Friday, November 8, 2019

The Daily Lectionary for FRIDAY, November 8, 2019

The Daily Lectionary
FRIDAY, November 8, 2019
(Revised Common Lectionary Year C)
(Semi-continuous Reading Plan)

(Great is the Lord)
The Greatness and the Goodness of God
Praise. Of David.
1  I will extol you, my God and King,
     and bless your name forever and ever.
2  Every day I will bless you,
     and praise your name forever and ever.
3  Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;
     his greatness is unsearchable.

4  One generation shall laud your works to another,
     and shall declare your mighty acts.
5  On the glorious splendor of your majesty,
     and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.

17 The Lord is just in all his ways,
     and kind in all his doings.
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him,
     to all who call on him in truth.
19 He fulfills the desire of all who fear him;
     he also hears their cry, and saves them.
20 The Lord watches over all who love him,
     but all the wicked he will destroy.

21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord,
     and all flesh will bless his holy name forever and ever.

(Far and near led to build the temple)
The Coronation of the Branch
6:9 The word of the Lord came to me: 10 Collect silver and gold from the exiles—from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah—who have arrived from Babylon; and go the same day to the house of Josiah son of Zephaniah. 11 Take the silver and gold and make a crown, and set it on the head of the high priest Joshua son of Jehozadak; 12 say to him: Thus says the Lord of hosts: Here is a man whose name is Branch: for he shall branch out in his place, and he shall build the temple of the Lord. 13 It is he that shall build the temple of the Lord; he shall bear royal honor, and shall sit upon his throne and rule. There shall be a priest by his throne, with peaceful understanding between the two of them. 14 And the crown shall be in the care of Heldai, Tobijah, Jedaiah, and Josiah son of Zephaniah, as a memorial in the temple of the Lord.

15 Those who are far off shall come and help to build the temple of the Lord; and you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. This will happen if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God.

(Paul testifies to the resurrection)
Paul’s Defense before Felix
24:10 When the governor motioned to him to speak, Paul replied:

“I cheerfully make my defense, knowing that for many years you have been a judge over this nation. 11 As you can find out, it is not more than twelve days since I went up to worship in Jerusalem. 12 They did not find me disputing with anyone in the temple or stirring up a crowd either in the synagogues or throughout the city. 13 Neither can they prove to you the charge that they now bring against me. 14 But this I admit to you, that according to the Way, which they call a sect, I worship the God of our ancestors, believing everything laid down according to the law or written in the prophets. 15 I have a hope in God—a hope that they themselves also accept—that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous. 16 Therefore I do my best always to have a clear conscience toward God and all people. 17 Now after some years I came to bring alms to my nation and to offer sacrifices. 18 While I was doing this, they found me in the temple, completing the rite of purification, without any crowd or disturbance. 19 But there were some Jews from Asia—they ought to be here before you to make an accusation, if they have anything against me. 20 Or let these men here tell what crime they had found when I stood before the council, 21 unless it was this one sentence that I called out while standing before them, ‘It is about the resurrection of the dead that I am on trial before you today.’”

22 But Felix, who was rather well informed about the Way, adjourned the hearing with the comment, “When Lysias the tribune comes down, I will decide your case.” 23 Then he ordered the centurion to keep him in custody, but to let him have some liberty and not to prevent any of his friends from taking care of his needs.

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.
The Daily Lectionary for FRIDAY, November 8, 2019
Psalm 145:1-5, 17-21; Zechariah 6:9-15; Acts 24:10-23

The Daily Prayer for FRIDAY, November 8, 2019

The Daily Prayer
FRIDAY, November 8, 2019

Dorothy Day, co-founder of the Catholic Worker Movement, wrote, “Whatever I had read as a child about the saints had thrilled me. I could see the nobility of giving one’s life for the sick, the maimed, the leper. But there was another question in my mind. Why was so much done in remedying the evil instead of avoiding it in the first place? Where were the saints to try to change the social order, not just to minister to the slaves, but to do away with slavery?”

Lord, we are slow to come to our senses. Often our feeble offerings are merely extensions of our sin. Quicken your Spirit within us and move us to offer up that which is pleasing to you: justice, kindness, and humilty of heart. Amen.

Verse of the Day for FRIDAY, November 8, 2019

Joshua 24:15 (NIV)
But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”
Read all of Joshua 24

Listen to Joshua 24

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 - Viernes 08 de Noviembre de 2019

La puerta estrecha

Pero estrecha es la puerta y angosto el camino que conduce a la vida, y son pocos los que la encuentran.
Mateo 7:14 (NVI)

Me llamó mucho la atención encontrar dentro de las cosas que Dios espera de nosotros algo que he escuchado, y hasta repetido: «¡Ah! Esa persona salió por la puerta grande». También se dice: «Quisiera salir por la puerta grande». Estas frases las usamos cuando queremos salir de un trabajo y quedar bien con todo el mundo. Cuando se va a cambiar de trabajo o de iglesia, a veces decimos: «Hay que dejar la puerta abierta», que también significa quedar bien con nuestros pastores, jefes o compañeros, ya que si algún día Dios nos lleva al mismo trabajo, estaremos preparados.

Al leer hoy este pasaje de la Biblia en Mateo, la puerta grande no se interpreta de la misma manera. Por el contrario, Dios dice que entremos por la puerta estrecha que nos lleva a la vida eterna, pues la puerta ancha, por ser más espaciosa, conduce a la perdición. En otras palabras, es más fácil perderse que guardarse.

Por eso debemos entender que aunque a veces el camino es difícil, angosto y hasta espinoso, si está bajo la voluntad de Dios, nos lleva a la bendición. Lo que es fácil, demasiado llamativo, tentador o sospechoso, no siempre está Dios de por medio. Recordemos que el enemigo nos pone a la vista cosas atractivas a fin de distraernos y apartarnos de la voluntad de nuestro Padre.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Me llamó mucho la atención encontrar dentro de las cosas que Dios espera de nosotros algo que he escuchado, y hasta repetido: «¡Ah! Esa persona salió por la puerta grande».

Standing Strong Through the Storm - Friday, November 8, 2019

But now, this is what the LORD says…“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
Isaiah 43:1-2 (NIV)

Twenty-eight-year-old evangelist Wako Halekie works in the town of Tuka Argiso in the border area between Ethiopia and Kenya. This small town is mostly inhabited by Borena livestock herders and is effectively divided between Oromia and Somali regional states. As a result both states are claiming ownership over Tuka Argiso. The federal government tried to hold a referendum to resolve the dispute, but they were unsuccessful.

Three years ago, Wako Halekie was assigned by his church to work as a missionary among the livestock herders in Tuka-Argiso. Despite their nomadic existence, Wako was able to plant three churches with an average of fifty members in each congregation. He attributes the positive growth to God’s blessing on the ministry. But Islamic presence in Tuka-Argiso is growing progressively. Muslim missionaries from neighboring villages are determined to Islamize all Borenas which rouses concern in the Christian community.

Wako says, “They regard my activities as an obstacle to their mission. I was alerted by some villagers about their antagonistic feelings towards me. Recently the Muslim missionaries criticized the Christian faith openly and tried to confuse our members.”

On March 30th, 2011, Wako left home for a routine visit to new Christian converts. In the early morning hours of March 31st, one of the three houses at his residence was set afire. The fire spread to the second and third house where his wife, newborn baby and their two older children were sleeping. Both the first and second house burnt to the ground. By the grace of God neighbors managed to rescue Wako’s family from the blaze just in time before the third house’s roof crashed in. None of their belongings were spared.

Mrs. Haleki said, “I heard a distant noise but thought I was dreaming. The next thing I knew, people broke through the door and dragged me and the children from the smoke. I was shocked and speechless.” She was still recovering from the birth of their third child a week before.

Wako says, “I know the purpose of this fire was to destroy me and my family. But God intervened and saved my wife and children. God is faithful to His words! As it was written in the book of Isaiah 43:1-3; we will not fear their threats. God is our Redeemer. They thought I would leave the village, but I will not wave from the calling God bestowed on me. I took my wife’s hands and together we stood in the midst of the ashes and gave thanks to the name of the Lord. By His grace I will continue serving Him right here in this village until the day He has helped me reach the entire village.”

RESPONSE: Today I will trust God to fulfill His promises even when going through fire and flood.

PRAYER: Pray for Evangelist Wako and his family working in difficult circumstances and pressures.

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, November 8, 2019

The Man by the Pool

His work: Since the man by the pool was an invalid, he may have made his living by begging.
His character: His role in the story seems almost entirely passive, perhaps in keeping with his character. He showed evidence neither of faith nor gratitude after the miracle of his healing and even went so far as to give evidence against Jesus to men who were hostile toward Jesus. Sin appears to have played a role in his condition.
His sorrow: To have been paralyzed for nearly forty years.
His triumph: To have been instantly healed.
Key Scriptures: John 5

A Look at the Man

"Do you want to be healed?"

It was an outrageous question to ask a man who had been paralyzed for thirty-eight years, a man forced to beg for a living.

But there was a reason for the question. Perhaps, in fact, the paralyzed man wasn't happy about the prospect of being healed. Maybe his disability offered a certain kind of security, enabling him at least to make a living as a beggar. His sudden cure would have undermined his many dependencies, his familiar routine, his ingrained view of himself. He would have had to start life all over again.

Or maybe he was offended by Jesus' warning against sin. Perhaps he thought it would do Jesus good to receive his comeuppance at the hands of the religious leaders.

The story of the man by the pool reminds us that displays of God's power are not enough to create faith in a person's heart. Though the man had suffered for many years, he showed no evidence of gratitude and no evidence of belief. We expect him to fall on his knees when he is miraculously healed. But he doesn't. We expect him to show some kind of curiosity about the person who healed him. But he doesn't even ask Jesus his name until their second encounter. We expect him to protect Jesus against his detractors, to be scandalized by their blindness and self-righteousness. Instead, he reports Jesus to men he knew to be hostile toward Jesus.

In Matthew's gospel, Jesus denounces the cities that had witnessed most of his miracles, because the vast majority of people there had failed to repent (Matthew 11:20). His words remind us that, even though miracles are evidence of God's power and compassion, without faith we are still free to reject them, still free to conclude that his offer of mercy is irrelevant or unnecessary.

Though none of us know what went on in the heart of the man who was healed, we are troubled by the way he responded and the way he failed to respond to the miracle he experienced. We may even wonder if by his own choice he finally succeeded in placing himself beyond the reach of God's mercy. Only God knows.

Reflect On: Psalm 86:1–8
Praise God: For his grace, mercy, and the faith to believe.
Offer Thanks: For the blessings of healing and wholeness.
Confess: Any tendency you may have to blame others rather than to admit your own sinfulness and receive Christ’s pardon.
Ask God: To give you courage to stand, face those crippling hurts, and live with freedom and hope.

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.
It was an outrageous question to ask a man who had been paralyzed for thirty-eight years, a man forced to beg for a living.

LHM Daily Devotions - November 8, 2019 - Follow the Leader

"Follow the Leader"

Nov. 8, 2019

Thus says the LORD: "Heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool; what is the house that you would build for Me, and what is the place of My rest? All these things My hand has made, and so all these things came to be, declares the LORD. But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at My Word."
Isaiah 66:1-2 (ESV)

As he filled out his daughter's paperwork for summer camp, a father came upon this question: "Would you classify your child as a leader or as a follower?" After a few moments thought, he replied that she was usually pretty much a follower.

A week after mailing the application, the father received a notice that his daughter had been accepted to camp. The director noted that, "Having already enrolled 58 leaders for the summer, we are thankful to have at least one follower."

Presidential candidates turn purple, strenuously trying to convince us of their own personal leadership qualities. If our country needs leaders, so in much larger measure does the church of Jesus. Yet not the kind of leader so highly prized by the world.

What makes a Christian leader? "This is the one to whom I will look," says the Lord, "he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at My Word."

Humility. The world believes in "winning by intimidation." The world admires people who pull themselves up "by their bootstraps." God values men and women who have a realistic grasp on who the Lord is: the ultra-holy, wholly Other, the omnipotent Ancient of Days. God lifts up men and women who know who they are—sinners, redeemed by the blood of Christ. God rejoices in men and women who realize their worth as sons and daughters of the King of grace.

Contrite in spirit. Dr. Karl Menninger, a famous psychiatrist, wrote a book entitled, Whatever Became of Sin? While many people refuse to admit such a thing as sin exists, others boast about their sin, trying to outdo one another in wickedness. Contrite hearts are hearts softened by sorrow over sin. Contrite hearts realize the hurts their sins have caused. Contrite hearts sincerely desire to make right the wrongs and to avoid involvement with evil in the future.

Trembling at His Word. Knowing God's Word. Seeking God's will. Ignoring the cost. Enduring by relying on Christ's strength. Sustained by fervent prayer. So committed to Jesus as Lord that the heart cannot conceive of disobeying.

Queen Esther. Elijah. Deborah. King David. All were leaders, excellent leaders, by God's grace. We need people like them today. Not just pastors and professional church-workers. Not just people over 35 years old. Not just established family men and women. But you. Me. As Mordecai counseled Esther, "And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"

The Lord seeks us to be His—through and through, committed completely to Him.

THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, it's easy for us to slide away from full service to You and Your kingdom. Lead us to hear Your Word, tremble at its power, and commit our lives to You. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Reflection Questions:
  • Living as a Christian takes a real commitment. How do you get focused and stay mindful of your relationship to God as you begin your day?
  • Though God created the universe and everything in it, man holds a special place in His heart. Does that impact the way you live for Him?
  • What does it really mean to be humble and contrite before God and others? Would this require a radical adjustment on your part to be this way?

From The Lutheran Layman February 1980 issue, "Christ's Leaders are Followers" by Jane Fryar. Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
Living as a Christian takes a real commitment. How do you get focused and stay mindful of your relationship to God as you begin your day?

CPTLN devocional del 08 de Noviembre de 2019 - Para un momento así


Para un momento así

08 de Noviembre de 2019

Así ha dicho el Señor: «El cielo es mi trono, y la tierra es el estrado de mis pies. ¿Qué clase de casa podrían edificarme? ¿Qué lugar pueden ofrecerme para mi reposo? Yo hice todo esto con mis propias manos, y fue así como llegaron a existir. Yo pongo la mirada en los pobres y humildes de espíritu, y en los que tiemblan al escuchar mi palabra.
Isaías 66:1-2 (ESV)

Mientras un papá llenaba la solicitud de su hija para un campamento de verano, llegó a esta pregunta: "¿su hija es líder o seguidora?". Después de unos momentos pensando, respondió que generalmente ella era seguidora.

Una semana después de enviar la solicitud, el padre recibió un aviso de que su hija había sido aceptada en el campamento. El director señaló lo siguientes: "después de haber inscrito a 58 líderes para el verano, estamos agradecidos de tener al menos un seguidor".

Los candidatos presidenciales se quedan sin aire, tratando enérgicamente de convencernos de sus cualidades de liderazgo. Si nuestro país necesita líderes, también lo hace en mayor medida la iglesia de Jesús. Sin embargo, necesita un tipo de líder diferente.

¿Qué hace a un cristiano ser un buen líder? "Yo pongo la mirada en los pobres y humildes de espíritu, y en los que tiemblan al escuchar mi palabra", dice el Señor.

Los humildes. El mundo cree en "ganar por medio de la intimidación". El mundo admira a las personas que encuentran su valor en sus triunfos. Pero Dios valora a los hombres y mujeres que tienen una comprensión realista de quién es el Señor: el omnipotente Señor. Dios admira a los hombres y mujeres que saben quiénes son: pecadores, redimidos por la sangre de Cristo. Dios se regocija en los hombres y mujeres que encuentran su valor en ser hijos e hijas del Rey de gracia.

Los pobres en espíritu con corazones contritos. El Dr. Karl Menninger, un famoso psiquiatra, escribió un libro titulado ¿Qué pasó con el pecado? Mientras que muchas personas se niegan a admitir que existe el pecado, otros se jactan de su pecado, tratando de superarse unos a otros en la maldad. Los corazones contritos son corazones suavizados por el dolor por el pecado. Los corazones contritos se dan cuenta de las heridas que sus pecados han causado. Los corazones contritos desean sinceramente corregir sus errores y evitar hacer el mal en el futuro.

Los que tiemblan por su Palabra. Ellos conocen la Palabra de Dios y buscan su voluntad a toda costa. Soportan los sufrimientos confiando en la fuerza de Cristo, sostenidos por una ferviente oración. Tan comprometido con Jesús como su Señor que el corazón no puede concebir desobedecerlo.

La reina Ester, Elías, Deborah, el rey David. Todos ellos fueron líderes, líderes excelentes, por la gracia de Dios. Necesitamos gente como ellos hoy. No solo pastores y obreros religiosos profesionales. No solo personas mayores de 35 años. No solo adultos con familias establecidas. Este mundo nos necesita a ti y a mí. Como Mardoqueo aconsejó a Ester: "¿Quién sabe si has llegado al reino para un momento así?"

El Señor busca que seamos suyos, de principio a fin, comprometidos completamente con Él.

ORACIÓN: Padre celestial, es fácil para nosotros escapar del servicio completo a ti y a tu reino. Llévanos a escuchar tu Palabra, temblar ante su poder y entregar nuestras vidas a ti. En el nombre de Jesús. Amén.

The Lutheran Layman, febrero de 1980, "Los líderes de Cristo son seguidores", Jane Fryar

Para reflexionar:
  • Vivir como cristiano requiere un compromiso real. ¿Cómo te enfocas y te mantienes atento a tu relación con Dios al comenzar cada día?
  • Aunque Dios creó el universo y todo lo que hay en él, el hombre ocupa un lugar especial en su corazón. ¿De qué forma impacta eso la forma en que vives para Él?

© Copyright 2019 Cristo Para Todas Las Naciones. Que a través de estos devocionales, la Palabra de Dios te refresque en tu diario caminar.
Vivir como cristiano requiere un compromiso real. ¿Cómo te enfocas y te mantienes atento a tu relación con Dios al comenzar cada día?

Lời Sống Hằng Ngày - Thật Tuyệt Vời!

Thật Tuyệt Vời!

Đọc: Châm ngôn 12:12, 24–28 | Đọc Kinh Thánh suốt năm: Giê-rê-mi 43–45; Hê-bơ-rơ 5

Tay siêng năng sẽ nắm quyền cai trị, còn tay lười biếng thì phải phục dịch. Châm Ngôn 12:24

Đó là sự kiện chạy việt dã đầu tiên dành cho học sinh lớp bảy, nhưng cô bé không muốn tham gia. Dù đã chuẩn bị cho sự kiện này, nhưng em vẫn sợ mình làm không tốt. Dù vậy, em vẫn bắt đầu cuộc đua với mọi người. Sau đó, lần lượt các vận động viên đều hoàn thành chặng đua hai dặm và cán đích, chỉ trừ vận động viên miễn cưỡng tham dự. Cuối cùng thì mẹ cô, người đang theo dõi con gái hoàn thành chặng đua cũng nhìn thấy bóng người đơn độc ở đằng xa. Người mẹ đi đến vạch đích, chuẩn bị an ủi đứa con gái đang buồn bã. Nhưng khi cô bé nhìn thấy mẹ mình, em đã thốt lên: “Thật tuyệt vời!”

Có gì tuyệt vời khi về đích cuối cùng chứ? Đó là vì cô bé đã hoàn thành cuộc đua!

Cô bé đã thử một việc khó khăn và đã hoàn thành. Kinh Thánh đề cao sự siêng năng, một khái niệm người ta thường được học qua lĩnh vực thể thao hoặc âm nhạc hay những việc đòi hỏi sự kiên trì và nỗ lực.

Châm Ngôn 12:24 cho biết: “Tay siêng năng sẽ nắm quyền cai trị, còn tay lười biếng thì phải phục dịch”. Rồi Kinh Thánh chép: “Mọi công lao đều đem đến ích lợi, nhưng lời nói suông chỉ mang lại cảnh nghèo nàn” (14:23). Đây là những nguyên tắc khôn ngoan, chứ không phải là lời hứa và nó có thể giúp chúng ta phục vụ Chúa tốt hơn.

Kế hoạch Đức Chúa Trời dành cho chúng ta luôn bao gồm công việc. Trước khi sa ngã, A-đam vẫn “canh tác và gìn giữ vườn” (Sáng. 2:15). Và chúng ta cần làm mọi việc cách “hết lòng” (Côl. 3:23). Hãy làm với năng lực Chúa ban và để Chúa quyết định kết quả.

Đâu là những lĩnh vực tôi cần siêng năng và kiên trì hơn? Thái độ làm việc hết sức mình và chăm chỉ sẽ tôn vinh Chúa như thế nào?

Lạy Cha Thiên Thượng, bất cứ điều gì Ngài muốn con làm hôm nay, dù là lớn hay nhỏ, xin giúp con trung tín làm điều đó. Xin bảo vệ con khỏi sự lười biếng và ban cho con sự khôn ngoan để biết cách hầu việc Ngài tốt nhất.

© 2019 Lời Sống Hằng Ngày
Dù đã chuẩn bị cho sự kiện này, nhưng em vẫn sợ mình làm không tốt.