Saturday, July 8, 2017

The Daily Readings for SATURDAY, July 8, 2017

Opening Sentence

Thus says the high and lofty One who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy, "I dwell in the high and holy place and also with the one who has a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble and to revive the heart of the contrite." Isaiah 57:15

Morning Prayer
Oh holy Christ, teach me to recognize your face in the people you put into my life today. Amen

Confession and Forgiveness
Eternal God, in whom we live and move and have our being, whose face is hidden from us by our sins, and whose mercy we forget in the blindness of our hearts: cleanse us from all our offenses, and deliver us from proud thoughts and vain desires, that with reverent and humble hearts we may draw near to you, confessing our faults, confiding in your grace, and finding in you our refuge and strength; through Jesus Christ your Son. Amen

Today's Readings

The First Reading is taken from 1 Samuel 14:16-30
Saul's lookouts in Gibeah of Benjamin were watching as the multitude was surging back and forth. Then Saul said to the troops that were with him, "Call the roll and see who has gone from us." When they had called the roll, Jonathan and his armor-bearer were not there. Saul said to Ahijah, "Bring the ark of God here." For at that time the ark of God went with the Israelites. While Saul was talking to the priest, the tumult in the camp of the Philistines increased more and more; and Saul said to the priest, "Withdraw your hand." Then Saul and all the people who were with him rallied and went into the battle; and every sword was against the other, so that there was very great confusion. Now the Hebrews who previously had been with the Philistines and had gone up with them into the camp turned and joined the Israelites who were with Saul and Jonathan. Likewise, when all the Israelites who had gone into hiding in the hill country of Ephraim heard that the Philistines were fleeing, they too followed closely after them in the battle. So the LORD gave Israel the victory that day. The battle passed beyond Beth-aven, and the troops with Saul numbered altogether about ten thousand men. The battle spread out over the hill country of Ephraim. Now Saul committed a very rash act on that day. He had laid an oath on the troops, saying, "Cursed be anyone who eats food before it is evening and I have been avenged on my enemies." So none of the troops tasted food. All the troops came upon a honeycomb; and there was honey on the ground. When the troops came upon the honeycomb, the honey was dripping out; but they did not put their hands to their mouths, for they feared the oath. But Jonathan had not heard his father charge the troops with the oath; so he extended the staff that was in his hand, and dipped the tip of it in the honeycomb, and put his hand to his mouth; and his eyes brightened. Then one of the soldiers said, "Your father strictly charged the troops with an oath, saying, 'Cursed be anyone who eats food this day.' And so the troops are faint." Then Jonathan said, "My father has troubled the land; see how my eyes have brightened because I tasted a little of this honey. How much better if today the troops had eaten freely of the spoil taken from their enemies; for now the slaughter among the Philistines has not been great."

The Second Reading is taken from Acts 9:10-19
Now there was a disciple in Damascus named Ananias. The Lord said to him in a vision, "Ananias." He answered, "Here I am, Lord." The Lord said to him, "Get up and go to the street called Straight, and at the house of Judas look for a man of Tarsus named Saul. At this moment he is praying, and he has seen in a vision a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight." But Ananias answered, "Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints in Jerusalem; and here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who invoke your name." But the Lord said to him, "Go, for he is an instrument whom I have chosen to bring my name before Gentiles and kings and before the people of Israel; I myself will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name." So Ananias went and entered the house. He laid his hands on Saul and said, "Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on your way here, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit." And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and his sight was restored. Then he got up and was baptized, and after taking some food, he regained his strength. For several days he was with the disciples in Damascus,

The Holy Gospel is written in Luke 23:32-43
Two others also, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. When they came to the place that is called The Skull, they crucified Jesus there with the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing." And they cast lots to divide his clothing. And the people stood by, watching; but the leaders scoffed at him, saying, "He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Messiah of God, his chosen one!" The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and offering him sour wine, and saying, "If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!" There was also an inscription over him, "This is the King of the Jews." One of the criminals who were hanged there kept deriding him and saying, "Are you not the Messiah? Save yourself and us!" But the other rebuked him, saying, "Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed have been condemned justly, for we are getting what we deserve for our deeds, but this man has done nothing wrong." Then he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." He replied, "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise."

Morning Psalms
Psalm 137 Super flumina
1   By the waters of Babylon we sat down and wept, when we remembered you, O Zion.
2   As for our harps, we hung them up on the trees in the midst of that land.
3   For those who led us away captive asked us for a song, and our oppressors called for mirth: "Sing us one of the songs of Zion."
4   How shall we sing the LORD'S song upon an alien soil?
5   If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its skill.
6   Let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth if I do not remember you, if I do not set Jerusalem above my highest joy.
7   Remember the day of Jerusalem, O LORD, against the people of Edom, who said, "Down with it! down with it! even to the ground!"
8   O Daughter of Babylon, doomed to destruction, happy the one who pays you back for what you have done to us!
9   Happy shall he be who takes your little ones, and dashes them against the rock!

Psalm 144 Benedictus Dominus
1   Blessed be the LORD my rock! who trains my hands to fight and my fingers to battle;
2   My help and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield in whom I trust, who subdues the peoples under me.
3   O LORD, what are we that you should care for us? mere mortals that you should think of us?
4   We are like a puff of wind; our days are like a passing shadow.
5   Bow your heavens, O LORD, and come down; touch the mountains, and they shall smoke.
6   Hurl the lightning and scatter them; shoot out your arrows and rout them.
7   Stretch out your hand from on high; rescue me and deliver me from the great waters, from the hand of foreign peoples,
8   Whose mouths speak deceitfully and whose right hand is raised in falsehood.
9   O God, I will sing to you a new song; I will play to you on a ten-stringed lyre.
10   You give victory to kings and have rescued David your servant.
11   Rescue me from the hurtful sword and deliver me from the hand of foreign peoples,
12   Whose mouths speak deceitfully and whose right hand is raised in falsehood.
13   May our sons be like plants well nurtured from their youth, and our daughters like sculptured corners of a palace.
14   May our barns be filled to overflowing with all manner of crops; may the flocks in our pastures increase by thousands and tens of thousands; may our cattle be fat and sleek.
15   May there be no breaching of the walls, no going into exile, no wailing in the public squares.
16   Happy are the people of whom this is so! happy are the people whose God is the LORD!

Evening Psalms
Psalm 104 Benedic, anima mea
1   Bless the LORD, O my soul; O LORD my God, how excellent is your greatness! you are clothed with majesty and splendor.
2   You wrap yourself with light as with a cloak and spread out the heavens like a curtain.
3   You lay the beams of your chambers in the waters above; you make the clouds your chariot; you ride on the wings of the wind.
4   You make the winds your messengers and flames of fire your servants.
5   You have set the earth upon its foundations, so that it never shall move at any time.
6   You covered it with the Deep as with a mantle; the waters stood higher than the mountains.
7   At your rebuke they fled; at the voice of your thunder they hastened away.
8   They went up into the hills and down to the valleys beneath, to the places you had appointed for them.
9   You set the limits that they should not pass; they shall not again cover the earth.
10   You send the springs into the valleys; they flow between the mountains.
11   All the beasts of the field drink their fill from them, and the wild asses quench their thirst.
12   Beside them the birds of the air make their nests and sing among the branches.
13   You water the mountains from your dwelling on high; the earth is fully satisfied by the fruit of your works.
14   You make grass grow for flocks and herds and plants to serve mankind;
15   That they may bring forth food from the earth, and wine to gladden our hearts,
16   Oil to make a cheerful countenance, and bread to strengthen the heart.
17   The trees of the LORD are full of sap, the cedars of Lebanon which he planted,
18   In which the birds build their nests, and in whose tops the stork makes his dwelling.
19   The high hills are a refuge for the mountain goats, and the stony cliffs for the rock badgers.
20   You appointed the moon to mark the seasons, and the sun knows the time of its setting.
21   You make darkness that it may be night, in which all the beasts of the forest prowl.
22   The lions roar after their prey and seek their food from God.
23   The sun rises, and they slip away and lay themselves down in their dens.
24   Man goes forth to his work and to his labor until the evening.
25   O LORD, how manifold are your works! in wisdom you have made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.
26   Yonder is the great and wide sea with its living things too many to number, creatures both small and great.
27   There move the ships, and there is that Leviathan, which you have made for the sport of it.
28   All of them look to you to give them their food in due season.
29   You give it to them; they gather it; you open your hand, and they are filled with good things.
30   You hide your face, and they are terrified; you take away their breath, and they die and return to their dust.
31   You send forth your Spirit, and they are created; and so you renew the face of the earth.
32   May the glory of the LORD endure for ever; may the LORD rejoice in all his works.
33   He looks at the earth and it trembles; he touches the mountains and they smoke.
34   I will sing to the LORD as long as I live; I will praise my God while I have my being.
35   May these words of mine please him; I will rejoice in the LORD.
36   Let sinners be consumed out of the earth, and the wicked be no more.
37   Bless the LORD, O my soul. Hallelujah!

The Nicene Creed
We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen

Prayer of the Day
Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who sets the solitary person in the comfort of families; I commend to your continual care the homes in which your people dwell. Put far from them, I beseech you, every root of bitterness, the desire of boastful vanity, and the pride of life. Fill them with faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness. Knit together in constant affection those who, in holy wedlock, have been made one flesh; turn the heart of the parents to the children, and the heart of the children to the parents; and fill us all with true love and charity, so that we put aside petty differences and act with kind affection and the sympathy of brotherly love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

A Prayer of Thanks
Thank you, oh source of all abundance, for surrounding me with good things. But help me to remember that nothing of earthly value owns timeless truth. Let your immeasurable blessings transform how I perceive material benefits. Teach me to appreciate unchanging treasures: the wealth of your compassion, the grandeur of your wisdom, and the richness of reconciliation. Lighten my selfishness with simple faith. Help me to reveal your love more joyously. And strengthen me in grace, oh God, always to give the best that serves you most in humble gratitude. Amen

A Prayer for Mission
Almighty and everlasting God, by whose Spirit the whole body of your faithful people is governed and sanctified: Receive our supplications and prayers which we offer before you for all members of your holy Church, that in their vocation and ministry they may truly and devoutly serve you; through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen

Alleluia! Christ has risen.
Christ has risen indeed. Alleluia!

I  pray that I may be blessed every step of my path this day by the great God of light. May your sun shine upon me; as the moon moves the tide, may your Spirit move my emotions with every grace and magic; may my heart sing with the voice of your angels and my hearth be warm; and may this and every blessed day You have given me be filled with joy. Amen

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted.

Prayer of the Day for SATURDAY, July 8, 2017

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who sets the solitary person in the comfort of families; I commend to your continual care the homes in which your people dwell. Put far from them, I beseech you, every root of bitterness, the desire of boastful vanity, and the pride of life. Fill them with faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness. Knit together in constant affection those who, in holy wedlock, have been made one flesh; turn the heart of the parents to the children, and the heart of the children to the parents; and fill us all with true love and charity, so that we put aside petty differences and act with kind affection and the sympathy of brotherly love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Verse of the Day for SATURDAY, July 8, 2017

Psalm 138:2 (NIV) I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your unfailing love and your faithfulness, for you have so exalted your solemn decree that it surpasses your fame.

Read all of Psalm 138

Listen to Psalm 138

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Morning Devotions with Cap'n Kenny - Smile Though Your Heart is Breaking

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

If you ask someone knowledgeable what the shortest verse in the Bible is, he will probably tell you, “Jesus wept.” And . . . he’s wrong! Well, at least technically; you can play Mr. or Ms. Smarty-Pants the next time you hear this. Because the New Testament was written in Greek, and the shortest verse in the original (Greek) Bible is: “Rejoice always.”

But what if we don't feel like rejoicing? What do we do about this when we just got rejected by a college, or our spouse left us, or our arthritis decides to act up?

The Bible does not tell us to always be happy. There is a big difference between happiness, our emotional response to the vicissitudes of life, and joy, which is the state of conviction in our ultimate salvation. Secular society always tries to find happiness in the world, and it always fails, sooner or later. Happiness is always temporary. Happiness depends on what happens. Joy is eternal and is a gift from God, when we give ourselves to Christ.

In fact, James tells us, “Count it all joy, when you fall into various trials.” Now, suffering is painful and makes us unhappy; I don't want to diminish the reality of pain. But when we know Christ, suffering, and especially suffering on His behalf, is tempered by a deep spiritual satisfaction that will long outlive the pain we fee. Happiness is a thermometer; joy is a thermostat.

There is a popular song from 1954 that begins, “Smile, though your heart is breaking.” You may weep — Jesus did it! — but remember your joy, even inside a painful period. Remember to smile from time to time, even though you're going through a rough patch. Let the world know that it can't keep you down, because the victory will be yours, soon enough.
Heavenly Father, let me always remember the joy of salvation, even amid the difficulties of life. Amen
In Jesus,
Cap'n Kenny

Seeking God?
Click HERE to find out more about how to have a personal
relationship with Jesus Christ.

Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

Un Dia a la Vez - Semana de pacto con Dios: Nuestra boca

De la abundancia del corazón habla la boca.
~ Mateo 12:34 (NVI)

La boca, aparte de que sirve de entrada a la cavidad bucal, tiene varias funciones. Dios la creó para ingerir los alimentos, salivar, para tener sentido del gusto, pero quizá hablar sea lo más importante.

Dios la diseñó perfecta y muchos la usamos mal. Entonces, ¿has pensado en las cosas indebidas que se puede hacer con ella? Aunque se puede usar para fumar, drogarse, hablar mal y chismear, también se puede usar, en muchos casos, para bendecir y hablar cosas que agradan a Dios y a la familia.

¡Qué mal ejemplo les damos a nuestros hijos y compañeros de trabajo cuando somos malhablados! ¡Eso es terrible! Cuando conocemos una persona, nos puede dar una clara impresión al abrir su boca y expresarse.

Por eso hoy la idea es que podamos cortar todo lo malo que está saliendo de nuestra boca. ¿Eres de bendición o una persona grosera al expresarte?

La oportunidad para ti este día es que puedas reconocer y comprometerte con Dios de que dejarás atrás las groserías y las malas palabras, y que te comprometerás a guardar tu boca para honrarlo a Él.

Quiero que recuerdes algo de lo que dice la Biblia respecto a la boca y es que «de una misma boca salen bendición y maldición» (Santiago 3:10).

Señor, hoy me comprometo a guardar mi boca y honrarte con mis palabras.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón

Standing Strong Through the Storm - OPEN AND CLOSED DOORS

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
~ Isaiah 55:8-9 (NIV)

The Bible has much to say about open doors but many times – even as Christians – we seem to face obstacles on our path and in our ministry. Blocked doors can be VERY frustrating. Yet God often uses closed doors to advance His cause.

Bible teachers like Max Lucado remind us that God closed the womb of a young Sarah so he could display His power to the elderly one. He shut the palace door on Moses the prince so he could open shackles through Moses the liberator. He marched Daniel out of Jerusalem so he could use Daniel in Babylon.

And even Jesus knew the challenge of a blocked door. When he requested a path that bypassed the cross, God said no. He said no to Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane so He could say yes to us at the gates of heaven.

It’s not that our plans are bad but that God’s plans are better.

A prayer is circulating on the Internet that expresses it this way:

He asked for strength that he might achieve,
he was made weak that he might endure;

He asked for health to do larger things,
he was given infirmity that he might do better things;

He asked for power that he might impress men,
he was given weakness that he might seek God;

He asked for wealth that he might be free from care,
he was given poverty that he might be wiser than carefree.

He asked for all things that he might enjoy life,
he was given life that he might enjoy all things;

He received nothing he asked for.

He received more than he ever hoped for.

His prayer was answered!

Blessed man!

The shortest distance between a closed and open door is the distance between your knees and the floor. The one who kneels to the Lord can stand up to anything.

RESPONSE: Today I will accept that my blocked door doesn’t mean God doesn’t love me. Quite the opposite. I’ll see it as proof that He does.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord that You know best and have even better plans for me and my service for You. Help me wait patiently for You to open the right door at the right time!

NIV Devotions for Couples - Growing Through Conflict

1 Corinthians 1:10–17

I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.

During the first year of our marriage, my husband and I were good friends with a young couple. They were at that do-we-break-up-or-get-married crossroads, and we did what we could to support them as they struggled with their relationship. One evening, they stopped by our apartment to tell us they had decided to get serious about marriage. “Thank you for helping us with this,” they said. “You’ve been a great example of people who fight all the time even though you really love each other.”

It sounded like a backhanded compliment. But they came from homes in which arguments escalated into shouting matches, and parents left in anger and didn’t come back. We had shown them a marriage in which two opinionated people managed to work through their differences—and differences are inevitable when two people try to make a life together—and still hold on to their connection.

A certain level of conflict in marriage means both partners feel free to speak their minds, can be honest about what they think and feel, and trust each other to stay committed despite occasional disagreements. First Corinthians 1:10 helps us understand the fine line between healthy conflict and hurtful discord.

Paul told the people in the church at Corinth to be perfectly united in mind and thought. But seriously, who could ever pull that off? It’s important to understand that Paul wasn’t suggesting that they agree on every detail of their lives. We see proof of that later in this letter; chapters 8–10 deal with gray areas such as whether or not it was OK to eat food that had been sacrificed to idols. Rather, Paul was talking about the big picture. “Look,” he was saying, “you’re never going to agree on all the details, but those details don’t matter as much as you think they do. What matters is that you love God and that you help each other follow the way of Jesus.”

Working out the details of married life naturally generates conflict. Why would we expect it to be otherwise? You take two people who grew up in different families with totally different sets of life experiences, expectations, hopes, ideas and beliefs, and, well, eventually someone’s going to load the dishwasher the wrong way.

But the big picture of a healthy marriage is a different story. Two people, despite all the ways they differ from each other, have decided they want their lives to follow the way of Christ together. On that path the details and differences fade into the background to reveal the beautiful mystery of two becoming one. It doesn’t mean their minds meld together. Or that only one person gets to have an opinion. Or that we pretend we don’t argue. Instead, our unity comes as we, in Christ, daily and persistently strengthen the common bonds of love, respect and faith that make a marriage thrive.

Carla Barnhill

Let’s Talk
  • What conflicts come up in our marriage? Which ones are big-picture issues? How do we manage those? Which are detail issues? How can we work together to avoid getting caught up in details that don’t really matter?
  • Do people think of us as a unified couple or as a couple who constantly argue? Which perception is accurate?
  • Do we have too much or too little conflict? Let’s talk about ways we might keep these things in balance. Could a Christian counselor help us develop better conflict management skills?

LHM Daily Devotion - July 8, 2017 "Balancing the Scales"

Since then I've run into a lot of folks who feel God's requirements to...

Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Pastor Ken Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour

"Balancing the Scales"

July 8, 2017

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.
~ Ephesians 1:7 (ESV)

"Yeah, I knew Louis did a lot of things wrong," the man said to me. "But I do remember a time when he was pretty nice to me. I think a loving Lord will let Louis into heaven because that time Louis tried to do the right thing."

Since then I've run into a lot of folks who feel God's requirements to get into heaven are skewed.

I wish they were all here now so I could tell them about the Georgia correctional officer who passed out from the heat and the humidity. The unnamed officer was supervising some inmates who were on a work detail when he said he wasn't feeling well. A few moments later, he collapsed.

At that moment, the inmates were presented with a number of choices. They could take the officer's gun and head for the hills. They could use his money and credit cards to flee the country. Those incarcerated men could have done a lot of things. What they did do was this: they took off the officer's bullet-proof vest and performed CPR on him. At the same time, they borrowed his phone to call 911. When emergency relief arrived, all the inmates were present and accounted for.

Now, let me ask -- what should be done with those prisoners who did the right thing?

My friends who want to open heaven up for anyone who has tried to do something right at some time, would, if they were being consistent, say, "All those fellows ought to be set at liberty."

But justice and the law don't work that way, do they. These men committed crimes which, according to the law, must be punished. The fact that they, in this instance, did the right, the humanitarian thing, doesn't change the court's ruling or the judge's sentence.

Similarly, because a sinner does something which is kind, or gentle, or compassionate, or caring -- that action doesn't automatically make things right with God. The Lord's scales of justice are not immediately brought into a balanced state; nor has this action paid for many, or any, sins of the past.

Yes, I'm glad when a person tries to do the right thing, but not even the best of intentions can turn a condemned sinner into a saved saint.

No, if heaven's doors are to be swung open for transgressors, it will have to be done by hands which are far more powerful than ours. In short, it will have to be done by the nail-pierced hands of the Savior. You see, my friends, no matter how good we try to be, we are not good enough; no matter how faithful we try to be, we are not faithful enough; no matter how often we try to do right, it is not enough.

For the scales to be balanced, we need Someone to take our place: Someone who never sinned; Someone who resisted all temptation; Someone who defeated death. We need Jesus. That's what St. Paul meant when he wore: "In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace."

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks that Jesus has done all I could not do. Now, because of Him, I have forgiveness and eternal life. Make that life one of praise and thanksgiving for Christ's sacrifice of love. In His Name. Amen

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin!  Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).

Our Daily Bread - A Day to Rest

Six days do your work, but on the seventh day do not work. Exodus 23:12

One Sunday, I stood by the gurgling stream that wends its way through our North London community, delighting in the beauty it brings to our otherwise built-up area. I felt myself relax as I watched the cascading water and listened to the birds chirping. I paused to give the Lord thanks for how He helps us to find rest for our souls.

The Lord instituted a time of Sabbath—a time for rest and renewal—for His people in the ancient Near East because He wanted them to thrive. As we see in the book of Exodus, He tells them to sow their fields for six years and rest on the seventh. So too with working six days and resting on the seventh. His way of life set apart the Israelites from other nations, for not only they but also the foreigners and slaves in their households were allowed to follow this pattern.

We can approach our day of rest with expectancy and creativity, welcoming the chance to worship and do something that feeds our souls, which will vary according to our preferences. Some will like to play games; some to garden; some to share a meal with friends and family; some to take an afternoon nap.

How can we rediscover the beauty and richness of setting apart a day to rest, if that’s missing from our lives?
Lord God, in You we find our rest. Thank You that You’ve created us both to work and to rest. Please help us to find the right rhythm for our lives.
In our faith and service, rest is as important as work.

Ministérios Pão Diário - A coisa certa
A Bíblia em um ano: Jó 36–37, Atos 15:22-41

“Davi, eu não vi você hoje na minha aula”, falei para um de meus alunos da universidade, quando nos encontramos na secretaria. Ele me olhou, pasmado, como calouro em sua primeira semana de aula, e então percebeu — ele havia se enganado com os horários e ido para uma sala errada.

O interessante foi que havia duas classes de gramática — a minha e a de um outro professor — e ele foi assistir a aula errada. Então disse-lhe: “Está bem, você estava recebendo a informação correta, por isso não vou lhe dar falta.”

Quando pensei a respeito, concluí que isso é um pouco parecido com as opções que muitos cristãos têm em relação às igrejas que frequentam. O fator-chave é frequentar uma igreja onde é compartilhada a informação certa, onde se prega a respeito da salvação por meio de Jesus Cristo (1 Coríntios 15:3-5), onde a Bíblia é o padrão para a fé e a prática, e onde há oportunidade de servir em nome de Jesus. É importante que a mensagem proclame o verdadeiro evangelho e a mensagem histórica de Jesus — e não um “outro evangelho” (Gálatas 1:6-9). O mais importante não é o mensageiro; é a mensagem.

Que “evangelho” você está ouvindo? Ele está edificado sobre o fundamento de Jesus Cristo?

O único fundamento da igreja é Jesus Cristo, nosso Senhor.

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - Ngày Nghỉ
Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: Gióp 36-37; Công vụ 15:22-41

Con hãy làm công việc của mình trong sáu ngày, sang ngày thứ bảy con hãy nghỉ. Xuất Ê-díp-tô ký 23:12

Một Chúa Nhật nọ, tôi đứng bên dòng suối róc rách chảy qua khu dân cư Bắc Luân Đôn. Tôi thích thú trước vẻ đẹp mà dòng suối này đem lại cho khu vực mà lẽ ra đã có nhà cửa chen chúc. Tôi cảm thấy thư giãn khi ngắm dòng nước đổ xuống và lắng nghe tiếng chim hót líu lo. Tôi lắng lòng cảm tạ Chúa về cách Ngài giúp chúng ta tìm được sự yên nghỉ cho linh hồn mình.

Chúa đã thiết lập ngày Sa-bát—là thời gian để nghỉ ngơi và làm mới lại—cho dân Ngài ở vùng Cận Đông xưa vì Ngài muốn họ thịnh vượng. Như chúng ta thấy trong Xuất Ê-díp-tô ký, Ngài bảo họ gieo trồng trong sáu năm, đến năm thứ bảy thì nghỉ. Tương tự, họ làm việc trong sáu ngày và nghỉ vào ngày thứ bảy. Cách sống này tách biệt dân Y-sơ-ra-ên khỏi các dân tộc khác, không chỉ họ mà những khách ngoại bang và nô lệ trong nhà họ cũng được phép theo khuôn mẫu này.

Chúng ta có thể hướng đến ngày nghỉ với lòng trông mong và óc sáng tạo, chào đón cơ hội thờ phượng Chúa và làm điều gì đó bồi bổ cho linh hồn mình, tùy theo sở thích của chúng ta. Một số người thích trò chơi; một số thích làm vườn; một số thích ăn uống cùng bạn bè và gia đình; một số thích ngủ trưa.

Làm sao chúng ta có thể tái khám phá sự tuyệt vời và ích lợi của việc dành ra một ngày để nghỉ ngơi nếu như đời sống của chúng ta đang thiếu mất điều đó?
Lạy Chúa, trong Ngài chúng con tìm được sự yên nghỉ. Cảm ơn Ngài đã tạo dựng chúng con để làm việc và nghỉ ngơi. Xin giúp chúng con theo đuổi nhịp sống đúng đắn cho mình.
Trong đời sống đức tin và sự phục vụ, nghỉ ngơi cũng quan trọng như làm việc.

Nuestro Pan Diario - Un día para descansar
La Biblia en un año: Job 36–37; Hechos 15:22-41

Seis días trabajarás, y al séptimo día reposarás… (v. 12).

Un domingo, estaba junto al arroyo que pasa por el medio de nuestro barrio, deleitándome en la belleza que trae a nuestra zona llena de edificaciones. Sentí cómo me relajaba al mirar el agua y escuchar el canto de los pájaros. Le di gracias al Señor por ayudarnos a encontrar descanso para nuestra alma.

El Señor instituyó el día de reposo (un tiempo para descansar y renovarse) para su pueblo porque quería que prosperara. Como vemos en Éxodo, Dios les dijo que sembraran los campos durante seis años y los dejaran descansar el séptimo. Lo mismo sucedía con trabajar seis días y descansar el séptimo. Esta manera de vivir distinguía a los israelitas de las demás naciones porque no solo ellos seguían este patrón, sino que los extranjeros y los esclavos en sus casas también podían hacerlo.

Podemos abordar nuestro día de descanso con expectativa y creatividad, aprovechando la oportunidad de adorar y hacer algo que alimente nuestra alma, según nuestras preferencias. A algunos les gustan los juegos; a otros, la jardinería; algunos comen con amigos y familiares; otros duermen una siesta.

¿Cómo podemos redescubrir la belleza y la riqueza de apartar un día para descansar, si esto está faltando en nuestra vida?
Señor, ayúdanos a encontrar el ritmo adecuado entre trabajo y descanso.
En nuestra fe y servicio, el descanso es tan importante como el trabajo.

Unser Täglich Brot - Ruhetag

Sechs Tage sollst du deine Arbeit tun; aber am siebenten Tage sollst du feiern. 2.Mose 23,12

An einem Sonntag stand ich einmal an dem kleinen Flüsschen, das sich durch unseren Stadtteil windet, und freute mich an der Schönheit, die es in unsere ziemlich verbaute Gegend bringt. Ich spürte, wie ich beim Anblick des plätschernden Wassers entspannte, hörte dem Zwitschern der Vögel zu und dankte Gott dafür, wie er uns hilft, unsere Seele zur Ruhe zu bringen.

Gott hat seinem Volk im alten Orient die Sabbatruhe verordnet—eine Zeit der Ruhe und Erfrischung—, weil er wollte, dass es ihm gutgeht. Wie wir im 2. Buch Mose nachlesen können, sollten sie ihre Felder sechs Jahre lang bebauen und im siebten ruhen lassen. Genauso sollten sie sechs Tage arbeiten und am siebten ruhen. Damit unterschieden sie sich von den anderen Völkern, denn nicht nur sie allein, sondern auch die Fremden und Sklaven in ihren Häusern sollten diesen Rhythmus befolgen.

Wir dürfen voll Erwartung in unseren Ruhetag gehen und uns freuen, dass wir die Möglichkeit haben, den Gottesdienst zu besuchen und etwas zu tun, was unsere Seele satt macht. Das kann bei jedem anders aussehen. Manche spielen vielleicht gern, andere gehen spazieren. Manche laden Familie und Freunde zum Essen ein und wieder andere halten gern ein Mittagsschläfchen.

Was können wir tun, um den Ruhetag, den Gott uns schenkt, wieder neu schätzen zu lernen?
Herr, unser Gott, bei dir finden wir Ruhe. Danke, dass wir nicht nur arbeiten, sondern auch ruhen dürfen. Lass uns den richtigen Rhythmus für unser Leben finden.
Bei allem, was wir tun, ist die Ruhe genauso wichtig wie das Arbeiten.

Notre Pain Quotidien - Un jour pour se reposer
Lisez : Exode 23.10‑13
La Bible en un an : JOB 36 – 37 et ACTES 15.22‑41

Pendant six jours, tu fera ton ouvrage. Mais le septième jour, tu te reposeras. V.12

Un certain dimanche, je me tenais près du ruisseau gargouillant qui traversait notre quartier du nord de Londres à savourer la beauté qu’il apporte à notre zone plutôt urbanisée. Je me sentais détendue en regardant cascader l’eau et en écoutant les oiseaux gazouiller. Je me suis interrompue le temps de remercier le Seigneur pour les moyens qu’il emploie afin de nous aider à trouver le repos de notre âme.

Le Seigneur a institué un congé sabbatique – un temps de repos et de renouveau – pour son peuple dans le Proche‑Orient de l’Antiquité parce qu’il désirait que ses enfants prospèrent. Comme on le voit dans le livre de l’Exode, il leur demande de cultiver leurs champs pendant six ans et de les laisser se reposer la septième année. De même, ils devaient travailler pendant six jours et se reposer le septième. Leur mode de vie distinguait les Israélites des autres nations, car non seulement eux, mais aussi les étrangers et les esclaves sous leur toit étaient autorisés à adopter ce même mode de vie.

Or, nous pouvons aborder notre journée de repos avec expectative et créativité, en accueillant la possibilité d’adorer Dieu et de faire quelque chose qui nourrit notre âme, selon nos préférences. Certains opteront pour des jeux et d’autres pour le jardinage, le partage d’un repas avec des amis ou en famille, ou encore une sieste en après‑midi.

Comment redécouvrir la beauté et la richesse de la mise à part d’un jour de congé, s’il fait défaut à notre vie ?

Dans la foi et le service, le repos compte autant que le travail.

Хліб Наш Насущній - День відпочинку
Читати: Вихід 23:10-13
Біблія за рік: Йова 36−37 ; Дії 15:22-41

Шість день будеш робити діла свої, а сьомого дня спочинеш. — Вихід 23:12

Однієї неділі я стояла біля струмочка, що торує свій звивистий шлях через південну частину Лондона, милуючись тієї красою, що він створює серед купи будівель. Я відпочивала душею, дивлячись на маленькі водоспади і слухаючи пташиний спів. Потім подякувала Господу за те, як Він допомагає нам знаходити хвилини й місця, щоб спочити і тілом, і духом.

Ще у старозавітні часи Господь встановив для ізраїльського народу суботу − час для спочинку й відновлення, тому що бажав йому процвітання. Читаючи Книгу Вихід, ми дізнаємося про Боже веління ізраїльтянам засіювати поля протягом шести років, а на сьомий рік давати землі спочити. Господь Бог встановив для Свого народу такий спосіб життя, що відрізняв його від інших націй. І це стосувалось не лише євреїв, але й чужинців та рабів, що жили серед них.

Ми можемо проводити свій день спочинку творчо, з натхненням, радіючи можливості поклонятися Богу і робити те, що живить наші душі, згідно з нашими уподобаннями. Деякі полюбляють грати в ігри, гуляти в саду, обідати разом з членами родини або друзями, або просто дрімати після обіду.

Подумайте, як можна заново відкрити для себе красу й багатство особливого дня спочинку, якщо раніше часто забували про нього?
Господи Боже, в Тобі ми знаходимо спочинок. Дякуємо за те, що створив нас для праці і для відпочинку. Допоможи, будь ласка, знаходити правильний ритм життя.
У вірі і служінні відпочинок так само важливий, як і праця.

© 2017 Хліб Наш Насущній

Хлеб наш насущный - День покоя
Читать сейчас: Исход 23:10-13
Библия за год: Иов 36–37; Деяния 15:22-41

Шесть дней делай дела твои, а в седьмой день покойся. — Исход 23:12

Однажды в воскресенье я стояла у журчащего ручья, протекающего через наш район на севере Лондона, и наслаждалась красотой, которую он привнес в плотно застроенную местность. Глядя на текущую по камням воду и слушая пение птиц, я радовалась жизни и благодарила Господа за то, что Он помогает обрести душевный покой.

В ветхозаветные времена Бог учредил для Своего народа субботу – время покоя и обновления. Как видно из книги Исход, Он повелел израильтянам засевать поля шесть лет, а в седьмой дать земле отдохнуть. То же касалось работы в шесть дней и покоя в седьмой. Такой образ жизни отличал Израиль от других народов. При этом не только они сами, но и иностранцы и рабы в их домах должны были следовать этим установлениям.

Мы можем подходить к дню покоя с ожиданием и фантазией, радуясь возможности прославить Бога и напитать свою душу. Кроме того, отдых можно обустроить согласно нашим предпочтениям. Одним нравится играть в игры, другим гулять на природе, третьим собираться с родными и друзьями за обеденным столом. А кому-то и просто поспать.

Как мы можем вновь открыть для себя красоту и благословение особого дня покоя, если раньше не уделяли ему внимания?
Господь Бог, в Тебе мы обретаем покой. Благодарим, что Ты создал нас и для труда, и для покоя. Помоги нам найти правильный ритм жизни.
В вере и служении отдых так же важен, как и труд.