“Go and rescue the perishing! Be their savior! Why would you stand back and watch them stagger to their death? And why would you say, “But it’s none of my business”? The one who knows you completely and judges your every motive is also the keeper of souls—and not just yours! He sees through your excuses and holds you responsible for failing to help those whose lives are threatened.” - Proverbs 24:11-12 TPT

There was a part of me that didn’t want to use this passage for my devotion. I wanted to choose a more uplifting one, but these words from Proverbs kept running through my mind. During a fast, we need to be uplifted and encouraged, but also convicted and stretched and these verses did just that to my heart. They challenged me to my core. 

Who am I loving that doesn’t know Jesus? Who am I reaching out to and pouring time and energy into that is perishing? If I am being honest, it is easy to want to surround myself with like-minded people who will lift me up, encourage me, and love me like Jesus does. And none of that is bad, but we were never meant to only surround ourselves with those people. We hear it all the time: Jesus surrounded himself with the sinners, the ones that were hard to love. And yet, are we doing the same? If we truly and fully believed in the reality of heaven and hell, would our lives look a little different? Would we be spending more time seeking out, loving, and praying for those that are currently perishing? And I mean REALLY praying. How much of our prayer life is filled with prayers for ourselves rather than the souls of others? Are we acting on the responsibility God has given us? Because when you think about it, it’s an honor that He even entrusts us with this responsibility and chooses to partner with us and use us. 

I know this devotion has been filled with a lot of questions, but these verses are meant to do just that. They’re meant to make us look at our lives and how we spend our time, to make us ask the hard questions that we would rather ignore and never answer because it’s easier that way. What is Holy Spirit pointing out to you? Don’t ignore it; ACT on it! 

Jesus, come and open our eyes to those in need. Give us a burning desire to love the unlovable, to seek out the lost and bring them home with a compassion and boldness like we’ve never had before. Give us Your eyes, give us Your heart, so that we might be Your hands and feet. 

Natalie Brown 
Youth Pastor