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

WE ARE SO EAGER to have folks busily engaged in the work of going and telling and doing that we fail to provide the needed preparatory time of experiencing grace and community. We rush to get new members connected through this committee or that task force as soon as possible, either in hopes of buoying up depleted ranks or in fear of losing the new ones out the back door. In some settings, folks are not even members when we sweep them into teaching Sunday school or serving on a mission board or . . . you get the picture. Perhaps you have even been the picture. We hurriedly involve people in calls and ministries, sometimes without allowing them to linger in the gift of come and see. How can we be spokespersons or exemplars of a faith that we have not taken the time to experience for ourselves?

—John Indermark
Gospeled Lives: Encounters with Jesus

From page 32 of Gospeled Lives: Encounters with Jesus by John Indermark. Copyright © 2008 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

Do you set aside time to experience grace and community?  Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.
—Matthew 28:5-6, NRSV

Prayer for the Week

Here I am, Lord.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Something more

How do we pray when we are divided? Read more.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA


  • Jill Posted March 29, 2019 5:59 am

    When life is “normal” – I do have time set apart for community and am more aware of graceful moments. One of the changes I am acutely aware of now with my restricted schedule is the lack of fellowship on Sundays at church, and evenings with my two small groups. I yearn for sharing, for corporate prayer, for just investing time and attention to listening to others pour out their hearts.
    Grateful for a quiet overnight here at my folks’. It has been commonplace for mom to want something to eat at 4AM – but all remains quiet. So glad dad is getting desperately needed rest.
    Grateful for my school administration being fully supportive of me stepping away to meet my family needs.
    Grateful for the quietness of this morning, the calming sound of light rain and a bird or two singing just outside the window.
    Grateful for this change, even though I will worry about my kiddos at school, looking forward to less hecticness and more quietness in moments like right now.
    Grateful for the steadiness of this community here, the prayerfulness and sharing and carrying of one another’s burdens.
    Good morning.

    • Connie Posted March 29, 2019 8:27 am

      Good morning. God bless you.

    • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 8:22 pm

      Jill, I am fervently praying for you as you go through these days and nights. I can only imagine how taxing and emotionally draining this must be for you, your Dad and Becky. As your Mom makes her way through her own difficult road, I pray for God’s peace and comfort to settle upon her. Please know that I pray for God’s gentle hand to carry her through. Please know, we are all here for you, Larry, Gloria and Becky. A little smooch tossed Roger’s way from me. Your kiddos will be fine, under God’s protection, and I’m thankful for the school’s understanding of your situation. You are loved, dear Jill. Sending you prayers of peace and Love tonight.

  • robert moeller Posted March 29, 2019 7:07 am

    I found today’s reflection somewhat apropos to the church I attend. I do think I was given time to acclimate. I also worked to do what I though I should do and perhaps speeded up the process. This church is a small country church so the few people who attend and do what is needed to keep things going is small. People serve on a variety of committees. There is support from the greater membership, but not what it once was.

    Hopefully we’ll see the two places we are interested in next week and can make progress. Thankful the car is working fine and my rash is being treated.
    It certainly feels better.

    Glad to read your post, Jill, and know how things are going. Grateful for the support from school. Also understand how you miss your students and the fellowship you have at church and with groups. Your Mom and Dad are getting good and much needed attention. I compare the time my sister and I spent with Mom her last years with the time she spent with us when we were
    babies, young children.

    Prayers for Marcy, her health, well being, insurance needs, and care. Thankful for Mary’s help and companionship.

    Prayers for Rusty that his health is improving and work is possible with a safe ride.

    Prayers for Julie, her hands and foot, warming weather, well-being, dealings with ‘h’, and a job for Megan. Thankful for your dedicated attention to the UR family in your prayers. You are a beautiful blessing to all of us.

    Thankful that Andrea and Lowell are home, better connected, and getting better.

    God’s peace to Connie and God’s strength to Betsy as she cares for Harrison.
    Blessings to all the UR family, GOD IS WITH YOU ALL THE TIME. THANK YOU, LORD.

    • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 8:35 pm

      Robert, thank you for your prayers. And your wise words of wisdom, that are filled with the Holy Spirit. I am praying for you and Erich, as you continue to find the right home for the two of you, (and Pearl). Praise God that your car has been repaired and that the rash is steadily healing! Unfortunately, I now have the “check engine soon” light ‘glaring’ at me in my own car. More about that in my comment. I continue to keep you and Erich in my prayers each day. Praying for Annaliese and your family always, Robert. And it will be good when the house is found, the move complete and you are settled in. Sending Love to you!

  • Julie Posted March 29, 2019 8:10 am

    Ooh do I miss church and Bible study and fellowship and community. The church is getting a new pastor in April so I may attend on Easter and see how the church is doing under new leadership. So few people attend that they have one service. Last Easter fewer people were in attendance than on a normal Sunday when I attended regularly.
    Prayers for Jill and her family. Thankful for your comment yesterday regarding my words. Glad I could help you understand your mom’s state of mind better. Prayers Gloria continue to have minimal discomfort and a healthy apetite. Prayers for continued rest for Larry as Jill and Betsy care for Gloria. Prayers that all feel God’s peace.
    Prayers for Robert, may God lead him to a new home where He can use Robert to further His kingdom on earth. Grateful for improving rash and working car and mortgage approval.
    Prayers for Connie, may her heart be glad today.
    Prayers for Mary, may she be strong to care for hermother and may her mother’s health improve.
    Prayers for Andrea, may she heal quickly andmay she and Lowell continue to watch their words and be kind to one another.
    Prayers for Betsy and Harrison, may their love grow strong.
    Prayers for Rusty, may his health improve.
    Prayers for Edy and Bill, may they be well.
    Prayers for Marcy, may she be receiving all needed care and may her insurance remain in effect next week. Prayers for Mary, may she continue to aid Marcy and may Mary be safe as she travels.
    Prayers and blessings and warm hugs dear UR family and thank you one and all for your prayers and kind words

    • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 9:09 pm

      Dearest Julie, you are such a blessing, and I wonder if you know how much of a blessing you really are to all of us. Just reading of your experiences, and observing the compassionate words and caring you extend to us, is an inspiration in itself. This is NOT flattery! It is who and what God has made you to be, even as you face trials of your own. I thank you, from the depths of my heart, for your prayers, as I’ve struggled to read and gain just an inch. And suddenly I’m uplifted. You are a wonder, a gift from God! Thank you! I am praying for your days with “h” to be drawing to a close as God WILL, I believe, provide seasonal employment for you. I pray that “h” will, one way or another, be assisting in your future financial needs through your lawyer. That’s the one way or the other: God has got this! I pray daily for the healing of your hands and feet. I’m praying Megan finds employment real soon, something she enjoys! Please know what a wonderful person God knows you are, as do all of us!
      After attending the Ash Wednesday service at church, I was overcome with tears; tears for the Jesus Christ’s sufferings as the day of His crucifixion approached and all He endured; tears for my church, which I hadn’t been to since my best friend passed January 9, 2017, due to many reasons, health being the #1 issue; tears for the depletion of our once large congregation; tears for all our Bible Study members who have passed, including our Leader; and then tears from all the frustrations I’ve struggled with, the final straw being the inability to read and type! I was tearful in church, but when I got home, the floodgates opened. I hadn’t been holding tears back, there’s plenty of times I’ve been brought to down before God in tears. But this was a cleansing, toxicity was being removed with God’s support. Sorry so long, just relate so much to you, Julie, on my UMC church, congregation and starving for face to face fellowship! I am sending you prayers of encouragement, and loads of Love and (((hugs))) too!

    • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 9:11 pm

      Julie, bless your kitties, Chai and Tazzie, too! Lucy is my dearest little furry friend! God is so very good!

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted March 29, 2019 8:25 am

    I stopped going for the fall prevention program and Zumba since my mum is in hospital.

    Grateful that my cooking class had a break this week as we completed level 3 last week.

    Also very grateful my mom is coming back tomorrow.

    Thank you for all your prayers.

    Prayers for Jill and your family. May God strengthen and surround you with His love.

    May Julie’s situation and health improve.

    May Marcy’s health improve and all her needs be met.

    May we all set asy time to experience grace and community.


    • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 9:16 pm

      Sweet sister Mary, I thank you for your prayers! I am praying your Mom heals quickly after being released from the hospital. I pray for all your concerns, and that you can resume your schedule once your Mom is healed by God’s hand! Praise God for His many blessings! Sending Love to you!

      • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted March 30, 2019 4:12 am

        Thanks so much Marcy!

        Right now mum is dischy and sleeping soundly at home. She’s so happy to be home!


        • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted March 30, 2019 8:39 am


  • Connie Posted March 29, 2019 8:32 am

    I miss the “old” normal. The “new” normal is restrictive, but I thank God for this day.

    • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 9:17 pm

      Connie, yes! Amen! Sending prayers and Love to you and your husband!

  • April Posted March 29, 2019 4:46 pm

    Here I am Lord….reading and connecting with the UR family and share prayers for each. As Jill is relating the daily cares she and her family are providing to Gloria, I am reminded of those days I have spent doing the same for family or friends. I felt it was truly a blessing when others shared meals or phone calls or a note during those times. When Jill mentioned Gloria being hungry at 0400 it reminded me of a suggestion that was passed to me….make up small snacks to have ready 24/7…. ½ sandwiches, ½ cup of soup, ¼ cup of tuna salad, etc. The small amount is easy to heat up quickly or eat from the refrigerator….caregivers or drop-in visitors too can enjoy a quick snack.
    The reading today reminds me of why we chose a large church when we moved. We did not want to be on committees right away, we wanted to just be in the company of believers. Now that we have been there/here 5 years, we have found 3-4 opportunities to participate that fit our style and we so enjoy doing them. The new direction for our church is to have opportunities for members to be involved and participation is encouraged.
    May we all know how much Christ loves each of us and is here beside us to go with us every minute of the day. Blessings dear UR family.

    • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 9:27 pm

      April, yes, these were things I found to be so useful for my Alzheimer’s friend, who I took care of for four years. He still lives at home, with round the clock caregivers and palliative care. Very helpful suggestions for Jill. Thank you for your comment today. I served in my church before work got in the way, as I was working three jobs at one time. Now, I would love to help out, and am slowly improving. Praise God! I am thankful for the prayers of the UR family. And I am keeping you in my prayers for any cares and concerns you may have. I’ve been out of touch for so long. Sending Love to you and your family!

  • Marcy Posted March 29, 2019 10:52 pm

    Hello blessed UR siblings and friends! I’m bursting with news. But first, today’s question. So many of these questions assume that one us healthy enough and able to be places physically. As you all know, this has not been the case for me for well over a year. It seems ALL I’ve been able to do is set aside time for grace and community, although I need God to supply with a bit more grace! And this was such a blessing! Then my vision was constantly blurred, and I was suffering headaches after reading for short periods and I lost my ability to be in community through this wonderful place! Then the migraines worsened, one medication gave me kidney stones, (extremely painful!), the next one sent me into seizures after only three days of taking it, and now the neurologist is having trouble getting my insurance to cover the MRI of my neck, so I can be seen by a neurosurgeon. I’m on a third medication now, that us ineffective, and causing nightmares. The migraines, numbness and tingling in my arms, hands and fingers are due to the arthritic bone spurs growing into my spinal canal, causing nerve damage. Hence, the need for the cervical spine surgery. Also some other treatments and medication approvals are needed as soon as possible. That’s the end of this section.

    Praises, praises, praises to God our Father Almighty! Wednesday, I got my car jumped, and my helper (a temporary replacement for Mary, as she was away on a mission trip/family gathering in Australia for nearly two months!), and I went to pick up my expensive glasses. So many issues going on with my eyes, including early stages of glaucoma. Oh! Praise God I’m able to see and type once again!

    Praise God I’m driving my car for the first time since December 2017! Unfortunately, it needs work. But I have faith that someway, somehow, God will see this through! “Check engine soon” light. This was just the light itself when it first showed up a few years ago, but then it would go off. To replace the faulty sensor was too expensive and the service station did a complete “physical” on the car. All was well. It needs a right front brake caliper replacement, new front tires and a new battery. A little at a time and patience supplied by God!

    Praise God! I am moving on April 13th to a first floor apartment, only two buildings away! Ugh on the move. Yay for the move!

    Praise God! The finances for this move are being donated from several sources and I can finally get the last of my family “heirlooms” out of storage!

    Praise God! I now have WiFi and Internet through the SNAP program for a pittance that I can afford! This is also going to cut my cell phone bill in half, because i no longer need unlimited data!

    Praise God! A new Notebook is in the works. Typing on a phone, since I have no computer, even with eyesight restored, takes hours and hours. Not complaining, I’m thankful for ways to communicate and gather together here! But I have lots more going on all day now, that’s a blessing too!

    Praise God today was my helper Mary’s first day back here!

    The cup is surely overflowing! On days without migraines, I start out with hymns contemporary Christian music, all different kinds of praise songs. This is a habit from not being able to read and type, that will continue. This empties any stress, so my prayers are deeper. I feel I’m forgetting a blessing. But what a blessing to have so many, you can’t keep count! Praise God in the Highest Heavens. This transformation back to God’s me, started on that Ash Wednesday. See my reply to Julie.

    I am keeping you and Lowell in my prayers, as your physical and relational issues heal. I keep your daughter, son-in-law and grandson in my prayers. Sending Love to you all!

    I am keeping you, Lou, and your daughter in my prayers as your futures unfold, and God makes known to you, Lou, His plans for you, “plans for a future with hope!” Sending Love to you!

    I am keeping you, Betsy, in my prayers, for needed strength. I’m also praying for Grace and your grandson, Harrison, and all your family. Sending Love to you!

    Praying also for Rusty, Edy and Bill, Chloe and Paige, Carol and Robin, Francesca, Amy, Pam and all who keep prayers requests to themselves. God knows who you are. Let us all be thankful to God for He is good, all the time!

    And these three remain: Faith, Hope and Love, and the greatest of these is LOVE! Prayers and Love to all who come together here!

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