Joni & Friends Devotional

Joni and Friends Devotional | 23 July 2022

Joni and Friends Devotional | 23 July 2022

Joni and Friends Devotional | 23 July 2022

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Joni and Friends Daily Devotional 23rd July 2022 Sunday Message

TOPIC: God’s Unconditional Love & Availability  

SCRIPTURE: But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. -2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)

MESSAGE

Those of us who love God’s Book find people we can identify with in its pages. 

Strong, mission-minded believers find a champion in the Apostle Paul. Young pastors feel a strong kinship with Timothy—a green pastor with a problem church and a queasy stomach!

ALSO READ, Joni and Friends Devotional | 6 July 2022

Single girls swoon over Ruth’s love story. Harried homemakers identify with Martha—but long to be more like her sister. Teens see themselves in the youthful David on his lonely, nighttime vigils. If children don’t picture themselves with the little ones who gathered at Jesus’ feet, they may sympathize with young Samuel, who had to leave his mom and dad to live in the temple. 

I don’t know too many stories of people in the Bible with spinal cord injuries. But there is one name I do remember from my Sunday school days—one disabled individual with whom I can identify. 

Mephibosheth, son of Jonathan. 

Prince Jonathan had died in battle along with his father, King Saul. Before his death, the prince and the fugitive David had been the closest of friends—though by all logic they should have been bitter rivals. When David ascended to the throne after the death of Saul and Jonathan, he wondered how he might honor the memory of his dear friend. So he summoned Saul’s former household servants to the palace. 

“The king then asked him, ‘Is anyone left from Saul’s family? If so, I want to fulfill a sacred vow by being kind to him.’

‘Yes,’ Ziba replied, ‘Jonathan’s lame son is still alive.’

‘Where is he?’ the king asked.

‘In Lo-debar,’ Ziba told him. ‘At the home of Machir.’

Joni and Friends Devotional | 23 July 2022

So King David sent for Mephibosheth—Jonathan’s son and Saul’s grandson. Mephibosheth arrived in great fear and greeted the king in deep humility, bowing low before him.

But David said, ‘Don’t be afraid! I’ve asked you to come so that I can be kind to you because of my vow to your father Jonathan. I will restore to you all the land of your grandfather Saul, and you shall live here at the palace!’

Mephibosheth fell to the ground before the king. ‘Should the king show kindness to a dead dog like me?’ he exclaimed.

…And from that time on, Mephibosheth ate regularly with King David, as though he were one of his own sons.”

2 Samuel 9:3-8, 11, TLB

It’s no easy thing to be disabled, even in today’s world. But it was immeasurably more difficult in those days. Not only was medical care all but nonexistent, but the disabled person had to endure the stab of pity and prejudice. Believe me, nobody cared about accessibility back then! People with disabilities were either relegated to back bedrooms or forced to beg on city streets.  

This was the kind of future faced by Mehpibosheth, whose feet were lame. But all of that changed when King David found the young man and summoned him to his throne. Disabled, considered worthless, an embarrassment even in his own eyes, the son of Jonathan was bidden by the king to come and dine. 

ALSO READ, Joni and Friends Devotional | 3 July 2022

As a former heir to the throne, Mephibosheth’s expected fate would be banishment at best—and most likely death. And now the new king wanted to dine with him? What had Mephibosheth done to deserve this unprecedented honor? 

Absolutely nothing. 

When the disabled man asked the king the reason for this extraordinary compassion, David explained,

“I will surely show kindness to you for the sake of your father”

2 Samuel 9:7

It was because of David’s great love for Jonathan that Mephibosheth was welcomed into the king’s presence. Disability or no, he was now part of the family and enjoyed all the privileges of a king’s son.  

Isn’t that the way God deals with us? We were alienated, disabled by our sin. Our disability was our ignorance and apathy toward the God who had every right to snuff us out in his righteous anger. As Paul put it,

“You were spiritually dead through your sins and failures…and obeyed the evil ruler of the spiritual realm…being in fact under the wrath of God by nature, like everyone else”

Ephesians 2:1, 2, Phillips

Joni and Friends Devotional | 23 July 2022

Like Jonathan, the best thing we could have expected from our King was permanent banishment or a swift execution. But no. Because of Jesus, we are invited to become the very sons and daughters of God.  

In love he…adopted us as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us. 

Consider the incredible love that the Father has shown us in allowing us to be called “children of God”—and that is not just what we are called, but what we are. (Ephesians 1:4, 5-8, 1 John 3:1, Phillips) 

Through Jesus’ provision, we can now draw our chairs up to the King’s table. We are welcomed. In spite of our spiritual disabilities—whatever they are—we are part of a family. There is no reason to fear. The King has called us into his intimate family circle, as Hhis own sons and daughters.  

Remember that, if today you feel unworthy to come into the King’s presence…if, like Mephibosheth, you sense that somehow you could never fit in. 

Come anyway, says the King. No matter what your weakness, hardship, or disability. 

Come and dine. 

ALSO READ, Joni and Friends Devotional | 25 March 2022

Joni & Friends Ministries Founded by Joni Eareckson Tada in 1979, Joni and Friends are dedicated to reaching out to families living with disabilities all around the globe with gospel-adorned hope. We extend gospel-centered care through Community Support, Respite, Retreats and Getaways, and Crisis Response. And we connect families with Christ-honoring, disability-friendly churches where they find a place belong.

ARE YOU BORN AGAIN? IF NO, ACCEPT JESUS NOW

Accept Jesus Christ today and secure a life of eternal rest and Glory …

Say this 1 Minute Prayer

Lord Jesus, I believe you died for my sins, Forgive me of all my iniquities. I accept you as my Lord and Saviour from today and forevermore. Come and Be the Lord of my life and I am willing to obey your command and live according to your will as you help me, Thank you for accepting me into your fold. AMEN

JOHN 3: 3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God

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