+ Behold, our savior will come; you need no longer fear
Reading #1 – Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13;
Reading #2 – Ezekiel 36:24-28;
So many people in today’s world long to change things about themselves.
Some want to change their appearance, others the amount of money in
their bank accounts, and still others their relationships. Millions of dollars
are spent every year by people who long to find the secret to making the
changes they want. But, while it is never a bad thing to work to become
healthier, more deeply connected with others, and more financially
responsible, we usually need a power beyond us for real transformation to
happen. This is why spiritual experiences in which we encounter God in
deep and profound ways can have such a strong impact on the course of
After centuries of warnings by prophet after prophet, God’s people had
finally had to face the consequences of their injustice, corruption, and
destructiveness. They had been conquered and the leaders had been
carried off into exile. The warnings had not been enough to change the
people and bring them into alignment with God’s ways. But, in today’s
reading Ezekiel promises the exiles that a time will come when God’s
people will experience true transformation. They won’t do it themselves – it
will be the work of God’s Spirit. They will be made clean, they will receive
new hearts, and God’s Spirit will live within them. Of course, this prophecy
was fulfilled in Jesus, and now this transformation is available to all.
Where do you long for transformation in your life? How can you receive
God’s promise and allow God’s Spirit to transform you a little more today?
For us to receive God’s transformation, we need to be willing to receive the
presence and power of God’s Spirit. That’s why our worship needs to
include moments of invocation when we invite the Spirit to work in us.
Today, carry a prayer of invocation on your lips, and allow God’s Spirit to
do God’s transforming work in your heart.
Come, Holy Spirit, create a new heart within me and lead me in God’s
PRAY: As I listen for your voice, O God, so I become more alert to the signs of your coming.:
Faithful God Hear our Prayer.
For all who suffer, that they may find comfort through their faith, we pray.
For all those who minister to the sick, that they be signs of God’s love we pray.
For doctors, nurses and caregivers, that their actions be done with love we pray.
For Ourselves, that we always believe that God holds us gently we pray.
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.
Look with favor, O God.
On all our needs
And hear our pleas when we cry out to you.
Grant to us, the faith of the centurion,
That we might give you glory
For the mercy and compassion
That lifts us up with your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ,
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
One God, for ever and ever Amen!