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Lenten Devotional – Day 26 – I Need God

Scripture Readings:  Exodus 1:6-22;   1 Corinthians 12:12-26;   Mark 8:27-9:1

He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” (Mark 8:34)

Denying myself means for me to be willing to give up something that I really, really want or to not seek something that hinders me doing God’s will. Wanting and seeking are not bad in themselves but are problems if I put them before doing what I know in my heart is God’s will. I must be willing to give up anything in life in order to please God.

Hearts are beloved objects to me. Shortly after I married, I found a heart-shaped cutting board and bought it for my husband because the shape and beautiful wood spoke to me of the love that we were sharing and of the hope I had for our relationship. From that purchase grew an incredible collection of heart-shaped objects —some I purchased but most were received as gifts from family and friends. It became easy for people to give me gifts. I was obsessed with not leaving the house without wearing some item of clothing, earrings, necklace, or bracelet with hearts on it.

One day I was brought up short with the realization that I was worshipping my heart objects and thinking more about them than I was about God. So I immediately stopped obsessing about hearts. I cleared items out of my closet and jewelry box and just kept a few things that I could wear on special occasions. Wow! I was denying myself and not seeking something that was hindering me from doing God’s will. I felt good that I was following God’s will for my life.

Prayer:  O God, guide me to daily deny myself, take up my cross and follow you.



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