August 11 - The Favor of the Lord

By David Martz

Today's Scripture: Nehemiah 2:8

Central Thought: God's favor brings honor from leaders and peers.

    Have you ever had a job where the management really liked you, but you didn't know why? Sometimes Christian character alone brings about respect, while at other times God uses our words or actions to draw attention to our integrity. Leadership likes integrity, morality, and character, as these characteristics reflect positively upon an organization.

    Nehemiah was faithful to God and man and appeared to pay attention to details. God used these and other godly traits to win the respect of the king and queen. God gave Joseph favor in the eyes of a jailer and pharaoh. He gave John favor with Herod, and Paul favor with those whom he evangelized. Favor is also a translated 'grace.” Believers have favor with God on the basis of the atoning sacrifice of Christ.

    Paul thanked the Corinthian church for their prayers that resulted in favor among those to whom he ministered (2 Corinthians 1:11). Paul also spoke of slaves' winning favor through their obedience. According to biblical texts, favor is earned or given freely, but in most cases, it is the result of character, obedience, and integrity.

    The Lord gives favor (Psalm 84:11), but even this text is conditional: 'to those who walk uprightly.” Do you seek the favor of leaders or coworkers? Ask God to show you how to win their favor and then go to work, with God's help, to live a life worthy of the honor you seek. Integrity, honor, and character are developed with time, not overnight.

Devotional Prayer: Father in heaven, open my eyes to how I can live my life in a way that brings glory to You and favor in the eyes of men and women. In the name (authority) of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.

Today's Bible Reading: Nehemiah 1:1–3:14; 1 Corinthians 7:1–24; Psalm 31:19–24; Proverbs 21:4