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Sunday, December 9, 2018

Daily Devotion for January 7, 2018


Christ Helping a Poor Man
Christ Helping a Poor Man.

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.

Our “Sunday Virtual Church” this week takes us to the Church of God at Lee University, in Cleveland.



To Proclaim the Gospel

Almighty God, who called your Church to bear witness that you were in Christ reconciling the world to yourself: help us to proclaim the good news of your love, that all who hear it may be drawn to you; through him who was lifted up on the cross, and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

Amen.

Confession of Sins, with a Prayer for Contrition and Pardon.

Most merciful God, whose eyes are too pure to behold iniquity, and who has promised forgiveness to all those who confess and forsake their sins; I come before you in a humble sense of my own unworthiness, confessing my many transgressions of your righteous laws. [* Here make a short pause, to remember and confess the sins and failings of the past week.]

But, O gracious Father, who desires not the death of a sinner, look upon me, I beseech you, in mercy, and forgive me for all my transgressions. Make me deeply sensible of the great evil of them; and work in me a hearty repentance; that I may obtain forgiveness at your hands, who is ever ready to receive humble and penitent sinners; for the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, my only Saviour and Redeemer.

Amen.

A New Year's Blessing

May God make your year a happy one!
Not by shielding you from all sorrows and pain,
But by strengthening you to bear it, as it comes;
Not by making your path easy,
But by making you sturdy to travel any path;
Not by taking hardships from you,
But by taking fear from your heart;
Not by granting you unbroken sunshine,
But by keeping your face bright, even in the shadows;
Not by making your life always pleasant,
But by showing you when people and their causes need you most,
   and by making you anxious to be there to help.
God’s love, peace, hope and joy to you for the year ahead.

Doxology

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!

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.



Amish teenager
The Amish are renown for their humble lifestyle.

Psalm 71:17-20 (NKJV)

O God, You have taught me from my youth;
And to this day I declare Your wondrous works.
Now also when I am old and grayheaded,
O God, do not forsake me,
Until I declare Your strength to this generation,
Your power to everyone who is to come.

Also Your righteousness, O God, is very high,
You who have done great things;
O God, who is like You?

You, who have shown me great and severe troubles,
Shall revive me again,
And bring me up again from the depths of the earth.


Blue Latin Cross

Luke 12:13-21 (ESV)

The Parable of the Rich Fool

Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” But he said to him, “Man, who made me a judge or arbitrator over you?” And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.”’

But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”


Notes on the Scripture

There is a joke on Wall Street that goes, “What do you call a man who has 900 million dollars?” The Answer: “A frustrated billionaire.”

T

he joke is funny because it is so often true; it is a foible of human nature. We focus upon getting something — often something that we actually need or is perfectly healthy to seek — but we become obsessed by it. We lose sight of the goal and when we reach it, we continue to act as if it is something we need. Very often, the obsession involves an element of sinful pride, because we see ownership of a large excess, or an amount greater than another person, as something that glorifies us among men.

Money is only one example; you could think of a hundred others. For example, there is nothing wrong with wanting to be in good physical shape: having a healthy weight, having strong healthy muscles, and having good cardiovascular fitness. But it is easy for an outsider to see prideful excess in people who become obsessed with exercise or musculature, especially when it causes them to ignore other areas of activity or becomes harmful to their own body. Many body builders and athletes have destroyed their health by using anabolic steroids

Jesus and the rich man, Matthew 19
Jesus and the rich young man

There are people who tan themselves to the point that they get skin cancer. (Some exposure to sun is actually vital for health, because our bodies need sunshine to produce Vitamin D!) There are people who spend hundreds of thousands of dollars per year on their clothes, just to glorify themselves over others. There are people who are so desperate to glorify themselves that they spend 100 hours per week playing video games in order to get more points than someone else, or to make sure that their online character has some item that makes it slightly more powerful than someone else’s character.

At one point, Christ told his disciples to take to the road, carrying nothing more than the clothes on their back: “Do not take along any gold or silver or copper in your belts; take no bag for the journey, or extra tunic, or sandals or a staff; for the worker is worth his keep.” (Matthew 10:9-10)

Few of us will take self-abnegation to such an extreme, unless we are called to monasticism. We work to make enough money to buy food and clothes, to have a place to live, etc. There is no wrong in this. Paul tells us repeatedly to earn our living. (E.g. 1 Thess. 4:10-12; 2 Thess. 3:10-12.) But it is important to stop and think, “How much do I really need in terms of earthly things?” and to compare that to “How rich am I toward God?”



endless knot

Daily Inspiration

“ Scatter The Seeds ”

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Today in Daily Prayer


Memory Verse

1 Thessalonians 4:11-12: Aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, . . . so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.


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Daily Quiz

Top score(s) on the Daily Quiz for Jan 06, 2018 were:
Pam Carpenter (11)
Norman Daniels (11)
Tom Kraft (10)
jimmy teasley (10)
wayne mills (10)


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