Daily Devotion for May 1, 2017
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.
Casting Crowns, 2003
Would care to know my name
Would care to feel my hurt?
Who am I, that the Bright and Morning Star
Would choose to light the way
For my ever wandering heart?
Not because of who I am
But because of what You've done
Not because of what I've done
But because of who You are.
I am a flower quickly fading
Here today and gone tomorrow
A wave tossed in the ocean
Vapor in the wind.
Still You hear me when I'm calling
Lord, You catch me when I'm falling
And You've told me who I am
I am Yours, I am Yours.
Who am I, that the eyes that see my sin?
Would look on me with love and watch me rise again?
Who am I, that the voice that calmed the sea
Would call out through the rain
And calm the storm in me?
I am Yours.
Whom shall I fear?
Whom shall I fear,
'Cause I am Yours.
Come to Our Aid
In the morning Abraham called upon you on the mountain top and you answered him, O lover of men; and in the morning I call upon you, come to my aid and the aid of all your servants, O God, full of mercy, hallelujah, and have mercy upon us.
Prayer to Know the Living Christ
Lord Christ, time and again I have lost you in a bleak and desolate spiritual wasteland, believing my eyes: For I do not see you. Have you died? Is the tomb empty because your body has been stolen? I look for you and do not see you.
Yet, somehow, you find me. I knock and the door does not seem to open; but you are behind me all the time. I seek and do not think that I find; but I am found. I imagine you and force myself to believe that the image I create is you; yet you yourself are actually there, seeing me and calling me all the time.
I wander off like a lost sheep, my eyes front, and cannot find my way back; but a shepherd seeks me out and calls me, gently. Bless you, and bless you seven times seven, for you admit no failure in finding those who seek you, no matter how lost they may believe themselves. I pray that I may hear your voice, oh Lord, for I know you call, and my desperation is only my willful deafness
For Renewal of the Holy Spirit
O Lord, renew in our own days your miracles like a second Pentecost. Grant that the Church, re-united in prayer, may extend the kingdom of Jesus - a kingdom of truth and justice, of love and peace.
[Reuniting the church in prayer.]
As I travel through the rest of my day, may the God of hope fill me with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit I may abound in hope.
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
Rebecca and Eliezer at the Well , by Johann Ramboux, ca. 1819.See full painting.
Proverbs 14:31 (NKJV)
He who oppresses the poor reproaches his Maker,
But he who honors Him has mercy on the needy.
Genesis 24:22-33 (ESV)
The Story of Abraham  - Rebekah
When the camels had finished drinking, the man took a gold ring weighing a half shekel, and two bracelets for her arms weighing ten gold shekels, and said, “Please tell me whose daughter you are. Is there room in your father's house for us to spend the night?”
She said to him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, whom she bore to Nahor.” She added, “We have plenty of both straw and fodder, and room to spend the night.”
The man bowed his head and worshiped the Lord and said, “Blessed be the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who has not forsaken his steadfast love and his faithfulness toward my master. As for me, the Lord has led me in the way to the house of my master's kinsmen.” Then the young woman ran and told her mother's household about these things.
Rebekah had a brother whose name was Laban. Laban ran out toward the man, to the spring. As soon as he saw the ring and the bracelets on his sister's arms, and heard the words of Rebekah his sister, “Thus the man spoke to me,” he went to the man. And behold, he was standing by the camels at the spring.
He said, “Come in, O blessed of the Lord. Why do you stand outside? For I have prepared the house and a place for the camels.”
So the man came to the house and unharnessed the camels, and gave straw and fodder to the camels, and there was water to wash his feet and the feet of the men who were with him. Then food was set before him to eat. But he said, “I will not eat until I have said what I have to say.” He said, “Speak on.”
Notes on the Scripture
hroughout history, weights and measures have changed constantly. We can infer from the gifts given here, however, that a gold shekel must be roughly one-third of an ounce. So this stranger gives Rebekah about $6000 worth of jewelry, at a time when money was scarce. Then he asks if he can spend the night!
This gets her attention! She immediately runs to tell her mother. We do not know if her father, Bethuel, is present at this point, although we learn later that he is. Laban, however, seems to act with great authority. And Laban, after seeing the gold on his sister, acts with great politeness.
No doubt, the abruptness of the activity is tempered by the mention of Abraham; Laban would know his family tree and would know exactly who Abraham was, even though they have never met. Also, the family of Nahor worships the One God; we have little in the way of theology from this time, but Abraham's family has taken its primitive religious belief from Noah, worshipping a single unseen God, rather than the idols that most of the world worshipped.
When the servant tells Laban he has something to say, Laban must know what is coming. There would be only one reason for his uncle's servant to travel so far and then give a strange girl such lavish gifts.