Teenside Daily Devotional

Read Matthew 7:21-23.

I’m sure that Jesus wasn’t excited to share these words. However, he could see many men and women around him that claimed Israel as their home and Yahweh as their God, yet their heart wasn’t in either of those things. Some were even performing miracles in Jesus’ name so that others would point to them, not to God. This is what Jesus is warning against. Isn’t this just as easy for us today? I have caught myself many times doing “churchy” things simply to seek the approval of others. Sometimes, I have even thought that I could impress God with the good things that I have done! That’s how pride begins to take over. And Jesus tells us that he has no room in his kingdom for false disciples. We should heed his warning against these things.

The two biggest takeaways for me are these: Jesus desires you to do God’s will and Jesus wants to know you. Both of these are tied to the same thing, a relationship with him. He wants your heart to be completely centered on him. Everything else will flow from that. Bearing good fruit will flow from that. Doing great works in his name will flow from that. And entering the kingdom of heaven will flow from that. All of these things will happen, but we can’t reverse the order in which these things happen. Our relationship with Jesus is of the highest importance! Just start by talking to him. Find ways to grow with him today!

*Take a moment to journal these questions. Write down your thoughts, questions, and concerns. Then date your entry. One of the coolest things is being able to look back and see how God came through for you.*

  1. What do you think it means to have a relationship with Jesus? What  should it look like? Do you think it’s all about praying and reading the bible or do you think there is more to it?

  1. What ways has your relationship with Jesus been strained? In what ways is it growing?

  1. Read James 4:6-8. Who does God give grace to? What do these verses say happens when you draw near to God? 

  1. Sometimes we treat this relationship with God as distant and mystical. We use God to fall back on when things are hard. But God doesn’t want this kind of relationship; He desires that you talk to Him like you would your closest friend. Do you think your relationship with Jesus looks like your relationship with your closest friend? If so, in what ways? If not, how could you change it to look this way?

Prayer: Spend some time praying about the things you journaled. Thank God for His promise to draw near to us when we draw near to Him. Thank Him for His grace that He pours out on the humble. Ask that God would show you the ways He wants to grow your relationship with Him. Then, stop talking. Sit in silence and let Him speak to your heart. That’s the way a relationship works. It goes both ways. As you sit in silence, thoughts will begin to pop into your head. Ask God what He thinks about them and let Him speak truth to those places. Remember– the best way for discerning God’s voice from your voice is if the words are rooted in the truth of the Bible. If you’re questioning whose voice you’re hearing, go to the Word!

Song: Who You Say I Am- Hillsong

Spotify Playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/169Fs68hROYRdS362T8D9w

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