December 24

Zechariah 6:1-7:14; Revelation 15:1-8; Psalm 143:1-12; Proverbs 30:24-28

Israel had mastered religious festivals and practices. Even when they were in exile, they remembered to fast and pray to commemorate the destruction of the Temple. They were diligent to do religious things but were unwilling to uphold the things that pleased God. Somehow Israel felt that God only wanted religious ritual. God wants so much more.

God wants each of us to live our lives showing others the best example we can of Who He is. God cares as much about how we treat people as how much we pray. God is as sensitive to those we help as He is with how much we give to Him.

It is not one or the other. God wants the spiritual disciplines in order to keep our relationship with Him strong. And, God wants us to honor our relationship with Him by treating people the way He would. God’s advice to Israel is the same to us today: “Judge fairly, and show mercy and kindness to one another. Do not oppress widows, orphans, foreigners, and the poor. And do not scheme against each other.” (Zechariah 7:9-10)

During this time of the year, it is especially necessary for us to remember that people matter to God. God showed us how much we mean to Him when he sent a little Baby in a manger.

Tomorrow’s Reading:  Zechariah 8:1-23; Revelation 16:1-21; Psalm 144:1-15; Proverbs 30:29-31