Saturday, February 17, 2018

The Daily Readings for SATURDAY, February 17, 2018

John 17:20-26

Daily Readings

Ezekiel 39:21-29
I will display my glory among the nations; and all the nations shall see my judgment that I have executed, and my hand that I have laid on them. The house of Israel shall know that I am the LORD their God, from that day forward. And the nations shall know that the house of Israel went into captivity for their iniquity, because they dealt treacherously with me. So I hid my face from them and gave them into the hand of their adversaries, and they all fell by the sword. I dealt with them according to their uncleanness and their transgressions, and hid my face from them. Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Now I will restore the fortunes of Jacob, and have mercy on the whole house of Israel; and I will be jealous for my holy name. They shall forget their shame, and all the treachery they have practiced against me, when they live securely in their land with no one to make them afraid, when I have brought them back from the peoples and gathered them from their enemies' lands, and through them have displayed my holiness in the sight of many nations. Then they shall know that I am the LORD their God because I sent them into exile among the nations, and then gathered them into their own land. I will leave none of them behind; and I will never again hide my face from them, when I pour out my spirit upon the house of Israel, says the Lord GOD.

Philippians 4:10-20
I rejoice in the Lord greatly that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned for me, but had no opportunity to show it. Not that I am referring to being in need; for I have learned to be content with whatever I have. I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. In any case, it was kind of you to share my distress. You Philippians indeed know that in the early days of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you alone. For even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me help for my needs more than once. Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the profit that accumulates to your account. I have been paid in full and have more than enough; I am fully satisfied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent, a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God. And my God will fully satisfy every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. To our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.

John 17:20-26
"I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. Father, I desire that those also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. "Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them."

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.
Jesus prays, “I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word...”

Prayer of the Day for SATURDAY, February 17, 2018


Lord of mercy, we call to you in this time of violence. We pray for all who died last Wednesday in Florida and those who were injured, we pray for our brothers and sisters of color and we pray for all of your people who struggle and mourn. Be our light in the darkness. Lord in your mercy...

Verse of the Day for SATURDAY, February 17, 2018


Matthew 21:43 (NIV) “Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit.

Read all of Matthew 21

Listen to Matthew 21

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

Morning Devotions with Chaplain Kenny - Expected Justice, but instead, Bloodshed

Expected Justice, but instead, Bloodshed

Isaiah 5:1-7
Matthew 21:33-46

Isaiah writes:

For the garden of God is God’s people.
We are God’s pleasant planting of produce.
God expected us to produce justice fruits, but instead, we hurt one another.
God expected us to follow God’s ways, but instead, we made others victims.

And Jesus continues, “Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit.” (Matthew 21:43)

When the religious people heard these words, they were so angry they wanted to arrest Jesus. But they were also scared.

When we hear these words, do we picture ourselves as the good vines who produce good fruit and inherit the kingdom? Or do we picture ourselves as the wild vines that have forgotten God?

This week has made me think many of us have forgotten our cornerstone. We have forgotten what we are to measure our life by. And in its place is an idol called... the gun.

I’m not going to advocate either extreme on this hot button issue. I’m not interested in banning all guns, or permitting all guns. I’m not interested in debating home-grown or international terrorism nor nitpicking the whys someone chooses to go on a murder rampage.

Instead, I want to talk about what is going on here, and what this means to a faithful Christian congregation. You see, I think we can produce the good fruit or the bad with guns… and it depends on our cornerstone. Depends on what we are using to guide and measure our live by.

First: What is going on here? Gun Law Scorecard ((gunlawsscorecard.org)) ranks the states on their gun laws, deaths by guns, and the accessibility of weapons and ammunition. Here in Wisconsin we get a “C-” grade.

In Wisconsin, 10.4 people die out of every 100,000 a year due to gun shots. In California it's 7.7 out of every 100,000. In Oklahoma it's 18 out of every 100,000 whereas in Alaska it's 23.4 out of every 100,000. ((cdc.gov)) Some of these people are intentional. Having access to a gun means one is more likely to commit suicide by a gun. Some of these are intentional against other people – gun homicides. And many are accidental.

See, we permit concealed carry into daycares, airports, school buses, colleges, churches, and elementary class rooms. And you can open carry just about anywhere. But nowhere is there a requirement that you have to be TRAINED in how to use a gun. Yes, you have to be trained to have a concealed carry license. This is a good thing. But there is no training required for open carry or for gun ownership.

Common sense? Gun safety? Keeping toddlers away from guns? None of these are prerequisites for gun ownership. All you have to be is over 18, and not convicted of a violent felony or a drug felony.

This means that we hear of terrible situations where a little girl went for candy in nana’s purse, and accidentally shot herself with nana’s gun. A little boy found a gun in his parents’ room, thought it was a toy, and killed his brother. In both of these cases, no rules or laws were broke… but yet, every 63 minutes a bullet hits a child here in the USA.

A plethora of guns means a plethora, many, accidents.

Owning a gun doesn’t mean you own gun sense. But we don’t require all gun owners to go through education courses.

I know I sure never was allowed to fire the .22 growing up without an adult educating me. I was taught. But many are not.

And we as a society are not requiring gun courses of people who purchase firearms.

I support gun ownership. I think we need guns, especially in rural areas, for hunting and for defense. However, I do not support private ownership of military guns – guns that leave such wounds and trauma that there’s nothing left of a deer to eat. Or that shoot 500 rounds a minute, thereby killing your entire family with an accidental pull of the trigger. I support guns for fun – .22s and bbs and airsofts.

Armor piercing ammunition is not for fun and does not belong in the hands of the general public.

Bullets designed to “take down a man,” as one advertisement lauds, shouldn’t be what we’re packing. Even in self defense situations, it is not the default that we have to kill someone to be safe.

I believe, however, no gun laws will change. Time and time again, we have a mass shooting… which once was six people dead, and then 10 Amish school kids and then a whole elementary school, then a movie theater, then a dance club, then a country music show with hundreds injured and 58 or 60 dead,  26 dead at a Texas church, and now 17 at a high school in Florida… and there is an outcry for change for a month or so… then we forget. Worse, we let already existing gun laws to slip or be repealed. In three months, gun lobbyists — who make their money by swaying politicians to make it easier to buy guns — will be back in local, state, and national offices donating money and promising votes if more guns are sold. In a month, there will be signs combining gun ownership with a patriotic duty, advertisements for Black Friday steep discounts so you can give the gift of “protection,” by rebranding the ability to murder hundreds in a minute as something you and I need to feel safe in our homes. Already, there are advertisements promoting gun sales.

Second: what does all of this mean for us, a congregation of Christians? Rev. Susan Thistlewaite accurately states – for many of us, we worship the God Gun.

See, worship is when we give our time and attention to something. When we are devoted to it. Sacrifice and change our lives for it. Wear its images and symbols. Promotes it beliefs. Live and preach its teachings and ethics. Live and die for it.

Many people worship guns.

Time and attention. The advertisement of our local newspaper alone shows how gun sellers clamor for our time and attention, our money. The more time and attention we invest into a hobby, the harder it is to step away from the hobby and take a honest look at it. Once you are several hundred dollars – several thousand dollars – invested into guns and gun accessories, clothes, and ammunition… it gets very hard to step away and think straight about guns. All this time and attention lead to devotion.

Devotion. Am I ever willing to step back and question my loyalty to guns? If we are never willing to question gun ownership or laws, even in light of scripture calling for justice and an end of bloodshed, then the gun is more our god than the God of the world.

Sacrifice. We are paying the lives of children, elderly, men and women, sacrificing them time and time again for our Gun Idolatry. Whenever someone dies by a gun, their death is considered ‘justified’ for the ‘right to bear arms.’ Maybe our Gun God is demanding too many innocent lives. Maybe we have replaced the Commandments of God with the 2nd Amendment.

Change our lives. The Idol the Gun preaches “They Are Coming For Your Guns.” They are not and cannot. Private citizens own 79 guns for every 1 gun the government owns — this includes all cops and the military. There is no way “the government” can “come” for the USA’s guns. They may start a buy back program to have less guns on streets- but there won’t be a military vs. civilian wild west showdown. The Idol is lying. But we are changing out lives to live ready to go to war with our own country, our own neighbors and family.

Wear its images and proselytize. Do I wear signs of my god? Logos, caps, t-shirts, bumper stickers, public displays of loyalty. What Facebook things are you posting? What phrases are we repeating? Do we say ‘GOD GUNS AND GUTS’ or ‘MY OTHER AUTO IS A 9MM’ or ‘I PLEAD THE 2nD’? What we publicly support, publicly advertise, we are proselytizing – attempting to make disciples out of others.

Teachings and ethics. Do the ethics of the Bible match up to the ethics we are living and preaching? “Keep honking I’m still loading” does not seem Biblical. I seem to remember the Bible says something about forgiveness and compassion. “Trespassers will be shot, survivors shot again” does not seem like the same teaching as “welcome in the stranger, for in doing so, you may unknowingly welcome in an angel.”  Helping strangers and loving one another is a different set of ethics and teachings than the ones advocated by Gun Worshipers.

The Gun Idol tells us that it is the source of our peace. An armed society is a polite society. Yet, those with guns in their cars are 44% more likely than those without guns in their cars to instigate road rage incidents… and states with Stand Your Ground laws have a 10% increase in homicides than states without such laws. Guns make people feel bolder, and more aggressive. Guns are not where our peace comes from.

Live and die for it.

The Gun God preaches “Guns Don’t Kill People – People Kill People.” Yet people with easy access to guns are much more likely to kill other people with guns. States with the highest number of gun ownership see the highest number of gun murders. In fact, it is so tied that for every 1% increase in private ownership, there is a 1% increase in firearm homicides. The Idol attempts to make itself exempt from all blame.

The Idol says keeping a gun at home keeps you safer. For every home defended by a gun there are 7 assaults, 11 suicides, and 4 accidental shootings by guns. Half of all homes with guns and kids keep one of those guns unlocked. The gun tricks us, lies to us, and says I will only hurt others and not you and your loved ones. Having a gun about does not make us safer just by default – just because there is a gun. Guns are not our shepherd and do not guide us to green pastures.

Guns are a tool. Tools can be turned against their owners. Tools can hurt their owners. Tools are items. Objects.

Impersonal. Nameless.

Tools are not our identity.

We are the disciples of the Good Shepherd, the God of Peace, Hope, Joy and Love. We following a living God, a person, who has a relationship with us.

Not an item made by mortal hands.

Not an idol.

Who’s Country is this?

Isaiah today talks about how God planted a vineyard called Israel and loved it very much. But the vineyard refused to yield good fruits. Instead, even with all the tender care of God, it was wild and unruly and forgot God. God expected justice and righteousness from the vineyard, but got instead bloodshed and heard crying.

Jesus continues the story. He says God sent people to the vineyard to collect those good fruits – prophets with messages – but the people murdered those sent by the owner of the vineyard. One after another – murdered them. God sent God’s own child, and the people chose to murder the child – saying – if we kill the child, we will be able to do just as we please. We will inherit the earth when we get rid of God and God’s messengers.

Jesus then reminds us that someday, God will return to the vineyard. The Messiah comes again. And the kingdom of God belongs to those who produce the good fruits of the spirit. The fruits of righteousness, justice, forgiveness, and love.

This isn’t NRA country, as they advertise. This is God’s country. This is God’s world.

So here we are. If we do not change a single gun law, there will be another mass shooting in a few months. The time between them is reducing. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. We want a different result – an end of this violence – but we do the same thing – decry the act, and forget, and change nothing.

How are we going to respond? By continuing to worship and promote the God of Guns, or by serving the God of Peace and Unity?

What we do to the least we do to Christ. And what are we doing doing to the least, our own children, and ourselves, and our God by teaching guns and violence are the answer? What are we doing by holding up guns as what it means to be American? To be Christian? What are we doing by ignoring the plight of our  nation’s violent, abusive relationship with guns?

I will own a gun. I will not worship the Gun.

I will not live and die by my gun. I will live and die by my God.

I hope, whether you own a gun or not, you do not pray to a gun for your salvation.

Lord of mercy, we call to you in this time of violence. We pray for all who died last Wednesday in Florida and those who were injured, we pray for our brothers and sisters of color and we pray for all of your people who struggle and mourn. Be our light in the darkness. Lord in your mercy...

In Jesus,
Chaplain Kenny

Seeking God?
Click HERE to find out more about how to have a personal
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Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Additional Sources consulted…

https://www.aol.com/article/news/2017/10/03/las-vegas-gunman-stephen-paddock-used-a-perfectly-legal-device-allowing-him-to-fire-400-rounds-per-minute/23230992/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/10/03/america-is-exceptional-for-its-unique-deadly-gun-culture/?utm_term=.e0ee61116f6d

https://twitter.com/Calebkeeter/status/914872808110510080/photo/1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2017%2F10%2F02%2Fus%2Fjason-aldean-vegas-shooting.html

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/03/opinion/rosanne-cash-country-musicians-nra.html

http://www.theonion.com/article/americans-hopeful-will-be-last-mass-shooting-they–57093?utm_content=Main&utm_campaign=SF&utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=SocialMarketing

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/formerlyfundie/when-we-worship-the-god-of-fear-the-idolatry-of-gun-culture/

https://churchplants.com/articles/6455-the-top-7-gods-americans-worship.html

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2013/01/pro-gun-myths-fact-check/

Un dia a la Vez - Oración de fe


Oración de fe

Si confiesas con tu boca que Jesús es el Señor, y crees en tu corazón que Dios lo levantó de entre los muertos, serás salvo.
~ Romanos 10:9 (NVI)

Mi Dios, hace varios días que estoy leyendo este libro que alguien me regaló (o que compré), porque ya es tradición leer algo todos los días. Tal vez lo escuche a través de la radio, pues se oye bonito. Me inspira a cambiar, a hacer cosas distintas y a vivir una vida diferente a la que estoy viviendo.

Muchos me han dicho: «Haz la oración de fe y acepta a Jesús como tu Salvador». Sin embargo, Señor, aún no sé cómo hacerlo. A decir verdad, no quisiera cambiar de religión.

En este día y en esta hora, me encuentro de nuevo en este libro la oportunidad de hacer esta oración y deseo hacerla con todo mi corazón. Aunque hay cosas que no entiendo, y aunque a veces lo que veo no me gusta, quiero recibirte en mi corazón.

Señor Jesús, me presento delante de ti para pedirte perdón por mis pecados, para decirte que te recibo en mi corazón como el único Salvador de mi vida.

Por favor, escribe mi nombre en el libro de la vida y gracias por darme vida eterna. Amén y amén.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Oración de fe

Standing Strong Through the Storm - THE MYSTERY OF REDEMPTION AND RESCUE


THE MYSTERY OF REDEMPTION AND RESCUE

For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves…

The imagery of God’s intervention in the suffering of the Israeli’s in Egypt recorded in Exodus 3:7-8 has captured the imaginations of many oppressed people. For example, African-American believers see a strong parallel between American slavery and the bondage of the Jews in Egypt and God’s personal and powerful exodus rescue of His people.

New Testament writers saw a powerful parallel with our sinful, lost, human condition and God’s redemption through the sending of His only Son who “pitched his tent” among us and purchased our salvation with His shed blood. For example, in Colossians 1:13, the Apostle Paul states it clearly. We have been “rescued from” Satan’s dark domain and “brought into” the kingdom of God’s Son.

The Exodus passage also brings great hope to persecuted Christians today. God has feelings. He cares. He sees. He hears. He knows. He’s concerned. And in His time, He rescues! The mystery of this rescuing action is God’s timing. Galatians 4:4 tells us it was when “the time had fully come” that God sent His Son to redeem us. We saw two days ago that the Israelis waited hundreds of years for deliverance from oppression in Egypt and entrance to the promised land while “the sins of the Amorites reached full measure” (Genesis 15:16). God alone sees the end from the beginning. We wait for His timing in His promise of coming down to rescue us.

Iranian Christian leader, Mehdi Dibaj, spent over nine years in prison for his faith as a believer from Muslim background. He was emotionally prepared to die a martyr’s death. His day was indeed to come. In late 1993, he was tried on charges of apostasy (from Islam) after being a Christian for over forty years. He made his own defence and used his written statement to share his commitment to Jesus Christ. In early 1994, he was sentenced to execution. There was a great international outcry when the news of Mehdi Dibaj's scheduled execution was publicized. Suddenly on January 16, 1994, the Teheran government released Mehdi Dibaj from prison and denied it had sentenced him to death for converting from Islam to Christianity over forty years earlier.

It was a great day of rejoicing for the believers in Iran. When Mehdi Dibaj first met with them, their immediate response was to burst into song, “In the name of Jesus, we have the victory!” Even TIME magazine reported the release under the title “Answered Prayers.” Yet in God’s perfect timing, this man who had experienced God’s rescue multiple times was martyred by vigilantes after six months of freedom from prison.

RESPONSE: Today I will acknowledge God’s timing is best for me as I await His rescue.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord for my deliverance from the kingdom of darkness to Your kingdom of light through Your Son, Jesus.

Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

The NIV Couples Devotional - When Excuses Won’t Do


When Excuses Won’t Do

Read Judges 6:1–27

“Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”
~ Judges 6:15 (NIV)

Isn’t God amazing? Throughout the Bible he patiently works with complainers, self-doubters and rebels. And not only that, but God also works his plan through truly weak people, like Gideon—or like a man and woman in marriage.

Gideon had good reason to fear an assignment from God to deliver the children of Israel from the oppression of the Midianites. His faith and his clan were weak, and the Israelites were mixing Baal worship with God worship. Even just talking to the Lord must have struck fear in Gideon’s heart: Didn’t he also deserve to be punished for failing to worship God with his whole heart?

Gideon thought his conversation with God was all about him. But, as we find out, Gideon came to realize he was just a player in God’s story, and God was the One with the power to save Israel. God patiently worked with Gideon to remove his doubts and to make him aware that God alone was his strength, telling him in verse 16, “I will be with you.”

So how do we complainers, self-doubters and rebels respond when we encounter God’s assignments in our married life? The first challenge is that there are two of us for God to deal with. Since God established the marriage covenant, he’s not inclined to undermine it by leading a husband and wife in different directions.

When my husband Grey and I were ending a one-year overseas mission assignment, the director of the mission agency challenged us to return as career workers. Grey was game, but I was unwilling to commit because I didn’t want to take on the challenge of raising financial support. We had funded one year of mission work with our own savings, but relying on God to lead people to support us caused me great anxiety.

While Grey stayed steady in his commitment to return to the mission field, I, like Gideon, whined about it and then asked God for a sign. When the first sign came (I encouraged Grey to look for a job in the United States, but all those career doors closed), I asked for another sign. Gideon-like, I was setting up my own fleece experiments.

This time God’s response was unmistakable. People started giving to us. Check after check finally brought me to the conclusion that God wanted to use us, ordinary people, to do his work overseas. We were nothing special, but raising support went well. We went back to the field for nine more years.

Gideon’s story, and the whole Bible, is full of principles we can apply to our lives today. Each day of marriage we can recall God’s blessings to us, be assured that he is with us—even in our weaknesses—and believe that he has work for us to do.

Mary Ann Jeffreys

Let’s Talk
  • What are some methods God uses to lead our decision making in marriage?
  • How do we distinguish God’s leading from our own desires and goals?
  • When we sense God leading each of us in different directions, how can we come to agreement?
Isn’t God amazing?

LHM Devotion - February 17, 2018 "What's In the Jar?"

https://www.lhm.org/dailydevotions/default.asp?date=20180217

Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"What's In the Jar?"

Feb. 17, 2018

Read John 2:1-11

Now there were six stone water jars there for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons.
~ John 2:6 (ESV)

There were several stone water jars in the house at Cana, meant to be used for washing. These were good-sized jars. They were probably nearly waist high. Filling them up with water would take some time. But once they were filled, the needs of the household would be taken care of for hours or days -- even if there was a wedding going on with lots of people. Jars like that were worth something -- humble, but very useful.

And that's a pretty good description of us, too, isn't it? Humble but useful -- at least, we hope so! We're only stone jars -- not gold or silver or anything with jewels all over it -- not even copper or bronze. But full of water (after a lot of work) they're useful things to have around.

No doubt those stone jars could have served out their useful lifetime without anybody paying much attention to them. But then Jesus got involved.

"Go fill those jars up with water," He says to the servants. Fine, they do it. That's nothing unusual. But then He shocks them. "Now dip some of it out and put it in a cup and take it to the master of ceremonies." Say what? Nobody drinks washing water! But they did it, and you know the rest of the story: the washing water had become the best wine.

What a shock to the bridegroom! He knew there wasn't supposed to be wine in those jars. And what a shock to us when Jesus takes the blah, boring water of our everyday lives and turns it into the wine of God's grace and mercy, passed through us to others who need it. "That's not what we were made to carry!" we might protest. "That's too good for us!" And so it is. But Jesus gives us the high privilege of being carriers of His love to others.

During this time of Lent, pour out that love and mercy to the people around you -- the love and mercy Jesus has showed you, even from the cross.

THE PRAYER: Lord, fill me with Your Holy Spirit, and use me to Your glory. Amen.

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
There were several stone water jars in the house at Cana, meant to be used for washing.

Devocional del CPTLN de 17 de Febrero de 2018 "¿QUÉ HAY EN LAS TINAJAS?"


ALIMENTO DIARIO

"¿QUÉ HAY EN LAS TINAJAS?"

17 de Febrero de 2018

Leer Juan 2:1-11

En ese lugar había seis tinajas de piedra para agua, como las que usan los judíos para el rito de la purificación, cada una con capacidad de más de cincuenta litros.
~ Juan 2:6 (RVC)

En la casa de Caná había varias tinajas con agua para lavarse. Eran bastante grandes, probablemente le llegaban a uno hasta la cintura, por lo que llenarlas de agua llevaba un tiempo. Pero una vez que estaban llenas, las necesidades de la casa quedaban satisfechas durante horas o días... aun cuando se celebrara un casamiento con muchos invitados. Tinajas como esas eran valiosas; humildes, pero muy útiles.

Y esa también es una buena descripción de nosotros, ¿no es cierto? Humildes, pero útiles. O al menos así lo deseamos. Sólo somos tinajas de piedra; no de oro o plata o decoradas con joyas, o siquiera de cobre o bronce. Sin embargo, llenas de agua (luego de mucho trabajo), útiles para tener en la casa.

No hay dudas que esas tinajas bien podrían haber servido toda su vida útil sin que nadie les prestara atención. Y así fue, al menos hasta que Jesús entró en escena.

"Llenen de agua esas tinajas", dijo a los sirvientes. Y así lo hicieron. Hasta aquí, nada fuera de lo común. Pero luego les dice: "Ahora saquen lo que está allí, y llévenselo al catador". ¿Qué? ¡Nadie bebe del agua para lavar! Pero obedecieron. Y ya sabemos cómo termina la historia: el agua para lavar se había convertido en el mejor vino.

¡Qué sorpresa para el novio, que sabía que en esas tinajas no debía haber vino! ¡Y qué sorpresa para nosotros cuando Jesús toma el agua aburrida de nuestra vida cotidiana, la convierte en el vino de la gracia y misericordia de Dios, y lo pasa a través nuestro a quienes lo necesitan! "¡No fuimos hechos para llevar eso!", protestamos. "¡Eso es demasiado bueno para nosotros!" Y es cierto. Pero Jesús nos da el gran privilegio de ser los portadores de su amor a los demás.

En esta época de Cuaresma, derrama ese amor y misericordia a quienes te rodean: el amor y la misericordia que Jesús te ha mostrado, incluso desde la cruz.

ORACIÓN: Señor, lléname con tu Espíritu Santo y utilízame para que muchas personas más puedan ver tu gloria. Amén.

© Copyright 2018 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
En la casa de Caná había varias tinajas con agua para lavarse.

Notre Pain Quotidien - Nous réfugier dans sa force

https://www.ministeresnpq.org/2018/02/17/nous-refugier-dans-sa-force/

Nous réfugier dans sa force


Car vous avez été rachetés à un grand prix. Glorifiez donc Dieu dans votre corps. (V. 20)


Lorsque je me suis mis à l’escrime, au lycée, mon entraîneur me criait la bonne posture défensive à adopter (« parry », qui signifie « parade ») contre le mouvement qu’il faisait. Lorsqu’il tendait son arme et se fendait, afin de repousser l’attaque, je devais écouter et réagir illico presto.

Cette écoute active rappelle la prompte obéissance que la Bible impose en matière de tentation sexuelle. Dans 1 Corinthiens 6.18, Paul exhorte les croyants qui sont tentés de solliciter les prostituées du temple à « [fuir] la débauche ». Parfois, nous devons « [demeurer] fermes » en situation de défi (GA 5.1 ; ÉP 6.11), mais ici la Bible nous crie presque la meilleure posture défensive à adopter : « Prenez la fuite ! »

L’action immédiate protège contre les compromis. De petits passe‑droits risquent d’aboutir à des échecs dévastateurs. Une pensée non retenue, un regard déplacé sur Internet, une amitié se prêtant au flirt hors des liens du mariage – voilà autant de pas conduisant là où l’on ne devrait pas aller et créant une distance entre soi et Dieu.

Si nous fuyons la tentation, Dieu nous procurera un refuge. En mourant sur la croix pour expier nos péchés, Jésus nous a offert l’espoir, le pardon et un nouveau commencement – peu importe par où nous sommes passés et ce que nous avons fait. Si dans notre faiblesse nous courons à Jésus, il nous libérera afin que nous vivions par sa force.

Dieu seul peut répondre à nos plus grands besoins de tout ordre.


© 2018 Ministères NPQ
Dieu seul peut répondre à nos plus grands besoins de tout ordre.