Friday, May 24, 2019

The Daily Lectionary for FRIDAY, May 24, 2019

The Daily Lectionary
FRIDAY, May 24, 2019
(Revised Common Lectionary Year C)

Psalm 67
The Nations Called to Praise God
To the leader: with stringed instruments. A Psalm. A Song.
1  May God be gracious to us and bless us
     and make his face to shine upon us,   Selah
2  that your way may be known upon earth,
     your saving power among all nations.
3  Let the peoples praise you, O God;
     let all the peoples praise you.

4  Let the nations be glad and sing for joy,
     for you judge the peoples with equity
     and guide the nations upon earth.   Selah
5  Let the peoples praise you, O God;
     let all the peoples praise you.

6  The earth has yielded its increase;
     God, our God, has blessed us.
7  May God continue to bless us;
     let all the ends of the earth revere him.

Proverbs 2:6-8
2:6  For the Lord gives wisdom;
     from his mouth come knowledge and understanding;
7  he stores up sound wisdom for the upright;
     he is a shield to those who walk blamelessly,
8  guarding the paths of justice
     and preserving the way of his faithful ones.

Acts 16:1-8
Timothy Joins Paul and Silas
16:1 Paul went on also to Derbe and to Lystra, where there was a disciple named Timothy, the son of a Jewish woman who was a believer; but his father was a Greek. 2 He was well spoken of by the believers in Lystra and Iconium. 3 Paul wanted Timothy to accompany him; and he took him and had him circumcised because of the Jews who were in those places, for they all knew that his father was a Greek. 4 As they went from town to town, they delivered to them for observance the decisions that had been reached by the apostles and elders who were in Jerusalem. 5 So the churches were strengthened in the faith and increased in numbers daily.

Paul’s Vision of the Man of Macedonia
6 They went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. 7 When they had come opposite Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them; 8 so, passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas.

Optional parts of the readings are set off in [square brackets.]

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 Daily Lectionary is a three year cyclical lectionary. We are currently in Year C. Beginning with the first Sunday of Advent in 2019, we will be in Year A. The year which ended at Advent 2018 was Year B. These readings complement the Sunday and festival readings: Thursday through Saturday readings help prepare the reader for the Sunday ahead; Monday through Wednesday readings help the reader reflect and digest on what they heard in worship. Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings, copyright © 2005 Consultation on Common Texts.
For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.

Verse of the Day FRIDAY, May 24, 2019

Romans 12:10 (NIV) Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.

Read all of Romans 12

Listen to Romans 12

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 - Friday, May 24, 2019

Dios nos ayuda

El Señor mismo marchará al frente de ti y estará contigo; nunca te dejará ni te abandonará. No temas ni te desanimes.

Hoy vamos a pedirle a Dios que nos ayude a ser mujeres y hombres sencillos que vivamos nuestra vida de acuerdo con su voluntad.

Sabemos que no podemos esperar más de los demás cuando no caminamos una milla extra. También sabemos que hay excepciones en esto de las oportunidades, ya que no le vas a dar la oportunidad a una persona que representa un peligro para ti o los tuyos y que hay situaciones en las que debemos soltarnos en las manos de Dios.

Si eres víctima de maltratos, violaciones, ofensas o chantajes, o a tus hijos los maltratan y sufren el abuso que pone en peligro sus vidas, es urgente que vayas en busca de ayuda.

Rompe el silencio y sal de ese círculo dañino porque Dios no te quiere ver de ese modo. Ante todo, tú eres un hijo de Dios. Por eso es tan importante tener un consejero o una persona que te escuche y te pueda ayudar a salir adelante en cualquier situación.

La buena noticia es que, en medio de cualquier tribulación, Dios nos ayudará.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Hoy vamos a pedirle a Dios que nos ayude a ser mujeres y hombres sencillos que vivamos nuestra vida de acuerdo con su voluntad.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - Friday, May 24, 2019

Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.
~ Psalm 62:2 (NIV)

In December 1999, a Muslim mob attacked the Doulos Bible School on the outskirts of Jakarta, Indonesia. One of the main aims of this Bible School is to evangelize among the 30-million-strong Sundanese, the largest unreached people group in the world, who live in west Java. One student died and forty-four other students were wounded. About eighty percent of the buildings were destroyed. Domingus is a young student who was injured. He shares his personal story of the events that fatal evening:

That night I was asleep in bed so I didn't know what was happening. Suddenly a friend woke me up and shouted that we were being attacked. The building was already burning and I did not know where to run to. I knew if I ran to the main gate I would be killed. I ran to the back of the campus where my friend lived. I prayed “Lord, if I die, I know I will go to heaven.”

Suddenly the crowds arrived and they shouted to kill me. They grabbed me and blindfolded me. The Lord spoke to me “Don't be afraid, I will be with you.” They hit me with a big stick and I lost consciousness. I felt my spirit leave my body. Through a sequence of events I was brought to a place where people were singing and worshipping God. I saw a very bright light and I closed my eyes and bowed down. A voice said “Your time has not come yet; it is time to go back!”

I regained consciousness and realized where I was. I tried to look at my watch but I discovered my neck was very badly cut. I saw all the blood. I prayed that the Lord would send someone to take me to hospital. I thanked the Lord that I could be persecuted for the gospel and that through this I could meet Him.

When the police arrived they asked, “Where did you find this corpse?” They took me to hospital. I tried to open my eyes and I still saw the angels around me. The doctors said I would be paralyzed but as you can see I am not.

Upon the conclusion of his testimony, Domingus was asked the obvious question: “What now? They will come back to finish the job and kill you. What do you want to do with your life Domingus?” He replied with great conviction, “I just want to serve Jesus.”

RESPONSE: Today I reaffirm my faith in God as my only protector who does not allow me to be shaken.

PRAYER: Thank You Lord, that only in You can I find safety and protection. You have promised that You will always be with me.

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

Men of the Bible - Friday, May 24, 2019


His name means: "He [God] Has Given"

His work: He was a prophet in Israel during the reign of King David and the early years of King Solomon.
His character: Nathan was a fearless man whose obedience to God's voice put him nose to nose with the most powerful person in the land, first announcing that King David would not have the honor of building the temple and later declaring his immorality and his severe punishment for it.
His sorrow: With great hopes for Israel's success under the monarchy, Nathan was an eyewitness to sin, corruption, and mutiny that tore the nation apart.
His triumph: Because of his own faithfulness, Nathan was given the privilege of being God's mouthpiece to an entire nation.
Key Scriptures: 2 Samuel 7; 12

A Look at the Man

Nathan loved David, the king of Israel.

The proof of this love was in Nathan's allegiance to the monarch and his sincere attempts to encourage the king, even to the point of affirming his ideas of a grand temple when God had not blessed the venture.

But the acid test of the prophet's affection was not in supportive or affirming words, but in truthful confrontation—the kind of confrontation that could cost the prophet his friendship with the king, not to mention his life.

Nathan was clever and creative. His involvement in the selection of worship music in the sanctuary (2 Chronicles 29:25) tells us of his sensitivity. His personal involvement in the naming of the baby Solomon hints to us of Nathan's tenderness (2 Samuel 12:25).

But Nathan had been given a terrifying assignment fit for the bravest warrior. And, if the nature of the commission wasn't tough enough, it had come as a directive of the living God.

Friendships are often put to the test over long hours of work or waiting. Friends pay a price by listening or issuing words of love and encouragement. But friendship knows no bravery like the bravery of brutal, truthful confrontation.

Those who have named this clash of emotions "tough love" have named it well. It is tough, but it is also the deepest form of love.

Although it was not Nathan's only challenge during David's reign, the confrontation following the king's adulterous affair with Bathsheba and murderous attempt to cover it up was his most grueling.

But instead of going nose to nose with David—a strategy that could have gotten Nathan in serious trouble—the prophet told a story. Drawing out the compassionate shepherd in the king, Nathan told him a story of a poor man's family, their only possession a ewe. Much more than simply an animal on the man's farm, this lamb was in every way a household pet. It "shared the man's food, drank from his cup, and even slept in his arms." The lamb was "like a daughter to the man."

Nathan must have known, as he watched the king's face, that David was captivated by the tale.

"In the same town was a rich man," Nathan continued. "Now a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man refrained from taking one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal…. Instead, he took the ewe lamb that belonged to the poor man and prepared it."

David was blind with rage. "The man who did this deserves to die!"

Nathan must have taken a deep breath, knowing he had the king exactly where God wanted him to be. "You are the man," Nathan said in measured tones. "You are the man."

The great challenge in truth telling, even with a close friend, is to keep the focus on the deed and the guilty party, not on the confronter's need to be right. In this, Nathan was brilliant. In Nathan's message, David clearly heard God's voice. Years later David would write: "Against you [the LORD], you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight" (Psalm 51:4).

Nathan dared to prove his love for his friend by telling him the truth in loving confrontation. And so skillful was the prophet at dealing with the king that when the third child was born to David and Bathsheba, they named him Nathan after the man who risked it all.

Reflect On: Psalm 51
Praise God: Because he is quick to forgive.
Offer Thanks: That God does not hold our sins against us as long as we repent.
Confess: Any sin you have tried to hide from yourself and from God.
Ask God: To purify your heart, making it “whiter than snow.”

Today's reading is a brief excerpt from Men of the Bible: A One-Year Devotional Study of Men in Scripture by Ann Spangler and Robert Wolgemuth (Zondervan). © 2010 by Ann Spangler. Used with permission. All rights reserved. Enjoy the complete book by purchasing your own copy at the Bible Gateway Store. The book's title must be included when sharing the above content on social media.
Friendships are often put to the test over long hours of work or waiting. Friends pay a price by listening or issuing words of love and encouragement. But friendship knows no bravery like the bravery of brutal, truthful confrontation.

Girlfriends in God - Friday, May 24, 2019

The Good Shepherd

Today’s Truth

He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.
~ Isaiah 40:11 (NIV)

Friend to Friend

As a little girl, I really did have a little lamb whose fleece was white as snow. I can remember the day my mother showed me the lamb and explained that she did not have a bottle with which to feed the lamb. I did. I agreed to let the lamb have my bottle if I could have the lamb. I have been fascinated by the unique relationship between sheep and their shepherd ever since.

Shepherds live with their sheep, finding places for them to eat and drink, providing shelter from the storms and protection from the heat. The type of shepherding referred to in the Bible is not the farming of fenced pasturelands, but nomadic grazing. The shepherd must carefully plan the path and lead the way so that the sheep have neither too little nor too much grazing and are able to get to the water hole on time. Several flocks of sheep are gathered together at night in a sheltered place so that shepherds can share watches of the night. Good shepherds are always willing to risk their lives to save their flocks from any harm.

Sheep are dumb, can never be left alone, and often stray, requiring the shepherd to find and rescue them.  A shepherd never pushes his sheep but rather leads his sheep, going before them, making sure they are not walking into danger. The needs of sheep, compared to the needs of other animals, are greater because of their instinct to be afraid and when faced with a fearful situation, to run. Without a shepherd to care for the sheep, they will not last long.

I definitely fit the profile of a sheep. I can’t count the number of times I have stubbornly stuck to my plan, foolishly thinking that it was better than His plan, only to end up in some pit somewhere, calling for help. Psalm 40:1-3 has become my life maxim – with one exception. I rarely wait patiently! Remember, I am a sheep!

Psalm 40:1-3 “I waited patiently for the LORD; He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear and put their trust in the LORD” (NIV).

I sometimes allow fear to drive me to a place where I am trapped by doubts and darkness…until He rescues me. I try to satisfy my hunger by eating the wrong things found in the wrong places at the wrong times. The result is always the same; my soul remains ravenous for what is good while stuffing my heart and mind with what is bad.

Like every sheep, I don’t like to be pushed. Good shepherds do not push, no matter how great the temptation.  A good shepherd stands in front of his sheep, gently calling their names, leading them to a place where he has already been, positioning himself between danger and his sheep. When I am tired and ready to give up, I tend to withdraw from the other sheep and even from my Shepherd. Many of us have somehow bought into the lie that we can make it on their own or that the rules, the commandments of God, do not necessarily apply to them…just those other sheep. The longer I serve God, the more I realize just how much we need each other and how much we need Him. When will I learn that I cannot do life on my own – as a sheep or as a shepherd?

A good shepherd is willing to lay down his life for his sheep, just as Jesus Christ laid down His life for you and for me. I am so glad He was willing to lay down His life for every single sheep – the cute, fluffy ones as well as the dirty, broken lambs like me.

Maybe it is time for us all to stop, listen for His voice, seek His plan, and remember that we are indeed needy sheep who are called to love and lead other needy sheep to the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ.

Let’s Pray

Lord, I am so thankful You are my Shepherd and that no matter how deep the valley or dark the pit, You have gone before me and made a way. Help me understand that Your ways are higher than mine. Forgive me when I complain that the way You have made for me is harder than I want it to be. I surrender my life to You, Lord, my God and my Shepherd.
In Jesus’ Name,

Now it’s Your Turn

Here is a challenge for every Girlfriend in God. Read Psalm 23 once a day for one month. Record it in your journal. Let every word soak into your heart, mind and soul. When fear comes, turn to God. When you are in need, trust the Shepherd. When confusion surrounds you, trust God to make the crooked paths straight. Rejoice daily in the fact that you are His lamb and He is your Shepherd.

More from the Girlfriends

I truly believe most of our stress in life is rooted in our refusal to trust God as our Shepherd. Escaping the Stress Trap is not just a book I wrote. It is based on Psalm 23 and is my story of learning to understand that I am His sheep and He is my Shepherd. Check it out! And be sure to connect with Mary on Facebook or through email.

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

Girlfriends in God
As a little girl, I really did have a little lamb whose fleece was white as snow.

LHM Daily Devotions - The Shimmer of Silence

"The Shimmer of Silence"

May 24, 2019

And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, He (Jesus) departed and went out to a desolate place, and there He prayed.
~ Mark 1:35 (ESV)

A friend and I went to a special worship service last night. It was a kind of teaching and learning experience for participants in a workshop context. The service featured readings from Scripture, followed by a time for prayer and a period of silence.

It was the period of silence that caused me a problem. I suppose as members of the congregation, we were to use the period of silence (and darkness) to meditate on the Scripture verses just read.

Now I must confess I've never really known what it means to meditate. I can think, dream, plan, recall, remember, and relate, but I don't know if that is meditation. I don't handle silence very well either, and it seems that others had a similar problem. The silence became so thick it was unsettling. I peeked about to see what others might be doing with the silence. Some were yawning; others were "studying" the stained-glass windows; some were peeking about—as I was—and that was really embarrassing. I felt guilty because I apparently wasn't doing what I should've been doing.

I think silence is often tough to take because we don't know what to do with it. We have sound about us all the time. There's traffic outside our front doors, nearby conversations in the office, the din of workplace machinery, or the white noise of congested public spaces. When I go home, one of the first things I do is turn on the TV. We seem always to be talking or being talked to. Have you ever noticed how long it seems, and how awkward it sometimes becomes, when there is a lull in a conversation? Teachers and counselors are eager to jump in with some statement in order to cover that silent gap of time between an asked question or suggestion and the anticipated response.

No wonder some people can't sleep in the quiet of the night. We just aren't comfortable with silence. Except for those who are hard of hearing, we seem ever and continually pummeled by anything and everything except silence.

It's sad in a way though that we live in such a noisy world, because silence has its rewards.

For instance, during those rare times when I am silent and surrounded by silence, I can concentrate my thinking on the task at hand—free of any disturbing influence. And perhaps, not surprisingly, silence is important if we are to hear the Lord, for often He speaks softly and in ways that require unwavering attention.

Sometimes it seems that I am so busy praying that I can't or don't hear the answer. But when I take time, when I pause and consider His Word in Scripture, quietly reflecting on its truth and meaning for me right here and now, then the silence becomes golden, brightened with a better understanding of God and His love, especially the way He loves us through His beloved Son Jesus Christ.

THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, teach us to be still before the power and presence of Your Word. It is there that we can hear Your voice. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

From The Lutheran Layman, August 1979 issue, "Be Still ... and Know I Am God," by Jon Suel. Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
I've never really known what it means to meditate.

Devocional de la CPTLN del 24 de Mayo de 2019 - El brillo del silencio


El brillo del silencio

24 de Mayo de 2019

Muy de mañana, cuando todavía estaba muy oscuro, Jesús se levantó y se fue a un lugar apartado para orar.
~ Marcos 1:35 (RVC)

Anoche fui con un amigo a un servicio de adoración especial. Se realizó en forma de taller con lecturas de las Escrituras, seguidas de un tiempo de oración y un período de silencio.

Fue el período de silencio lo que me causó problemas. Supongo que el período de silencio (y oscuridad) debería ser usado para meditar en los pasajes de las Escrituras que acabábamos de leer.

Pero debo confesar que nunca he sabido realmente lo que significa meditar. Puedo pensar, soñar, planear, evocar, recordar y relacionarme, pero no sé si eso es meditación. Y tampoco sé qué hacer en silencio, y parece que otros tienen un problema similar: el silencio se hizo tan espeso, que era incómodo. Atisbé para ver qué estaban haciendo los demás con el silencio. Algunos bostezaban; otros estaban "estudiando" los vitrales y otros atisbaban como yo, lo que fue realmente embarazoso. Me sentí culpable porque, aparentemente, no estaba haciendo lo que debía.

Se me ocurre que el silencio a menudo es difícil de asumir porque no sabemos qué hacer con él. Vivimos constantemente con ruidos, ya sea en la calle, en la oficina o en la escuela. Cuando voy a casa, una de las primeras cosas que hago es encender el televisor. Parece que siempre estamos hablando con alguien o a alguien. ¿Te has dado cuenta de lo largo que parece, lo embarazoso y hasta espantoso que resulta cuando hay una pausa en una conversación? Los maestros y consejeros están ansiosos por intervenir con alguna declaración para cubrir ese espacio de silencio entre una pregunta o sugerencia y la respuesta anticipada. No es de extrañar que algunas personas no puedan dormir en la tranquilidad de la noche. Simplemente no nos sentimos cómodos con el silencio.

De alguna manera, es triste que vivamos en un mundo tan ruidoso, porque el silencio tiene sus recompensas. Por ejemplo, durante esos raros momentos en los que estoy en silencio y rodeado de silencio, puedo concentrar mi pensamiento en lo que estoy haciendo, libre de cualquier influencia perturbadora. Y tal vez, como es lógico, el silencio es importante si queremos escuchar a nuestro Señor, ya que a menudo Él habla en voz baja y en formas que requieren nuestra atención inquebrantable.

A veces parece que estoy tan ocupado orando, que no puedo o no escucho su respuesta. Pero cuando me tomo el tiempo, cuando hago una pausa y considero su palabra en las Escrituras, reflexionando en silencio sobre su verdad y significado para mí aquí y ahora, el silencio se vuelve dorado, iluminado con una mejor comprensión de Dios y de Su amor, especialmente de la manera que Él nos ama a través de su amado Hijo Jesucristo.

ORACIÓN: Padre celestial, enséñanos a estar en silencio ante el poder y la presencia de tu Palabra en nuestras vidas para poder escuchar tu voz. En el nombre de Jesús. Amén.

"Estén quietos y sepan que yo soy Dios", Jon Suel, The Lutheran Layman, agosto de 1979.

© Copyright 2019 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
De alguna manera, es triste que vivamos en un mundo tan ruidoso, porque el silencio tiene sus recompensas.

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - “Chúa Đã Cứu Tôi”

“Chúa Đã Cứu Tôi”

Đọc: Giăng 8:42-47 | Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: I Sử ký 22-24; Giăng 8:28-5

Khi nó nói dối thì nói theo bản tính của mình, vì nó là kẻ nói dối và là cha của sự nói dối. Giăng 8:44

Khi Aaron được 15 tuổi, anh bắt đầu cầu nguyện với Sa-tan: “Tôi cảm thấy như tôi và nó có một mối liên kết.” Aaron bắt đầu nói dối, ăn cắp và lợi dụng gia đình, bạn bè của mình. Anh cũng trải qua những cơn ác mộng: “Tôi thức dậy vào một buổi sáng nọ và thấy ma quỷ đứng ngay cuối giường. Nó nói với tôi rằng tôi sẽ thi đậu hết mọi kỳ thi rồi tôi sẽ chết.” Nhưng khi thi xong, anh vẫn sống. Aaron suy ngẫm: “Tôi thấy rõ rằng nó là kẻ nói dối.”

Với hy vọng gặp gỡ các cô gái, Aaron đến dự các buổi lễ của Cơ Đốc giáo, tại đó có một người đã đề nghị được cầu nguyện cho anh. “Khi ông ấy cầu nguyện, tôi cảm nhận một sự bình an tràn ngập trong con người mình.” Anh cảm nhận một điều gì đó “mạnh mẽ hơn, tự do hơn” so với những gì mà anh cảm nhận được từ Sa-tan. Người cầu nguyện nói với Aaron rằng Chúa có chương trình dành cho anh và Sa-tan là kẻ nói dối. Người này đã lặp lại lời Chúa Jêsus nói với Sa-tan khi Ngài trả lời những người chống đối Ngài: “Nó là kẻ nói dối và là cha của sự nói dối” (Gi. 8:44).

Aaron từ bỏ đạo Sa-tan và đến với Đấng Christ và giờ đây anh “thuộc về Chúa” (c.47). Anh làm mục sư trong một cộng đồng người đô thị, anh chia sẻ sự khác biệt của việc theo Chúa. Anh ấy là lời chứng sống động cho quyền năng cứu rỗi của Chúa: “Tôi có thể nói với lòng tin chắc rằng Chúa đã cứu tôi.”

Đức Chúa Trời là nguồn của mọi điều tốt lành, thánh khiết và chân thật. Chúng ta hãy đến với Ngài để tìm kiếm chân lý.
Bạn đã kinh nghiệm Chúa giải cứu mình khỏi ma quỷ như thế nào? Bạn sẽ chia sẻ câu chuyện của mình với ai trong tuần này?
Đức Chúa Trời đầy quyền năng, còn ma quỷ là cha của sự nói dối.

© 2019 Lời Sống Hằng Ngày
Khi Aaron được 15 tuổi, anh bắt đầu cầu nguyện với Sa-tan: “Tôi cảm thấy như tôi và nó có một mối liên kết.”