New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

"A Liturgy for Morning Prayer," Upper Room Worshipbook

Used by permission from the Book of Common Worship, © 2018 Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved. This prayer appears in “A Liturgy for Morning Prayer” in Upper Room Worshipbook.


Today’s Reflection

Our truest home is next to the heartbeat of God. Not only in some distant heavenly future but right now. Our truest home is listening and responding to God’s heartbeat of love for us and for the world. But that’s not a destination we can choose and then assuredly plot our course to by adopting practices of prayer and ways of living that will propel us to our destination. As soon as it becomes a destination that we’re determined to reach by our own effort and ingenuity—our own bias for action—we’re headed in the wrong direction.

—L. Roger Owens, Everyday Contemplative: The Way of Prayerful Living (Upper Room Books, 2022)

Today’s Question

When has spiritual growth felt like a destination you were determined to reach? When have you realized your effort was leading you in the wrong direction? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

You show me the path of life.
In your presence there is fullness of joy;
in your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

—Psalm 16:11, NRSV

Prayer for the Week

Nurturing God, tend our whole lives like a patient gardener. May our desire for you grow as grace works the soil of our lives. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Enjoying this week’s reflections? Learn more about how to use Everyday Contemplative as a guide for the season of Lent by joining our free webinar with author Roger Owens on Monday, January 30, 2023, at 6:30 p.m. (CT). Register here.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.


  • robert moeller Posted January 25, 2023 7:27 am

    I believe one must make a commitment to believe, trust, love, and follow God. Even in this we can and do make mistakes. Acknowledging them, repenting, and starting anew is thankfully possible by the love, grace, and mercy of God. Lord, I pray You will let us know when we have gone astray and enable us to acknowledge our error, confess our mistake, and set out again to be Your humble servants. Thank You, Lord.
    Worship planning progressing, the message is next. Thankful for help from someone better trained than me.
    The focus is Jesus and the Sermon on the Mount with a key word being BLESSED.
    Snowshoed yesterday, fresh deep snow and a wide path, I avoided the cross country ski track and made a parallel trail. Slow steady pace and some stops to rest. Flurries this morning and more snow tonight. The outdoor activities options are improving. Thank You, Lord.

  • Julie Posted January 25, 2023 9:49 am

    I understand what the author is saying, however for people such as myself who have no religious upbringing it is imperative that we get to know God though reading his Word. I hope the author was not referring to every action taken to get to achieve spiritual growth. I feel that we must put in a certain anount of effort in order to achieve growth in our spiritual life. we can’t just say “Here I am Lord, grow me.”
    The weather didn’t start to get really bad until Megan was safely at work and I am thankful for that. However it did get bad and so I am home instead of at Bible study. I wonder if it was cancelled as I called the office and there was no answer. I will try again soon. The sleet has started and by noon we should have rain and the snow should be gone. However more snow is forecast for overnight. We are to get snow every day for the foreseeable future. Yuck!

  • Jill Posted January 25, 2023 3:30 pm

    I think I have realized for quite some time that spiritual growth is ongoing and initiated by God the Father and the Holy Spirit. I must be an active participant – but there is no end goal. I am to strive to become increasingly like Christ. 100% is not possible here on earth. But intentionality, striving, alertness, seeking is expected. This too, we fail at as humans…but can try to become better at. Progress forward.
    A blessed snow day today. Really surprised. I was out running and the roads were wet, but not snow covered. When I stepped foot back inside I received a text and “the call”. Joy! A shower, a heated blanket, kittens. We napped off and on all morning.
    Did an impromptu google meet (zoom) with a student whom I was to work with after school today. She is going out of town for a wedding beginning tonight – so I emailed her and asked if she wanted to meet. We did for an hour this afternoon.
    I then ran my disk of images over to the doctor’s office. The receptionist there was quite helpful and scheduled me…although the first opening was not until February 21. I asked to be placed on the cancellation list. I stopped to get some groceries and ran into my aunt. I had just gotten a birthday card and gift card for her husband for his upcoming birthday – so I gave it to her to pass along.
    Zoom small group this evening. Grateful for my morning nap so I will be sharp and alert for this.
    Dad called and his sister arrived safely. They were getting ready to go out to dinner and then to the “town square” for the live music.

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