25 Days of December: Matthew Chapter 7

Hello and welcome to Day 4 of our 25 Days of December series, where we are diving into the book of Matthew with the goal of gaining access to some “soul food” during this season of busyness and distraction!

It’s Saturday and I know you have a list of other things you could be doing right now, even if sleep is at the top, so I will get started!

If this is your first time reading, I will be referencing The Message and NIV translations with occasional entries from biblehub.com. If you don’t have a bible, you can jump over to biblehub.com, which is a very user friendly way to look up scripture and provides MANY translations allowing for easy deciphering. If you click on the blue link, I have bookmarked Matthew Chapter 7 for you! 🙂

The main points I want to touch on today are:

  • Judging others
  • Ask for what you need
  • Entering the “narrow gate”
  • False prophets
  • Building a firm foundation

I LOVE this chapter. Each point speaks directly to me and gives me a practical guide to follow in my day to day.

  • Judging others

Matthew 7:1-2 (NIV) reads: Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

(Raises her hand) I am guilty as charged! This may be one of my biggest weaknesses guys. The thing that keeps replaying in my mind is that we will be judged to the same measure as we have judged others. So not only do we get judged if we judge others but the degree to which we judge is even taken into account! YIKES! Looking back, I find that I tend to judge people when they are a threat to me or I feel hurt by them. It’s a defense we use to justify our feelings. All we can do is try our best to not judge others and if we do (because we are human) we know where to go for forgiveness! There is freedom in forgiving others AND in forgiving yourself!

  • Ask for what you need

Matthew 7:7-8 (NIV) promises us: “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knows, the door will be opened.”

Something that dawned on me as I read these verses: ABSOLUTELY, we must go to our Father and ask, seek and knock, but this also applies to our interactions with our family and friends! We have all heard men tease women about how they assume men know what they need and then give them the silent treatment when they don’t get it! (Raises her hand, again!) GUILTY. I am all the time doing this to my poor husband! If I look even further, I do this with my family and friends as well! It is hard to be open with people. Sit them down with some coffee and tell them what you need or set boundaries where there is too much give and not enough receive. I recently did this. It was very hard and emotionally straining, but you know what I gained from it? The time to write this blog and join in on a community full of Jesus loving women! What a reward!

  • Entering the “narrow gate”

Matthew 7:13-20 (The Message) describes the narrow gate: “Don’t look for shortcuts to God. The market is flooded with surefire, easy going formulas for a successful life that can be practiced in your spare time. Don’t fall for that stuff, even though crowds of people do. The way to life-to God!- is vigorous and requires total attention.

We know that hard work produces great rewards in our everyday life. Why would our faith be any different? It WILL be hard to go against the crowd, for it is harder work. The crowd tends to do what is easy. Remember to always listen to your inner gauge of character and morals and to always go to God if you are questioning what his will is. I struggle weekly, if not daily with the writing of this blog. It’s not necessarily popular to set aside social events or Facebook scrolling to write a month long bible study. It just isn’t. I know that you too, choose to do the right thing when it’s not popular and I am SO PROUD of you for doing that!!

  • False prophets

Be wary of false preachers who smile a lot, dripping with practiced sincerity. Chances are they are out to rip you off some way or other. Don’t be impressed with charisma; look for character. Who preachers are is the main thing, not what they say. A genuine leader will never exploit your emotions or your pocketbooks. These diseased trees with their bad apples are going to be chopped down and burned.”

Also, choose your church, your bible studies, the leaders in any area of your life -carefully! Unfortunately, there are people out there who are VERY good at pretending and they will stop at nothing to get what they want. 😦

Matthew 7:15 (NIV) says: Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.”

  • Building a firm foundation

Matthew 7:24-27 (NIV) tells us: “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

I like to think of this in a way that’s easy for me to visualize. I love the foundation metaphor but I like to think of it like a tree. Every time I put scripture into action it’s like another root growing it’s way deeper into the ground. The more I do this and grow my roots, the stronger the tree (myself) will stand when a storm hits. In turn, if I read scripture but do not apply it, it is like watering a tree that you haven’t actually planted into the ground. You can water it all you want but if the roots have nowhere to grow, the tree will die.

Not only that, but if we are “practicing what we preach,” non-believers will be attracted to the love and light they see in us, and want to know where we got it! The Lord! 🙂

I hope and pray that these lessons are touching you and inspiring you to love on others the way reading scripture does for me. ❤ Thank you so much for joining in on this community and being a part of this study and the sharing of my personal stories. I can’t wait to see you here again tomorrow!

* Reminder: You will have easier access to each of my posts by hitting the “follow” button in the sidebar to the right. This will sign you up to receive emails each time a post is published! Thanks again, friends!

 

 

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2 thoughts on “25 Days of December: Matthew Chapter 7

  1. Thanks for putting in the investment of time into this ignore I am really enjoying your writing and perspective! Keep it up,looking forward each day!
    Blessings,
    Kaitlyn

    Liked by 1 person

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