Knee Jerk Devotional: April 26, 2021

Colossians 1:1-14

Passage:

I, Paul, have been sent on special assignment by Christ as part of God's master plan. Together with my friend Timothy, I greet the Christians and stalwart followers of Christ who live in Colosse. May everything good from God our Father be yours!

Our prayers for you are always spilling over into thanksgivings. We can't quit thanking God our Father and Jesus our Messiah for you! We keep getting reports on your steady faith in Christ, our Jesus, and the love you continuously extend to all Christians. The lines of purpose in your lives never grow slack, tightly tied as they are to your future in heaven, kept taut by hope.

The Message is as true among you today as when you first heard it. It doesn't diminish or weaken over time. It's the same all over the world. The Message bears fruit and gets larger and stronger, just as it has in you. From the very first day you heard and recognized the truth of what God is doing, you've been hungry for more. It's as vigorous in you now as when you learned it from our friend and close associate Epaphras. He is one reliable worker for Christ! I could always depend on him. He's the one who told us how thoroughly love had been worked into your lives by the Spirit.

Be assured that from the first day we heard of you, we haven't stopped praying for you, asking God to give you wise minds and spirits attuned to his will, and so acquire a thorough understanding of the ways in which God works. We pray that you'll live well for the Master, making him proud of you as you work hard in his orchard. As you learn more and more how God works, you will learn how to do your work. We pray that you'll have the strength to stick it out over the long haul—not the grim strength of gritting your teeth but the glory-strength God gives. It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for us.

God rescued us from dead-end alleys and dark dungeons. He's set us up in the kingdom of the Son he loves so much, the Son who got us out of the pit we were in, got rid of the sins we were doomed to keep repeating.

We will get back to the gospels soon, but, when I saw the readings for the next few days I got so excited because they are coming from Colossians! Colossians is hands down my favorite book. It is this compact, succinct, and pointed text about the beautiful Christ that we follow and practically how to follow.

As much as I love Romans and Hebrews this little letter has my heart. So, I hope that you will indulge me as we read it together. I’m looking forward to seeing how God uses this little text in me over the next few weeks.

Reading this in The Message has left me pondering and thinking about so many things. It just hits so different with words I’m not used to.

I could write on these fourteen verses all week, I think. But, it’s a knee jerk devotional. So, what stands out? What jumps off the page this morning?

This line: “The lines of purpose in your lives never grow slack, tightly tied as they are to your future in heaven, kept taut by hope.”

I think that as we grow older and we’ve been living our lives we wonder, “Does what I do matter?” I think we want purpose and desire to live lives of purpose. We want to know that we are having an impact. I’m grateful this morning as I write this because I have the words running around in my head of so many who have told me that I matter to them and that I’ve had an impact on their lives.

As I consider this line from our reading it strikes me that for the “line of purpose” in my life to never grow slack it means that somehow where it is anchored is constantly moving and pulling me ahead. If I am running hard after my purpose then whatever it is anchored to is moving just a little faster than me to keep that line taut.

There are so many thoughts now running through my mind. Is this the ever expanding nature of the universe? The reality that our hope anchored in eternity is continually pulling us forward as eternity continues to expand to engulf all of existence? Is it that Christ is drawing us in through pulling the line and at some point we will come face to face with Christ at the proverbial “end of our rope”?

I don’t know, but the this line of purpose is anchored in hope. Hope never fails. So, we keep pressing on in hope. We keep moving forward in recognition of what’s to come. We keep hold of that line of purpose and pursuing it because, “It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for us.”

I’m curious, what jumps out to you this morning? I’d love to hear your observations in the comments over at danielmrose.com.