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Daily Devotion for December 19, 2012


Visitation of Mary and Elizabeth, carving on Reims Cathedral
A carving on Reims Cathedral (@ 14th Cent.) showing the visitation of Mary and Elizabeth. Notice that the plinths descend in height, beginning with Gabriel, and that he and Mary have purer looking garments than Elizabeth and her mother.

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Scripture

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lessons and scripture

Lord's Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.

Amen.

May Luciano Pavarotti's soul be blessed. He truly gave us a foretaste of the voices of angels.



"For Each New Morning"

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
I thank thee.
Amen.
(From a poem by Ralph Waldo Emerson)

For Each of Us in Our Work

Almighty God, heavenly Father, who makes it possible for me to work and who gives every creature its food, declaring your glory and showing your handiwork in the heavens and in the earth; Deliver me, I pray, in my work, from coveting material goods, from falling into the temptation of serving mammon and putting money in the forefront of my life. Help me to perform the work which you have put at my hand, in truth, in beauty, and in righteousness, with singleness of heart as your servant, and to the benefit of my fellow men as well as myself; for the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lived and died only to serve us.

Amen.

Benediction

Walk with me, dear Lord, so that I may not be alone as I face this day, but always in your presence. Your joy is a lighthouse in a world often dark with sin, and I pray that I may inspire others as I have been inspired. In the name of Christ, bless me this day, and all whom I may meet.

Amen.


Think of the day ahead in terms of God with you, and visualize health, strength, guidance, purity, calm confidence, and victory as the gifts of His presence.



endless knot

Proverbs 18:2 (ESV)

A fool takes no pleasure in understanding,
but only in expressing his opinion.

Blue Latin Cross

Luke 1:39-45 (ESV)

Blessed Are You Among Women

In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb.

And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?

For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord."



Notes on the Scripture

The Scripture from today and yesterday forms the basis of the text for the Ave Maria. Although this is known primarily as a Catholic prayer or hymn, I have heard it sung in Methodist and Baptist churches, so I surmise that it is appreciated in most denominations.

Elizabeth is Mary's cousin, and the two have good reason to be friends. Both of them have become pregnant by a miracle announced by Gabriel, an angel of God; in Elizabeth's case, she was unable to have children, and in Mary's case, she has not slept with a man. Moreover, their children's lives will be linked together in the most profound moment of human history. Elizabeth's child, John the Baptist, will be a great prophet in his time and will become the man who announces the imminent arrival of Christ, and then baptizes Him.



<i>The Visitation</i>, Mariotto Albertinelli c. 1503.
The Visitation, Mariotto Albertinelli c. 1503.

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Today in Daily Prayer


Memory Verse

Isaiah 7:14: Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.



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