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Friday, June 23, 2017

Declare: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


           Declare


            Lack of faith

            stubbornness

            refusal to listen

            share hope

            crushes our soul

            condemns others

            from living in grace

            proclaim gospel to

            whole creation.

            

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Reflection Unbelief: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


Reflection Questions


1.     Did you resist the good news when you first heard it spoken? Why or why not?

2.     How do you define “whole creation”?

3.     Do you find yourself resistant to sharing the message at any time? Why?

4.     How do you overcome your hesitation to share? Or where do you still need faith to speak?


Share: What word to you broke through your unbelief?


Monday, June 19, 2017

Unbelief: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry

Reading: Mark 16:14-16

“He upbraided them for their lack of faith and stubbornness, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen. And he said to them, ‘Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation. The one who believes and is baptized will be saved, but the one who does not believe will be condemned.’”

In what ways does our personal lack of faith hinder not only our own lives but also those around us? Like the disciples we may believe in Jesus and yet still resist His words.

To trust them. To live them. To share them.

To a whole creation!

How? Some of us are so bold in personality that we come across like hammers and frighten listeners away as we point fingers at sin and demand immediate repentance. So are some of us so timid that we clam up our faith from honest seekers for fear of failure or embarrassment. Or so self-centered that we pick and choose to whom we will share good news.

All focused on ourselves instead of trusting in His Spirit to guide us and use us—usually in circumstances far beyond our comprehension. So that we don’t interfere with His good news given to each individually. So we don’t interfere with His light piercing the lies and darkness.

We are not all called to be ministry evangelists but we are all called to live our days in faith: ready to give an answer—ready to share—ready to pray—ready to introduce anyone to His saving grace.

Or does our own unbelief put up barriers of hardness and condemnation and selection?

Lord, please forgive our silence when we should speak and quiet our self-centered rhetoric we rehearse. Instead may our hearts be so filled with Your truth that our words and our actions live Your good news with open welcome.


Psalm of Worship: 1 John 1:5

“This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all.”


Friday, June 16, 2017

End: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


            End
           

            At the end

            will our thoughts, hearts

            linger at regret,

            unfinished commitments,

            hesitant to leave or

            accept full

            responsibility for both

            done and undone,

            knowing we sought

            only Spirit’s guidance

            keeping our hearts steady


            even in failure.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Reflection: Finish: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry


Reflection Questions

           
1.     What memory do you cherish from a loved one that is gone? Why?

2.     What character trait do you hope your loved ones will remember of you? Why?

3.     What worries you that you might leave undone?

4.     Where do you need the Spirit’s guidance for priorities right now?


Share: How have you been strengthened in your faith in a time of failure?




Monday, June 12, 2017

Finish: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry

Reading: 2 Timothy 4:7-8

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race. I have kept the faith. From now on there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give me on that day, and not only to me but to all who have longed for his appearing.”

How did Paul interpret his finish? He still lived for several years past the Biblical narratives of him, but the scripture is silent of this season as it is over the first ten years in the wilderness after his first encounter with Jesus.

After a long chronicle of Abraham’s faith walk there is silence re him as well after he was willing to sacrifice Isaac in trust to the Lord’s purpose.

Moses’ first call was to lead his people out of Egypt, yet scripture notes that he finished the Tabernacle and later Solomon finished the Temple. Jesus said, “It is finished,” while on the cross yet He continues to pour out His grace daily.

We all have life markers and project markers that we can point to with either a sense of accomplishment, or a sense of regret, and sometimes both together. Perhaps in our daily race to complete tasks we yearn for Paul’s confidence in a finish and wonder what that looks like for our spiritual life too. We gravitate to a desire for results.

Yet maybe the clue lies in the second sentence? “I have kept the faith.” Maybe something happened to Paul where he really ‘got’ what walking with God meant. Maybe it’s not an always active accomplishment but a heart one—a trust one—an unbreakable faith.

Not measurable by visible standards or markers or by others. But a light bulb insight into faith that overpowers any of our human weaknesses and empowers our complete trust in all circumstances.

Lord, by Your grace, please guide and direct and strengthen each of us to fulfill the call You choose with hearts of faith and trust and commitment.


Psalm of Worship: 1 John 1:4

“We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.”


Friday, June 9, 2017

Trusting: Word Ambassadors: Prayers and Poetry



           Trusting


            Time only

            all we can see now

            plan with open hands

            act with commitment

            trusting each day’s

            purpose to fulfill

            timing under boundaries.


 
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