Silence and Centering _ Sept. 27
“Be still, and know that I am God; – Psalm 46:10
Compassionate and loving God, we look around us and see the pain of those who are struggling with the devastation of their homes and lives. The evidence is ever-present on the news, on the internet, and in the social media. It’s hard to avoid the tears that so many people around us are shedding. Forgive us, Lord, for shutting our eyes and wishing that it would all go away.
For many, the grief and sorrow will remain for months and maybe years. Forgive us for only thinking of ourselves and failing to consider the lives of others. Open our hearts to continue to respond in ways that proclaim Your love and grace.
Help us to be Your hands and feet, reaching out and caring for those who have lost so much. Continue to remind us each day that even in the midst of the circumstances of life, You are always walking beside us to offer us the strength and courage to carry on. In Christ’s Name, we pray. Amen.
PAUSE FOR 2 MINUTES OF SILENCE
Reading & Devotional:
“It was by faith that Moses, when he grew up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. He chose to share the oppression of God’s people instead of enjoying the fleeting pleasures of sin. He thought it was better to suffer for the sake of Christ than to own the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to his great reward.” (Hebrews 11:24-26)
Many people do not accept God’s offer of salvation for fear of having to ‘give-up’ something. It is true. Becoming a follower of Christ comes with its price. Jesus said:
“If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?” (Matthew 16:24-26)
Consider carefully what our Lord said. If we try to hold on to our life, we will eventually lose it. But if we will give up our life for Him, our life will be saved. This seems like a strange twist of words and therefore we need to study them in order to understand what they mean.
The person who chooses to invest his life in the kingdoms of this world, will eventually lose his life when he one day stands before God.
But the person who chooses to invest his life in the kingdom of God, will not only have eternal life in the end, but will experience many of God’s blessings today.
Consider once again what scripture says about Moses. “He thought it was better to suffer for the sake of Christ than to own the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to his great reward.”Though Moses could have easily enjoyed all the pleasures of Egypt, he chose rather instead to share in the oppression of God’s people. Moses understood that “The world and its pleasures will one day pass away, but the man who does the will of God will live forever.” (see 1 John 2:17)
Perhaps you are currently going through a difficult season in your life and are tempted to wonder whether or not it is worth it to continue to follow Jesus. Perhaps you thought that once you became a Christian, everything would be better. Yet perhaps your life isn’t better. Perhaps in some ways, it seems worse. In closing, consider this conversation between Jesus and His disciples.
Matthew 19:27 Then Peter said to him, “We’ve given up everything to follow you. What will we get?” 28 Jesus replied, “I assure you that when the world is made new and the Son of Man sits upon his glorious throne, you who have been my followers will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or property, for my sake, will receive a hundred times as much in return and will inherit eternal life. 30 But many who are the greatest now will be least important then, and those who seem least important now will be the greatest then.
Devotional By: Terry Covey
PAUSE FOR 2 MINUTES OF SILENCE
Here is a simple easy to remember method for praying for those around you, even if you don’t know their specific needs. The five requests are based on the word “B-L-E-S-S”.
B – Body – For health, safety, and physical needs.
L – Labors – For the success and prospering of their work and/or studies (Jeremiah 29:7).
E – Emotions – For peace and joy to replace fear and anxiety (Matthew 10:13).
S – Social life – For family’s to function well together in their community.
S – Salvation – For each to understand salvation in Jesus Christ, and come to know Him personally and grow in their spiritual lives.
The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.