Thoughts & Prayers for the Week of August 11 – 15

Thought & Prayer for Monday, August 11, 2008

The lectionary selections for this week include: Genesis 45:1-15; Psalm 133; Romans 11:1-2a, 29-32 and Matthew 15:(10-20), 21-28. Alternate lectionary readings include Isaiah 56:1, 6-8 and Psalm 67.

Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers to a group headed toward Egypt. Two years into a famine, his brothers came to Egypt and are surprised to see that not only is Joseph alive, but he has flourished. We pick up the scripture where his brothers have just learned that the man they are standing before is their brother.

From Genesis 45:6b-8 – “…God sent me before you to preserve life. For the famine has been in the land these two years; and there are five more years in which there will be neither plowing nor harvest. God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant on earth, and to keep alive for you many survivors. So it was not you who sent me here, but God; he has made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house and ruler over all the land of Egypt;

Joseph was not angry at his brothers because he saw God’s hand as directing all the events leading up the moment we just read. Think for a moment about how you sense God actively present in your life.

Prayer:

Loving God, we thank you for your presence in our lives. Direct us so we might be the people you would have us be. AMEN.

Thought & Prayer for Tuesday, August 12, 2008

From Psalm 133:1, 3 – How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity! It is like the dew of Hermon, which falls on the mountains of Zion. For there the LORD ordained his blessing, life forevermore.

We often talk about our mission and our virtues, and how they inform and direct our daily work here. We do this so we sing as best we can with one unified voice.

Prayer:

Gracious God, watch over your Church Health Center family as we seek to do your will among your people. AMEN.

Thought & Prayer for Wednesday, August 13, 2008

From Isaiah 56:1 – Thus says the LORD: Maintain justice, and do what is right, for soon my salvation will come, and my deliverance be revealed.

Maintain justice and do what is right. A simple phrase but a lifetime practice.

Prayer:

From Psalm 67:1-2 – May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine upon us, that your way may be known upon earth, your saving power among all nations. AMEN.
Thought & Prayer for Thursday, August 14, 2008

From Matthew 15:10-11 – Then [Jesus] called the crowd to him and said to them, “Listen and understand: it is not what goes in the mouth that defiles a person, but it is what comes out of the mouth that defiles.”

Have you ever said something to a friend or loved one you wished you hadn’t said? Have you used a tone that conveyed something you didn’t intend? That is the problem with spoken words…they can’t be taken back.

Prayer:

Understanding God, our voices can be powerful weapons. Help us use them for peace. AMEN.

Thought & Prayer for Friday, August 15, 2008

From Romans 11:16-17. 29 – If the part of the dough offered as first fruits is holy, then the whole batch is holy; and if the root is holy, then the branches also are holy…for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

My life-journey with God has generally been one where I am walking toward or with God, but there have been times when I have walked away from God. It gives me peace to know that God remains steadfast even when I am not.

Prayer:

Faithful God, thank you for being ever present in our lives. Help us be as faithful to you as you are to us. AMEN.

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