make it a win/win.
I believe that Mary, the sister of Martha, clearly understood this win/win scenario. We visited the M sisters during week 1 of this series to contrast the difference in Mary’s wonder and Martha’s worry. Today we find them with Jesus just days before his death. They are once again hosting a dinner as Mary chooses to demonstrate her love for her Lord in a most extravagant, refreshing and joyful way. Read about her generosity in John 12:1-8.
Here are your questions for today:
- Mary could have either used the expensive perfume herself or sold it for personal benefit. What underlying beliefs and attitudes did she express through this generous act? Do you think it led to a “rich and satisfying life”?
- Judas, the betrayer, objected to the gift with the rationale that the money could be used for a “better” purpose. Have you ever been prompted to do something extravagantly generous but rationalized a more reasonable, practical replacement? How do you know when you are being a good steward vs. being disobedient?
- How could these verses apply to your current situation?
- What one thing will you do different as a result of our study today?
You’ve reached the final day of the study. Congratulations! Whether you followed along daily or worked each day’s study as you could, I’m so glad you stuck with it! We began this journey desiring to trade our rushed and harried days for abundant vitality, in other words, the rich and satisfying life Jesus promised. We explored how God uniquely made us, His intentions that we surrender our plans for our resources and trade them for His, and His love that motivates us to generously share with others. Would you share one or two principles you learned? Let’s continue the journey to be more like Him.
I would be most grateful to hear from you personally. Let me know how this study benefited you and what other topics you’d like to explore. When you complete a message here, it comes straight to my inbox. I can’t wait to hear from you!