Serving in Love

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Jesus, greatest at the table, the almighty Son of Man,

Laid aside His outer clothing poured some water in a pan;

As the Twelve lay, hushed in silence, He the servant’s task began.

Marvel how their Lord and teacher gently taught them not to vie

As He humbly knelt before them dusty feet to wash and dry,

By His tender touch expressing true compassion from on high.

Jesus took the role of servant when upon that gruesome span,

For all human sin He suffered as a vile and loathsome man;

On the cross poured out like water to fulfill the Father’s plan.

Can we fathom such deep mercy?  Do we see what God has done?

Who can grasp this great reversal;  Love that gives His only Son?

Christ, the sinless for the sinners, for the many dies the One.

Jesus gave to His disciples a commandment that was new:

“Show My love to one another, do as I have done for you;

All the world will know you love Me as you love each other too.”

Hymn “Jesus, Greatest at the Table” by Stephen P. Starke

“But He that is greatest among you shall be your servant.”  Matthew 23:11

Heavenly Father, grant us Your mercy and grace to love others even as we have been loved by You through Your Son, Jesus Christ, the greatest servant of all.  In His name we pray, Amen.

 

 

Skilled to Serve

Photos by Laura Jostes

Photos by Laura Jostes

“Kenaniah the head Levite was in charge of the singing; that was his responsibility because he was skillful at it.”

1 Chronicles 15:22

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What skills has God blessed you with?

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How might you use them at home, at church, at work, in your community?

Lord God, strengths, skills, and abilities You have gifted to each and every one of us to benefit those around us.  Help us Lord to be faithful managers of that which you have so richly blessed us, not using our gifts for our own gain, but to serve others.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

December 29 Mama’s Words

Image by Kevin Carden

Image by Kevin Carden

Zechariah 14:1-21;  Revelation 20:1-15;  Psalm 148:1-14;  Proverbs 31:8-9

“Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute.

Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.”  Proverbs 31:8-9

King Lemuel’s mother taught him from early on God’s Word.

Not how to become rich and famous.

She taught him according to God’s word, how to be wise, how to serve.

The verses for today reflect God’s heart of mercy and His desire to reach out to those less fortunate, who don’t have resources to speak for themselves.

King Lemuel was called to speak up and defend not only a city wall, but the hearts of his people.

Who do you know that needs your voice to speak up for them?

Lord God,  as the New Year approaches direct us to use our mouths to help those in need, whether physically or spiritually.  Help us to bring your words of life to those we serve with our hands.  Thank you for speaking up for us and for making us yours through faith.   We give you all our thanks and praise, Amen!

April 30 Perfect Politico

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Image by Megan Watson

Judges 11:1-12:15;  John 1:1-28;  Psalm 101:1-8;  Proverbs 14:13-14

“I will sing of steadfast love and justice to you, O Lord, I will make music.

I will ponder the way that is blameless.

I will walk with integrity of heart

within my house;

I will not set before my eyes anything

that is worthless.

I hate the work of those who fall away;

It shall not cling to me.

A perverse heart shall be far from me;

I will know nothing of evil.”

Psalm 101: 1-4

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all politicians and those who govern the nations of the world had a mission statement like King David’s?

Wouldn’t it be even more wonderful if they could actually live by those words?

Wouldn’t it be awesome, if we, the governed, could live by those words too?

There just might be peace in the world!

Only One has lived up to His mission statement. 

     Only One has a perfect record.

         Only One brings peace–one believing heart at a time.

              Only One is a perfect politico.

Dear Jesus, just as the people during the time you walked the earth longed for a political leader who would bring lasting peace to their country, many today long for the same.  You could have easily become that leader but it would have been only a short term fix.  No, you had a greater mission statement to live by and you faithfully did so.  You lived a life of integrity and purity.  Evil did not cling to you and you did no deceiving.  And ultimately you allowed yourself to be hung on a cross where peace was won through your blood.  For all who believe in you as Lord and Savior–there is peace, there is forgiveness of sins, there is hope of eternal life.  Thank you, Lord, for accomplishing your perfect mission and for serving as our Heavenly politico.  To you all praise and honor and glory be!  Amen.

February 3 Monday Memo

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Image by Rock Springs Church

Exodus 17:8-19:15;  Matthew 22:34-23:12;  Psalm 27:7-14;  Proverbs 6:27-35

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart

and with all your soul

and with all your mind…

You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

Matthew 22:37-39

Lord, it’s the start of a new week.  There’s a lot to do.  Please help us to keep our eyes on you and to focus on your word.  Let your love reign in our hearts–that all we say and do reflect your grace and mercy towards us, remembering “that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.”

You alone are good.  You alone are the Lord. 

The world would have us believe in ‘ourselves’ and in sheer will power to make the world ‘right’.  But we know we can do none of this without you in our lives.  Help us to love and serve others this week even as you love and serve us–for Jesus’ sake, Amen.

“But you may say:  Oh, it is utterly impossible for a person to keep these two commandments.   Yes, it is impossible for you to keep or perform them.  You cannot do it;  God must do it in you.  For him, it is possible.”

~  Martin Luther

January 2 Rock Reality

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Genesis 3:1-4:26;  Matthew 2:13-3:6;  Psalm 2:1-12;  Proverbs 1:7-9

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge,

but fools despise wisdom and discipline.”

Proverbs 1:7

 

Beneath my feet

I stand on the Rock

He who changes never,

Whose wisdom guides

and leads me through

this life’s twists and turns.

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I cannot see what lies beyond

I trust Him to deliver

to pastures green and waters still

to fill me up forever.

 

Knowing Him is knowing all

the past, the present, future.

Wrapped up in faith,

secure within,

I greet each day

with fervor.

Lord God,  Thank you for not being a “far off” God, but one who is Immanuel–“God with us”.   As we continue to celebrate Christmas, we remember how you came to us, like one of us, to be one of us so that we could be made one with you.  What an awesome truth–that through faith in Christ–sin no longer separates us from you.  May we live this day with fervor-passion and zeal-for you.  To those near us, may we show love and compassion.  For those far away, may we lift them up to you in prayer–be near them as you are near to us.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

“Serve the Lord with fear

and rejoice with trembling.”

Psalm 2:11