Prayer Prompt: School
You are like salt
In Matthew 5:13 Jesus said, You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its salty taste, it cannot be made salty again. It is good for nothing. It must be thrown out for people to walk on. I believe that your saltiness is your Christian character. If you lost that you are just like sand which is only good for walking on. Salt makes food taste good and prevents it from spoiling. Jesus can have the same effect on your life.
Verses 3-11 are known as the beatitudes and describe people who have a godly character:
Verse 3 - Happy are those who know they are spiritually poor.
Verse 4 - Happy are those who mourn.
Verse 5 - Happy are those who are humble.
Verse 6 - Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.
Verse 7 - Happy are those who are merciful to others.
Verse 8 - Happy are the pure in heart.
Verse 9 - Happy are those who work for peace.
Verse 10 - Happy are those who are persecuted because they do what God requires.
Verse 11 - Happy are you when people insult you and persecute you and tell all kinds of evil lies against you because you are my followers.
These are the characteristics that make you salty. How salty do you think you are? Do you know that you're spiritually poor? Do you mourn for the world's brokenness? Are you humble? Do you desire to do what God wants? Are you merciful and kind? Is your heart pure? Do you work for peace? Are you persecuted and insulted for being a Christian? If so, congratulations, you are salty.
Verse 12 says, Be happy and glad, for a great reward is kept for you in heaven. God will reward salty people—what a great promise!
Your Christian Life
Spiritual Gifts - Faith
All Christians have faith in God, but the gift of faith that Paul refers to in 1 Corinthians 12:9 is not the same. Jesus often observed that people didn't have enough faith.
For example, when Peter got out of the boat and started to walk on water to Jesus, he started to sink and Jesus said, You of little faith, why did you doubt? (Matthew 14:31).
Jesus also commented that some people had great faith. For example, when Jesus healed a woman's demon possessed daughter he said, Woman, you have great faith! You will get what you asked for (Matthew 15:28).
Hebrews 11 is a whole book about faith. Verse 1 says, Faith makes us sure of what we hope for and gives us proof of what we cannot see. Faith is believing that God knows what he's doing and trusting in him.
The rest of Hebrews lists what we call the Heroes of Faith:
Abel offered a better sacrifice than his brother.
Enoch didn't die, God just took him up to heaven.
Noah built the ark, even though he had probably never seen a flood before.
Abraham moved to a new country.
Sarah had a baby even though she was really old.
All of these people had great faith. They obeyed God because of it.
I believe the gift of faith enables people to look past their circumstances and obstacles, to trust God completely, and do hard things. They know that God is with them and helps them.
Christians are like good ground
In Mark 4:3-8 Jesus tells a parable about a farmer who was planting some seeds. In Mark 4:14-20 he explained what it meant. He described four scenarios where the seed symbolises the good news about Jesus and the ground represents different types of people.
What kind of ground are you? Do you get dragged to church each week and sit there doing your best grumpy cat impersonation? Did you accept Jesus but got discouraged when life got difficult? Do you go to church on Sunday but live like the world for the rest of the week? Or are you good dirt? Do you read your Bible, love going to church and worshipping God, do you pray, are generous and serve others and tell them the Good News?
In Mark 4:8 Jesus said, But other seeds were planted on good ground, sprouted, and produced thirty, sixty, or one hundred times as much as was planted. Be good dirt and live a fruitful life serving Jesus!
I am holding your hand
Spiritual gifts : Knowledge
The second part of 1 Corinthians 8 says, the same Spirit gives another the ability to speak with knowledge. Knowledge and wisdom are listed as two separate gifts. The Bible doesn't give us a clear definition of the gift of knowledge but I will attempt to make sense of it.
HELPS—Word Studies defines the original Greek word as 'functional ("working") knowledge gleaned from first-hand (personal) experience.' It's a bit like saying, 'I know about gravity because I fell out of a tree when I was six.' I know about it because I experienced it. I think that it's similar to someone having the gift of knowledge—they know because they have experienced it. Many people know that God loves them, but it's just a head knowledge. Other people have experienced his love in a powerful way and it has moved from being a head knowledge to a heart knowledge. The Holy Spirit gives us this knowledge, you can't learn it.
Here's another illustration. If you haven't seen snow you can still know about it—you know that it's white and cold, you could even imagine what it feels like. But if you have stood in the snow, touched and tasted it, you know about snow on a whole other level.
In my understanding, the gift of knowledge is linked to our experiences as the Holy Spirit helps us to understand them. It gives us a new perspective. Some people have the gift of seeing things from a God point of view, instead of a human point of view—I think that is part of the gift of knowledge. Hope that makes sense.
Short and sweet inspirations for Christian teen girls.