God's Requirements

Mark 12:17
And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's.

Micah 6:8
. . . . And what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

It's income tax time! I don't know one single person who looks forward to that time-unless, of course, it's the tax collector! We grumble and complain, but wind up sending in our checks anyway. It's the right thing to do because it's the required thing. Christ clearly told us to give to our government the things that are owed to it. What does the government want from us? Primarily, payment of taxes, obedience to the laws and loyalty to the country.

Ultimately, as a follower of Christ, I serve a Higher Power. I serve Almighty God. What is it that He requires from me? Micah 6:8 shows me three things:
First God wants me "to do justly." In the context of the passage it means to stop trusting my own righteousness and religiosity and live according to God's way of doing things. Second, I'm "to love mercy." That means being generous in giving and forgiving with both others and myself. Third, God wants me "to walk humbly" with my God. As I ponder how I can give God the things He requires of me, I realize that it's not about writing a check, or doing more good works, or attending more church services. It's about being surrendered to His will and obedient to His Word-without grumbling and complaining. This means giving up self and putting on Christ. It's the right thing to do because it's the required thing.

Father in Heaven, hear my prayer today as I give myself to you, starting with the gift of my thoughts and desires. Let my mind be surrendered to think only on things that please you. May my body act in ways that bring you glory. May my spirit reflect and attitude of unselfishness and holiness.

By Ann Shorb
©Copyright Ann Shorb, 2006

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