Archive for June, 2012

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Mark 5:25-29

Friday, June 29, 2012 – Proper 8/Ordinary 13, Year B

Mark 5:25-29Now there was a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years.  She had endured much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had; and she was no better, but rather grew worse.  She had heard Jesus, and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, for she said, “If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.”  Immediately her hemorrhage stopped; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease.

Today’s scripture reports that this woman was healed of her physical ailment, but bleeding for twelve years would have made her ritually unclean for all that time.  This would have separated her from her community of faith and from her God.  Jesus healed her, but more importantly, Jesus restored her relationship with God and her community.

Prayer: God of restoration, we want to live in full relationship with you, but there are often barriers preventing us from such.  Help remove those barriers, especially those within us, that keep us separated from you.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Mark 5:22-24

Thursday, June 28, 2012 – Proper 8/Ordinary 13, Year B

Mark 5:22-24Then one of the leaders of the synagogue named Jairus came and, when he saw Jesus, fell at his feet and begged him repeatedly, “My little daughter is at the point of death.  Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.”  So he went with him.  And a large crowd followed him and pressed in on him.

What moves me about this passage is the lack of discussion between Jesus and Jairus.   Jairus pleads with Jesus to make his daughter well, and verse 24a simply states, “So Jesus went with him.”  As you consider this passage today, think of what it tells us about our responsibility toward children and their health and welfare.

Prayer: Creator God, keep us mindful of the needs of the children in our lives – both our own children and those belonging to others.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15

Wednesday, June 27, 2012 – Proper 8/Ordinary 13, Year B

Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15God did not make death, and he does not delight in the death of the living.  For he created all things so that they might exist; the generative forces of the world are wholesome, and there is no destructive poison in them, and the dominion of Hades is not on earth.  For righteousness is immortal.

Some Christian traditions recognize the Wisdom of Solomon as part of their holy texts.  I don’t normally use readings from the Apocrypha, but I loved these verses.  Consider today how each of us as a part of God’s creation are “generative forces,” life-giving and life–enhancing presences, for each other. 

Prayer: Creator God, help us in our daily walk with you to be present in the lives of those around us in ways pleasing to you.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Lamentations 3:25

Tuesday, June 26, 2012, Proper 8/Ordinary 13, Year B

Lamentations 3:25The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul that seeks him.

A coworker once exclaimed to me, “It is a blessing to be in an environment where you are surrounded by fine, Christian people.”  She was right.  I am blessed by the fellowship and camaraderie of my fellow workers who are waiting and seeking with me.

Prayer: Loving God, today we thank you for those people of faith who surround us at home, work and play.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Lamentations 3:22-23

Monday, June 25, 2012

The lectionary offers numerous selections this week including: 2 Samuel 1:1, 1:17-27; Psalm 130; 2 Corinthians 8:7-15 and Mark 5:21-43.  Alternate selections include: Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15, 2:23-24; Lamentations 3:23-33 and Psalm 30.

Lamentations 3:22-23The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

One of joys of following the lectionary is finding scriptures that you never knew were the basis of great hymns.  For example, the refrain to the wonderful hymn “Great is Thy Faithfulness:”

Great is thy faithfulness!

Great is thy faithfulness!

Morning by morning new mercies I see;

All I have needed thy hand hath provided;

Great is thy faithfulness,

Lord, unto me!

Prayer: Taken from Lamentations 3:24 – “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Psalm 9:17-19

Friday, June 22, 2012 – Proper 7/Ordinary 12, Year B

Psalm 9:17-19The wicked shall depart to Sheol, all the nations that forget God.  For the needy shall not always be forgotten, nor the hope of the poor perish forever.  Rise up, O LORD!  Do not let mortals prevail; let the nations be judged before you.

God works through us individually, but this scripture reminds us that God works through us collectively as communities of believers.  We can bring hope to the least among us by reminding them through our words and actions that they will never be forgotten.

Prayer: Gracious God, bless our efforts to bring hope and healing to everyone who seeks our help us this and every day.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Mark 4:35-40

Thursday, June 21, 2012 – Proper 7/Ordinary 12, Year B

Mark 4:35-40On that day, when evening had come, Jesus said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.”  And leaving the crowd behind, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was.  Other boats were with him.  And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped.  But Jesus was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke him up and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?”  He woke up rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace!  Be still!”  Then the wind ceased, and there was a dead calm.  He said to them, “Why are you afraid?  Have you still no faith?”

Serving God faithfully can mean venturing into uncharted waters.  While the going can get tough, we are reminded again that God is always with us.

Prayer: Loving God, thank you for the example of Jesus calming the storm to remind us of your steadfast presence in our lives.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Psalm 9:9-10

Wednesday, June 20, 2012 – Proper 7/Ordinary 12, Year B

 Psalm 9:9-10The LORD is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.  And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you.

I like the word “seek” in verse 10, because I consider faith a journey more than a destination.  These verses remind me that when my faith journey is raising more questions than it is answering, God remains steadfast in his faith in me.  In the words of an old choir song I sang, “I believe.  Help thou my unbelief.”

Prayer: Steadfast God, thank you for patiently guiding us, especially during those times when we are not understanding the map.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – 1 Samuel 17:45, 49

Tuesday, June 19, 2012 – Proper 7/Ordinary 12, Year B

1 Samuel 17:45, 49But David said to Goliath, “You come to me with sword and spear and javelin; but I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.”  David put his hand in his bag, took out a stone, slung it, and struck Goliath on his forehead; the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell face down on the ground. 

Consider for a moment a giant in your world…something ominous looming ahead of you like an interview, an exam, a presentation, or maybe a person.  David faced Goliath with a few stones, a slingshot and a deep, abiding faith that God was on his side.  God is on your side, too.

Prayer: Almighty God, help us face the giants in our lives with the same assurance of David.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center –

Monday, June 18, 2012

For this Sunday there are a number of scriptures from which to select including: 1 Samuel 17:(1a, 4-11, 19-23), 32-49; Psalm 9:9-20; 2 Corinthians 6:1-13 and Mark 4:35-41.  Alternate selections include 1 Samuel 17:57 – 18:5, 18:10-16 and Psalm 133 or Job 38:1-11 and Psalm 107:1-3, 23-32.

1 Samuel 17:37, 40David said, “The LORD, who saved me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, will save me from the hand of Goliath.”  So Saul said to David, “Go, and may the LORD be with you!”  Then David took his staff in his hand, and chose five smooth stones from the wadi, and put them in his shepherd’s bag, in the pouch; his sling was in his hand, and he drew near Goliath.

In verses 38-39, David puts on all of Saul’s weighty armor for protection.  Taking the armor off because he was not “used” to it, David then opts to face Goliath wrapped only in his faith that he would be protected by God. 

Prayer: Gracious God, give us the faith of David so that we can face all obstacles with the assurance that you are always by our side.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – Mark 4:30-32

Friday, June 15, 2012 – Proper 6/Ordinary 11, Year B

Mark 4:30-32Jesus also said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it?  It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up to become the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”

From where does our hope come?  When our faith is only that of a mustard seed, God can still do extraordinary things through us.

Prayer: Loving God, our faith in you waxes and wanes, but you are steadfast in your love for us.  Thank you for using us all those times we are less than 100%.  AMEN.

Daily Devotion from the Church Health Center – 2 Corinthians 5:6-8

Thursday, June 14, 2012 – Proper 6/Ordinary 11, Year B

2 Corinthians 5:6-8So we are always confident; even though we know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord – for we walk by faith, not by sight.  Yes, we do have confidence, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.

Usually when we speak of having confidence, we are referring to something that we have seen.  “I have performed the experiments, and the data has provided me with confidence in the conclusion.”  “I interviewed the job candidate, and I am confident of his/her qualifications for the job.”   This passage reminds us that God asks us to live confidently walking by faith, not by sight.

Prayer: God of mystery, strengthen our faith so that our life-walk can be made with confidence. AMEN.

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June 2012

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