Editor’s note: Many churches observe Pastor Appreciation Month in October. Many are careful to include the entire church staff as they express their appreciation. As you plan ways to thank your pastor(s) and staff, we hope this free devotion will help shape your thinking. It is slightly adapted from one of CTA’s devotion books for Christian Workers, Thanking God for Your Servant Heart.
As you begin, read 1 Peter 1:10-12.
Entrepreneur and circus owner P.T. Barnum is supposed to have said, “’There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” But then, he didn’t need to contend with tabloid news outlets. In the past, superstars endured gossip columns. Today’s celebrity Internet sites and 24/7 news channels can muddy reputations and ruin careers in just hours.
Why do we read tabloids? Why do we sit, slack-jawed, watching in real time as the police pursue a white minivan or red sports car across freeways and sidewalks—even when the outcome won’t affect us in the least? It’s a mystery, but train wrecks of all kinds are somehow just fascinating.
Isaiah, Micah, and Malachi did not subscribe to The Jerusalem Inquirer. So far as we know, they didn’t stop to gawk at chariot collisions on the corner of Olive and Fig Streets. But the Bible says that the prophets “searched and inquired carefully” as they wrote. They scrutinized the inspired texts, looking for clues about their coming Messiah. When would he arrive? What would he be like? Would he accomplish the mission set before him? What glories would follow? What would his victory mean?
The prophets had many questions. For the most part, those questions went unanswered until our Savior’s birth in Bethlehem and his victory over death on Resurrection morning. Still, the prophets continued searching and inquiring. What’s more, so did the holy angels! Peter tells us that these are “things into which angels long to look”!
The grace of God in Christ. It fascinated the prophets. It still fascinates the angels. And—imagine this—it’s the message we get to share! Knowing the One who served, we are the ones who serve. The grace of God proclaimed by the prophets propels us onward.
Lord Jesus, I confess that I sometimes study and proclaim your Word half-heartedly. In your cross, forgive me! Then work in me . . .
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