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Shield Daily Devotional  

Day 168

Henri Nouwen described Jesus' temptation as follows: "There he was tempted with the three compulsions of the world: to be relevant ('turn stones into loaves'), to be spectacular ('throw yourself down'), and to be powerful ('I will give you all these kingdoms'). There he affirmed God as the only source of his identity ('You must worship the Lord your God and serve hum alone'). Solitude is the place of the great struggle...." I think Nouwen describes the temptations well. In our day, we are often tempted to be relevant, spectacular and powerful. Instead of seeking these attributes, we should be seeking Jesus Christ as our identity. By this I mean wanting to manifest His attributes in our lives.

I sometimes think that those in counties being persecuted have it easier than us. They are confronted with a "renounce Christ or die" on a consistent basis. We live in a society that says it is OK what you believe just keep it to yourself. Or worse yet, we live with a challenge to defeat the boredom of everyday life. If someone is trying to arrest you because of your faith, at least it is exciting. Too many professing believers live as if there really wasn't a judgment day coming. There is not a living in His Presence. We need His Presence in our lives 24/7. How can we walk in the Holy Presence of God every day?

The answer is not complicated: prayer and praise. The Word commands us to pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17: "Pray without ceasing"). The Word tells us that God inhabits the praise of His people (Psalm 22:3 "But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel"). If we can stay in an attitude of prayer and the giving of praise to our God, we will walk in His Presence. In doing so, boredom will be defeated and so will temptation. Today, earnestly seek His Presence throughout the day (I promise you will not be bored!).
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