Saturday, February 18
After the Pentecost event, Peter speaks to those who he feels caused the Lord’s death. He could have been blistering in his rebuke of them, but he meets them with words of reconciliation and love. Look at verses 19 and 20. Just as Jesus gave Peter the chance to be refreshed after he denied knowing Jesus three times (see John 21), here Peter gives the Jewish Council the same grace. Paul tells us in Romans 8 that there is nothing that can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Paul knew this to be true, because God had forgiven him of persecuting the followers of Jesus on the Road to Damascus. Those who are forgiven and refreshed are to forgive and refresh others. Go and be the disciples Christ calls you to be.
Friday, February 17
Paul asks Philemon to refresh his heart in Christ. There are those who can do that for us. They bring us back in line with the Lord. We also can be that person for others. Who do you go to to be refreshed? Is this a good time to call them into service? Who do you know needs refreshment? Is it time for you to serve?
Thursday, February 16
Jeremiah 31:23-25Here Jeremiah gives the people of Israel hope. Judah’s exile into Babylon will not be the end of the story. The lives they had in the Promised Land will be refreshed, made possible again, because the Lord is gracious and faithful. Sometimes we feel like the Lord has given up on us. Certainly, we have given the Lord reason to. But God’s grace and forgiveness gives us hope and makes all things possible. Like refreshing a computer syncs the parts of the computer back with one another, so the Lord’s love refreshes us into a new relationship with God.
Wednesday, February 15
Read this famous and favorite psalm from several versions of the Bible. If you don’t have the Bibles with you, look them up on the internet. (Bible Gateway is a good source.) As you read the different versions, ask yourself how does the author of the psalm feels the Lord’s refreshment in his/her life? How does the Lord refresh you?
Tuesday, February 14
Proverbs 11:25Happy Valentine’s Day. Make sure you thank the Lord for the love you give to and feel from others, because God is love (I John 4) and the author of all love. The one who refreshes others will in turn be refreshed. Sharing God’s love is the gift in itself. When love is given, it refreshes both the giver and the one given to. It is a win win
Over the past two years, we have selected one word to guide us in our ministry for the year. This year our one word is “refresh”. This week we will be looking at some scriptures using the word or concept. I hope these scriptures help you see how the Lord is using this word to lead you along the pathway of faith.
Monday, February 13
Exodus 23:10-12In the Jewish law code, the people of Israel were commanded to allow the Lord to refresh. They were to allow the land to refresh. We now know the science and wisdom behind that command. If the land is not allowed to refresh, it will not have the nutrients needed to grow healthy crops. The same is true of human beings. We must take time to refresh to stay whole and healthy. Worship is a part of that refreshment. What refreshes you? How much time do you give to refreshment? Do you see time to refresh as useful or wasted time?
Saturday, February 11
Philippians 4:1-9If I could summarize last Sunday’s sermon it might sound something like verses 8 and 9. “…whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise…” let these guide my every word and writing and work. Amen
Friday, February 10
This is Luke’s version of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7), known in Luke as the Sermon on the Plain. In verse 31, we have what we call the Golden Rule. The verses before and after it in this reading are descriptive of what the Golden Rule looks like in practice. Read though the verses a few times using them to evaluate how you are doing in following the Golden Rule.