Monthly Archives: July 2016

Put your money where your faith is!

money faith

Daily Rhythm

Devotional Diary 1 – 7 August  2016

7th August is the Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost.

Readings for this week with thanks to www.umcdiscipleship.org 

 Use these readings in “The Word” step below.

Isaiah 1:1, 10-20 (first of two weeks in Isaiah). Isaiah addresses the Southern Kingdom, Judah, as “Sodom and Gomorrah” offering a word of judgment and a call to genuine repentance instead of just more religious ceremonies.

Psalm Response: Psalm 50:1-8, 22-23The sacrifice God desires is thanksgiving and upright living.

Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16 (first of four weeks in Hebrews 11-13). “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Here the writer remembers the faith of Abraham as sign of the faith of all who seek a homeland.

Luke 12:32-40Jesus teaches: Your real values are where you put your money. Be ready always to receive the bridegroom from the wedding banquet.

Monday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 31:21) Praise be to the Lord, for he showed his wonderful love to me…

Confession:  “A survey of Discipleship Journal readers ranked the areas of greatest spiritual challenge to them. This is the result of that survey:  1. Materialism. 2. Pride. 3. Self-centeredness. 4. Laziness. 5. (Tie) Anger/Bitterness. 6. Sexual lust. 7. Envy. 8. Gluttony. 9. Lying.  (Discipleship Journal, 11-12/92.)  In your confession this week you are asked to examine your life using this list.   Where do you need to come to God in confession seeking His gift of transformation?  How can you die to self and be raised in Christ?  You may choose one of the above to focus on each day.

The Word: See readings above or use your own devotional aid.

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Each day we look at an area of concern. Lift up prayer needs that relate to this area. Today: Your local neighbourhood.

Personal prayers: (Use this section to list people you need to pray for or situations of personal concern that you need to bring before God in prayer)

Dedication:  As I face the day ahead I know it’s your strength I need.  I have struggled for too long and fallen short too many times.  Your hand is stretching towards me. It’s your hand that I take hold of now.

Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 30:1) I will exalt you, O Lord…

Confession: “A survey of Discipleship Journal readers ranked the areas of greatest spiritual challenge to them. This is the result of that survey:  1. Materialism. 2. Pride. 3. Self-centeredness. 4. Laziness. 5. (Tie) Anger/Bitterness. 5. (Tie) Sexual lust. 7. Envy. 8. Gluttony. 9. Lying.  (Discipleship Journal, 11-12/92.)  In your confession this week you are asked to examine your life using this list.   Where do you need to come to God in confession seeking His gift of transformation?  How can you die to self and be raised in Christ?  You may choose one of the above to focus on each day.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Each day we look at an area of concern. Lift up prayer needs that relate to this area each day. Today: Your land.

Personal Prayers:

Dedication: As I face the day ahead I know it’s your strength I need.  I have struggled for too long and fallen short too many times.  Your hand is stretching towards me. It’s your hand that I take hold of now.

 Wednesday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 29:2) Ascribe to the Lord the glory due to his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.

Confession: “A survey of Discipleship Journal readers ranked the areas of greatest spiritual challenge to them. This is the result of that survey:  1. Materialism. 2. Pride. 3. Self-centeredness. 4. Laziness. 5. (Tie) Anger/Bitterness. 5. (Tie) Sexual lust. 7. Envy. 8. Gluttony. 9. Lying.  (Discipleship Journal, 11-12/92.)  In your confession this week you are asked to examine your life using this list.   Where do you need to come to God in confession seeking His gift of transformation? How can you die to self and be raised in Christ?  You may choose one of the above to focus on each day.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Each day we look at an area of concern. Lift up prayer needs that relate to this area each day. Today: Your continent.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: As I face the day ahead I know it’s your strength I need.  I have struggled for too long and fallen short too many times.  Your hand is stretching towards me. It’s your hand that I take hold of now.

 Thursday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 28:7)  The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.

Confession: “A survey of Discipleship Journal readers ranked the areas of greatest spiritual challenge to them. This is the result of that survey:  1. Materialism. 2. Pride. 3. Self-centeredness. 4. Laziness. 5. (Tie) Anger/Bitterness. 5. (Tie) Sexual lust. 7. Envy. 8. Gluttony. 9. Lying.  (Discipleship Journal, 11-12/92.)  In your confession this week you are asked to examine your life using this list.   Where do you need to come to God in confession seeking His gift of transformation?  How can you die to self and be raised in Christ?  You may choose one of the above to focus on each day.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Each day we look at an area of concern. Lift up prayer needs that relate to this area each day. Today: Families.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: As I face the day ahead I know it’s your strength I need.  I have struggled for too long and fallen short too many times.  Your hand is stretching towards me. It’s your hand that I take hold of now.

Friday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 27:1)  The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear?

Confession: “A survey of Discipleship Journal readers ranked the areas of greatest spiritual challenge to them. This is the result of that survey:  1. Materialism. 2. Pride. 3. Self-centeredness. 4. Laziness. 5. (Tie) Anger/Bitterness. 5. (Tie) Sexual lust. 7. Envy. 8. Gluttony. 9. Lying.  (Discipleship Journal, 11-12/92.)  In your confession this week you are asked to examine your life using this list.   Where do you need to come to God in confession seeking His gift of transformation? How can you die to self and be raised in Christ?  You may choose one of the above to focus on each day.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Each day we look at an area of concern. Lift up prayer needs that relate to this area each day. Today: Schools and educational institutions.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: As I face the day ahead I know it’s your strength I need.  I have struggled for too long and fallen short too many times.  Your hand is stretching towards me. It’s your hand that I take hold of now.

Saturday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 26:8)  I love the house where you live, O Lord, the place where your glory dwells.

Confession: “A survey of Discipleship Journal readers ranked the areas of greatest spiritual challenge to them. This is the result of that survey:  1. Materialism. 2. Pride. 3. Self-centeredness. 4. Laziness. 5. (Tie) Anger/Bitterness. 5. (Tie) Sexual lust. 7. Envy. 8. Gluttony. 9. Lying.  (Discipleship Journal, 11-12/92.)  In your confession this week you are asked to examine your life using this list.   Where do you need to come to God in confession seeking His gift of transformation? How can you die to self and be raised in Christ?  You may choose one of the above to focus on each day.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Each day we look at an area of concern. Lift up prayer needs that relate to this area each day. Today: Our Police force and emergency services.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: As I face the day ahead I know it’s your strength I need.  I have struggled for too long and fallen short too many times.  Your hand is stretching towards me. It’s your hand that I take hold of now.

 Sunday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 25:10)  All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful.

Confession: “A survey of Discipleship Journal readers ranked the areas of greatest spiritual challenge to them. This is the result of that survey:  1. Materialism. 2. Pride. 3. Self-centeredness. 4. Laziness. 5. (Tie) Anger/Bitterness. 5. (Tie) Sexual lust. 7. Envy. 8. Gluttony. 9. Lying.  (Discipleship Journal, 11-12/92.)  In your confession this week you are asked to examine your life using this list.   Where do you need to come to God in confession seeking His gift of transformation?  How can you die to self and be raised in Christ?  You may choose one of the above to focus on each day.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus:  Each day we look at an area of concern. Lift up prayer needs that relate to this area each day. Today: The Churches that surround us.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: As I face the day ahead I know it’s your strength I need.  I have struggled for too long and fallen short too many times.  Your hand is stretching towards me. It’s your hand that I take hold of now.

Time for a new outfit?

clothes old

Daily Rhythm

Devotional Diary  25 – 31 July 2016

July 31 is the Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost.

Readings for this week with thanks to www.umcdiscipleship.org   

Readings for the week:

Hosea 11:1-11God speaks of God’s tender affection for Israel like a father teaching an infant child to walk, and so how hard it is to see Israel continually rejecting God’s ways. God will not again destroy Ephraim after the coming exile, but intends to return them to their homes someday.

Psalm Response: Psalm 107:1-9, 43. A psalm of thanksgiving that ends almost as a wisdom psalm — “Consider the steadfast love of the Lord.”

Colossians 3:1-11Live the fullness of what happened in your baptism, Paul commends. Strip off the old self and its practices, be clothed with the new. Let Christ, and no other practices or distinctions, be all in all!

Luke 12:13-21.  Jesus uses an inquirer’s request to arbitrate an inheritance dispute to warn against all forms of greed — all desires to obtain more than what one already has — and tells the story of a successful grain farmer as an example.

In our shared focus we use extracts from “We are your children” (Found in “An Anglican Prayer Book 1989; Church of the Province of Southern Africa).

Monday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 38:15) But I trust in you, O Lord; and you, O Lord my God, will answer me.

Confession: This week for our confession you are asked to reflect on this prayer each day.  Let the Spirit of God speak to you in a fresh way each day through these words.

“Almighty God, Spirit of purity and grace, in asking your forgiveness I cannot claim a right to be forgiven but can only rely on your unlimited love.

I cannot hide behind my good works

I cannot hide behind extenuating circumstances

I cannot hide behind my human nature

I cannot hide behind the temptations I faced

I cannot hide behind peer group pressure

I can only say through the death of Christ my Lord.  Amen”  (John Baillie)

The Word: See readings above and use creatively during the week.

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Father, you inspired the prophets of old; grant that your Church may faithfully proclaim your truth to the world.  Lord hear us.

Personal prayers: (Use this section to list people you need to pray for or situations of personal concern that you need to bring before God in prayer)

Dedication: “Since without you we can do no good thing:  May your Spirit make us wise; May your Spirit guide us; May your Spirit renew us; May your Spirit strengthen us…”  (Church of the Province of the West Indies)

 Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 37:4) Seek your happiness in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desire.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: You prayed for your church to be one; unite all Christians that the world may believe.  Christ hear us

Personal Prayers:

Dedication: “Since without you we can do no good thing:  May your Spirit make us wise; May your Spirit guide us; May your Spirit renew us; May your Spirit strengthen us…”  (Church of the Province of the West Indies)

 Wednesday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 36:7) How precious, O God, is your constant love!  We find protection under the shadow of your wings.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: You taught us through Paul, your apostle, to pray for kings and rulers; bless and guide all who are in authority.  Christ heal us.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: “Since without you we can do no good thing:  May your Spirit make us wise; May your Spirit guide us; May your Spirit renew us; May your Spirit strengthen us…”  (Church of the Province of the West Indies)

Thursday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 35:10)  With all my heart I will say to the Lord, “There is no-one like you. …”

Confession: See Monday’s confession.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: You lived as an exile in Egypt; protect and comfort all refugees.  Christ heal us,

Personal prayers:

Dedication: “Since without you we can do no good thing:  May your Spirit make us wise; May your Spirit guide us; May your Spirit renew us; May your Spirit strengthen us…”  (Church of the Province of the West Indies)

Friday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 34:8)  Find out for yourself how good the Lord is.  Happy are those who find safety with him.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: You were unjustly condemned by Pontius Pilate: strengthen our brothers and sisters who are suffering injustice and persecution.  Christ hear us.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: “Since without you we can do no good thing:  May your Spirit make us wise; May your Spirit guide us; May your Spirit renew us; May your Spirit strengthen us…”  (Church of the Province of the West Indies)

Saturday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 33:11)  But his plans endure forever; his purposes last eternally.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: You cured by your healing touch and word: heal the sick and bless those who minister to them.  Christ hear us.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: “Since without you we can do no good thing:  May your Spirit make us wise; May your Spirit guide us; May your Spirit renew us; May your Spirit strengthen us…”  (Church of the Province of the West Indies)

 Sunday:

Adoration Focus: (Psalm 32:7)  You are my hiding place; you will save me from trouble.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus:  Lord Jesus, you called your disciples to take up the cross: deepen in each of us a sense of vocation.  Christ hear us.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: “Since without you we can do no good thing:  May your Spirit make us wise; May your Spirit guide us; May your Spirit renew us; May your Spirit strengthen us…”  (Church of the Province of the West Indies)

Teach us to Pray

 

Praying

Seasonal Rhythm

Taking following Christ seriously!

Daily Rhythm

Devotional Diary 18 – 24 July 2016

July 24 is the Tenth Sunday after Pentecost: Men’s Work Sunday

Readings for this week with thanks to www.umcdiscipleship.org   

Hosea 1:2-10Hosea obeys God and takes Gomer, a prostitute, as his wife. She bears children whose names are prophetic expressions of the relationship between Israel and God — Jezreel (after an outrageously bloody battlefield), Lo Ruhamah (not pitied), and Lo Ammi (not my people).

Psalm 85As a response to the first reading.

Colossians 2:6-19.  The subject matter in Paul’s letter shifts from Christology to Christian living grounded in the reality of being baptized into Jesus Christ. “See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit… in Christ the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily.”

Luke 11:1-13The disciples ask Jesus to teach them to pray. Jesus gives them a prayer (The Lord’s Prayer — Luke’s version) and a story of persistence in prayer.

Monday:

Adoration Focus: He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the almighty. (Psalm 91:1)

Confession: In our confessions this week we follow a prayer by Neil Dixon.  This prayer calls us to be more open to the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives.  Today: “There will be visions and dreams.  But we are stuck in our ways, for we have stopped dreaming.  Forgive us, Lord.  Holy Spirit, come, bless us”  (Neil Dixon)

The Word:  See reading above and use creatively during the week.

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus:  Sunday is Men’s Work Sunday. This week we pray for and rejoice in the men of the world.  You will be given key words and are asked to reflect on these and pray as God’s Spirit leads you. Today: The men of your church.

Personal prayers: (Use this section to list people you need to pray for or situations of personal concern that you need to bring before God in prayer)

Dedication: Holy Spirit, ever making life new, the living power of God within us, come, claim us for yourself. Yours we are, now and every day, for the rest of our lives, into eternity.  Thanks be to God!  Amen.

Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. (Psalm 90:1)

Confession: “The believers were together.  But we are so divided.  Forgive us, Lord.  Holy Spirit, come, bless us.” (Neil Dixon)

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for and rejoice in the men of the world.  You will be given key words and are asked to reflect on these and pray as God’s Spirit leads you. Today: The men of your land.

Personal Prayers:

Dedication: Holy Spirit, ever making life new, the living power of God within us, come, claim us for yourself. Yours we are, now and every day, for the rest of our lives, into eternity.  Thanks be to God!  Amen.

Wednesday:

Adoration Focus: I will sing of the Lord’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations. (Psalm 89:1)

Confession: “There were sounds of wind and sights of fire.  But we expect nothing new to happen.  Forgive us. Lord.  Holy Spirit, come, bless us.” (Neil Dixon)

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for and rejoice in the men of the world.  You will be given key words and are asked to reflect on these and pray as God’s Spirit leads you. Today: The men of Africa.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Holy Spirit, ever making life new, the living power of God within us, come, claim us for yourself. Yours we are, now and every day, for the rest of our lives, into eternity.  Thanks be to God!  Amen. (Neil Dixon)

Thursday:

Adoration Focus: As they make music they will sing, “All my fountains are in you.” (Psalm 87:7)

Confession: “They spoke with new freedom.  But we are so tongue-tied, too dumb to speak for you.  Forgive us, Lord.  Holy Spirit, come, bless us.” (Neil Dixon)

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for and rejoice in the men of the world.  You will be given key words and are asked to reflect on these and pray as God’s Spirit leads you. Today:  The men of the world.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Holy Spirit, ever making life new, the living power of God within us, come, claim us for yourself. Yours we are, now and every day, for the rest of our lives, into eternity.  Thanks be to God!  Amen. (Neil Dixon)

Friday:

Adoration Focus: You are forgiving and good, O Lord, abounding in love to all who call to you. (Psalm 86:5)

Confession: “Everyone heard the message.  But we try to reach only the nearest few.  Forgive us, Lord. Holy Spirit, come, bless us.” (Neil Dixon)

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for and rejoice in the men of the world.  You will be given key words and are asked to reflect on these and pray as God’s Spirit leads you. Today:  A particular man that God prompts you to pray for.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Holy Spirit, ever making life new, the living power of God within us, come, claim us for yourself. Yours we are, now and every day, for the rest of our lives, into eternity.  Thanks be to God!  Amen. (Neil Dixon)

Saturday:

Adoration Focus: How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord Almighty! (Psalm 84:1)

Confession: “The Father will send another Helper.  But we are so self-sufficient, relying on our own resources. Forgive us, Lord.  Holy Spirit, come, bless us.” (Neil Dixon)

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for and rejoice in the men of the world.  You will be given key words and are asked to reflect on these and pray as God’s Spirit leads you. Today: Men in abusive circumstances.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Holy Spirit, ever making life new, the living power of God within us, come, claim us for yourself. Yours we are, now and every day, for the rest of our lives, into eternity.  Thanks be to God!  Amen. (Neil Dixon)

 Sunday:

Adoration Focus: …you alone are the Most High over all the earth. (Psalm 83:18)

Confession: “The Helper will teach you everything.  But we have stopped wanting to learn or grow.  Forgive us, Lord.  Holy Spirit, come, bless us.” (Neil Dixon)

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for and rejoice in the men of the world.  You will be given key words and are asked to reflect on these and pray as God’s Spirit leads you. Today:   Men in service to God.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Holy Spirit, ever making life new, the living power of God within us, come, claim us for yourself. Yours we are, now and every day, for the rest of our lives, into eternity.  Thanks be to God!  Amen. (Neil Dixon)