Audience of One.

I am grateful for my church devotion today based on Matthew 6:1-15. I’m pretty sure John Ortberg must have some Quaker blood in him. Or maybe he was in Mom’s Sunday School class at one time. This was what got to me:

Here’s a simple way to examine your motives, shared by Pastor John Ortberg in his book The Life You’ve Always Wanted: “Do something good and try to make sure no one finds out about it” (p. 168). 

Matthew 6:1-15 (CEB)

“Be careful that you don’t practice your religion in front of people to draw their attention. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. Whenever you give to the poor, don’t blow your trumpet as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets so that they may get praise from people. I assure you, that’s the only reward they’ll get. But when you give to the poor, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing so that you may give to the poor in secret. Your Father who sees what you do in secret will reward you. When you pray, don’t be like hypocrites. They love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners so that people will see them. I assure you, that’s the only reward they’ll get. But when you pray, go to your room, shut the door, and pray to your Father who is present in that secret place. Your Father who sees what you do in secret will reward you. When you pray, don’t pour out a flood of empty words, as the Gentiles do. They think that by saying many words they’ll be heard. Don’t be like them, because your Father knows what you need before you ask. Pray like this: Our Father who is in heaven, uphold the holiness of your name. Bring in your kingdom so that your will is done on earth as it’s done in heaven. Give us the bread we need for today. Forgive us for the ways we have wronged you, just as we also forgive those who have wronged us. And don’t lead us into temptation, but rescue us from the evil one. If you forgive others their sins, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you don’t forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your sins.”

I am grateful for the reminder today that our kindness, our compassion, our mission, should not be for the recognition we want from others, but for the Audience of One.

I am grateful today for loneliness. It takes me back and is a good reminder of the pain and the heartache that allows me to be even more grateful for where I am now.

I am grateful for funny. It would be a very sad world if there was no such thing as funny.

I am grateful for stain remover.

I am grateful for my daughters’ friends.

I am grateful for ways and means of seeing pictures of my granddaughters even when…

I am grateful that my sister visited my aunt and uncle in Pratt yesterday.

I am grateful for the end of a work day.

I am grateful for a REALLY GOOD BOOK. It makes me so sad I have to read it a couple of chapters at a time, but IT IS SO GOOD. Today would have been a great day to stay home and relax under a blanket and read and cry and read and sigh. Shoulda coulda woulda but there is that work component that doesn’t seem to fit the schedule I want.

And I am grateful that a really terrific family is about to embark on a wonderful adventure vacation to see things they have never seen before. Yay for them! Life is too short to not take fun vacations.

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