Weekly Devotion and Lectionary

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Two-Way Street 

I John 3:21-22: Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him.

Do you have that one friend in your life who will be by your side through thick and thin? Does he show up when you need to get a task completed quickly and correctly? Does she always seem to have the time to sit and listen to you when everyone else seems to have something else to which they need to attend? No matter the circumstance, that one person says the right thing, gives the best-timed gift, or just spends time listening when you need to speak your mind while offering that sound advice after listening to your outpouring of emotions.

For me, that was my mother. Granted, there were a few reasons why I would always turn to her. #1 - She was my flesh and blood - she would not turn her son away. Would she? #2- No matter what she was doing - preparing dinner for the evening, trying to sleep when her son calls her in the late evening, asking for her response to “hypothetical” situations, or even calling once or twice while she was playing the organ during church (Whoops - Sorry Pastor!), she would always make time to talk with me and listen to me. #3 - But most importantly, she listened to me. She did not pass judgement on me. She would give me small doses of constructive criticism after she heard what was on my heart. But she is no longer here for me.Image result for two way street sign

I now rely on a different person to listen to me. He is around whenever I need to talk to Him. He sends people into my life who will help me resolve a difficult situation or put a smile on my face when I am having a bad day. He is Jesus Christ. What a wonderful feeling to know that even when you are in your bleakest hour, Christ is there for you. If you “need” Him, He will help you. (Please note that many people confuse the idea of a need with that of something that they want. Do not get frustrated when God does not respond to your “wants.”). When you are lying in bed awake and you have so many different thoughts running through your head, you are not alone. Simply ask God to calm your mind. If you are struggling financially (again be careful with want vs. need), ask God to help with financial support and watch what happens.

Is there a catch to these gracious blessings? Nope! As we live our lives in Christ, we receive the daily blessings of a house over our heads, our daily bread (check out Luther’s Small Catechism for that list), and even a Lutheran school where our children can learn about Jesus Christ and the blessings I am talking about. The biggest blessing is yet to come. My mother is enjoying this blessing right now - eternal life with Jesus in heaven. We simply need to have faith in Jesus Christ and lead a Christ-like life. We will never attain the righteousness that Jesus Christ had when He lived on earth by ourselves. We have received it through Holy Baptism. The richest reward for being baptized is again, eternal life. We need to continue to talk with Him when we feel alone (pray continually - I Thes. 5:17), study God’s Word daily, and lead a life which is permeated by God’s essence each and every day. It is my hope that you will make a difference in God’s ministry each and every day. As Christians, we praise and honor God for all the rich blessings He has bestowed upon us due to the traveling He did 2,000 years ago.

Written by Mr. David Kaiser

Online sources for personal or family devotions: 

 http://www.whatdoesthismean.org/devotions.html 

Go to the website above and click on the devotions tab to find an entire liturgy to use at home. These devotions are meant to be used daily for a week and then new devotions are posted. 

I would also like to share a different Bible series that you may want to use at home to start dinner time devotions. I have discovered a new avenue to use for YOUNG children’s ministry. It is called d365.org. You are asked to subscribe to the site which will then send a small family devotion for you to use with your children every single day of the year.

A brand new way to access the Bible as you spend time with your family. Mr. Charles McGathy has posted a way for parents to access a new yearly Bible reading app on Facebook. The app is called Youversion. It will look like a small icon of a Bible. One way is to ask each pastor and myself to write a weekly devotion that you may read together as a family. That is enclosed on the end of the newsletter. Another way is to provide a weekly Bible reading program and a family prayer that you may use at dinner devotions or whenever you hold Jesus Time at home. Please feel free to use this.


Lectionary Readings for This Week:

Mon. – Amos 2:6-16; Matt. 21:1-11
Tues. – Amos 3:1-11; Matt. 21:12-22
Weds. – Amos 3:12-4:5; Matt. 21:23-32
Thurs. – Amos 4:6-13; Matt. 21:33-46
Fri. – Amos 5:1-17; Matt 22:1-14
Sat. – Amos 5:18-27; Matt. 22:15-22
Sun. – Amos 6:1-14; II Thess. 1:5-12
Mon. – Amos 7:1-9; Matt. 22:23-33
 
 

Family Prayer for the Week:

God of hope, who brought love into this world, be the love that dwells between us. God of hope, who brought peace into this world, be the peace that dwells between us. God of hope, who brought joy into this world, be the joy that dwells between us. God of hope, the rock we stand upon, be the center, the focus of our lives always, and particularly this Advent time.

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