Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The Daily Readings for WEDNESDAY, September 13, 2017

Imitating Christ’s Humility
Opening Sentence
Send out your light and your truth, that they may lead me, and bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling.
~ Psalm 43:3

Confession of Sin

Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.
Gracious God, our sins are too heavy to carry, too real to hide, and too deep to undo. Forgive what our lips tremble to name, what our hearts can no longer bear, and what has become for us a consuming fire of judgment. Set us free from a past that we cannot change; open to us a future in which we can be changed; and grant us grace to grow more and more in your likeness and image, through Jesus Christ, the light of the world. Amen.

Morning Prayer
I rise today with the power of God to pilot me,
God's strength to sustain me,
God's wisdom to guide me,
God's eye to look ahead for me,
God's ear to hear me,
God's word to speak for me,
God's hand to protect me,
God's way before me,
God's shield to defend me,
God's host to deliver me,
from snares of devils,
from evil temptations,
from nature's failings,
from all who wish to harm me,
far or near,
alone and in a crowd.

~ 8th century Irish prayer

Today's Readings

The First Reading is taken from 1 Kings 17:1-24
[Elijah Predicts a Drought] Now Elijah the Tishbite, of Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, "As the LORD the God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by my word." The word of the LORD came to him, saying, "Go from here and turn eastward, and hide yourself by the Wadi Cherith, which is east of the Jordan. You shall drink from the wadi, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there." So he went and did according to the word of the LORD; he went and lived by the Wadi Cherith, which is east of the Jordan. The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening; and he drank from the wadi. But after a while the wadi dried up, because there was no rain in the land.
[The Widow of Zarephath] Then the word of the LORD came to him, saying, "Go now to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and live there; for I have commanded a widow there to feed you." So he set out and went to Zarephath. When he came to the gate of the town, a widow was there gathering sticks; he called to her and said, "Bring me a little water in a vessel, so that I may drink." As she was going to bring it, he called to her and said, "Bring me a morsel of bread in your hand." But she said, "As the LORD your God lives, I have nothing baked, only a handful of meal in a jar, and a little oil in a jug; I am now gathering a couple of sticks, so that I may go home and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die." Elijah said to her, "Do not be afraid; go and do as you have said; but first make me a little cake of it and bring it to me, and afterwards make something for yourself and your son. For thus says the LORD the God of Israel: The jar of meal will not be emptied and the jug of oil will not fail until the day that the LORD sends rain on the earth." She went and did as Elijah said, so that she as well as he and her household ate for many days. The jar of meal was not emptied, neither did the jug of oil fail, according to the word of the LORD that he spoke by Elijah.
[Elijah Revives the Widow’s Son] After this the son of the woman, the mistress of the house, became ill; his illness was so severe that there was no breath left in him. She then said to Elijah, "What have you against me, O man of God? You have come to me to bring my sin to remembrance, and to cause the death of my son!" But he said to her, "Give me your son." He took him from her bosom, carried him up into the upper chamber where he was lodging, and laid him on his own bed. He cried out to the LORD, "O LORD my God, have you brought calamity even upon the widow with whom I am staying, by killing her son?" Then he stretched himself upon the child three times, and cried out to the LORD, "O LORD my God, let this child's life come into him again." The LORD listened to the voice of Elijah; the life of the child came into him again, and he revived. Elijah took the child, brought him down from the upper chamber into the house, and gave him to his mother; then Elijah said, "See, your son is alive." So the woman said to Elijah, "Now I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of the LORD in your mouth is truth."

The Second Reading is taken from Philippians 2:1-11
[Imitating Christ’s Humility] If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death-- even death on a cross. Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

The Holy Gospel is written in Matthew 2:1-12
[The Visit of the Wise Men] In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, asking, "Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage." When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. They told him, "In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet: 'And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who is to shepherd my people Israel.'" Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, "Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage." When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road.

Morning Psalms
Psalm 119:49-56 Zayin Memor esto verbi tui
49   Remember your word to your servant, because you have given me hope.
50   This is my comfort in my trouble, that your promise gives me life.
51   The proud have derided me cruelly, but I have not turned from your law.
52   When I remember your judgments of old, O LORD, I take great comfort.
53   I am filled with a burning rage, because of the wicked who forsake your law.
54   Your statutes have been like songs to me wherever I have lived as a stranger.
55   I remember your Name in the night, O LORD, and dwell upon your law.
56   This is how it has been with me, because I have kept your commandments.

Psalm 119:57-64 Heth Portio mea, Domine
57   You only are my portion, O LORD; I have promised to keep your words.
58   I entreat you with all my heart, be merciful to me according to your promise.
59   I have considered my ways and turned my feet toward your decrees.
60   I hasten and do not tarry to keep your commandments.
61   Though the cords of the wicked entangle me, I do not forget your law.
62   At midnight I will rise to give you thanks, because of your righteous judgments.
63   I am a companion of all who fear you and of those who keep your commandments.
64   The earth, O LORD, is full of your love; instruct me in your statutes.

Psalm 119:65-72 Teth Bonitatem fecisti
65   O LORD, you have dealt graciously with your servant, according to your word.
66   Teach me discernment and knowledge, for I have believed in your commandments.
67   Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep your word.
68   You are good and you bring forth good; instruct me in your statutes.
69   The proud have smeared me with lies, but I will keep your commandments with my whole heart.
70   Their heart is gross and fat, but my delight is in your law.
71   It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn your statutes.
72   The law of your mouth is dearer to me than thousands in gold and silver.

Evening Psalms

Psalm 49 Audite haec, omnes
1   Hear this, all you peoples; hearken, all you who dwell in the world, you of high degree and low, rich and poor together.
2   My mouth shall speak of wisdom, and my heart shall meditate on understanding.
3   I will incline my ear to a proverb and set forth my riddle upon the harp.
4   Why should I be afraid in evil days, when the wickedness of those at my heels surrounds me,
5   The wickedness of those who put their trust in their goods, and boast of their great riches?
6   We can never ransom ourselves, or deliver to God the price of our life;
7   For the ransom of our life is so great, that we should never have enough to pay it,
8   In order to live for ever and ever, and never see the grave.
9   For we see that the wise die also; like the dull and stupid they perish and leave their wealth to those who come after them.
10   Their graves shall be their homes for ever, their dwelling places from generation to generation, though they call the lands after their own names.
11   Even though honored, they cannot live for ever; they are like the beasts that perish.
12   Such is the way of those who foolishly trust in themselves, and the end of those who delight in their own words.
13   Like a flock of sheep they are destined to die; Death is their shepherd; they go down straightway to the grave.
14   Their form shall waste away, and the land of the dead shall be their home.
15   But God will ransom my life; he will snatch me from the grasp of death.
16   Do not be envious when some become rich, or when the grandeur of their house increases;
17   For they will carry nothing away at their death, nor will their grandeur follow them.
18   Though they thought highly of themselves while they lived, and were praised for their success,
19   They shall join the company of their forebears, who will never see the light again.
20   Those who are honored, but have no understanding, are like the beasts that perish.

Psalm 53 Dixit insipiens
1   The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God." All are corrupt and commit abominable acts; there is none who does any good.
2   God looks down from heaven upon us all, to see if there is any who is wise, if there is one who seeks after God.
3   Every one has proved faithless; all alike have turned bad; there is none who does good; no, not one.
4   Have they no knowledge, those evildoers who eat up my people like bread and do not call upon God?
5   See how greatly they tremble, such trembling as never was; for God has scattered the bones of the enemy; they are put to shame, because God has rejected them.
6   Oh, that Israel's deliverance would come out of Zion! when God restores the fortunes of his people Jacob will rejoice and Israel be glad.

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
Dear Heavenly Father, I lower my head before you and confess that I have too often forgotten that I am yours. Sometimes I carry on my life as if there were no God, and I fall short of being a credible witness to You. For these things I ask your forgiveness.

And I also ask for your strength. Give me a clear mind and an open heart so I may witness to You in my world. Remind me to be who You would have me to be regardless of what I am doing or who I am with. Hold me to You and build my relationship with You and with those You have brought into my life on earth. Amen.

A Collect for Grace
O Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought us in safety to this new day: Preserve us with your mighty power, that we may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by adversity; and in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your purpose; 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.

Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing
The BYU Combined Choruses

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

Closing Prayer
Finally, may I go forth filled with the joy and confidence of your Spirit; and may everything I do this day, in word or deed, be done in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. 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 WEDNESDAY, September 13, 2017

Dear Heavenly Father, I lower my head before you and confess that I have too often forgotten that I am yours. Sometimes I carry on my life as if there were no God, and I fall short of being a credible witness to You. For these things I ask your forgiveness.

And I also ask for your strength. Give me a clear mind and an open heart so I may witness to You in my world. Remind me to be who You would have me to be regardless of what I am doing or who I am with. Hold me to You and build my relationship with You and with those You have brought into my life on earth. Amen.

Verse of the Day for WEDNESDAY, September 13, 2017

1 Peter 3:8 (NIV) [Suffering for Doing Good] Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble.

Read all of 1 Peter 3

Listen to 1 Peter 3

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 - God on Earth

So a division occurred in the crowd because of Him.
~ John 7:43 (NASB)

“There are two kinds of people,” begins a standard quip, “Those who _____ and those who ______ .” I remember my first philosophy lecture in college, when the professor stood up in front of the class and said — he was something of a joker — “There are two kinds of people.” We looked to him with full attention, pencils poised to write down our first note on philosophy. He waited four full seconds. “Crumplers, and folders.”

He successfully broke the anxiety of a room full of freshmen; he was a terrific professor. But as we know, there really is one and only one important division among human beings: Those who believe that God made Himself manifest on earth as a human being, 2000 years ago, and those who do not. This is a division for all eternity, for those who realize the truth of the Bible will live with God for all eternity, and those who do not, will not.

Here is the five-dollar word for today: theophany. “Theophany” is a generic term that means the appearance of God, or a god, to humanity. There are many recounted in the Bible: The three men who visit Abraham; the burning bush speaking to Moses; the flash of light and voice that converted Paul on the road to Damascus. But there is one so important that all others dim in comparison, which we celebrate today: the coming of God to walk among us a human being, emptied of much of His divine power so that He might live and suffer, and ultimately die, just like one of us.

Let us take a minute just to think about how extraordinary the theophany of God as Christ was. We tend to take the event for granted, as a starting point — something that we grow towards and struggle with, but something that is a “given” in our lives. Our attitude towards Christ is like a child to his or her parents, taking their existence for granted. It is not until we mature that we consider how wonderful it was, that they existed and loved us so much; we are not mature until we understand that they did not have to exist, that they did not have to give us all the attention and effort and time they spent on us.

So let us remember, today, that Christ came to us to suffer as a volunteer, out of love. Let us not take Him for granted. He was the greatest gift of all time; a gift without parallel. And no greater love can any person or being have than this: to give His life for those He loves. (John 15:13)
Lord Christ, let me never take your life and sacrifice for grants, but always appreciate fully your love in coming to us. Amen.

In Jesus,
Cap'n Kenny

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Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Devotion by Mason Barge, Editor, Daily Prayer
There are two kinds of people.

Un Dia a la Vez - Oración por sueños hechos realidad

Camino, Señor, en torno a tu altar, proclamando en voz alta tu alabanza y contando todas tus maravillas.

Dios mío, hoy acudo a ti en oración junto a los que como yo hemos visto cumplidos nuestros anhelos más profundos. Levanto mi mirada a ti y no me queda más que decirte… ¡Gracias!

Gracias porque me acompañaste en momentos de angustia. Gracias porque de esta prueba pude aprender muchas cosas. Gracias porque puedo contárselas a otras personas a través de mi ministerio y testificarles que el Dios que sirvo me salvó, me sanó y me trajo de vuelta a una vida nueva con un esposo y un hogar para mis princesas.

Señor, mientras tenga vida te serviré de manera incondicional y no me cansaré de hablar de tus maravillas.

Permite, Jesús, que este libro les sirva de ayuda a las personas que aún dudan de tu poder y que logren conocerte mejor y cambiar el rumbo de sus vidas.

Te lo pido en el nombre de Jesús, amén y amén.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón

Standing Strong Through the Storm - THE REAL ENEMY

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.
~ 1 Peter 5:8-9 (NIV)

Joshua Sauñe had not planned to speak at his brothers’ funeral. Had he planned a speech, it certainly would not have been the one he delivered on that remarkable September day in 1992.

“Shining Path is not my enemy, Satan is my enemy,” he told the mourners who packed the Presbyterian Church in Ayacucho, Peru. “The people who killed my brothers need Christ just as you and I do.”

The funeral of Quechua evangelist and Bible translator Rómulo Sauñe, his brother Ruben and their cousins Josué and Marco Antonio, was one of the largest Ayacucho witnessed during the decade that the communist guerrilla army known as Shining Path terrorized the city. Nearly 5,000 people, the vast majority of them Quechua-speaking native Americans like the Sauñes, turned out to grieve the fallen Christians, murdered September 5.

God was there that day, too, performing silent miracles in the lives of several of the mourners.

Joshua was Rómulo’s only surviving brother and had come immediately from his home in the United States when he heard of the murders. All during the long flight to Peru, Joshua seethed with anger. He later told a friend that, in the very moment he rose to address the crowd, God took away the hatred he felt for the Shining Path terrorists that had caused his family so much suffering. In its place, God gave Joshua a burning desire to carry on the evangelistic work that his brothers, parents and grandparents had faithfully performed.

“I suddenly saw (that) if I was going to fight Shining Path, I should fight with the Bible,” Joshua said. “It was the first time I understood that.”

Not long afterward, Joshua abandoned his successful art career in Arizona and moved back to Peru with his family to work with Runa Simi, the indigenous ministry founded by Rómulo and his wife, the former Donna Jackson. Between evangelistic campaigns in the Andes, Joshua and Missy Sauñe have worked to establish community self-help projects and schools for the widows and orphans of Shining Path violence.

RESPONSE: Today I will publicly affirm that my only enemy is Satan and I will be alert to his tactics.

PRAYER: Thank You, Lord, for the work you are doing in Peru as a result of Romulo’s martyrdom and in the face of opposition from the enemy.

Girlfriends in God - September 13, 2017

God Can Redeem Anything

Today’s Truth

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”
~ Genesis 50:20 (NIV)

Friend to Friend

God is faithful. He can use all circumstances for His glory. Let’s take a brief look at the life of Joseph (Genesis 37–50). Joseph was a man of integrity who did right in the eyes of the Lord, yet he faced hardship, betrayal, and temptation. As a young man, he was less than humble a few times with his ten older brothers. Okay. Straight up, he actually came across as a puffed up little braggart. His bragging fed the jealously of Joseph’s brothers because he was clearly their father’s favorite child.

Now granted, Joseph threw gasoline on the fire of this jealousy when he told his brothers about the dreams God had given him. He may have deserved a good smack upside his head for being so insensitive, but imagine how he must have felt to be thrown into a cistern and sold into slavery by his very own brothers!

Through it all, however, “the Lord was with Joseph and he prospered” (Genesis 39:2).

He found favor in the eyes of Potiphar, an official of Pharaoh in Egypt, and gained great position, privilege, and prestige. Not so bad for a guy who had been sold into slavery, huh? God was surely with him through it all. Joseph was trusted and placed over all that Potiphar owned.

His circumstances had taken quite a turn for the better…until our man Joseph was wronged again, this time by Potiphar’s lying, lustful wife. Although he nobly resisted her sexual advances, Joseph was imprisoned when she falsely accused him of attempted rape. In the darkness of a dungeon, Joseph again experienced the lavish light of God’s faithfulness as he was granted, “favor in the eyes of the prison warden” (Genesis 39:21). He quickly rose to a position of power and responsibility amongst his prisoner peers and was trusted by the warden.

While imprisoned, Joseph met a cupbearer and a baker who had been in Pharaoh’s service, and when each of these two men had a disturbing dream the same night, God allowed Joseph to interpret their dreams. Joseph told the cupbearer that in three days he would be freed from prison and restored to his position in Pharoah’s court (the interpretation wasn’t quite so favorable for the baker). Joseph asked the cupbearer to remember him to Pharaoh, but on the third day, at Pharaoh’s birthday feast, the cupbearer was reinstated and Joseph was forgotten. How frustrating would that be?

Two years later, while Joseph was still in the dungeon for doing the right thing, Pharaoh had two dreams that troubled him greatly. “So he sent for all the magicians and wise men of Egypt. Pharaoh told them his dreams, but no one could interpret them for him” (Genesis 41:8b). Finally, the cupbearer remembered Joseph and told Pharaoh of his ability to interpret dreams. Pharaoh sent for Joseph, who—with God’s enabling—interpreted the dreams, and Pharaoh rewarded Joseph by placing him in charge of his palace and his people.

After Joseph was placed in charge of the whole land of Egypt, he worked with integrity and fervor. He collected and stored all the excess food from the land in preparation for the famine that God had revealed, through Pharaoh’s dream, would come. There were seven years of abundance followed by seven years of famine. The years of famine were severe, and during the famine, Joseph sold grain to both the Egyptians and to people of other lands.

Ultimately, the famine brought Joseph’s brothers and father from the land of Canaan to Egypt for a God-reunion and restoration that only our amazing El-Shaddai could have arranged. In spite of all the pain he endured at the hands of others, Joseph was able to exclaim to his brothers in kindness, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good.”

Joseph really got it.

He saw the big picture.

Though we’ve had to rush through this story, the take-away is clear. Joseph paid a high price for sins that had been committed against him, but through the trials, he was blessed richly as God eventually used each circumstance for His good.

My dear sister, our God is able to redeem anything and everything that we face or endure.


No matter what you’ve been through, not matter the secrets you’ve been hiding or accusations you’ve been listening to, God is able to redeem you.

Do you believe that?

He is waiting to show you the big picture. If you’ve been holding something back from God or resisting His healing, then it’s time you take your faith and trust to another level. No more safe living.

Let’s Pray

Dear God, Help me to see the big picture today. I surrender my pain of __________ to your greater purpose. You know what I’ve been through...and I know that you are faithful, compassionate, and able to redeem anything. Please turn my hurt into something that can be used for Your good!
In Jesus’ Name,

Now It’s Your Turn

Write in a journal about what’s been redeemed in your life... or about what you would like God to redeem.

Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Write this on the tablet of your heart today. Commit it to memory!

More from the Girlfriends

Today’s devotion is an excerpt from Gwen’s book Broken Into Beautiful. Every step of healing begins with the heart of God. If you’d like to learn more about how your brokenness can be transformed into a picture of God’s beauty, get your copy today. To order the book go to Amazon or, for a signed copy, visit Gwen’s web store.

Get 20% OFF Gwen’s BROKEN INTO BEAUTIFUL book today when you order from her website and use the code: 20OFF

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

Girlfriends in God

LHM Daily Devotion - September 13, 2017 "A Mighty Great God"

They tell me that Hurricane Harvey killed more than 60 people, caused...

Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Pastor Ken Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour

"A Mighty Great God"

September 13, 2017

Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; His understanding is unsearchable.
~ Isaiah 40:28 (ESV)

They tell me that Hurricane Harvey killed more than 60 people, caused damage which has been estimated to be as high as $180 billion, and dropped more than 40 inches of rain upon certain locations.

They tell me Hurricane Irma is the most powerful Atlantic hurricane in recorded history. They say it is so powerful it is shaking the earthquake seismograph machines. Irma is generating winds of 185-plus miles per hour, and heaven help the place where it comes on land.

Although I've heard the reports and I've seen the videos, I have to confess I don't understand that kind of power.

They tell me one of the strongest forces in the universe is a super-massive black hole. For example, computer models say the super black hole of the M87 galaxy weighs about as much as 6.4 billion of our suns. They say anything which gets close to that monster will be sucked in, and it won't be coming out in the immediate future.

Although I've tried to read and understand all of this about the power of a black hole, I have to confess I really can't wrap my mind around facts and figures that are so immense and intimidating. Simply stated, I don't understand that kind of power. And just as simply stated, nobody else does either.

It is possible to stand in awe and wonder of such forces, but we cannot completely, thoroughly, understand them.

All of which leads me to ask, if we cannot understand the forces of creation which are perceivable and, theoretically speaking, measurable, why is it so many people think they can easily comprehend the mind and discern the motive of the great Creator? Still that is what happens after every cataclysmic event. People demand to know, "Why has God done, or allowed, such a thing to happen?"

It's highly unlikely we could understand even if the Lord sat us down and explained His thinking in depth.

Let me ask, do you understand why
• the Lord would want to rescue Adam and Eve after they had just rejected Him to follow the advice of a serpent?
• He would send His innocent Son to carry the sins of every person who has ever lived?
• He still cares for us even though we daily sin often?

Truly, God's ways are not ours; we cannot understand them. All we can do is thank and praise, serve and obey Him because He cares so very much.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, we give thanks that You cannot be defined or contained by man's measurements. Truly, Your love, grace, care, and compassion are things to be praised, honored, and appreciated. May we do so in the Name of Jesus who is Your greatest gift to us. Amen.

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

CPTLN Devocional de 13 de Setiembre de 2017

Alimento Diario

Demostrando el amor

13 de Setiembre 2017

Porque de tal manera amó Dios al mundo, que ha dado a su Hijo unigénito, para que todo aquel que en él cree no se pierda, sino que tenga vida eterna.

¿No es maravilloso el amor?

Eso fue lo que pensé cuando leí la historia publicada en el CNEWS de Canadá, acerca de lo que Jeff Skulmoski hizo para proponerle matrimonio a su novia Jeannie.

Primero llega el amor y después el matrimonio, pensaba Jeff, pero, ¿cómo podía hacer para asegurarse lo más posible de que ella aceptara casarse con él?

Después de mucho pensar, Jeff decidió tomar su tractor con el cultivador acoplado, y atravesar el campo ya cosechado. Cinco horas más tarde había casi cumplido con su misión. Unos minutos después, Jeff y Jeannie levantaban vuelo en el avión de un amigo de Jeff. Desde el aire, Jeannie vio la pregunta que Jeff había escrito en el campo con letras de más de 72 pies de tamaño: "Jeannie, ¿te quieres casar conmigo?"

La sorpresa fue tan grande, que Jeannie no pudo hablar, pero eventualmente la respuesta fue "sí".

Hay muchas maneras de comunicar el amor. Jeff lo hizo escribiendo palabras con letras gigantes en la tierra de su granja.

Nuestro Padre celestial nos mostró su amor permitiendo que su Hijo fuera herido por el odio de los corazones humanos: bofetadas en el rostro, una corona de espinas, latigazos, escupidas en la cara, clavos atravesando sus manos y sus pies, y una lanza traspasando su costado para confirmar su muerte...

Cuando miramos al Salvador en la cruz, podemos ver al Señor diciendo con total claridad: "Te amo tanto, que quiero perdonarte y que vivas conmigo por la eternidad". Mire la cruz, fíjese en la tumba vacía y crea: Dios amó tanto al mundo, que dio a su Hijo para salvarnos.

ORACIÓN: Querido Padre, podemos amar porque tú nos amaste primero. Te damos gracias por la cruz de Jesús y por su tumba vacía, porque allí es donde vemos el amor que nos tienes. Ayúdanos a reflejar ese amor a quienes nos rodean. En el nombre de Jesús. Amén.

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