Ash Wednesday Devotion

from Paul Metzger

Reading: Mt. 6:1-6; 16-21

Mat 6:1  "Be careful not to do your good works in public in order to attract attention. If you do, your Father in heaven will not reward you...
Mat 6:2  So when you give to the poor, don't announce it with trumpet fanfare...
Mat 6:5  "When you pray, don't be like hypocrites...
Mat 6:16  "When you fast, stop looking sad like hypocrites.

The focus here is on our attitudes and motivations for what we do, especially the good things we do. Our focus should be on pointing to, and glorifying, God. If we are drawing attention to ourselves when we do good things, thinking or hoping that others will think of us more highly, then we have missed The Lord's purpose for doing them.

He definitely wants us to give, pray and fast, which were the 3 areas that the Jews divided personal religion into, but he wants us to do them in such a way that He is the focus and He gets the glory.

So this Lent, think through why you do what you do: why you help others, why you do various things at church, why you're even doing this Lenten devotional. Is it to please others, to make yourself look better, or because you want to Glorify God and please Him? Let us always seek to please Him!