CLCSB 2022 Fasting & Prayer Devotion
Day 2: A Measure of Faith
Having opened our time of fasting and prayer with our focus on transforming our lives by the renewing of our minds, we now move into verse 3 of Romans 12, which encourages us to know that God has given all of us a measure of faith.
Taking on a new way of thinking will always result in displaying a new way of living and behaving. As we yield our hearts and minds to be transformed by the Lord, it leads us to living a life that is more pleasing to Him. In Romans 12:3, Paul follows up his urgent plea for mind renewal from verses 1 and 2 with an inspiring new perspective of our faith. Verse 3 says in the Amplified Version,
Romans 12:3 AMP
3 For by the grace [of God] given to me I say to everyone of you not to think more highly of himself [and of his importance and ability] than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has apportioned to each a degree of faith [and a purpose designed for service].
As we heard in this past Sunday’s message from Pastor Cruz, leaders understand how to find their calling. While we may tend to relegate this to those who hold an official title or office, this really applies to everyone. All of us are called to lead in some way, whether great or small. And as Paul says in Romans 12:3, God has given all of us a measure of faith by which to handle the task.
This measure of faith is not referring to the type of faith that we commonly think of when we believe God for a new house, car, or job. That’s not to say that such faith is wrong or misplaced in anyway. In fact, this type of faith is very important to our relationship with God.
However, the type of faith Paul is referring to is the faith to accept the responsibility of God’s calling to serve Him and to serve the needs of others. All of us have been given faith and grace, as well as gifts and callings to help others where needed.
But before Paul even delves into this truth, he admonishes us in the beginning of this verse not to think more highly of ourselves than we ought to think. We need to think with the mind of Christ that is characterized by humility and servitude. This Christlike mindset becomes crucial to exercising the faith that God has given to each of us.
One of the hidden gems in this verse is stated both in the King James Version and the New King James Version as “to think soberly”. The way it is presented in the Amplified Version above is “to have sound judgment”.
In either version we read, this phrase denotes the importance of thinking seriously about what God is calling us to. This means demanding of ourselves the utmost care in how we carry out God’s will. It also implies a grave level of accountability, meaning that we understand and appreciate how what we’re called to do pleases God and impacts others.
According to Ephesians 2:10, God has created a plan for us to express this sober mindedness and sound judgment in the works that He’s already prepared for us to do. Here’s how it reads in the Amplified Version:
Ephesians 2:10 AMP
10 For we are His workmanship [His own master work, a work of art], created in Christ Jesus [reborn from above—spiritually transformed, renewed, ready to be used] for good works, which God prepared [for us] beforehand [taking paths which He set], so that we would walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us].
In 1 Corinthians 10:13, the Bible states that God will not put more on us than we can bear. Therefore, we can trust that the good works described in Ephesians 2:10 that God has prepared for us in advance will not overwhelm us. The works that He’s prepared for us are works that He’s already prepared us for.
This is yet another area where our minds often need to be transformed. So many times, we look at God’s assignment to us and we either feel unworthy or incapable of living up to the task. This is once again where humility and servitude come into play.
Genuine humility gives us a heart to recognize that we need help, both from God and from people. Yet humility also affords us the confidence that the help we request will be sufficient. Humility is full of faith, yet it points our faith to the ability of God and others instead of our own strength.
Servitude works hand in hand with humility because a heart of servitude is not looking for accolades nor is it concerned with how foolish we look when we serve others. The measure of faith that Paul describes enables us to express this level of humility and servitude as we commit to God and help others. God has empowered all of us to step into His calling and fulfill it with a Christlike heart of love and grace.
So, as we join together this week in fasting and prayer, let’s put a real focus on seeking the Lord for what God has called us to do. It doesn’t mean that we need to figure out God’s ultimate plan for our lives. However, in the meanwhile, we do need to ask God, “Where am I supposed to be now? What am I supposed to be doing? And what are my next steps to get there?”
As the Lord begins to answer these questions and give clearer revelation to these requests, let’s trust confidently that God has equipped us for the work He’s called us to do. God’s grace is sufficient for us, and His strength is made perfect in our weakness. God has given us the faith we need, and He will not give us more than we can bear. He has thoroughly prepared us for the work He has prepared for us.
Day 2 Fasting Item: TV and TV apps (Netflix, Hulu, Disney +, etc)
Daily Bible Reading: Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
Before you ever took your first breath, God knew you. He knew how tall or short you would be, the color of your eyes, the color of your hair, and a thousand other details. You are not a genetic accident; you are created by God, the Father. It was God who formed you in your mother’s womb. Even before you were born, He knew you and was working in your life. He not only knew you, but He also formed you for His purpose. He told Jeremiah that He appointed Him as a prophet. He had a special message He wanted to tell the Children of God through Jeremiah. God has appointed you for His divine purpose as well. There are some good deeds that only you can do. He has called you to be a light in your world. God has a plan for your life, and that plan is good. That plan began before you were born and won’t be completed until you see Him face to face. God knows and loves you beyond your comprehension. He sees the wonderful person He created. He sees all the potential that He created in you. Write your reflections.