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    Daily Devotionals

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    SatSaturdayMayMay27th2017 Saturday, May 27
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Scripture:  John 20:24-31

    In that locked upper room, Jesus appeared to the disciples and did not stay long.  But he left a parting gift: the blessing of peace and the promise of the Holy Spirit.  And he didn’t just give it to them, but breathed the Spirit into them.  In the Gospel of John, this is the day of Pentecost.  But the Spirit comes not with wind and flame, but with Jesus’ own breath!  The life-force of one raised from the dead who tells them to go out and be peace and forgiveness and love for the world.  Just as God sent Jesus, so Jesus sends them—and us—into the world that God loves so lavishly and abundantly.

    Prayer:

      Loving God, today we celebrate the presence and power of the One who let go of earthly existence and ascended into the heavens.   Just like those first disciples, we are assured of your presence with us.  We know that by mercy, forgiveness and love we are connected to you. 

    Your grace invites and transforms us as we are called to be in relationship with you.  We are invited into your heart as abundant life calls us to live in love.  You have called us to be your people of hope as we live the promise of resurrection, here and now.  Let us now build heaven on earth.  Amen.

    Listen:  

    FriFridayMayMay26th2017 Friday, May 26
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 1 comments Add comment

    Scripture:  John 20:24-31

    Thomas stands in a long line of doubters stretching back to the beginnings of our faith.  Abraham was skeptical that God could deliver on the promise of a son, while Sarah, his wife, laughed in God’s face. Moses doubted he could accomplish what God called him to do.  Gideon demanded proof.  Elijah ran away.  Jeremiah and even Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane before his arrest and crucifixion struggled with doubt.  Doubt and faith are intimately intertwined.  Doubt is useful when it pushes us beyond the superficial to the substantive, when it pushes us to ask hard questions and look at life, and ourselves, with clear and open eyes.  Doubt pushes us to change and grow.

    Prayer:

      Loving God, today we celebrate the presence and power of the One who let go of earthly existence and ascended into the heavens.   Just like those first disciples, we are assured of your presence with us.  We know that by mercy, forgiveness and love we are connected to you. 

    Your grace invites and transforms us as we are called to be in relationship with you.  We are invited into your heart as abundant life calls us to live in love.  You have called us to be your people of hope as we live the promise of resurrection, here and now.  Let us now build heaven on earth.  Amen.

    Listen:  

    ThuThursdayMayMay25th2017 Thursday, May 25
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Scripture:  John 20:24-31

    After Jesus appeared to the disciples and made sure they saw him; we come to Thomas.  Suffering from a deep grief, he hastily said, “Unless I see the marks of the nails, and put my hands in the scars on his side, I will not believe.”  I don’t think you can’t blame the guy; we would have wanted the same thing.  I don’t think that Thomas wasn’t any less faithful than the other disciples; more that he just wanted to be included in their experiences of the risen Christ.  And so Thomas touches those wounds of Jesus.  And in the next breath Thomas exclaims, “My Lord and my God.”  There is something about woundedness.  Something about hurt that can tie us together in healing.  It is a powerful God that we follow who suffers and rejoices with us.


    Prayer:

      Loving God, today we celebrate the presence and power of the One who let go of earthly existence and ascended into the heavens.   Just like those first disciples, we are assured of your presence with us.  We know that by mercy, forgiveness and love we are connected to you. 

    Your grace invites and transforms us as we are called to be in relationship with you.  We are invited into your heart as abundant life calls us to live in love.  You have called us to be your people of hope as we live the promise of resurrection, here and now.  Let us now build heaven on earth.  Amen.

    Listen:  

    WedWednesdayMayMay24th2017 Wednesday, May 24
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Scripture:  John 20:24-31

    Jesus appeared to the disciples on Easter evening, but Thomas wasn’t there.  John writes that they were afraid–and who wouldn’t be:  the teacher they had been following for years had just been murdered.  And they certainly couldn’t and didn’t do much to stop it.  And now there were strange reports of an empty tomb, which might not have been received as good news at all.  What if Jesus was angry with them for abandoning him?   And in Peter’s case for even denying him several times, as he warmed himself by the fire in the courtyard, while his friend was questioned and sentenced to death.  It’s frightening enough to think about seeing someone who was dead suddenly alive, but what if he has every reason to say, “Where were you when I needed you?  What kind of faithful disciples are you, anyway?  Why did you run out on me?”  But instead, Jesus offers a word of peace.  Peace be with you this day.  

    Prayer:
      Loving God, today we celebrate the presence and power of the One who let go of earthly existence and ascended into the heavens.   Just like those first disciples, we are assured of your presence with us.  We know that by mercy, forgiveness and love we are connected to you. 

    Your grace invites and transforms us as we are called to be in relationship with you.  We are invited into your heart as abundant life calls us to live in love.  You have called us to be your people of hope as we live the promise of resurrection, here and now.  Let us now build heaven on earth.  Amen.

    Listen:  

    TueTuesdayMayMay23rd2017 Tuesday, May 23
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Scripture:  John 20:24-31

    “Jesus replied, ‘Do you believe because you see me? Happy are those who don’t see and yet believe.’” You see, taking Jesus’ famous rebuke of Thomas within its context muddies the waters a bit.  In fact, Jesus actually empowers people to see him—to have faith after seeing–—he does it over and over again in John’s gospel.  We read how Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene and she figured he was the gardener.  Jesus could have moseyed on by Mary, but he didn’t.  The risen Christ comforted her, called her by name; and in this process she recognized him.  For Mary, it is only after Christ made sure he was seen that her faith was sure.  How has Christ made himself seen in your life?


    Prayer:

      Loving God, today we celebrate the presence and power of the One who let go of earthly existence and ascended into the heavens.   Just like those first disciples, we are assured of your presence with us.  We know that by mercy, forgiveness and love we are connected to you. 

    Your grace invites and transforms us as we are called to be in relationship with you.  We are invited into your heart as abundant life calls us to live in love.  You have called us to be your people of hope as we live the promise of resurrection, here and now.  Let us now build heaven on earth.  Amen.

    Listen:  

    MonMondayMayMay22nd2017 Monday, May 22
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Scripture:  John 20:24-31

    “Thomas, the one called Didymus, one of the Twelve, wasn’t with the disciples when Jesus came.”  Thomas is the one called “the twin.”  That is what “Didymus” means in Greek (the original language of the New Testament).  It is one of the only personal things that we know about Thomas.  I wonder, as I read this text, why this small clue to Thomas’ identity was named by John.  As a gospel writer, the fourth evangelist always seems to focus his attention on the big picture and leave out many important details.  Perhaps it is because twins have such a strong bond that it is essential to their identity.  Perhaps, it is because Thomas does have a mirror image – and it is us.  We are his twins.  All of those that read and heard the gospel of John in some ways will connect to Thomas’ need to see Jesus risen.  It’s a high compliment that John pays his readers.  How will you be a twin of Thomas today?

    Prayer:
      Loving God, today we celebrate the presence and power of the One who let go of earthly existence and ascended into the heavens.   Just like those first disciples, we are assured of your presence with us.  We know that by mercy, forgiveness and love we are connected to you. 

    Your grace invites and transforms us as we are called to be in relationship with you.  We are invited into your heart as abundant life calls us to live in love.  You have called us to be your people of hope as we live the promise of resurrection, here and now.  Let us now build heaven on earth.  Amen.

    Listen:  

    SatSaturdayMayMay20th2017 Saturday, May 20
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Read:

    John 21:12-19

    “Jesus said to him, ‘Feed my sheep…’ After saying this, Jesus said to Peter, ‘Follow me.’”  Jesus looks Peter in the eye and speaks the words that won him in the first place: “Follow me.”  Peter, like us, is called to rise from the meal and go out to greet the stranger with the same love and devotion that he has just professed to the Christ.  Peter’s penance is to put his love for Jesus into swift, concrete action.  “Feed my lambs. Tend my sheep. And feed my sheep some more.”   Love is an verb of engaged, committed, invested, and risk-taking action.   This kind of love, whether it is called philos or agapē, involves an inherent expectation of “doing.”  Love is as love does.  This is love as courage, love as risk, love as not wavering, regardless of what we are called to do.  Do love today. 

    Prayer: God of Eastertide, God of second chances, God of blazing bonfires—God of familiar gestures, of serious questions, of tears and laughter, God of conversations by the shore: come and meet us and make us new. We know, O Christ, that we are called to set a place at our tables for the outcast, the hungry, the lonely. We are called to a love which goes beyond mere friendship. We are called to let love guide our feet, our hands, our hearts, our voices. God of new life, bless us as we celebrate your rising and calling in us, as we recognize you are closer to us than breathing; you are life-giving as fire and bread. Amen.

    Listen Again:

    FriFridayMayMay19th2017 Friday, May 19
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Read:

    John 21:12-19

    Peter responds to Jesus question honestly and simply, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.”  But unlike Jesus, Peter uses a different word for love, philios, which is more a family type of love that has its ups and its downs.  Essentially, Peter is saying, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you like a brother.”  The third and last time that Jesus asks the question, his word for love changes, and he meets Peter where he is.  One last time, Jesus asks, “Simon, son of John, do you love me like a brother?”  Even though Peter was hurt, he said to Jesus, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you like a brother.”  And there it is, that love that speaks across our differences and our hurt.  The love that reaches up and out and grabs hold of us.  Feel that love this day.

    Prayer: God of Eastertide, God of second chances, God of blazing bonfires—God of familiar gestures, of serious questions, of tears and laughter, God of conversations by the shore: come and meet us and make us new. We know, O Christ, that we are called to set a place at our tables for the outcast, the hungry, the lonely. We are called to a love which goes beyond mere friendship. We are called to let love guide our feet, our hands, our hearts, our voices. God of new life, bless us as we celebrate your rising and calling in us, as we recognize you are closer to us than breathing; you are life-giving as fire and bread. Amen.

    Listen Again:

    ThuThursdayMayMay18th2017 Thursday, May 18
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Read:

    John 21:12-19

    “When they finished eating, Jesus asked Simon Peter, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’”  What does not come across in English is the depth of love that Christ is encouraging in Peter.  When Christ asks Peter, “Do you love me?” the first two times, the Greek word for love is agape – which is the kind of love which knows no bounds – it is higher and deeper and fuller than our imaginations can handle.  Essentially, Jesus asks Peter twice, “Do you unconditionally love me?  Do you love me more than anything – more than your security, your safety, your well-being, your life?”  Faced with this question, what would your response be? 

    Prayer: God of Eastertide, God of second chances, God of blazing bonfires—God of familiar gestures, of serious questions, of tears and laughter, God of conversations by the shore: come and meet us and make us new. We know, O Christ, that we are called to set a place at our tables for the outcast, the hungry, the lonely. We are called to a love which goes beyond mere friendship. We are called to let love guide our feet, our hands, our hearts, our voices. God of new life, bless us as we celebrate your rising and calling in us, as we recognize you are closer to us than breathing; you are life-giving as fire and bread. Amen.

    Listen Again:

    WedWednesdayMayMay17th2017 Wednesday, May 17
    byJenn Pick Tagged No tags 0 comments Add comment

    Read:

    John 21:12-19

    “When they finished eating, Jesus asked Simon Peter, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?’”  After a sleepless night and a good meal, I imagine that most of the disciples are taking an early morning nap.  Jesus calls Peter for a private chat.  This is a conversation about the language of the heart – of Christ’s heart calling out to our hearts.  I can imagine that Peter was pained by the question.  Does he love Jesus?!?  Peter has left his home, his business, possibly his family for ministry with this man.  “Yes, Lord,” Peter replies, “You know that I love you.”  And then Jesus asks it again.  And then again, wanting that declaration, each time getting more and more intimate and intense.  Jesus wants Peter to really think this question through.  I think that as humans, we never hear we are loved enough.  How many times would it take you to hear that you are loved before you believe it? 

    Prayer: God of Eastertide, God of second chances, God of blazing bonfires—God of familiar gestures, of serious questions, of tears and laughter, God of conversations by the shore: come and meet us and make us new. We know, O Christ, that we are called to set a place at our tables for the outcast, the hungry, the lonely. We are called to a love which goes beyond mere friendship. We are called to let love guide our feet, our hands, our hearts, our voices. God of new life, bless us as we celebrate your rising and calling in us, as we recognize you are closer to us than breathing; you are life-giving as fire and bread. Amen.

    Listen Again:

    Daily DevotionalsRead Scripture for 15 minutes. Pray for 15 minutes. Every day.by Read Scripture for 15 minutes. Pray for 15 minutes. Every day. These daily readings are chosen by the pastor to relate to the sermon that was preached the previous Sunday.
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