Catch UpNew Every Morning | April 6, 2020
Words of Hope During COVID-19
Author Sharon Seyfarth Garner’s chosen word for 2020 is still. In a moving reflection she reminds us God is still with us and we are still beloved.
During Lent, Jesus invites us into a renewed friendship. He invites us to “catch up” on the things that have happened in our lives that we have not told him about. Today, specifically, Jesus invites us to put God at the center of our lives. He knows that in doing so we will reclaim our true identity as beloved sons and daughters of a God who deeply desires friendship with us.
—Anthony Egan, Trevor Hudson, and Russell Pollitt, Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent (Upper Room Books, 2018)
How is Jesus inviting you into renewed friendship? Join the conversation.
This is eternal life: to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you sent.
—John 17:3 (CEB)
Prayer for the Week
May this Holy Week be one of challenge, growth, and an ever-deepening friendship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
Praying as you color, or contemplative coloring, is a great practice for calming anxious minds during times like these. Read Still by Sharon Seyfarth Garner and download a free, printable mandala at UpperRoom.org.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.
God is calling me to be willing to be uncomfortable in order to do His Kingdom work. He is asking me to set aside weariness, and to turn to Him anew. To continue to do what He has placed right in front of me, and to be faithful. And, to recognize my wrong thoughts, to confess them to Him and allow Him to cleanse me, instead of me trying to pretty myself up. Oh, when will I learn this lesson?
Father – You are faithful, make me more so. Father – You sacrificially love, lead me in Your way.
Thank You, Father – for those who write beautiful praise songs and share their gift, the gift You have blessed them with, so that we can lift our heart and voices to You. You are worthy of all our praise.
Read Max Lucado’s book, JESUS, a refreshing and enlightening understanding of Jesus. Through difficult situations God has helped me. Faith in God will carry me whether in this world or the next, “nothing can separate us from the love of God. Put God first.” Through the Holy Spirit, Jesus, and God I have everything necessary. Prayers for a blessed and holy week as we remember what Christ did for us .
Thank You, Lord.
Jesus is asking me to sit quietly with Him and listen to and for His voice. I try to do this daily though I have fallen short of this goal. It is very centering and I find myself calmer after.
Megan and I are using my vehicle as her’s is incapacitated. However, I have a manual transmission which she assured me she could drive. Yesterday she had errands to run. I heard the car start, then a crash. Somehow she ripped the entire front bumper off while only backing out of the garage. Sigh…
Prayers for Jill and Larry as they try to stay connected and healing while staying safe.
Prayers for Robert as he too remain safe yet connected to family and church.
Prayers for Andrea as she cares for herself and Lowell. Small, everyday actons are very calming and reassuring.
Prayers for April who also seeks to connect with family while staying healthy.
Prayers for BJ, may she and her mother stay safe and may God bless BJ for her constant shining of His light for others.
Prayers for Lou and her children, may all remain healthy and financially solvent.
Prayers for Rick and husband, may they remainsafe while still progressing with schhooling and remaining sober.
Prayers and thank you UR
I thought about the question today and decided to call a newer friend who I have found to be a difficult person to be around. She is a widow, and I have often found her difficult to be with – she comes across as quite critical and has a very sharp tongue. I had backed away from her. We had a good conversation about how we’re doing in these unusual circumstances and she was grateful for my call.
I feel Lowell and I are among the lucky ones, retired, with a pension, a home, access to food, not in need of ongoing medical care, although we do have “underlying conditions.”. I pray for those less fortunate. I continue to make face masks. Food shelves are running low – we will contribute. We walk almost every day and see and chat with our neighbors. Spring is in the air.
Continued prayers for David and Ally. Prayers for dear UR friends and those for whom you pray, and prayers for all who stop by UR today. Wishing all a blessed day.
I am catching up with God and my friends during this time of staying home by intentionally taking time to do just that. I am not squeezing it in “when I have time, or I have 5 minutes now…do it”, no, I have time carved out in the day to do this act of love. Yesterday I selected and wrote my Easter cards. As I wrote Happy Easter, I thought of how not long ago I wrote Merry Christmas. Easter is my favorite season and I am humming “I am one of the Easter People”…
I just finished listening to Sharon read her poem on Still…it is beautiful and to me, in one word, tells the power and love of God.
Yesterday the theme of adding beauty to our days was included in the online message from our pastor. They had sent out a palm branch template to download and color, then upload so they could share. I was so surprised to see that some had colored each of the leaves a different color…not green!! it was beautiful and something I had never thought to do. During this time, I am catching up on new insights from God, family, friends, the world. I see this as a wink from God…pay attention, April….
I hold you in my prayers, dear UR family, as we navigate COVID-19 and it’s presence in our world. Please be with David and Ally, ,ay they feel your presence with them and the healthcare workers who are there with them. Please be with all older residents of assisted living or nursing homes as they are locations where so many older persons live. A friend just texted that his mother has been tested as she has a fever and 4 others there are positive.
I pray for D as Jill connects with her. May you be at the meetings, Lord, to guide them in the plans for this young person.
I feel Jesus, calling me into renewed walk with him. I was hoping to do a retreat on the walk to Emmaus this spring. However, just being still and embracing the quiet and solitude has been life giving. It’s something i didn’t think i could do for long periods of time, yet I’m beginning to appreciate it more. I’m able to see where God is working in my life. Especially, in this new and unfamiliar place the world is in now. Even when i read the Psalms, they too have a new meaning.
This the beginning of Holy Week too feels different and again even more special perhaps its the sorrowfulness of this pandemic. I see and feel a hope underlying all in my faith and in my hope, believing deep with in me the Hope that Christ resurrection brings to us.
Thank you Andrea for that poem suggestion on the donkey Beautiful, Thank you Roberts suggestion Robert on,Max Lucado’s book, JESUS i will look into it. Continued prayers for David and Ally, my Pastor Melissa and all those diagnosed and with COVID-19, especially those requiring Intensive care, may the Doctors, Nurses and medical staff and first responders be nourished and strengthen and not grow weary. Keeping you all in my prayers for your joys and concerns and those visiting the UR Lord in all your mercy hear our Prayers.