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. Father, we pray for Croatia, Burundi, Canada, Kazakhstan, Honduras and the church in these countries as well as the lost. Jesus, teach us how to live as you lived. Father, Your will be done, here as it is in heaven Spirit, show us the way today 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 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’" Matthew 25:37-40 NIV We will continue our discussion of the Bible Project video on justice (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A14THPoc4-4) People have a dark side. Consider the ugliness of human behavior in mobs and crowds. Have you ever read Lord of the Flies? William Goldings’ book explores how a group of schoolboys degenerate into murder when their plane crashes on an island and only they survive. Consider online trolls, facebook fights, school yard bullies and high school taunts; there is something fundamentally wrong with people. Now consider your own thoughts... would you want them projected for the world to see? We all participate in injustice, whether actively or passively, we are all rashah: guilty.* This is the surprising message of the Biblical story, we are all the guilty ones. So how did God choose to respond to our sin and injustice? He came, walked among us, showed us another way, and then made that way possible through unthinkable sacrifice: JESUS. Jesus lived a life without sin or injustice but he then died for the rashah and then when Jesus rose from the dead God declared Him righteous. Now His righteousness is available to us! Not because of what we do but because of what He has done! The transformation that Jesus offers us is complete but takes a lifetime. We must re-learn how to see God, ourselves, and others. We have to learn to walk in step with the Holy Spirit and listen to God and His word. We are like people relearning how to do everything and it is hard work. Injustice is the result of human rebellion against God. It’s what happens when my little bit of personal selfishness is projected out along with the rest of the world’s selfishness. The resulting amplification of sin feels too big to tackle. We tell ourselves, “What difference can I make?” But the only person God has given you control of is… you. We choose justice whether or not it will change the world because it brings God glory and joy. We choose justice because it’s what we were made for. We choose justice because that’s the way Jesus lived and because He died so we could live lives of love, reconciliation and righteousness. Ask God to show you what acts of justice are waiting for you today. -nicole *from the Bible Project video on Justice
DAILY SCRIPTURE READING -pastor mike 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/song-of-songs/ for an overview of Song of Songs and https://bibleproject.com/explore/1-corinthians/ for an overview of Paul’s letter to the church in Corinth. These videos will help with the “big picture” and the main themes. Song of Songs 1-4:16 So did you blush at all as you read this poem? Song of Songs, if you watched the Bible Project video through the link above, is poetry. If you had grown up in the Middle East almost three thousand years ago, it might make a little more sense. The flowers and the fruit and the fragrances are from that culture. We might loose a little in translation. But like most poetry it is meant to capture your imagination. Paint a picture, if you will. So read it and enjoy! 1 Corinthians 12:1-26 What is the point of the gifts of the Spirit? (v 7) Paul will sum this sentiment up once more at the end of our text. (vv 25-26) Paul can’t say enough, that there is no room for division in the church. Whether that is over teaching or spiritual gifts or… you fill in the blank. If our goal is the pursuit of God, then we must do this together, offering grace to one another as we do so. Psalm 99:1-9 This psalm begins with the image of Power! Of a God who is truly awesome! Do you ever think of God in such majestic terms?