A Triad of Intentionality

(Today's post by Marc Cannon)

Matthew 6:1-18

The first 3 sections of Matthew chapter 6 deal with specific aspects we as believers immerse ourselves in: Giving, Prayer & Fasting. All three of those aspects of a believer’s life are done with intentionality. This in simple terms means we CHOOSE to do these things. All 3 are extremely important, vital to our walk, divinely powerful and so unimaginably beautiful. Jesus understands these things because He designed them and in that design they bring us closer, teach us to rely and ultimately build a stronger relationship with Him.

BUT, and yes there is a “but”, in the red letter words from 1-18, Jesus gives us proper instruction and plenty of caution. In these things we can certainly use them selfishly. To be honest with you I’ve used them all selfishly at some point. I’ve prayed for show, fasted for show and I’ve bragged about giving. UGH! “Hey y’all, look how pious I am!” I even have the t-shirt. There is a reason the Lord wants our prayers to be sincere and succinct, our fasting to be a private reliance on Him and our giving to be something done behind the scenes. It has to do with where our heart truly is and where the glory ultimately rest.Because if it’s ourselves that we’re trying to please and for our own glory we’re trying to gain we might as not even lace up our fasting, praying and giving boots.

As I read these words from Jesus, He placed on my heart to examine these aspects of my walk and where my heart truly is as I take part in each of them. Today I challenge each of you to do the same – Since this is an intentional act, what are your intentions?

When you give, do you give quietly with a glad heart?

When you pray, do you pray sincerely?

When you fast, do you fast privately?

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  • Fabio Esguerra

    Perhaps being an introvert makes this a little easier, but even then pride can still manifest itself. Sincerity along with intentionality is key.

    • Marc Cannon

      Interesting point, Fabio! I’m inherently introverted and now that I examine that point for myself. I may have used these things selfishly to get attention that I don’t normally get from being naturally to myself. I will tell you that in my own nature being introverted has actually made it harder on me to seek a personal relationship with Jesus. I’m not a person who seeks out others. What I mean by that is that my friends and family usually have to reach out to me to contact me. I don’t reach out to them very well. So my natural instinct is to not reach to Jesus daily. That makes me even more thankful for His grace. Thank you for your comment.

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