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Daily Devotion for April 26, 2017


Jesus Christ, 'Come unto me all who labor'

Prayers

Scripture

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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.




Prayer for the Morning

Dear Lord, please give me the patience to make it through this busy day with all the hustle, demands and distractions of modern life. Let me find the quiet time to hear your voice and feel your calming presence. I ask this in your son's name.

Amen.

To Awaken in Christ's Body

I awaken in Christ's body as Christ awakens my body, and my poor hand is Christ. He enters my foot, and is infinitely me. I move my hand, and wonderfully my hand becomes Christ, becomes all of Him (for God is indivisibly Whole, seamless in His Godhood). I move my foot, and at once He appears like a flash of lightning.

Do my words seem blasphemous? Then I must open my heart to You and let myself receive the One who is opening to me so deeply. For if I genuinely love You, I wake up inside Your body where all my body, all over, every most hidden part of it, is realized in joy as You, and You make me utterly and real. Everything that is hurt, everything that seemed to me dark, harsh, shameful, maimed, ugly, irreparably damaged, is in You transformed and recognized as whole, as lovely, and radiant in Your light.
Awaken, Beloved Son of God, in every last part of my body.

Amen.

Meditation

[Ugly things transformed in God’s light.]


Benediction

Now, oh Lord, I pray that you may lift up the light of your countenance upon me, and give me peace; in my going out and in my coming in; in my sitting down and my rising up; in my work and in my play; in my joy and in my sorrow, in my laughter and in my tears; until that day comes which is without dawn and without dark.

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

Psalm 103:8-11 (NKJV)

The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.

He will not always chide,
nor will he keep his anger forever.
He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.

For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him.


Blue Latin Cross

John 16:20-24 (ESV)

Joy to Come

Jesus said, “Very truly, I tell you, you will weep and mourn, but the world will rejoice; you will have pain, but your pain will turn into joy.

When a woman is in labor, she has pain, because her hour has come. But when her child is born, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy of having brought a human being into the world. So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you. On that day you will ask nothing of me.

Very truly, I tell you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.”


Notes on the Scripture

C

hristianity is the ultimate expression of “delayed gratification.” Many martyrs have given their lives for their faith in Christ. Most of us will not be called to such great sacrifice, but we are called, at times, to make small sacrifices, because of our belief in the joy that will come to our eternal soul.

In today's passage, Christ speaks words of enormous comfort to the apostles, who are disconsolate at the approach of Jesus' cruel death. The example he gives, of a woman in labor, is wonderful; it is something that everyone can understand and appreciate, for birth can indeed be terribly painful (and in that time, dangerous) to the mother; yet the result is one of the happiest moments in the woman's life.

For most of us, Christ's burden is light and the reward is great. Life is not fair, although in this case the unfairness runs in our favor. We are given the same eternal salvation as those who were crucified, those who were thrown to lions, and those who spend their entire adult lives as monks and nuns, living in poverty and discomfort.

In fact, often Christ's “burden” is an earthly blessing, especially for those who feel God's Holy Spirit in their lives. Every person's life is full of cares and woes. When we really can grasp the significance of our salvation, they do not hurt so much. Christ did say, “Come to me, those of you who labor and carry heavy burdens, and I will refresh you.”

I hope that all of us can take this message to heart. True faith, especially letting the Holy Spirit enter our lives, takes an enormous weight off our shoulders. Whenever we are feeling down, we should take time to meditate and pray for this enormous blessing we can receive during our lives.



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Mark 9:40: He who is not against us is for us. For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because of your name as followers of Christ, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.



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