Saturday, July 22, 2017

The Daily Readings for SATURDAY, July 22, 2017

Saint Mary Magdalene, Head hands and feet | photo by Simon Webster

Opening Sentence

Their sound has gone out into all lands, and their message to the ends of the world. Psalm 19:4

Morning Prayer
O Lord our God, most mighty and merciful father, I, your unworthy creation and servant, once more approach your presence. Though not worthy to appear before you, because of the many sins and transgressions which I have committed against your divine majesty; yet I pray you, for the sake of him in whom you are well pleased, the Lord Jesus Christ, to let me give you thanks and praise for your many and varied mercies extended toward me, for the quiet rest and repose of the past night, for food, clothing, health, peace, liberty, and the hopes of a better life through the merits of your dear son's bitter passion.

And O kind Father, continue your mercy and favor to me this day, and always; give resolution to all my lawful undertakings; let me have all my directions from your Holy Spirit; and success from your bountiful hand. Let the bright beams of your light so shine into my heart, and enlighten my mind in understanding your blessed word, that I may be enabled to perform your will in all things, and effectively resist all temptations of the world, the flesh and the devil. Preserve and defend our rulers in church and state. Bless the people of this land, be a father to the fatherless, a comforter to the comfortless, a deliverer to the captives, and a physician to the sick. Let your blessings guide me and all of us, this day and forever, through Jesus Christ, in whose name I pray. Amen.
~ George Washington

Prayer of Confession and Pardon
Almighty and most merciful Father, we have erred and strayed from Your ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against Your holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; and we have done those things which we ought not to have done; and there is nothing good in us. O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore those who are penitent; according to Your promises declared unto men in Christ Jesus our Lord. Grant that we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life; to the glory of His name. Amen

Today's Readings

The First Reading is taken from Judith 9:1, 11-14
Then Judith prostrated herself, put ashes on her head, and uncovered the sackcloth she was wearing. At the very time when the evening incense was being offered in the house of God in Jerusalem, Judith cried out to the Lord with a loud voice, and said, "For your strength does not depend on numbers, nor your might on the powerful. But you are the God of the lowly, helper of the oppressed, upholder of the weak, protector of the forsaken, savior of those without hope. Please, please, God of my father, God of the heritage of Israel, Lord of heaven and earth, Creator of the waters, King of all your creation, hear my prayer! Make my deceitful words bring wound and bruise on those who have planned cruel things against your covenant, and against your sacred house, and against Mount Zion, and against the house your children possess. Let your whole nation and every tribe know and understand that you are God, the God of all power and might, and that there is no other who protects the people of Israel but you alone!"
Psalm 42:1-7
1   As the deer longs for the water-brooks, so longs my soul for you, O God.
2   My soul is athirst for God, athirst for the living God; when shall I come to appear before the presence of God?
3   My tears have been my food day and night, while all day long they say to me, "Where now is your God?"
4   I pour out my soul when I think on these things; how I went with the multitude and led them into the house of God,
5   With the voice of praise and thanksgiving, among those who keep holy-day.
6   Why are you so full of heaviness, O my soul? and why are you so disquieted within me?
7   Put your trust in God; for I will yet give thanks to him, who is the help of my countenance, and my God.

The Second Reading is taken from 2 Corinthians 5:14-18
For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died. And he died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died and was raised for them. From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way. So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation;

The Holy Gospel is written in John 20:11-18
But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. They said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?" She said to them, "They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him." When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?" Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away." Jesus said to her, "Mary!" She turned and said to him in Hebrew, "Rabbouni!" (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, "Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, 'I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'" Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord" and she told them that he had said these things to her.

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, whose blessed Son restored Mary Magdalene to health of body and of mind, and called her to be a witness of his resurrection: Mercifully grant that by your grace we may be healed from all our infirmities and know you in the power of his unending life; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

A Prayer for Saturdays
Almighty God, who after the creation of the world rested from all your works and sanctified a day of rest for all your creatures: Grant that we, putting away all earthly anxieties, may be duly prepared for the service of your sanctuary, and that our rest here upon earth may be a preparation for the eternal rest promised to your people in heaven; through Jesus Christ our Lord. 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.

Reach Out To Jesus
Elvis Presley
Is your burden heavy as you bear it all alone?
Does the road you travel, harbor dangers yet unknown?
Are you growin' weary in the struggle of it all?
Jesus will help you with all his name you call.

He's always there hearing every prayer, faithful and true
Walking by our side, in his love we hide all the day through
When you get discouraged just remember what to do
Reach out to Jesus, he's reaching out to you.

Is the life you're living filled with sorrow and despair?
Does the future press you with its worry and its scare?
Are you tired and jealous, have you almost your way?
Jesus will help you, just talk to him today.

words & music by Ralph Carmichael

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

Closing Prayer
The blessing of the Lord rest and remain upon all his people, in every land, of every tongue; the Lord meet in mercy all that seek him; the Lord comfort all who suffer and mourn; the Lord hasten his coming, and give us, his people, the blessing of peace, this day and always. 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.

Mary Magdalene

Today the church remembers Saint Mary Magdalene.

Mary of Magdala (Magdalene) was one of several people of ill repute whose lives were radically changed by Jesus. The scriptures are not explicit about the nature of her many sins, but it is made clear in the gospels that Jesus gave her the will and power to abandon them. Nevertheless, the authorities were not impressed, and Jesus seems to have been criticized for keeping company with such people.

Tradition has held that Mary of Magdala was a very emotional person and our English word "maudlin" derives from her name. She followed Jesus into Galilee and helped care for him and the disciples there. She witnessed the Lord's suffering on the cross. She took oil to anoint his entombed body and therefore she is often represented with a jar of ointment. Her tearful reaction on finding an empty tomb is still a favorite line to many faithful, "They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him" (John 20:13). When the Lord appeared and called her name, "Mary," she recognized him and exclaimed, "Teacher!" She was the first to see the risen Lord.

Help us to recognize Jesus when we meet him, that we may proclaim the Good News of his eternal life to the world. Amen.

Read the Wikipedia article here.

Almighty God, whose blessed Son restored Mary Magdalene to health of body and of mind, and called her to be a witness of his resurrection: Mercifully grant that by your grace we may be healed from all our infirmities and know you in the power of his unending life; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Prayer of the Day for SATURDAY, July 22, 2017

Almighty God, whose blessed Son restored Mary Magdalene to health of body and of mind, and called her to be a witness of his resurrection: Mercifully grant that by your grace we may be healed from all our infirmities and know you in the power of his unending life; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Verse of the Day for SATURDAY, July 22, 2017

Matthew 16:15-16 (NIV) “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

Read all of Matthew 16

Listen to Matthew 16

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 - Rotation

For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able, to keep that which I’ve committed to Him against that day.

~ 2 Timothy 1:12 (KJV)

In the morning we say, “The sun came up,” but in truth, it did not come up, the earth just rotated. We learn this lesson when we are children. It takes 365.25 days for the earth to rotate around the sun.

The sun itself, has rotation. Different than a solid, but as a gas, the inner core of the sun rotates at a different rate than the exterior, and the equator region rotates different than the poles. Also, our entire solar system, rotates around the Milky Way, which also has some kind of a central core. It takes our solar system approximately 225-250 million terrestrial years to make a full rotation around that galaxy.

Then the galaxy also rotates. It is as if God took His finger and stirred all things up, and they are still spinning. Some may say that is such a simplistic way of putting it, but since I believe that God is the creator of the universe, my faith is that He is capable of doing anything.

When we stir a pot of water, even after we remove the spoon, the water continues to spin. The Bible tells of the day when stars will fall. Is that the time when His motion He put in order, will stop its reaction as He planned? In Matthew 24:29, Jesus said, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun will be darkened, the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.”

The definition of rotate is: Movement in a circle around a central axis. Our central, personal axis should be around God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit; all one. If we let Him be the central axis, that He already is (whether we admit it or not), everything else will come into order, and we will never need to have fear of the day the stars fall.

Our love for others will show, because we are rotating around Love. Our vision will be more focused, because we rotate around Light. Our work will be productive, because we are rotating around Strength. Our minds will be sharp as we rotated around Knowledge. Our anxieties will abate as we rotate around Peace. Our sins will be erased as we rotate around Forgiveness through Jesus. Our life will continue as we live in the pull of His rotation of everlasting Life.

God is all these things. He is Love, Light, Strength, Knowledge, Peace, Victor, and Life. When we devote ourselves to rotate around Him, making our full existence on the central axis; Jesus, He will keep what we have committed to Him, for all eternity.
Dear Lord, Thank you for being our central axis. Help us to acknowledge that. Through Jesus we pray, Amen
In Jesus,
Cap'n Kenny

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Scripture taken from The Holy Bible,  King James Version (KJV) Public Domain

Un Dia a la Vez - No dependas del hombre

Es mejor refugiarse en el Señor que confiar en el hombre.
~ Salmo 118:8 (NVI)

¿Te has dado cuenta de las muchas veces que en tu vida te has puesto en la posición de «depender» de alguien? Quizá en tu trabajo dependas de alguien. Es obvio que no me refiero a que no respetes a los que están en autoridad. Claro que hay que respetarlos. De lo que hablo es de que tu vida gire en torno a esa persona, que des por sentado que nunca te va a fallar y que confíes más en ella que en Dios, por ejemplo. ¿Sabes que pasa con eso? Lo que pasa es que cuando te falla esa persona que es tan humana como tú, la desilusión es grande y tu dependencia se va al piso.

Para que no sufras es mejor que no dependas de nadie. Así que aprende a depender de manera exclusiva de Dios. Quizá te preguntes: «¿Y cómo lo logro?».

Primero, pídele perdón a Dios en oración por no haberlo puesto a Él ante todo en tu vida. Segundo, pídele que te ayude a fin de que puedas ponerlo en práctica. Tercero, solo dale la oportunidad a Dios que te sorprenda. Él, que es amor, te demostrará con muchos detalles que se preocupa por tu bienestar. Por último, lee la Palabra. Allí encontrarás muchas promesas que, cuando las analices, serás capaz de ver que Él sí ha estado dispuesto a bendecirte.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón

Standing Strong Through the Storm - THE VALUE OF SALT

Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

At the end of His Beatitudes, Jesus stated that His followers were to be salt and light in the world. Salt was highly valued in the ancient world for four special qualities:
  1. Its purity - glistening white and coming from the sun and the sea, it was the most primitive of all offerings to the gods. If we are to be salt, we must be an example of purity. In the world, efforts to lower standards of honesty, diligence in work, conscientiousness and morality are going on all the time. The Christian must be the person who holds aloft the standard for purity of speech, conduct and thought. Words cannot be effective unless backed up by pure living.

  2. It was inexpensive but precious - Christians may seem few, insignificant and of no consequence to society. In 1 Corinthians 1:26-31, Paul addressed the early church with the concept that though few in numbers, lowly and unimportant, Christians are called to exercise godly influence over the whole of society.

  3. As a preservative to keep meat from going bad - salt rubbed into meat slowed the rotting process. Christians whose lives exhibit “blessedness” will have a preserving impact upon a society that, if left to itself, will rot and deteriorate. In Judges 9:45, Abimelech, after defeating the city of Shechem destroyed it and scattered salt all over it. Spiritually, this is what the Christian does when he takes his stand for God in society. He makes that society, be it his friends in school, his fellow students at college, his co-workers, or those with whom he plays sports, less fertile soil for other ungodly influences. We too can have a preserving witness, by being involved with this world gone wrong, if we will pay the price.

  4. To season food - salt brings out the distinctive flavor of food. The increase of God’s people should increase the flavor of life in many different ways. By His very presence, Jesus raised the spirits of people. There was a quality about His life that could not be explained in natural terms. As our verse for today says, our speech especially should be seasoned with salt. In this context Paul also talks about not grieving the Holy Spirit. Since speech is linked to a person’s spiritual state and has tremendous potential for building up or tearing down (James3:3-12), the constant reminder is to watch not only what is allowed to come forth but how it comes.
By our presence, participation and penetration of society, in our daily contacts in our neighborhood and community, we are to bring the flavor of Christ to an unbelieving world.

RESPONSE: Today I will check my conversation and be sure I season it with the salt of purity.

PRAYER: Lord, forgive me when I grieve Your Holy Spirit by what I do and what I say and how I say it.

NIV Devotions for Couples - Halting Marital Drift

2 Corinthians 9:6–15

Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

In a recent Marriage Partnership article, author David Goetz talked about “marital drift.” He said that in our busy age, we schedule time for everything and everybody, and as a result, we neglect our spouses. Before we know it, we’ve drifted so far apart that the person we share our bed with no longer shares our life.

“The pursuit of marriage needs to be intentional,” Goetz said, “because if you default to the values of our culture, you’ll pursue the sprawling house, the great body, the accomplished kids. But you’ll let your marriage drift.”

Goetz said that passivity—not taking initiative in marriage—is a spiritual issue. Its core is me-centered. When I’m pursuing other interests and not actively pursuing my spouse’s interests, I’m putting my needs first.

“That’s a spiritually dangerous and crippling place to be,” Goetz said.

Although 2 Corinthians 9 deals with attitudes about giving money, the general principle can also apply to giving ourselves—our time, energy, attention, focus, even our bodies—in sexual intimacy and friendship. If I hold back any of these from my spouse, I put our relationship at risk.

When it comes to giving, the apostle Paul made three points:

1. Decide beforehand. Drifting comes naturally. It’s easy to slide into a pattern of relational laziness. When my husband and I hit a rough patch of arguing and disagreement, it’s much simpler to sit in front of the TV and zone out. But if I decide beforehand to attend to my spouse and his needs because it glorifies God to do so, then I will reap the benefits of doing what’s right.

2. Don’t give out of guilt or obligation. Guilt is a poor motivator. It may initially spur me to action, but eventually it will turn into resentment. If my heart is not in my decision, I need to ask God to change my heart.

3. Do it cheerfully. When I decide in my heart that my spouse is my priority and the one whom God has given me to serve, then I won’t be reluctant to give myself to him. The more I give—depending on God to meet all my needs (see Philippians 4:19)—the more cheerful I become. God loves a cheerful giver, and so does my spouse.

A marriage that is fulfilling is a marriage that is not passive, Goetz said. It’s “always initiating, as God always initiates with us, always loving even when it’s not easy.”

Nancy Kennedy

Let’s Talk
  • What are ways that we already give to each other?
  • What are ways that we, as a couple, can give to others besides ourselves?
  • If our marriage has suffered from marital drift, what are some things we can do to halt that?

LHM Daily Devotion - July 22, 2017 "Take It Down"

Some years ago, the pastor of a North Carolina Catholic Church placed an...

Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Pastor Ken Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour

"Take It Down"

July 22, 2017

But we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

Some years ago, the pastor of a North Carolina Catholic Church placed an array of Lenten crosses on the front lawn of his little congregation.

It wasn't long before he received a call from the Chamber of Commerce. He was told, "Look Father, we're getting complaints about those crosses in your churchyard. When they are inside the church nobody cares, but out front, where everybody can see them, those crosses are offensive. The retired people don't like them; they find them depressing. The tourists probably won't like your display either. It'll be bad for business. People come down here to get happy, not depressed. Father, speaking for many in the community, we would all very much like to see those crosses be put away, so they no longer offend."

For any number of reasons, the world doesn't want anyone to hear about the cross of Christ.

For one reason, the Lord wants His Good News to be shared. The reason we need to speak of the cross is because it was God's method which saves sinners. That's you. It's me. Actually, it's everybody. Jesus was born to save sinners. He suffered for sinners. He died on the cross for sinners. He rose for sinners. And now the risen Redeemer sends His Holy Spirit to rescue sinners.

And you, my friend, are a sinner.

To which you may reply, "That's good news?"

And I say, oh, yes. It is the best news you will ever hear. It's Good News because the message of the empty cross and tomb says that we are going to be made well.

It's just that simple. God has a cure for what ails you. It is a cure that will change your life.

• Have you been searching for something you can rely on? The love of Jesus -- His presence, His concern, His care, His power -- will always be there (see Matthew 28:20).
• Have you been lonely? There is nowhere you can go where you can ever be separated from the love of God, which comes to you in Christ Jesus (see Romans 8:35-39).
• Have people let you down? Jesus Christ will always lift you up (see James 4:10).
• Has your life been a fiasco of falsity and foolishness? Jesus has come so you might have life, and have it to the full (see John 10:10).

With nail-pierced hands, Jesus reaches out to you. Along with forgiveness and salvation, He offers the peace that passes human understanding.(Philippians 4:7).

The cross is God's medicine that will wash your soul from every spot and stain. No matter what's gone wrong, no matter how bad a sinner you've been, by God's power -- through His Son -- you can be made well. This is God's Good News which says you no longer have to be what you were. It's God's Good News which says your cure can be complete. And that, my friends, like those crosses, is a message that should never be taken down.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, may Your church proudly proclaim to a sinful world the salvation that only comes through the cross of Christ. If we boast, let us boast in what You have done to save us. This I ask in Jesus' 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 - “I’m Really Scared . . .”

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6

“I’m really scared.” This was the poignant note a teenager posted to friends on Facebook as she told them of some upcoming medical tests. She was facing hospitalization and a series of procedures in a city three hours from home and anxiously waited as doctors tried to discover the source of some serious medical problems she was experiencing.

Who of us, in youth or later years, has not felt similar fears when facing unwanted life events that are truly frightening? And where can we turn for help? What comfort can we find from Scripture to give us courage in these kinds of situations?

The reality that God will go with us through our trial can help us to hope. Isaiah 41:13 tells us, “For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, ‘Do not fear; I will help you.’ ”

In addition, God offers indescribable, heart-guarding peace when we present our difficulties to Him in prayer (Phil. 4:6–7).

Through God’s unfailing presence and His peace that “transcends all understanding” (v. 7), we can find the hope and help we need to endure situations in which we are really scared.

Dear heavenly Father, when I am afraid, remind me that You hold my hand and give me peace. I’m grateful that I can lean into Your arms and find help when I’m scared. You are good to me.

God is with us in all our struggles.

Ministérios Pão Diário - Instintos
Leia: Salmo 32
A Bíblia em um ano: Salmos 31–32, Atos 23:16-35

É perigoso voar em meio às tempestades. A tentação é de voar seguindo os nossos instintos, como parecer melhor. Mas qualquer piloto afirma que sem habilidade isso é um convite ao desastre. Se você confiar em seus instintos, se desorientará achando que o avião está subindo quando ele estiver descendo. Felizmente, o painel de controle está ajustado para o polo norte magnético e podemos confiar nele em todo o tempo. Deixar que esses instrumentos o guiem, mesmo quando parecerem errados, ajuda a garantir sua segurança.

Todos nós enfrentamos tempestades que ameaçam nos confundir e desorientar. Pode ser um telefonema do consultório do médico, um amigo que o traiu ou um sonho despedaçado. Nesses momentos devemos ser cuidadosos. Quando você perder a visão por causa de decepções, não confie em seus instintos. Voar por instinto nas tempestades da vida pode conduzir ao desespero, confusão e reações vingativas que pioram as coisas ainda mais.

Deus quer guiá-lo, e Sua Palavra está repleta de sabedoria e discernimento para se viver. O salmista diz: “Lâmpada para os meus pés é a tua palavra e, luz para os meus caminhos” (Salmo 119:105). Ele sempre nos conduz para o lugar certo!

Leia a sua Bíblia e confie que Deus o guiará. Ele promete: “Instruir-te-ei e te ensinarei o caminho que deves seguir…” (Salmo 32:8).

Quanto mais próximos de Deus caminharmos, mais claramente veremos a Sua orientação.

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - “Tôi Thực Sự Sợ Hãi…”
Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: Thi thiên 31-32; Công vụ 23:16-35

Đừng lo lắng gì cả, nhưng trong mọi sự hãy dùng lời cầu nguyện, nài xin cùng sự tạ ơn mà trình dâng những nhu cầu của mình cho Đức Chúa Trời. Phi-líp 4:6

“Mình thực sự sợ hãi.” Đây là dòng trạng thái cảm động mà một thiếu niên gửi cho bạn bè trên Facebook khi cô bé kể về một số xét nghiệm y khoa sắp tới. Cô bé đang ở bệnh viện để thực hiện một loạt thủ tục tại một thành phố cách nhà ba giờ lái xe và lo lắng chờ đợi khi các bác sĩ cố tìm ra nguyên nhân của một số vấn đề sức khỏe nghiêm trọng mà cô bé đang gặp phải.

Ai trong chúng ta, suốt thời niên thiếu hay những năm sau đó, không cảm thấy những nỗi sợ hãi tương tự khi đối diện với các sự kiện không mong muốn và thực sự đáng sợ trong đời? Và chúng ta có thể cầu cứu ở nơi đâu? Chúng ta có thể tìm thấy sự an ủi nào từ Kinh Thánh để can đảm trong những tình huống đó?

Chúa sẽ đi cùng chúng ta qua những khó khăn trong đời. Lẽ thật đó có thể tiếp thêm niềm hy vọng cho chúng ta. Ê-sai 41:13 cho biết: “Vì Ta là Giê-hô-va Đức Chúa Trời của con, Đấng nắm giữ tay phải con và phán với con rằng: ‘Đừng sợ, chính Ta sẽ giúp đỡ con.’”

Bên cạnh đó, Chúa còn ban sự bình an vượt quá sự hiểu biết, gìn giữ tấm lòng chúng ta khi chúng ta trình dâng những khó khăn của mình cho Ngài trong sự cầu nguyện (Phil. 4:6-7).

Nhờ sự hiện diện liên tục của Chúa và sự bình an “vượt trên mọi sự hiểu biết” của Ngài (c.7), chúng ta có thể tìm thấy hy vọng và sự giúp đỡ cần thiết để vượt qua những tình huống khiến chúng ta thực sự sợ hãi.

Lạy Cha, khi con sợ hãi, xin nhắc nhở con nhớ rằng Ngài đang nắm tay con và ban bình an cho con. Con biết ơn Ngài vì có thể nương dựa vào cánh tay Ngài và tìm được sự giúp đỡ khi con sợ hãi. Ngài thật tốt lành với con.

Chúa ở cùng chúng ta trong mọi nan đề.

Nuestro Pan Diario - «Tengo mucho miedo»
La Biblia en un año: Salmos 31–32; Hechos 23:16-35

Por nada estéis afanosos, sino sean conocidas vuestras peticiones delante de Dios… (v. 6).

«Tengo mucho miedo». Esta fue la nota conmovedora que una adolescente publicó en Facebook después de comunicarles a sus amigos que se realizaría unos exámenes médicos. La hospitalizarían y le harían una serie de estudios en una ciudad a tres horas de distancia de su casa, y, ansiosa, esperaba que los doctores descubrieran la causa de algunos problemas serios que tenía.

¿Quién, en la juventud o después, no ha sentido temores similares frente a sucesos indeseables y temibles? ¿Dónde podemos buscar ayuda? ¿Qué consuelo podemos encontrar en la Escritura que nos anime en esta clase de situaciones?

La realidad de que Dios nos acompaña en las pruebas puede ayudarnos a esperar. Isaías 41:13 declara: «Porque yo el Señor soy tu Dios, quien te sostiene de tu mano derecha, y te dice: No temas, yo te ayudo».

Además, Dios ofrece una paz indescriptible y que protege nuestro corazón cuando le presentamos nuestras dificultades en oración (Filipenses 4:6-7).

A través de la presencia incondicional de Dios y de su paz «que sobrepasa todo entendimiento» (v. 7), podemos encontrar la esperanza y la ayuda que necesitamos para sobrellevar situaciones que nos producen temor.

Padre, gracias porque puedo apoyarme en tus brazos y encontrar ayuda cuando tengo miedo.

Dios está con nosotros en todas nuestras luchas.

Unser Täglich Brot - Ich habe Angst

Sorgt euch um nichts, sondern in allen Dingen lasst eure Bitten in Gebet und Flehen mit Danksagung vor Gott kundwerden! Philipper 4,6

„Ich habe Angst.“ Das postete ein Teenager ihren Freunden auf Facebook. Sie sollte für einige Untersuchungen in ein Krankenhaus drei Stunden von Zuhause weg, wo die Ärzte herausfinden wollten, was mit ihrer Gesundheit los war.

Wer von uns, ob jung oder älter, hat nicht schon ähnlich empfunden, wenn unliebsame Ereignisse uns wirklich Angst gemacht haben? Und wo können wir Hilfe finden? Welchen Trost kann uns die Bibel bieten, wie kann sie uns in ähnlichen Situationen Mut spenden?

Die Tatsache, dass Gott auch durch schwierige Zeiten mit uns geht, kann uns Hoffnung schenken. In Jesaja 41,13 heißt es: „Denn ich bin der Herr, dein Gott, der deine rechte Hand fasst und zu dir spricht: Fürchte dich nicht, ich helfe dir!“

Außerdem schenkt Gott uns unbeschreiblichen Frieden und bewahrt unser Herz, wenn wir ihm im Gebet unsere Nöte bringen (Phil. 4,6-7).

Durch Gottes unwandelbare Gegenwart und seinen Frieden, „der höher ist als alle Vernunft“ (V.7). können wir die Hoffnung und Hilfe finden, die wir brauchen, um auch mit den Situationen fertig zu werden, die uns wirklich Angst machen.

Lieber himmlischer Vater, wenn ich Angst habe, dann lass mich nicht vergessen, dass du meine Hand hältst und mir Frieden gibst. Ich danke dir, dass ich mich in deine Arme fallen lassen kann. Du bist so gut zu mir.

Gott ist in allen Schwierigkeiten bei uns.

Notre Pain Quotidien - « J’ai vraiment peur… »
Lisez : Philippiens 4.4‑9
La Bible en un an : PSAUMES 31 – 32 et ACTES 23.16‑35

Ne vous inquiétez de rien ; mais en toute chose faites connaître vos besoins à Dieu par des prières et des supplications, avec des actions de grâces. V. 6

« J’ai vraiment peur. » Voilà le mot émouvant qu’une adolescente a affiché pour ses amis sur Facebook en leur parlant des examens médicaux qu’elle allait devoir passer. Elle risquait d’être hospitalisée et de subir une série d’actes médicaux dans une ville située à trois heures de route de chez elle. Par ailleurs, elle attendait avec angoisse de connaître le diagnostic que lui rendraient les médecins qui s’efforçaient de découvrir la source de ses graves problèmes de santé.

Qui d’entre vous, jeune ou vieux, n’a jamais ressenti de peur similaire devant des événements indésirables vraiment affolants ? Et où trouver alors de l’aide ? Quelle consolation puiser dans la Bible qui nous procure le courage de les surmonter ?

Le fait que Dieu traversera avec nous toute épreuve peut nourrir notre espoir, conformément à Ésaïe 41.13 : « Car je suis l’Éternel, ton Dieu, qui fortifie ta droite, qui te dis : Ne crains rien, je viens à ton secours. »

De plus, lorsque nous présentons nos difficultés à Dieu par la prière, il nous offre une paix indescriptible qui gardera notre coeur (PH 4.6,7).

Grâce à la présence de Dieu, ainsi que sa paix infaillible « qui surpasse toute intelligence » (V. 7), nous pouvons trouver l’espoir et l’aide qui nous sont nécessaires pour surmonter les situations qui nous effraient.

Dieu se tient à nos côtés dans toutes nos épreuves.

Хліб Наш Насущній - Мені справді страшно
Біблія за рік: Псалми 31−32 ; Дії 23:16-35

Ні про що не турбуйтесь, а в усьому нехай виявляються Богові ваші бажання молитвою й проханням з подякою. — Филип’ян 4:6

“Мені справді страшно”. Ці зворушливі слова дівчинка-підліток написала у соціальній мережі Facebook своїм друзям, коли розказувала їм про свої проблеми зі здоров’ям. Вона чекала на госпіталізацію в лікарні, що знаходиться за три години їзди від дому. Їй потрібно пройти обстеження і вона з тривогою чекає, що скажуть лікарі про причину її серйозних проблем зі здоров’ям.

Хто з нас, незалежно від віку, не відчував подібного страху в часи серйозних неприємностей – таких, що дійсно можуть налякати? І до кого можемо звернутись за допомогою у такі моменти? Яку втіху можемо знайти у Святому Письмі, щоб мати підбадьорення і мужність у подібних ситуаціях?

Велику надію в часи випробувань дарує нам реальність Божої присутності. В Книзі пророка Ісаї читаємо наступні слова: “Бо Я Господь, Бог твій, що держить тебе за правицю й говорить до тебе: Не бійся, Я тобі поможу!”(Іс. 41:13). Крім того, Бог пропонує Свій мир, що “вищий від усякого розуму” і береже серця наші та наші думки у Христі Ісусі, коли ми в молитві приносимо свої проблеми Богу (Фил. 4:6-7).

Завдяки незмінній Божій присутності й миру, яким Він сповняє наші серця, можемо дійсно мати надію і поміч, яких потребуємо для проходження через випробування, що так лякають нас.

Дорогий Небесний Отче, коли я наляканий, нагадуй мені, що Ти тримаєш мене за праву руку; сповняй моє серце Твоїм миром. Я дуже вдячний за те, що в страшні моменти можу пригорнутись до Тебе й отримати поміч. Дякую, що Ти такий благий до мене.

Бог із нами в усіх наших проблемах.

Хлеб наш насущный - Реально страшно
Читать сейчас: Филиппийцам 4:4-9

Не заботьтесь ни о чем, но всегда в молитве и прошении с благодарением открывайте свои желания пред Богом. — Филиппийцам 4:6

«Мне реально страшно». Такое сообщение разместила девочка-подросток в социальной сети Facebook. Она писала друзьям, что ей предстоит сдать ряд анализов, для чего нужно лечь в больницу в трех часах езды на автомобиле. Она с тревогой ждала заключения врачей по поводу возникших у нее серьезных проблем со здоровьем.

Кто из нас, в юности или будучи взрослым, не испытывал похожих страхов, встречаясь с неожиданными и иногда действительно страшными явлениями? Куда обратиться за помощью? Какое утешение можно найти в Библии, чтобы стать смелее в подобных обстоятельствах?
Истина заключается в том, что Бог пойдет с нами через все испытания. Через пророка Исаию Он говорит: «Я Господь, Бог твой, держу тебя за правую руку твою, говорю тебе: “Не бойся, Я помогаю тебе”» (Ис. 41:13).

В дополнение к этому Бог дарует неизреченный, хранящий сердце мир, если мы приносим свои переживания к Нему в молитве (Флп. 4:6-7).

Благодаря неизменному Божьему присутствию и Его миру, «который превыше всякого ума» (Флп. 4:7), мы можем получить надежду и помощь, чтобы пройти через любые, даже самые страшные, испытания.

Отец Небесный, когда мне страшно, напомни сердцу, что Ты держишь меня за руку и даешь мир. Я благодарю, что могу успокоиться в Твоих руках и найти поддержку среди любых страхов. Ты так благ ко мне.

Бог с нами во всех переживаниях.

© 2017 Хлеб Наш Насущный