Archive for June, 2014

Proper 9/Ordinary 14, 2014 – Genesis 24:42-44

Monday, June 31, 2014

I can’t believe the year is half over! The scriptures for this upcoming Sunday are full of familiar passages. Those scriptures include: Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67 and Psalm 45:10-17 or Song of Solomon 2:8-13, Zechariah 9:9-12 and Psalm 145:8-14, Romans 7:15-25a and Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30.

Genesis 24:42-44“I came today to the spring, and said, ‘O LORD, the God of my master Abraham, if now you will only make successful the way I am going! I am standing here by the spring of water; let the young woman who comes out to draw, to whom I shall say, “Please give me a little water from your jar to drink,” and who will say to me, “Drink, and I will draw for your camels also” –let her be the woman whom the LORD has appointed for my master’s son.’

Abraham’s servant is recounting to Laban, Rebekah’s brother, how he came to believe that she was chosen by God to be Isaac’s wife. This is a powerful testimony to the power of prayer to God and of active listening for God’s will.

Almighty God, hear our prayers and help us to hear your answers to those prayers. Amen.

Proper 8/Ordinary 13, 2014 – Romans 6:16

Friday, June 27, 2014

Romans 6:16Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?

People in recovery are often advised to avoid the people and friends with whom they drank or did drugs. But all of us have had friends who influenced us in negative ways. Our passage this morning reminds us of the importance of choosing your friends wisely.

Faithful God, help us to surround ourselves with friends who help us to serve you more fully. Amen.

Proper 8/Ordinary 13, 2014 – Matthew 10:40

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Matthew 10:40“Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me.”

One way we can express our faith is through our interactions with others. We can serve God through our service to others.

Loving God, help us to see your face in each person we meet today. Amen.

Proper 8/Ordinary 13, 2014 – Genesis 22:13-14

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Genesis 22:13-14And Abraham looked up and saw a ram, caught in a thicket by its horns. Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son. So Abraham called that place “The LORD will provide”; as it is said to this day, “On the mount of the LORD it shall be provided.”

As I understand the Islamic tradition of this story, Abraham had the vision from God about offering his son as a sacrifice. When he told his son about the vision, his son accepted the vision as God’s will. As such, both father and son proved their faith in God.

Gracious God, may our faith in you shine in such a way that we deepen the faith of those around us. Amen.

Proper 8/Ordinary 13, 2014 – Genesis 22:9-10

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Genesis 22:9-10When they came to the place that God had shown him, Abraham built an altar there and laid the wood in order. He bound his son Isaac, and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then Abraham reached out his hand and took the knife to kill his son.

If you are at all like me, you cannot imagine doing what Abraham is prepared to do. But the passage does cause us to reflect on what complete trust in God means in our own lives.

Loving God, help us to have faith in you that leads us to act boldly in your name. Amen.

Proper 8/Ordinary 13, 2014 – Genesis 22:2-3

Monday, June 23, 2014

Our passages for this week will be quite familiar to many of my readers. The selections include: Genesis 22:1-14 and Psalm 13, Jeremiah 28:5-9 and Psalm 89:1-4, 15-18, Romans 6:12-23, and Matthew 10:40-42.

Genesis 22:2-3God said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains that I shall show you.” So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey…and set out and went to the place in the distance that God had shown him.

I have a grandson turning 10 years old today, so the 22nd chapter of Genesis is particularly poignant for me this week. As is most often the case with scripture, the complex thoughts that went through Abraham’s mind before he set out to Moriah are left to our imagination.

Almighty God, grant each of us a portion of the faith that Abraham had. Amen.

Proper 7/Ordinary 12, 2014 – Matthew 10:29-31

Friday, June 20, 2014

Matthew 10:29-31Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. And even the hairs of your head are all counted. So do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows.

I couldn’t help but smile at the fact that I don’t have near as many hairs on my head as I once did. But I rejoice with confidence that God knows me better than I know myself.

Loving God, help us to see ourselves as you see us. Help us to remember that you love us as we are. Amen.

Proper 7/Ordinary 12, 2014 – Matthew 10:26-27

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Matthew 10:26-27“So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known.
10:27 What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim from the housetops.

This week’s passages share a theme of people living out their faith amidst persecution they suffer for that faith. Here, Jesus is encouraging the disciples to live their faith boldly despite the opposition to which they might be subjected.

Gracious, loving God, give us the confidence to live into our faith as fully as we are able. Amen.

Proper 7/Ordinary 12, 2014 – Psalm 69:13-14

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Psalm 69:13-14But as for me, my prayer is to you, O LORD. At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love, answer me. With your faithful help rescue me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters.

I must admit that God’s time table is usually frustrating to me. The Psalmist in today’s passage reminds us that our prayers to God should always be “thy will in thy time” prayers.

Almighty God, give us patient and trusting hearts that are confident in your unending love for us. Amen.

Proper 7/Ordinary 12, 2014 – Genesis 21:17-18

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Genesis 21:17-18And God heard the voice of the boy; and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven, and said to her, “What troubles you, Hagar? Do not be afraid; for God has heard the voice of the boy where he is. Come, lift up the boy and hold him fast with your hand, for I will make a great nation of him.”

Hagar’s son was named Ishmael, and the Islamic faith springs from Abraham through Ishmael to his descendent Muhammad. We are children Abraham, Christians and Muslims alike.

Creator God, help us to view one another as relatives, even if distant ones. Amen.

Proper 7/Ordinary 12, 2014 – Genesis 21:8

Monday, June 16, 2104

For this coming Sunday, we are offered a number of passages to consider including: Genesis 21:8-21 and Psalm 86:1-10, 16-17, Romans 6:1b-11, Matthew 10:24-39. The alternative to the Genesis and Psalm selection is Jeremiah 20:7-13 and Psalm 69:7-10, (11-15), 16-18.

Genesis 21:8The child grew, and was weaned; and Abraham made a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned.

There are special moments in all of our lives worth taking time to celebrate – our birthdays, work anniversaries, entering fatherhood. Yesterday was Father’s Day, and I hope your Father’s Day was as special as mine was.

Loving God, thank you for those special moments in our lives when we are honored for simply being who we are. Help us to honor those in our lives who have been pivotal to us. Amen.

Trinity Sunday 2014 – 2 Corinthians 13:11

Friday, June 13, 2014

2 Corinthians 13:11Finally, brothers and sisters, farewell. Put things in order, listen to my appeal, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.

There is so much divisiveness in the world today. Disagreements can lead to such polarization that it seems we fail to acknowledge the inherent value in one another. Paul appeals to us as people of faith to live in peaceful community together.

Creator God, help to make us more appreciative of the gifts of one another. Amen.

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June 2014

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