A farmer was driving along the road with a load of fertilizer. A little boy, playing in front of his house, saw him and called, “What have you got in your truck?” “Fertilizer,” the farmer replied. “What are you going to do with it,” asked the little boy? “Put it on strawberries,” answered the farmer. “You ought to visit with us,” the little boy advised. “We put sugar and cream on ours.”
LET'S PRAY TOGETHER Lord, let our souls rise up to meet you as the day rises to meet the sun. Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. Today, Lord we specifically lift up the people of Bahrain, Iran, Chad, Morocco, Somalia Lord, fill Your followers in these countries with love and Strength and reveal Yourself to those who have never met You. Encourage the caregivers, teachers, and healthcare workers around the world. Knit Your people together in kindness and courage. May the peace of the Lord Christ go with us: wherever He may send us; may You guide us through the wilderness: protect us through the storm; may You bring us home rejoicing: at the wonders You have shown us; may You bring us home rejoicing once again into our doors. Amen
MEDITATION “…(God) has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. (2 Corinthians 5:19-20 NIV) Here are some quotes to help us see reconciliation in new ways… -nicole
“To confess, then, is to praise and glorify God; it is an exercise in self-knowledge and true humility in the atmosphere of grace and reconciliation.” St. Augustine "Christ has no body now, but yours. No hands, no feet on earth, but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ looks compassion into the world. Yours are the feet with which Christ walks to do good. Yours are the hands with which Christ blesses the world."-St Theresa of Avila “I knew that to really minister to Rwanda's needs meant working toward reconciliation in the prisons, in the churches, and in the cities and villages throughout the country. It meant feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, caring for the young, but it also meant healing the wounded and forgiving the unforgivable. I knew I had to be committed to preaching a transforming message to the people of Rwanda. Jesus did not die for people to be religious. He died so that we might believe in Him and be transformed. ― John Rucyahana, The Bishop of Rwanda “I am all for churches being a part of the nonviolent marches and protests that have happened in the wake of violent killings, but these protests happen only after a tragic event has taken place. I want the church to be what prevents these acts from ever happening. I want the church to be the community that is so dedicated to loving our neighbors, to caring for the poor and neglected, and to living out true reconciliation that these killings do not even take place.” ― John M. Perkins “Faith is a divine evidence and conviction, not only that ‘God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself,’ but also that Christ ‘loved me, and gave himself for me.’”- John Wesley “Nelson Mandela taught the world a lesson in grace when, after emerging from prison after twenty-seven years and being elected president of South Africa, he asked his jailer to join him on the inauguration platform. He then appointed Archbishop Desmund Tutu to head an official government panel with a daunting name, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Mandela sought to defuse the natural pattern of revenge that he had seen in so many countries where one oppressed race or tribe took control from another.”
-Philip Yancey “(Reconciliation and) unity is what God wants, it’s what Jesus prayed for, and we can’t be paralyzed by the magnitude of it. How are we going to fix all of these hundreds of years of division? I don’t know. I just know this is my start.” –Francis Chan
DAILY SCRIPTURE READING Our daily scripture reading comes from the following link… http://listenersbible.com/devotionals/biy/ If you have any insights into our daily readings, please feel free to share them with me. I would encourage you to visit https://bibleproject.com/explore/1-2-chronicles/ for an overview of Chronicles and https://bibleproject.com/explore/romans/ for an overview of the book of Romans. These videos will help with the “big picture” and the main themes. 1 Chronicles 1:1-2:17 Wow! That’s a lot of names. A lot! And yet, how many are we familiar with? A couple maybe, but not very many. 1:34 is probably the most important. Why? Chapter 2 will pick up this lineage. How many sons did Israel or Jacob have? (Israel was the name given to Jacob by God, after Jacob wrestled with a “man” all night. Genesis 32:28) Did you know these twelve sons, will become the twelve nations that come up out of Egypt? The twelve tribes of Israel. As we read on in chapter 2, we will begin to recognize more names. If only because we find them in Matthew 1. (Because you haven’t read enough names, check out Matthew 1) 1 Chronicles 2:18-4:8 And more names… chapter 3 will begin with the sons of David. One thing that might jump out at you is that Michal is not mentioned, Saul’s daughter. Do you know why? (2 Samuel 6:16-23) These lists are much more comprehensive then we find elsewhere in the bible. Interesting? Maybe… Romans 9:22-10:4 I told you we would come back to this idea of “election.” What is Paul’s point about election or being “chosen?” Look to 9:30-31. Righteousness, which is tied to the idea of being chosen, which is tied to the idea of being saved, comes through faith and faith alone. Not the Law! 10:4 probably sums it up best, and most concise. Romans 10:5-11:10 Paul is wrestling with those who are Jews, over the inclusion of the Gentiles. Part of this is the realization that not all Jews will be saved. Which is a huge challenge to the Jews, who had thought they were “God’s Chosen People!” They were "safe." The issue is that salvation comes not through the Law, but through Grace! Re-read 10:9-10. These are well-known verses. Paul is using them as an argument in contrast to being saved by the Law, which is what the Jews believed. Does that change how you read these verses? Psalm 89:14-18 Psalm 89 continues to praise God. I don’t know about you, but I find it comforting to read. How does it come across to you? Proverbs 18:7-16 Which of today's proverbs jumps out at you, and why?