Sunday, July 1, 2018

The Daily Readings for SUNDAY, July 1, 2018 - Sixth Sunday after Pentecost

“Daughter, your faith has made you well...”
The Daily Readings
SUNDAY, July 1, 2018 - Sixth Sunday after Pentecost
(Revised Common Lectionary Year B)

Greeting
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Prayer of the Day (Collect)
Almighty God, you have built your Church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone: Grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their teaching, that we may be made a holy temple acceptable to you; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Confession and Forgiveness
Trusting God's promise of forgiveness, let us confess our sins against God and one another.

Eternal God our creator, in you we live and move and have our being. Look upon us, your children, the work of your hands. Forgive us all our offenses, and cleanse us from proud thoughts and empty desires. By your grace draw us near to you, our refuge and our strength; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


The Lessons

Old Testament
Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15; 2:23-24
1:13 because God did not make death, and he does not delight in the death of the living. 14 For he created all things so that they might exist; the generative forces of the world are wholesome, and there is no destructive poison in them, and the dominion of Hades is not on earth. 15 For righteousness is immortal. 23 for God created us for incorruption, and made us in the image of his own eternity, 24 but through the devil’s envy death entered the world, and those who belong to his company experience it.

The Response
Psalm 30 Exaltabo te, Domine
1 I will exalt you, O Lord,
because you have lifted me up

and have not let my enemies triumph over me.
2 O Lord my God, I cried out to you,
and you restored me to health.
3 You brought me up, O Lord, from the dead;
you restored my life as I was going down to the grave.
4 Sing to the Lord, you servants of his;
give thanks for the remembrance of his holiness.
5 For his wrath endures but the twinkling of an eye,
his favor for a lifetime.
6 Weeping may spend the night,
but joy comes in the morning.
7 While I felt secure, I said,
"I shall never be disturbed.

You, Lord, with your favor, made me as strong as the mountains."
8 Then you hid your face, *
and I was filled with fear.
9 I cried to you, O Lord;
I pleaded with the Lord, saying,
10 "What profit is there in my blood, if I go down to the Pit?
will the dust praise you or declare your faithfulness?
11 Hear, O Lord, and have mercy upon me;
O Lord, be my helper."
12 You have turned my wailing into dancing;
you have put off my sack-cloth and clothed me with joy.
13 Therefore my heart sings to you without ceasing;
O Lord my God, I will give you thanks for ever.

The Epistle
2 Corinthians 8:7-15
8:7 Now as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in utmost eagerness, and in our love for you—so we want you to excel also in this generous undertaking. 8 I do not say this as a command, but I am testing the genuineness of your love against the earnestness of others. 9 For you know the generous act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich. 10 And in this matter I am giving my advice: it is appropriate for you who began last year not only to do something but even to desire to do something— 11 now finish doing it, so that your eagerness may be matched by completing it according to your means. 12 For if the eagerness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has—not according to what one does not have. 13 I do not mean that there should be relief for others and pressure on you, but it is a question of a fair balance between 14 your present abundance and their need, so that their abundance may be for your need, in order that there may be a fair balance. 15 As it is written, “The one who had much did not have too much, and the one who had little did not have too little.”

The Gospel
Mark 5:21-43
A Girl Restored to Life and a Woman Healed
5:21 When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered around him; and he was by the sea. 22 Then one of the leaders of the synagogue named Jairus came and, when he saw him, fell at his feet 23 and begged him repeatedly, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.” 24 So he went with him. And a large crowd followed him and pressed in on him. 25 Now there was a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years. 26 She had endured much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had; and she was no better, but rather grew worse. 27 She had heard about Jesus, and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 for she said, “If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.” 29 Immediately her hemorrhage stopped; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease. 30 Immediately aware that power had gone forth from him, Jesus turned about in the crowd and said, “Who touched my clothes?” 31 And his disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing in on you; how can you say, ‘Who touched me?’” 32 He looked all around to see who had done it. 33 But the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came in fear and trembling, fell down before him, and told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.” 35 While he was still speaking, some people came from the leader’s house to say, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any further?” 36 But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the leader of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” 37 He allowed no one to follow him except Peter, James, and John, the brother of James. 38 When they came to the house of the leader of the synagogue, he saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. 39 When he had entered, he said to them, “Why do you make a commotion and weep? The child is not dead but sleeping.” 40 And they laughed at him. Then he put them all outside, and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha cum,” which means, “Little girl, get up!” 42 And immediately the girl got up and began to walk about (she was twelve years of age). At this they were overcome with amazement. 43 He strictly ordered them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat.


Here ends the Lessons

Click HERE to read today's Holy Gospel Lesson message

The Apostle's Creed
We believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

We believe in Jesus Christ, his only son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

Closing Prayer
Lord God, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown. Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go, but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us; through Jesus Christ ore Lord. Amen.

Blessing
The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.

The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle and Gospel lessons are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Church of Christ in the USA, and used by permission. The Collects, Psalms and Canticles are from the Book of Common Prayer, 1979.
“If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.”

"Two Healing Stories" The Sermon for SUNDAY, July 1, 2018 - Sixth Sunday after Pentecost

Ole and Sven

"Two Healing Stories"
by Rev. Garth Wehrfritz-Hanson
Camrose, Alberta, Canada

The Holy Gospel comes to us this morning from Mark the 5th chapter, beginning at the 21st verse.

When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered around him; and he was by the sea. Then one of the leaders of the synagogue named Jairus came and, when he saw him, fell at his feet and begged him repeatedly, “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.” So he went with him. And a large crowd followed him and pressed in on him. Now there was a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years. She had endured much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had; and she was no better, but rather grew worse. She had heard about Jesus, and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, for she said, “If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.” Immediately her hemorrhage stopped; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease. Immediately aware that power had gone forth from him, Jesus turned about in the crowd and said, “Who touched my clothes?” And his disciples said to him, “You see the crowd pressing in on you; how can you say, ‘Who touched me?’” He looked all around to see who had done it. But the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came in fear and trembling, fell down before him, and told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.” While he was still speaking, some people came from the leader’s house to say, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any further?” But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the leader of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” He allowed no one to follow him except Peter, James, and John, the brother of James. When they came to the house of the leader of the synagogue, he saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. When he had entered, he said to them, “Why do you make a commotion and weep? The child is not dead but sleeping.” And they laughed at him. Then he put them all outside, and took the child’s father and mother and those who were with him, and went in where the child was. He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha cum,” which means, “Little girl, get up!” And immediately the girl got up and began to walk about (she was twelve years of age). At this they were overcome with amazement. He strictly ordered them that no one should know this, and told them to give her something to eat.

Here ends the gospel of our Lord and Savior, Jesus the Christ!
Grace and Peace to you from our Lord and Savior, Jesus who is the Christ. Amen
Ole went to Sven limping badly. ’Sven’ says Ole, ’do yiew know of a good doctor? M’leg hurts.’

’Ya’ says Sven, ’Go see my cousin Hilding, I give you da number.’ Finally getting an appointment, Ole explained to Dr. Hilding in his office, ’M’leg is hurting me, bad!’

’Let’s take a look’ said Hilding.

’Yust vun minute’ said Ole, ’I tell you someting about me. I am vun of dos special Norwegians dat is gifted. I tell you I haf the gift of a TALKING LEG!’

’Another crazy Norwegian,’ thought Hilding. But, he decided to humor Ole, ’OK, Ole, explain.’

’Vell, I haf no stetoscope so I can’t hear m’leg. Yust put yur stetoscope on m’leg... on m’tigh an listen.’ Hilding placed the stethoscope in his ears, then put the other end on Ole’s thigh. His hair [what little he had] stood on end as he heard, ’I need forty dollars!’ Stunned, Hilding jumped back, but Ole said, ’Now put it on m’knee!’ This time, Hilding heard ’I need tirty dollars!’ ’Now on m’ankle!’ said Ole. From the ankle, Hilding heard ’I need tventy dollars!’

"Well, I’ve never heard of such a thing’ said Dr. Hilding. ’I must go check m’books!’ Hilding went into his inside office and Ole could hear him shuffling and muttering to himself. After about 5 minutes Dr. Hilding came out with his glasses perched on the end of his nose, saying ’I found what’s wrong Ole, hear it is right in my book. The problem with your leg is, is that it’s BROKE!’

Unlike Sven, Ole, and Dr. Hilding in this joke, which leaves it up to us to conclude whether or not Ole’s leg got healed; our gospel today is a remarkable one in that it tells of Jesus definitely healing two people. It unfolds in a most interesting way in that the story of Jesus healing the woman with the 12-year hemorrhages is sandwiched in the middle of the story of Jesus healing Jairus’ daughter. By being sandwiched together, these two healing stories display at least three similarities. Let us take a closer look at these similarities to help us develop a clearer picture of these two incredible healings of Jesus.

One common thread in both of these healings is the appeals to Jesus directly for healing. Notice that in both of the healings Jairus and the woman suffering from hemorrhages APPEAL TO JESUS IN DESPERATION. It is as if Jesus were their ONLY LAST HOPE. No doubt Jairus, described here as “one of the leaders of the synagogue,” WAS A MAN HIGHLY RESPECTED IN THE COMMUNITY AND A MAN OF MEANS. Most likely he had already sought out EVERY OTHER RESOURCE WITHIN HIS JEWISH COMMUNITY BEFORE HE HAD COME TO JESUS. Quite likely he and his family, along with others in his synagogue had poured out their prayers and had done all of the prescribed rituals of their faith in order to heal the daughter from her death-threatening illness. Yet, nothing had happened. So now, in a last desperate effort, respectable Jairus, who had obviously heard of Jesus comes directly to him, and Mark tells us Jairus “FELL ON HIS FEET AND BEGGED HIM REPEATEDLY.” This is truly a sign of despair and humility on the part of a synagogue leader such as Jairus. In a similar manner, notice the details that Mark provides us with concerning the woman suffering from 12 years of hemorrhages. “SHE HAD ENDURED MANY PHYSICIANS, AND HAD SPENT ALL THAT SHE HAD; AND SHE WAS NO BETTER, BUT RATHER GREW WORSE.” She, like Jairus, had exhausted all of her possibilities and resources. Now she was in desperation. So she, like Jairus comes directly to Jesus in despair and humility because she too had heard of Jesus’ reputation. Twelve years of hemorrhages was long enough; after all, according to Leviticus 15:2-27, she was classified as an unclean and impure person. She was to be avoided by others in the community. She was forbidden to attend worship services at the synagogue. Her life would have been a very lonely one, and filled with one rejection after another. So she comes to Jesus out of humility and desperation. And later, when the healing occurs, she, like Jairus goes to Jesus “IN FEAR AND TREMBLING, FELL DOWN BEFORE HIM.” Is it also not true that even today Jesus still continues to welcome and heal those who come directly to him often out of desperation and with humility, like Jairus and the woman in today’s gospel? We do not have to be perfect to seek Jesus’ healing. Rather, we are invited TO COME AS WE ARE. For as Jesus reminds us elsewhere at Mark 2:17: “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.” SO WE ARE INVITED TO COME AS WE ARE TO JESUS DIRECTLY FOR HEALING BECAUSE WE ARE ALL SINNERS IN NEED OF JESUS OUR GREAT PHYSICIAN.

Another similarity in both of these healing stories is the connection of touching Jesus and believing, having the faith and confidence that such a touch is able to heal. Notice the words of appeal to Jesus by Jairus: “My little daughter is at the point of death. Come and lay your hands on her, so that she may be made well, and live.” And afterwards, when Jesus walks into the little girl’s room and heals her, Mark tells us that the first thing he did was: “He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha cum,” which means, “Little girl, get up!” A similar thing happens when Jesus heals the woman suffering from hemorrhages. This time however notice that it is the woman herself who takes the initiative to get close enough to Jesus, saying: “If I but touch his clothes, I will be made well.” Is this not also the case today as well? This is not some kind of magic or superstition happening here. No! Rather, it is by now an established fact that when humans are appropriately touched the body releases healing endorphins by the pituitary gland. That is why some say we need at least ten hugs every day for our health and well-being.

The church at its best is called to continue Jesus’ work as a healing community. That is why more congregations offer healing services on a regular basis. It is also why some are attracted to the church due to the love and acceptance they experience in the congregational setting. One church has developed the tradition of asking new members what the church means to them.

Recently, one new member wrote: “I feel an inner strength here at church, a strength I need to get me through the week. The touch of tenderness and caring from this congregation gives me such a warm feeling. Someone really cares through a smile and a handshake.”

As a congregation, we too may wish to consider and be more intentional about the ongoing healing ministry perhaps by more frequent healing services—not as an abandonment or condemnation of traditional medical treatment, but as a complementary practice along with it. One way in which we are involved in Christ’s healing ministry is through our prayers for the suffering and sick. And I know that that makes a big difference for a lot of people—giving them comfort, peace, hope and contentment. So I encourage you to continue with your prayers and am grateful to all of you who are faithful in this ministry.

A third similarity in both of these healing stories is that Jesus speaks directly to those who are healed. In the case of Jairus’ daughter, he says: “Talitha cum,” which means, “Little girl, get up!” And Mark tells us that is exactly what she did. In the case of the woman with the hemorrhages, after Jesus realised that someone in the crowd had touched him and power had gone forth from him, he wants to know who did touch him. So the woman comes to him in fear and trembling and fell down before him, and told him the whole truth. Then Jesus speaks, saying: “DAUGHTER, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.” This is a loaded sentence! Now, after 12 years of not belonging and being rejected this woman BECOMES A DAUGHTER OF JESUS’ FAMILY. Such a term certainly underscores the love and acceptance Jesus has for her. She is no longer unclean, impure; she is no longer only an anonymous woman; she is a DAUGHTER. She is restored and renewed and re-created in and by Jesus as a rightful member of his community. Notice too that he praises her for her strong faith in Jesus, which motivated her to take the initiative in the first place to seek out and find Jesus for healing. Then Jesus concludes his sentence by blessing her with peace, which in the biblical sense, means complete health and wholeness, confirming to this new daughter and to the crowd as well that her disease had been healed completely.

Are you feeling dead like Jairus’ daughter? Or perhaps you’re feeling ostracized, avoided, treated as if you no longer belong to the community, like the woman with the hemorrhages.

Death (and ostracism) meets us, not only in the grim face of our doctor, informing us of the onset of some dreaded illness, but also in the faces of the one who told us that we were not needed anymore at this job, the one who asked out of a marriage, a friend who turns her (or his) back upon us, the family member who would not forgive.

YET JESUS IS WITH US EVEN IN DEATH AND IN THE FACE OF OTHERS LEAVING US ALL ALONE. JESUS IS CALLING TO US STRONGLY, CLEARLY, LOUDLY, YET EVER SO LOVINGLY—HE IS GIVING US LIFE, TELLING US TO “GET UP!” WE TOO, LIKE JAIRUS’ DAUGHTER ARE OFFERED NEW LIFE IN HIM. HE IS RESTORING US, RENEWING US, RE-CREATING US LIKE HE DID WITH HIS DAUGHTER WHO SUFFERED FROM HEMORRHAGES. HE IS TELLING US THAT “OUR FAITH HAS MADE US WELL; WE CAN GO IN PEACE, WE TOO ARE HEALED OF OUR DISEASE.” Listen carefully now and take his words to heart; in them there is healing for us all!

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The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle and Gospel lessons are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Church of Christ in the USA, and used by permission. Sermon contributed by Pastor Garth Wehrfritz-Hanson on Jun 21, 2003.
Ole went to Sven limping badly. ’Sven’ says Ole, ’do yiew know of a good doctor? M’leg hurts.

The Morning Prayer for SUNDAY, July 1, 2018


My dear Father,

I pray that I will stay focused on You today even after this morning. You are more than enough to sustain me. I pray that You will constantly remind me to be satisfied with everything I have and every circumstance I am in. I pray that You fill me up with joy even if I am tired.

Teach me to be brought low and how to flourish. Teach me to learn the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. You are the only One who can satisfy my thirst and hunger when you open Your Hands. You give power to the faint. My soul clings to you as your right hand upholds me. I know that through my contentment, dear Lord, You will be glorified.

I want to honor You in all that I do. I believe I can do everything when You are with me, Lord. I praise your Holy Name.
Amen

Verse of the Day for SUNDAY, July 1, 2018


Mark 2:17 (NIV) On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Read all of Mark 2

Listen to Mark 2

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

Un dia a la Vez - Seamos instrumentos


Seamos instrumentos

Todo lo que te viniere a la mano para hacer, hazlo según tus fuerzas.

Me tomé la tarea de investigar lo que es un instrumento musical y llegué a esta conclusión: Un instrumento musical es un conjunto de piezas que se disponen en un todo de manera que un intérprete logre producir sonidos musicales. Si lo analizamos, es posible que de cualquier objeto se pueda obtener sonidos. Sin embargo, para que sea musical, el sonido que produce debe combinar la melodía, el ritmo y la armonía.

Dejando este análisis a un lado, quiero hacer un paralelo a lo que nosotros podemos ser en las manos de Dios. La Palabra nos enseña que a todos se nos han dado dones y talentos. Muchas veces ni sabemos que los tenemos. Así que un día alguien nos los descubre o nosotros mismos nos damos cuenta que ciertas cosas que hacemos nos salen bien y le gustan a la gente.

Si un instrumento musical es un conjunto de piezas que se combinan para producir sonidos melódicos, rítmicos y armónicos, tú y yo tenemos esa combinación perfecta para poner en acción el don que puso Dios en nosotros.

Además, si a diferencia de que en principio cualquier cosa que produzca sonido puede ser un instrumento, te recuerdo que tú no eres cualquier cosa, sino que eres un hijo de Dios creado a su imagen y semejanza.

Valórate y pídele al Señor que te revele cuál es ese talento y empieza a desarrollarlo ya.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Me tomé la tarea de investigar lo que es un instrumento musical y llegué a esta conclusión:

Standing Strong Through the Storm - MYSTERY


MYSTERY

He made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ…
~ Ephesians 1:9 (NIV)

Human beings always want to know “why?” and “why not now?” But it’s precisely because we are human we cannot know. That’s why mystery is so important to understand. The entire book of Job is all about the “why” of suffering and in the end God invites Job to see a bigger picture than even his suffering.

Creation is a mistake if all you see is your suffering. But if you lift your eyes wider and let your gaze roam over the whole universe with God, you can also see that creation has even more beauty and grace.

So we are to value mystery because it enables us to feel God’s love…love that was fully revealed in Christ.

Sometimes we get to see “why?” and “why not now?” (one of the good aspects of growing older). Often we don’t because we are the players of life in the universe, not the playwright.

Christine Mallouhi in her excellent book, Waging Peace on Islam, makes this significant conclusion:

The victorious and triumphant Christian life does not conjure up pictures of suffering and death and feelings of abandonment. But this was all part of God's victory in Christ. If this was the path the Master trod why should it be any different for the servants? Jesus cried out "why?" and "where are you?" to God when circumstances were crushing him. God is always greater than our understanding of him and there will always be mystery about him that causes us to fall down in awe and worship. This mystery, which we want to tidily categorize, keeps causing struggles in our life. Every time we get God tidied up like a ball of rubber bands, another end bursts out and the struggle begins over again, until we learn to live in faith with untidy ends. If everything is clear then faith is irrelevant. We are not called to solve the mystery, but enter it.[1]

RESPONSE: Today I will value mystery because it enables me to feel God’s love.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord that though the world around us if full of suffering, it is more full of beauty and grace. Help me to trust You and value mystery.

1. Christine Mallouhi, Waging Peace on Islam (Downers Grove, IL: Intervarsity Press, 2000), p.52.

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

LHM Devotion - July 1, 2018 - False Faces

https://www.lhm.org/dailydevotions/default.asp?date=20180701

Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"False Faces"

Jul. 1, 2018

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

Lisa Giaconda was the lady who served as the model for the Mona Lisa.

I wonder, when the painting was finished did she turn to da Vinci and say,

1. "Lenny, do I really look that chubby? Couldn't you have taken off a few pounds?"

2. "And my eyes, why didn't you get rid of those circles and add a little eye shadow?"

3. "It's not a bad picture as far as oil paintings go, but I don't like my smile. It's really not a smile at all. It's sort of a snicker-smile. I know you're an artist and all that, but I'm going to be looking at this painting for a long time, so I want to make sure it's done right. Let's try it again, okay?"

Of course, the art history books record no such conversation ever having taken place, but I'd be surprised if something like that didn't happen. That's because most people don't like the way they look.

Talk to the supermodel whose mug is on a multitude of magazines; visit with the actress whose countenance has filled the largest movie screen and, they will, without hesitation, give you a complete list of the things which are wrong with their faces and figures. Because we are obsessed by appearances, tabloids regularly run features on the celebrities who have let themselves go to pot, and articles about the stars who have taken off too much weight too fast.

Of course, you don't have to be a model or a movie star for the average person to think a few improvements are in order. If you doubt that, ask people about their New Year's resolutions.

You should know this exterior stuff is not what God sees when He looks at you.

When God gazes upon you, He sees past the shell; when God looks at you, He sees your interior: your mind and soul. Even if you're a pretty nice individual, even if you try to be a person of honor, even if you work hard at being the best you can be, you, like all of humanity, have your flaws and failings, your shortcomings, and yes, your sins.

Talking about the part of us which God sees, the Old Testament prophet Jeremiah said, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? 'I the Lord search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds'" (Jeremiah 17:9-10).

Think about it. Our happiness depends on people not seeing what we're thinking, not knowing all we're doing. If our thoughts of lust, greed, anger, pride were all flashed on our faces so everyone could read them, who among us would show ourselves in public ever again?

Knowing who we really are and recognizing we could never change ourselves, the Heavenly Father decided to bring about some changes. Unlike a change made to a person's external appearance, the changes God initiated changed our hearts, our minds, our relationship with Him, and our eternity. Through the sacrifice of His Son and the faith-giving work of the Holy Spirit, the old is gone, the new has come.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, create in me a new heart and renew a right spirit within me. In Jesus' Name I pray it. Amen.

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
Lisa Giaconda was the lady who served as the model for the Mona Lisa.

Notre Pain Quotidien - À quoi ressemble Dieu ?

https://www.ministeresnpq.org/2018/07/01/a-quoi-ressemble-dieu/

À quoi ressemble Dieu ?

La Bible en un an : Job 20 – 21 ; Actes 10.24-48

[Le Fils] étant le reflet de sa gloire et l’empreinte de sa personne [de Dieu]. (V. 3)

Pour célébrer une occasion spéciale, mon mari m’a amenée visiter une galerie d’art locale en m’offrant d’y choisir une toile en cadeau. J’ai alors opté pour une petite peinture illustrant un ruisseau coulant dans une forêt. Le ruisseau prenait presque toute la toile, si bien qu’il n’y avait que très peu de ciel qui y apparaissait. Par contre, les reflets sur l’eau révélaient l’emplacement du soleil, la cime des arbres et l’atmosphère brumeuse. Le seul moyen de « voir » le ciel consistait à contempler la surface de l’eau.

Or, au sens spirituel, Jésus est comme ce ruisseau. Quand nous voulons voir à quoi ressemble Dieu, nous regardons Jésus, « l’empreinte de sa personne » (HÉ 1.3). Bien que nous puissions découvrir des faits au sujet de Dieu au moyen d’énoncés directs dans la Bible, comme « Dieu est amour », nous pouvons aussi approfondir notre compréhension de lui en discernant comment il agirait s’il affrontait les mêmes problèmes que nous ici‑bas. Être Dieu incarné, voilà l’exemple que Jésus nous en a donné.

Tenté, Jésus a révélé la sainteté de Dieu. Devant les ténèbres spirituelles, il a usé de l’autorité de Dieu. Confronté à des problèmes relationnels, il a démontré la sagesse de Dieu. Dans sa mort, il a illustré l’amour de Dieu.

Bien qu’il nous soit impossible de tout saisir au sujet de Dieu – il est infini et notre pensée est finie –, nous pouvons avoir l’assurance à la vue de Christ de connaître ses attributs.

En Jésus, on voit les attributs de Dieu.


© 2018 Ministères NPQ
Pour célébrer une occasion spéciale, mon mari m’a amenée visiter une galerie d’art locale en m’offrant d’y choisir une toile en cadeau.