Say a Little Prayer…

The song “Say a Little Prayer for You” shares a message about the number of opportunities to say prayers for others, putting “pray without ceasing” in the context of typical day activities. A beautiful rendition of this song is HERE, performed by Aretha Franklin.

ACTION: Who in your life is particularly needing your prayers today? Think of an activity you’ll do several times during your day and each time you do that activity, “say a little prayer” for that person.

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, September 6, 2020:


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Naming evil… and then run from it (and/or to God!)

Remember our “Run to God! Run from evil!” post the other day? The original content was a little edgier and was “watered down” for final distribution.

This “Naming Evil” devotional (HERE) shares more eloquently some important thoughts. Take a read when you have 2 minutes.

As efforts persist to root out evil, let’s continue naming it. And amidst those thoughts and actions may we heed Proverbs 3:5-7:

  • we should pray for wisdom
  • we shouldn’t try to have all the answers
  • as we proceed in conversation and action, we can listen for God’s voice
  • we should remain confident that God will be with us
  • we should pray for strength and support as we endure the angst and actions of the political season

PRAYER: Creator God, help us follow Proverb teachings, continuing to run to you while seeking wisdom, conversation, support, action and more. Move in us that we might continually work to help all people run away from the evils you deplore. Amen!

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 30, 2020:


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Helping hands…

When people on the street ask for a handout it can feel cold-hearted to say “no.” Yet many homeless agencies and food pantries encourage that response in hopes that those individuals will use local services instead. All too frequently we’ve heard stories of how folks making those requests are actually buying alcohol, drugs, making a living, etc..

An experience years ago has helped shape an approach our family members sometimes take. When our older son was an early teen, we were walking towards our Shakespeare Theater downtown after a nice dinner together. Along the way we encountered a woman who told us she was hungry and asked for money for a meal. Instead of sharing cash, we took her to the pizza place a block away and paid for her order of a personal pan pizza and salad. We sat and chatted with her while she waited for the pizza. That experience made a nice impression on our teenager and opened the doors to conversation on many fronts.

For those of us who want to help out but NOT give cash to that person requesting cash, here are some possibilities…

  • offer to take the person to a local restaurant and pay for their meal
  • carry soft, easy-to-chew, snack/breakfast bars you can share
  • carry gift certificates/cards to a local grocery store (ideally, designated “for food item purchase only”)

POTENTIAL ACTION: Next time you know you’ll be in an area with people asking for cash, put a few soft granola or breakfast bars in your backpack, purse or briefcase to give to folks. This gesture will not always be met with appreciation, but it’s the thought that counts, right?!?

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 30, 2020:


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Run to God! Run from evil!

“Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; God is the one who will keep you on track. Don’t assume that you know it all. Run to God! Run from evil!”  ~ Proverbs 3:5-7 (The Message)

Run to God! … Seems relatively easy many days, especially when we run to God in prayer.

Run from evil! … Is this more challenging, at least in certain periods of life?

In this season of United States national politics, it frequently seems that evil is amidst us, depending to whom you are speaking. In some ways, this commentary may remind readers of the lyrics in Harry Emerson Fosdick’s hymn, “God of Grace and God of Glory”…

The Proverbs 3:5-7 verses prove instructive in helping us live through this political season:

  • we should pray for wisdom
  • we shouldn’t try to have all the answers
  • as we proceed in conversation and action, we can listen for God’s voice
  • we should remain confident that God will be with us
  • we should pray for strength and support as we endure the angst and actions of the political season

PRAYER: Creator God, help us follow Proverb teachings, continuing to run to you while seeking wisdom, conversation, support, action and more. Move in us that we might continually work to help all people run away from the evils you deplore. Amen!

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 30, 2020:


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23rd Psalm and beautiful music…

This video shares a most effective listening experience of the 23rd Psalm, the song written by a talented Korean named La, Un-Yung. Listening to the song – the words and the music – envelopes us in God’s caring, healing and love (whether we understand Korean language or not.)

Can you feel the still waters? the leading? the shadows? the preparations? the forever and ever? WOW!

Un-Yung wrote this song in one sitting and never edited it. That’s the only time he ever wrote a song without doing some editing – – and he wrote over 1,000 songs!

The story behind this song and the man who wrote it are well worth knowing. You can read more HERE

POTENTIAL ACTIONS:

  1. Read some of La’s story (HERE). Reflect on those times in your own life where memorable events – and maybe even “mistakes” – resulted in some wonderful new outcomes.
  2. Many of us are ill-informed about the Korean conflict. The 2019 documentary – Korea: the Never-Ending War – is a good one to help our understanding. It is well worth the time.

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!


The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.  ~ Psalm 23


Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 23, 2020:


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A Glimmer on the Sea…

“God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead” ~ Ephesians 2, vv. 4–5

In this Guideposts devotional, we read about a World War II spy intent on taking his own life. Muggeridge was intent on drowning himself by swimming out to sea, and yet “he knew God had reached him in that dark moment, infusing him with a hope that could only be supernatural.”

The author concludes the devotional with this inspiration:

“This world tries to drag us into the depths, but there’s no reason to succumb to despair. As Muggeridge said about his swim in the sea, ‘It became clear to me that there was no darkness, only the possibility of losing sight of a light which shone eternally.’ “

PRAYER: Dear God, when darkness seems to be closing in, help us to see your light – and feel the Spirit – shining eternally… Amen.

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!

P.S. Consider going to the webpage and listening to the story. Near the top of the webpage you will see this image – click on the play button on the left and you’ll hear the story, scripture and prayer. The reader does a fabulous job


http://christianplaybook.longmemories.info


HUMOR


PRAYER OPPORTUNITIES:


Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 23, 2020


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Don’t Let Nobody Rob You of Your Joy…

Krista Tippett discusses “How can we stay present to what’s happening in the world without giving in to despair and hopelessness?” in this 9 minute segment (HERE). She mentions a regular practice of partaking of the news and at the same time limiting her exposure so the 24 hour news cycle doesn’t occupy her full-time. She also discusses embodying joy-filled and hope-filled practices as a way to balance the sobering news.

So taking a pause is important. Maybe we Christians could go so far as to say that the Spirit automatically equips us with joyful opportunities if only we’ll engage it? Those moments of silent contemplation can go a long way to helping…

POTENTIAL ACTIONS:

  • Spend some moments of silent contemplation, allowing the Spirit to stir within you all the more
  • Listen to Paul Thorn singing Don’t Let Nobody Rob You of Your Joy. One line is “let the light of love shine in.” [Great lyrics, Paul, and a wonderful message!!!]

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!


http://christianplaybook.longmemories.info


HUMOR


PRAYER OPPORTUNITIES:


Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 23, 2020


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Moses…with a little grin thrown in

Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will give you your wages.” So the woman took the child and nursed it. When the child grew up, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and she took him as her son. She named him Moses, “because,” she said, “I drew him out of the water.” ~ Exodus 2:9-10

The full reading of Exodus reminds us of the transition from Joseph and his dream leadership to Moses and a very different political environment. One thing I’d never noticed before – or forgot! – is that Pharaoh’s daughter really kept Moses out of her father’s sight until after Moses was grown.

Here’s a humorous little reminder about Moses from the show “Singin’ in the Rain” including a great dance routine by Donald O’Connor and Gene Kelly.

And on this glorious weekend, if you’re looking for a little more “holy humor,” check out the Christian Playbook humor section HERE and/or some quick-hitting stories HERE (the last one is about Moses golfing with Jesus)

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit (and maybe a chuckle or two?)


http://christianplaybook.longmemories.info


HUMOR


PRAYER OPPORTUNITIES:


Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 16, 2020


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Overcoming Worry…

Rick Hamlin shares nice wisdom HERE about overcoming worry. How many of us can relate to these comments:

“I have a way of keeping anxiety as a close companion, not willing to let it go. I invite it in for just a moment and then give it the run of the house.”

When that undesired “companion” stays too long, perhaps we can adopt Rick’s statement…

“Here, God,” I can say, “take this worry. I’ve had enough of it.”

Then, with the previous CP post in mind, let’s Brighten the Corner Where We Are!

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!


http://christianplaybook.longmemories.info


HUMOR


PRAYER OPPORTUNITIES:


Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 16, 2020


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Brighten the Corner Where You Are…

The title “Brighten the Corner Where You Are” gives a nice hint of where Ina Mae Duley Ogdon wants Christians to make a difference – right where you are! Charles Hutchinson Gabriel provides a pleasant, speedy melody to highlight the brightening aspect.

Take a listen HERE.

A mighty fine example of a person who takes this song to heart is our mom. She is heavily informed of what’s going on in our world and yet still has plenty of joy to share where she lives. We praise God, that we have this wonderful example continuing to brighten the corner where she lives.

ACTION: Consider 1-3 actions that might brighten this day for you and others in your path. Among the possibilities: 1) smile and/or wave to someone as you walk past; 2) write a prayer of praise and share it with a friend; 3) do a random act of kindness; 4) when paying for fast food takeout, ask to cover a few dollars of the bill (or the whole thing if you’re feeling mighty generous!) for the person behind you…

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!


http://christianplaybook.longmemories.info


HUMOR


PRAYER OPPORTUNITIES:


Lectionary Texts for Sunday, August 16, 2020


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