Daily Devotion for October 24, 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.
Your eye is on the sparrow,
And Your hand, it comforts me.
From the ends of the Earth to the depth of my heart
Let Your mercy and strength be seen.
You call me to Your purpose
As angels understand;
For Your glory, may You draw all men
As Your love and grace demand.
And I will run to You,
To Your words of truth;
Not by might, not by power,
But by the spirit of God.
Yes I will run the race
'Till I see Your face;
Oh let me live in the glory of Your grace.
Words and Music by Darlene Zschech (1996)
Prayer for Morning
Oh Lord, when it is still dark outside and I am half asleep,
My prayers they slip and slide; I know my talk is cheap.
For I am ever wandering; but I can hear you beckoning.
So every morning you can find me in this place.
And I will be waiting; how I long to see your face.
And I want to walk the deeper walk with you.
Hymn to Harsh Matter
Blessed be you, harsh matter, barren soil, stubborn rock: you who yield only to violence, you who force us to work if we would eat.
Blessed be you, perilous matter, violent sea, untameable passion: you who unless we fetter you will devour us.
Blessed be you, mighty matter, irresistible march of evolution, reality ever new-born; you who, by constantly shattering our mental categories, force us to go ever further and further in our pursuit of the truth.
Blessed be you, universal matter, unmeasurable time, boundless ether, triple abyss of stars and atoms and generations: you who by overflowing and dissolving our narrow standards of measurement reveal to us the dimensions of God.
[The “dimensions of God” — stars and atoms.]
Now to him who by his power within us is able to do far more than we ever dare to ask or imagine — to him be glory in the Church through Jesus Christ for ever and ever,
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.
My Life is But a Weaving
My life is but a weaving,
Between the Lord and me.
I cannot choose the colors,
He worketh steadily.
Oft times He weaveth sorrow,
And I in foolish pride,
Forget he sees the upper,
And I, the underside.
The dark threads are as needful,
In the weaver's skillful hand,
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern He has planned.
Not 'til the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly.
Shall God unroll the canvas
And explain the reasons why.
~ B. M. Franklin
Ruth 2:1-12 (ESV)
The Story of Ruth (part 4)
[If you have not been following along, you might want to read Ruth 1 before reading today's selection.]
aomi had a relative on her husband’s side, a man of standing, whose name was Boaz. Ruth (who was from Moab) said to Naomi, “Let me go to the fields and pick up the leftover grain behind anyone in whose eyes I find favor.”
Naomi said to her, “Go ahead, my daughter.” So she went out and began to glean in the fields behind the harvesters. As it turned out, she found herself working in a field belonging to Boaz, who was from the clan of Naomi’s dead husband.
Just then Boaz arrived from Bethlehem and greeted the harvesters, “The Lord be with you!” “The Lord bless you!” they called back. Boaz asked the foreman of his harvesters, “Whose young woman is that?”
The foreman replied, “She is the Moabitess who came back from Moab with Naomi. She said, ‘Please let me glean and gather among the sheaves behind the harvesters.’ She went into the field and has worked steadily from morning till now, except for a short rest in the shelter.”
So Boaz said to Ruth, “My daughter, listen to me. Don’t go and glean in another field and don’t go away from here. Stay here with my servant girls. Watch the field where the men are harvesting, and follow along after the girls. I have told the men not to touch you. And whenever you are thirsty, go and get a drink from the water jars the men have filled.”
At this, she bowed down with her face to the ground. She exclaimed, “Why have I found such favor in your eyes that you notice me, a foreigner?”
Boaz replied, “I’ve been told all about what you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, how you left your father and mother and your homeland and came to live with a people you did not know before. May the Lord repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge.”
Notes on the Scripture
In Hebrew custom, widows were given the right of gleaning the fields. When grain is harvested, some of it falls on the ground and is wasted; going behind the harvesters and picking up this fallen grain is called “gleaning”. It is hard work and yields only a little grain, but it was enough to keep a good worker and one or two other people alive for a day.
Boaz shows special consideration for Ruth. He ensures that she will be protected from harassment by the male workers and lets her drink from his water jars. As a relative of Naomi’s husband, he has a special duty towards her; but even more important, he has heard of Ruth’s dedication to her mother-in-law and is moved by it.