Friday, March 29, 2019

Like a Dream

Psalm 90:1-6, 9b-10 Easy-to-Read Version 

The prayer of Moses, the man of God.

90 My Lord, you have been our home forever and ever.
You were God before the mountains were born,
    before the earth and the world were made.
    You have always been and will always be God!
You bring people into this world,
    and you change them into dust again.
To you, a thousand years is like yesterday,
    like a few hours in the night.
Our life is like a dream that ends when 
morning comes.
We are like grass
    that grows and looks so fresh in the morning,
    but in the evening it is dry and dying.

 Our lives fade away like a whisper.
10 We live about 70 years
    or, if we are strong, 80 years.
But most of them are filled with hard work and pain.
    Then, suddenly, the years are gone, and we fly away.



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Thursday, March 28, 2019

God Is In This Place

Isaiah 55:6 English Standard Version (ESV)

“Seek the Lord while he may be found;
    call upon him while he is near;

There was a song we used to sing with the Sunday School kids, “God is in the place, as certain as the air I breathe, as certain as the morning sun that rises…”  God is here. Seek him out every day.  Seek him in scripture, seek him in prayer, seek him in nature, seek him in the people around you.  Draw near him for he is here.

Loving Lord,
We are seeking you today.  Reveal yourself to us as we go about our day.  Amen.


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Wednesday, March 27, 2019


Luke 14:28 English Standard Version (ESV)

28 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?

This verse seems a bit out of place among the others this week about focusing on the present.  When I chose this one I was thinking of my children and laying a firm foundation in their lives by being present with them today, knowing that what I do with them today influences their tomorrow.  What we do with one another today, influences our tomorrows.  Today and tomorrow do go together even when our tomorrow might not come, it will for someone and our influence and participation in today leaves a lasting impact for tomorrow with or without us.

Lord of time and space,
Help us to make the most of each moment, leaving a positive mark on the world. Amen.



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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Let God

James 4:13-14 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Let God Plan Your Life

13 Some of you say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to some city. We will stay there a year, do business, and make money.” Listen, think about this: 14 You don’t know what will happen tomorrow. Your life is like a fog. You can see it for a short time, but then it goes away.

Planning for the future is inevitable.  We need to do it, but we can’t get so caught up in it that we forget to live in the here and now.  The future isn’t promised to us.  It can dissipate like a fog.  Life is to be lived today, not put off till tomorrow.  Love those who are dear to you today.  Spend time with them, be fully present with them now.

Loving God,
Thank you for today and the opportunities for living, giving and loving that you send our way.  Amen.


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Monday, March 25, 2019

Martha and Mary

Luke 10:38-42 English Standard Version 

Martha and Mary

38 Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to his teaching. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” 41 But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, 42 but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”
It’s easy to get caught up in the preparations, the hosting, the serving and forget to actually be present in the moment with our guests.  There’s nothing wrong with being a good host but we need to know when to stop and let ourselves focus on the people around us, let ourselves enjoy the party too, let ourselves find rest at Jesus’ feet.

Gracious God,
Forgive us when we get caught up in the busyness of preparations and neglect those that are truly important to us. Help us to find balance in our lives for work, rest and play.  Amen.


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Friday, March 22, 2019

The Lord Is My Shepherd

Psalm 23 English Standard Version (ESV)

The Lord Is My Shepherd

A Psalm of David.

23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
    He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
    for his name's sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
    your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord


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Thursday, March 21, 2019

Come to the Table

Micah 4:3-4 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Then God will act as judge to end arguments between people in many places.
    He will decide what is right for great nations far and near.
They will stop using their weapons for war.
    They will hammer their swords into plows
    and use their spears to make tools for harvesting.
All fighting between nations will end.
    They will never again train for war.
They will sit under their own
    grapevine and fig tree.
No one will make them afraid.
    That is because the Lord All-Powerful said it would happen like that.

Tomorrow our scripture will come from the 23rdPsalm and I think it fits so well with this reading from Micah.  We need to come to the table with our enemies, with those who hold different opinions than ours and simply be present.  Taking time to listen, truly listen to one another not so that we can respond but just that we can be present in the moment, showing we care and want to understand one another.  That doesn’t mean we have to agree, only that we try to see where each other is coming from.

Holy God,
In you, all things are possible, even what seems impossible.  Help us to lean on you, being present, fully present in our lives.  Amen.



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Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Too Important?

Galatians 6:2-3 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Help each other with your troubles. When you do this, you are obeying the law of Christ. If you think you are too important to do this, you are only fooling yourself.

Sometimes we do think ourselves too important, or maybe just too busy to take time to be present others. We don’t have time to go visit our sick friend, we don’t have time to listen to our children’s fears and worries, we don’t have time sit and be still and spend a little time with God -- we don’t have time.  But I wonder if we are just fooling ourselves and that really, we just don’t want to make the time.  We need to make time, we need to take time for our family and friends, for ourselves, and for God.

Gracious God,
Forgive us when we think ourselves too important to make time for others.  Help us set our priorities to better reflect our love of you.  Amen.


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Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Ask Questions

Luke 2:46 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

46 After three days they found him. Jesus was sitting in the Temple area with the religious teachers, listening and asking them questions.

Jesus had the gift of being fully present where ever he was.  He listened to those around him.  He took time to ask questions so that he could better understand and so that others could better understand too.  Let’s learn this gift from him.  Let us listen more, with open hearts and minds and ask questions to show we care and want to understand.

Loving Lord,
Help us to be more like you, being fully present in our lives and in the lives of those around us.  Amen.

Monday, March 18, 2019

The Right Time

Mark 1:14-15 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Jesus Begins His Work in Galilee

14 After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee and told people the Good News from God. 15 He said, “The right time is now here. God’s kingdom is very near. Change your hearts and lives, and believe the Good News!”

“The right time is now here.” How often do we put things off? Even important things!  Oh, I’ll just look at Facebook for a second.  I’ll get to that later.  I’ll call them tomorrow.  The list could go on and on but Jesus tells us the right time is NOW. We are so ‘busy’ that we don’t have time for our friends and family.  How many times did I say, “We’ll play that game tomorrow” to my kids?  How I would love to play a game with them today. What’s that old saying?  “Don’t put off tomorrow, what you can do today.” Time is precious, use it wisely. Be radically present in your life and in the life of those around you TODAY.
God of time,
We never think we have enough time and yet we constantly waste it on mindless things.  Help us to recognize that the time is here.  Help us to live our lives being fully present with you. Amen.



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Friday, March 15, 2019

A Psalm for the Day

Psalm 18:31-35 Common English Bible (CEB)

31 Now really, who is divine except the Lord?
    And who is a rock but our God?
32 Only God! The God who equips me with strength
    and makes my way perfect,
33     who makes my step as sure as the 
    who lets me stand securely on the heights,
34     who trains my hands for war
    so my arms can bend a bronze bow.
35 You’ve given me the shield of your salvation;
    your strong hand has supported me;
    your help has made me great.




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Thursday, March 14, 2019

What's the hurry?

Jeremiah 2:25 The Message (MSG)

25 “Slow down. Take a deep breath. What’s the hurry?
    Why wear yourself out? Just what are you after anyway?
But you say, ‘I can’t help it.
    I’m addicted to alien gods. I can’t quit.’

Why do we rush about?  Why do we stay so busy?  Is it for recognition?  "Oh, look what a great mom/grandmom she is!"  "Oh look what a good Christian they are!"  "They are such a hard worker!"  The thing is, we already have God’s approval, and more importantly his love.  Take a deep breath, look around and see what’s really important and focus on that.  Don’t worry about the world and what they think.  God knows your heart.

Holy God,
Forgive us when we let idols slip into our lives. Help us to keep our eyes firmly focused on you.  Amen. 
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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Wait for the Lord

Isaiah 40:29-31 English Standard Version (ESV)

29 He gives power to the faint,
    and to him who has no 
might he increases strength.
30 Even youths shall faint and be weary,
    and young men shall fall exhausted;
31 but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
    they shall walk and not faint.

Everyone gets tired.  We run at breakneck speed and think, “we’ve got this” only to collapse later with exhaustion.  Wait for the Lord and he will give you the strength to do even greater things. Walk with him, don’t run off on your own.  Let him renew your spirit and guide your steps.

Gracious God,
We get in such a hurry.  We get excited and run headfirst into life.  Slow us down so that we can walk with you.  Amen.



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Tuesday, March 12, 2019


Romans 12:2 English Standard Version (ESV)

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

The world is a busy place. Society pushes us constantly forward, keeping us always in motion.  Draw back from that, turn away and turn towards God and let Him renew your spirit, set your tempo and transform you and your work, your ministry in the world. 

Loving God,
Give us rest.  Help us to slow down.  Renew us, renew our spirits and ignite your flame within us again so that we can better be in ministry for you.  Amen.


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Monday, March 11, 2019

Tempo of life

Matthew 11:28-30 The Message (MSG)

28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

Our Lenten Theme is Busy.  Society has become increasingly busy.  We just can’t seem to sit still anymore.  It’s always go, go, go whether it is our job, home, kids/grandkids, even church!  But we all need time to rest, time to recover to refocus.  Take some time today sit still with God.  Let Him refresh and renew you.  Let Him set the tempo of your life.

Renewing God,
Help us to slow down to the pace you set before us.  Help us work alongside you instead of running ahead.  Amen.


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Thursday, March 7, 2019


Matthew 6:16-18 The Message (MSG)

16-18 “When you practice some appetite-denying discipline to better concentrate on God, don’t make a production out of it. It might turn you into a small-time celebrity but it won’t make you a saint. If you ‘go into training’ inwardly, act normal outwardly. Shampoo and comb your hair, brush your teeth, wash your face. God doesn’t require attention-getting devices. He won’t overlook what you are doing; he’ll reward you well.

Often during the season of Lent, we practice some sort of Fasting.  Maybe we give up chocolate, bread, soda, coffee, social media or sometimes take something up like exercising, healthier eating, daily reading the Bible, and so on. This year I’d like to invite you to give up some of the busyness of your life.  Take time to pray, take time to sit quietly each day and pray.  Find a chair, light a candle if you’d like, and sit in quiet time with God for at least 10 minutes.  Pray, meditate, listen.
Almighty God,

Thank you for being here every day for us. Thank you for listening to us. Help us to remember to take time each day for a little quiet time with you.  Amen.


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