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Daily Devotion for February 25, 2012
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.
Prayer for the Morning
Oh Lord, most heavenly Father, Almighty and everlasting God, who has safely brought me to the beginning of this day; I give you thanks for my creation, preservation, and all the blessings of my life. Grant that this day I fall into no sin, neither run into any kind of danger; but that all my doings, being governed by your will, may be righteous in your sight. Through Christ our Lord, I pray.
A Prayer for Lent
Father, through our observance of Lent, help us to understand the meaning of Your Son's death and resurrection, and teach us to reflect it in our lives. Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son. who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Prayer for Grace and Strength
Lord God, I pray that you will fill my heart with the blessing of your Holy Spirit. Grant me this day the strength to be temperate in all things, diligent in my duties, and patient under my afflictions. Direct me in all my ways. Give me grace to be just and upright in all my dealings; quiet and peaceable; full of compassion; and ready to do good to all people, according to my abilities and opportunities. For the sake of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ,
Community of Prayer
Heavenly Lord, I know I am not alone saying these prayers or reading your Word this morning, but many people unknown to me, from all stations of life, have joined together in this brief moment of devotion. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be among the community of all who pray in the name of Christ this morning, and remain among us always.
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.
Christ's Call to Us
"I have called you not to the secular journey where you must make everything in your life now as pleasant as possible. I have called you to the spiritual journey, to a process of enlarging your heart to desire Me above everything else."
~ by Larry Crabbe
Genesis 21:1-7 (ESV)
The Story of Abraham  - Isaac
The Lord visited Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did to Sarah as he had promised. And Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son in his old age at the time of which God had spoken to him.
Abraham called the name of his son who was born to him, whom Sarah bore him, Isaac. And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac when he was eight days old, as God had commanded him. Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.
And Sarah said, "God has made laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh over me." And she said, "Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age."
Notes on the Scripture
Finally, after all of the trials they have faced, Sarah has the son God has promised to her and Abraham, even though she was barren in her youth and must now be nearing 50 years of age. Sarah has just a bit of the smart aleck in her, for she laughed when God told her she would have a child. We know she eavesdropped on Abraham's conversation with the three men. Now that she has gotten reason for laughter and joy, she replies, basically, "yes, I have laughter in my life. Everyone is laughing at me."
But Sarah has been a bit storm-tossed in all of this. She was a woman of great beauty and hope. Beginning when she was young, her husband dragged her hundreds of miles through harsh terrain, always facing the possibility of attack, from Ur to northwest, through Syria, then south the central Canaan. When famine hit them there, they had to make another arduous journey to the somewhat hostile land of Egypt; there the Pharaoh took her from Abraham and made her his concubine. Finally, they were able to go back to Canaan, but then they watched the destruction of the cities of the Jordan Valley (especially Sodom and Gomorrah) and again went south, to live in the arid land of the Negev (where Abimelech almost took her, yet again).
Throughout this all, though, she has carried the great sadness of being childless. She has hung for years onto God's promise of a great son, who will be the patriarch of a nation "numbered as grains of sand". Her faith has seen her through her ordeal.
And which of us knows what God may have in store for us, in the future? Great things may come to us, no matter what our age; we cannot fathom God's will, but if we live in faith, we know that we will be rewarded, no matter how hopeless some aspect of our lives may seem.