The house of God, the armour of God and the words of life

NG KERK Franschoek

Yearly Rhythm

Sunday 23 August 2015
The Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Ordinary Time
Year B
Colour: Green

“Others inspire us, information feeds us, practice improves our performance,but we need quiet time to figure things out, to emerge with new discoveries, to unearth original answers.”

-Dr. Ester Buchholz-

For more about the rhythm of the church year and the Revised Common Lectionary click HERE!

Daily Rhythm

Making worship part of the everyday

Devotional Diary 17 – 23 August 2015

DOWNLOAD THE DEVOTIONAL DIARY AND COMMENTS AS A PDF HERE:

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

 1 Kings 8:1, 6, 10-11, 22-30, 41-43.  Highlights of the story of the dedication of the temple complex in Jerusalem with extended portions of the dedicatory prayer by King Solomon. In this prayer, Solomon calls on promises in the covenant with David to ask God to sustain the dynasty and to hear the prayers prayed in or toward the temple.

Psalm 84. A psalm in praise of the beauty of the temple and its worship.

Ephesians 6:10-20.  Put on the whole armour of God as defence against surrounding evil spiritual strongholds and pray constantly for all sisters and brothers in Christ.

John 6:56-69.  Jesus continues to contrast those who “chew on his flesh and live into eternity” with those who “ate the manna in the wilderness and died” while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. The point is so clear and offensive, perhaps particularly in that context, that many of his followers abandon him; but Peter and an unspecified number of others remain because they are convinced he has the words of life.

Monday:

Adoration Focus: Each day focus on the loving heart of our Father God and each day thank him for a different aspect of that heart.  Today: Never-ending love….

Confession: Become aware of your thoughts and emotions as they are right now. Where/on what is your life focused? Remember your focus determines your fulfillment.  Hebrew 12:2: “Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus”.  Why should you focus on Jesus?   Each day renew your focus:  How will you move to becoming more Christ-focused today?

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

Seeking the Kingdom

Shared Focus:  Our prayer is that the Father’s will may be done on this earth.  Each day reflect on our world and pray for the Father’s will to be done in a new and specific way.  Today: Your life.

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)

Transforming verse: Hebrews 12:1-2 (A description of focus) “… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…”

 Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: Each day focus on the loving heart of our Father God and each day thank him for a different aspect of that heart.  Today: Forgiving love…

Confession: See Monday’s Confession focus

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

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Our Prayer is that the Father’s will may be done on this earth.  Each day reflect on our world and pray for the Father’s will to be done in a new and specific way. Today: In your work place/home.

Personal Prayers:

Transforming verse: Hebrews 12:1-2 (A description of focus) “… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…”

Wednesday: 

Adoration Focus: Each day focus on the loving heart of our Father God and each day thank him for a different aspect of that heart. Today: Restoring love (Think Prodigal Son)

Confession: See Monday’s Confession focus

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

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Our Prayer is that the Father’s will may be done on this earth.  Each day reflect on our world and pray for the Father’s will to be done in a new and specific way. Today: Your land.

Personal prayers:

Transforming verse: Hebrews 12:1-2 (A description of focus) “… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…”

Thursday:

Adoration Focus: Each day focus on the loving heart of our Father God and each day thank him for a different aspect of that heart.  Today: Assuring Love.

Confession: See Monday’s Confession focus

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

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Our Prayer is that the Father’s will may be done on this earth.  Each day reflect on our world and pray for the Father’s will to be done in a new and specific way. Today: Your family.

Personal prayers:

Transforming verse: Hebrews 12:1-2 (A description of focus) “… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…”

Friday:

Adoration Focus: Each day focus on the loving heart of our Father God and each day thank him for a different aspect of that heart.  Today: Joyful love.

Confession: See Monday’s Confession focus

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

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Our Prayer is that the Father’s will may be done on this earth.  Each day reflect on our world and pray for the Father’s will to be done in a new and specific way. Today: In a difficult situation.

Personal prayers:

Transforming verse: Hebrews 12:1-2 (A description of focus) “… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…”

Saturday:

Adoration Focus: Each day focus on the loving heart of our Father God and each day thank him for a different aspect of that heart.  Today: Communicative love.

Confession: See Monday’s Confession focus

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

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Our Prayer is that the Father’s will may be done on this earth.  Each day reflect on our world and pray for the Father’s will to be done in a new and specific way. Today: Your world.

Personal prayers:

Transforming verse: Hebrews 12:1-2 (A description of focus) “… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…”

Sunday:

Adoration Focus: Each day focus on the loving heart of our Father God and each day thank him for a different aspect of that heart.  Today: Ever present love.

Confession: See Monday’s Confession focus.

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

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Our Prayer is that the Father’s will may be done on this earth.  Each day reflect on our world and pray for the Father’s will to be done in a new and specific way.  Today: Your church.

Personal prayers:

Transforming verse: Hebrews 12:1-2 (A description of focus) “… let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…”

Weekly Rhythm

Joining our stories with the stories of God’s people.

Questions and prayers to explore readings:

(The notes in italics are with thanks to www.umcdiscipleship.org.)

As you read, remember these three basic questions:
What does the passage say?
What does the passage mean?
How does it apply to my life?

1 Kings 8:1, 6, 10-11, 22-30, 41-43.  Highlights of the story of the dedication of the temple complex in Jerusalem with extended portions of the dedicatory prayer by King Solomon. In this prayer, Solomon calls on promises in the covenant with David to ask God to sustain the dynasty and to hear the prayers prayed in or toward the temple.

Litany (based on 1 Kings 8: 22-30)

Will you, God, live on this small planet earth?
Look! Heaven and earth cannot contain You,
much less this house of prayer
which we have built and cherished.
    Raise the stone and you shall find me,
    cleave the wood and I am there.

There is no god like you, God of Jesus,
neither on earth nor elsewhere in the whole universe!
A God who keeps every promise
and shows unswerving love to your servants
who with all their hearts walk in your ways.
    Blessed are you, our Creator and Redeemer,
    in whom we live and move and have our being

~ Written by Bruce Prewer, and posted on Bruce Prewer’s Home Page.

 

Psalm 84. A psalm in praise of the beauty of the temple and its worship.

Prayer (inspired by Psalm 84)

King of all the earth,
Creator of the universe,
Holy Triune God,
From everlasting to everlasting, you are Lord.
Our souls long for your courts, O Lord of hosts;
Happy are we who dwell in your house and are ever praising you!
Our hearts and our flesh rejoice in the living God;
Happy are we who dwell in your house and are ever praising you!
We have found a home in your presence, Our King and Our God;
Happy are we who dwell in your house and are ever praising you!
Who is like our God, the One who strengthens his people,
the One who reveals himself to all who seek after him?
This is our God, the Holy One.
Come before him with thanksgiving and offer him the sacrifice of praise.

~ excerpted from a longer prayer posted on the Oratio Contemplativa website.

 Ephesians 6:10-20.  Put on the whole armour of God as defence against surrounding evil spiritual strongholds and pray constantly for all sisters and brothers in Christ.

 Prayer of Confession  (inspired by Ephesians 6:10-20)

Spirit of God, we confess that we put on airs more often than we put on the armour of God.  We are guilty of girding ourselves with lies instead of the truth.  We try to protect ourselves with arrogance, superstition, and self-reliance instead of righteousness, faith, and your gift of salvation.  Our footsteps do not follow your path of peace.  And we are quick to use your Word to attack one another, instead of striking out against the sins we personally commit.  Forgive us, Holy God.  Gift us with the wisdom and strength to change our ways, so that we may live as your faithful ambassadors of the Good News.

~ written by Amy Loving.  Posted on The Worship Closet website.

John 6:56-69.  Jesus continues to contrast those who “chew on his flesh and live into eternity” with those who “ate the manna in the wilderness and died” while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. The point is so clear and offensive, perhaps particularly in that context, that many of his followers abandon him; but Peter and an unspecified number of others remain because they are convinced he has the words of life.

Gospel Reflection  (inspired by John 6:60-69)

“Do you want to leave me too?” Jesus asks.

He does not water down his words or change them.
“Whoever eats my flesh will live forever.”

Where would we go, Jesus?
Who has life and words like yours?

If you can create a universe from nothing;
if you can invent a wheat field,
then we believe that you can come to us
as bread.

Holy One of God,
come nourish us, be with us and sustain us,
or we will not have the strength.
Our journey will be too hard.

~ written by Anne Osdieck, and posted on Saint Louis University’s The Center for Liturgy web site.