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Daily Reading: Ezekiel 21:1-22:31 ESV, Hebrews 10:1-17 ESV, Psalm 108:1-13 ESV, Proverbs 27:12 ESV

Daily Verse: “For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near.” (Hebrews 10:1 ESV)

SKIA (4639): “Is used of “a shadow,” of these as appointed under the Law, Heb 10:1.”[1]

Preliminary outline.

“The “shadow” then is the preliminary outline that an artist may make before he gets to his colors, and the “reality” is the finished portrait.” Expositor’s Bible Commentary

When I don’t understand a verse, I turn to commentaries; Expositor’s a favorite.  Nothing beats their description of the law and its application to faith in Jesus.  Without the early commandments, we wouldn’t understand why we need Jesus.  Unable to keep them, we need someone who could.

Become colorful.

Placing your faith in Jesus fills the lines in the shadow.  Continually taking the next step of faith leads you to an unimaginable grace.  Christ’s presence in the present moment becomes so real it overwhelms you.  Understanding that life’s fragility and vitality coexist together gives it new meaning.

At any moment, God can call us home.  But in the meantime, live.  The poem at my mother and nephew’s funeral instructed us:

“think of me sometimes, but not too much.  While you live, let your thoughts be with the living.” Unknown

Our thoughts control our actions. To live, we must think in the now, not the then.  Taking with us the meat, leaving behind the bones.  Forgive yourself for the laws you struggle to keep.  Try to do better today, and keep going; life’s journey never ends.

Like a tire stuck in a mud puddle, spinning its wheels, when we spend too much time in the valley, we get stuck in a rut with our thoughts.  Not able to see a way out, we think life won’t change, but don’t believe the lie.

Like the unending waves in the ocean, time never stops, nor does life.  Grace moves us forward on the journey, allowing us to forgive ourselves for breaking the “law” and try again.  You can try again every day God gives you on earth and make different choices. Become colorful as you follow Jesus, applying His teachings to your life.  Let grace become your calling card.

[1] Strong, J., & Strong, J. (2010). The New Strong’s expanded exhaustive concordance of the Bible. Greek Dictionary of the New Testament (p. 228) Thomas Nelson

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