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Weekly Inspiration

Weekly Inspiration

BasketofFruit

Christ in You, the Hope of Glory

Amos 8:1-12 by Robert Charles Leibold On New Year’s Eve dear friend s suddenly found themselves in a life-and-death crisis when their SUV went into an uncontrol­lable spin on black ice. With a full load of groceries and two chil­dren buckled in the rear seat, the SUV flipped over and slammed into a telephone pole, snapping it in  two     – a totally unexpected and frightening moment for this family of four. Sam, father of the two boys, was driving. He…

A New Standard

Luke 10:25-37 by Bill Lizor The religious leaders of Jesus’ day were famous for questioning and challenging Jesus and his ministry. In this story a scholar approaches Jesus wanting to know the way to eternal life. The scholar knows the intellectual answer, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” The scholar could have left well enough alone at…
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It’s Not About Us

Luke 10:1-11 by Carolyn M. Anderson Jesus selects workers to go where he intends to go. He has commissioned twelve and now commissions seventy more! Then as now, there is more to be done than there are workers to do it. And the sense of urgency is great. We live in a time of enormous opportunity. We pray because the need is enormous and the laborers are few. But in praying for more workers we then make ourselves available because…
Follow

It’s Not about Us

2 Kings 5:1-14 by Carolyn M. Anderson Just as it often is for us today, God’s instructions come to Naaman from a most unlikely source. He responds just as we sometimes do, allowing his pride to get the best of him and therefore not doing exactly what the young Israelite girl has said. Rather than following the guidance God is sending, Naaman decides to go to the authority figures, hoping to get what only God can give. Since the letter…
dinnerTable

The Still Small Voice May Be Your Own

2 Kings 2:1- 2, 6- 14 by Darlene Saunders Ousley My mom likes to tell the story about my request for an extra seat at the table for my invisible friend Jesus) when I was four or five years old. She honored my request – even though our dinner table already had ten places set. During dinner I regularly conversed with “my friend,” being sure to ask if he wanted peas or chicken. She never questioned my behavior. God’s presence…
river

When Life is Tough

Read Psalm 42:1-6 by F. Belton Joyner The psalmist knew what it was to live in the desert. Life itself depended on finding water that kept flowing, even in the midst of the summer’s driest heat. That’s the kind of relationship we seek with God: a fountain that flows when our souls are thirsty, a presence that is real even when we do not feel it. If God’s love is like an ever-flowing river, sometimes it seems that the flow…
Grapes

Temptations and Consequences

1 Kings 21:1-10 by Luis F. Reyes How easy would it be to give up your heritage? If someone in a position of power asked you to give up a personal possession, how would you respond? In our story, Naboth answers King Ahab’s request for his vineyard by saying that “the LORD forbid that I should give you my ancestral inheritance. “We should never be asked to give up our heritage, which includes our cultures and traditions. The vineyard is…
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Godly Guides

John 16:12; Proverbs 8:1 by Ulrike R. M. Guthrie “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth.” Like so many eager young people, we told Roberta we intended to write our own individualized wedding vows. Wise  woman that she is, our professor, friend, and pastor, instead of pouring cold water on the idea, simply asked us this: What precisely did we want to communicate that wasn’t covered by the familiar “to love and to…
WhatDoesItMean

What Does This Mean?

Acts 2:5-13 by Marty G. Bell “All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, ‘ What does this mean?”‘ The mighty acts of God that Acts 2 describes are nothing short of amazing and perplexing. Ultimately, like those who originally experienced Pentecost, we are led to ask: What does this mean? I enjoy what I do as a professor of religion and as a pastor. I constantly ask my students and parishioners in a variety of ways some version…
Caring-101

Something more

Revelation 21:22-22:5 by Rene A. Perez Most Sundays after church we pick up fast food. Usually we go through the drive-through to bring the food home. It never fails that whenever we go, the same homeless man approaches us to ask for money; and every time, if we can, we give him a few coins. One day I realized God was asking me to do more. I did not hear a voice out of nowhere; I simply felt a tug…
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Persuaded by God

Acts 16:9-15 by Rene A. Perez What amazing ways God employs to persuade us to follow! The book of Acts tells of Paul’s vision of a man in Macedonia who begs him to come and help. Although Paul and Silas conclude that God is calling them to Macedonia, I can think of numerous undertakings I considered to be of my making before I realized that it was God’s idea all along. For Paul and Silas, it begins with God’s vision.…
Prayer

Praising God

Psalm 148:1-6 By Bo Prossert Creation is groaning and has gotten our attention recently. The fury of hurricanes, tsunamis, and tornadoes; the rumblings of volcanoes, earthquakes, and mudslides; warming of polar caps, destruction of acid rain: all this and more demand that we pay attention. If we listen closely, we will hear the groans of our world-not just its inhabitants but also the trees, the stones, the water, the air! Are we listening? Are we responding? God commanded, and the…