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

Even if we avoid these more extreme reactions to pain, we may construct imaginary walls around our inner emotional selves under the fantasy that we can be insulated from true experiences of pain. Some people even look to the church as a place where they can flee the discomfort of the “real world” by cloaking themselves within purported religious responses to pain. Yet this use of an escapist faith is no better than the use of drugs or alcohol to avoid discomfort.

—John R. Wimmer, Blessed Endurance: Moving Beyond Despair to Hope (Upper Room Books, 2018)

Today’s Question

What thoughts and feelings arise when you think about using the church as a place to flee discomfort? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

You have kept count of my tossings;
put my tears in your bottle.
Are they not in your record?
—Psalm 56:8 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

Healing God, when we feel alone, hurt, or misunderstood, assure us of your presence and companionship as you guide us toward a more abundant life. Amen. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

“Hymns embed faith into the marrow of the soul,” Rev. Dr. James C. Howell writes in Unrevealed Until Its Season: A Lenten Journey with Hymns. Howell believes in the power of song to teach spiritual truths. His newest book takes us on a 40-day journey through well-loved hymns. Learn more 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, 2022 8:23 am

    This is a tough topic. Yes, in this world we will have pain, that’s the reality of this world. At the same time we look to Jesus for healing since there are many stories of His healing ability. I do believe that with God we can endure (that word pops up here again) and that one day believers, followers of Christ will be with Him in a place of no pain.
    Proverbs Bible study in a few minutes, this has been helpful. Am understanding this book better.
    Snow last night, but the roads are clear, although wet. Plows cleaning up the road edges now.
    Thankful that God’s love never ends.

  • Julie Posted January 25, 2022 8:23 am

    Not sure what this means. I thought we were to turn to God in our pain.
    Prayers for Ally’s tooth issues and finances. Prayers for Jill’s friend and her daughter, may they receive the help they need. Prayers for Robert as he prepares the message for his church for this Sunday.
    Have a video doctor’s appointment this morning. I hope something can be done about my ongoing stomach issue and the pain in my leg.
    Thank you for your prayers and may God bless all who visit here.

  • Jill Posted January 25, 2022 10:36 am

    Fleeing to the church can get one pointed in the right direction, if a godly person takes the time to listen well and direct you to God. But, just being amongst other Believers will not somehow rub off on us and give us holiness or righteousness. This comes from God alone. Yes – we run to the church to be surrounded by likeminded people and to hear how others endure in “the world”. We need to be in the world, but not changed to be like the world. We must steadfastly cling to Christ, His righteousness as ours. The church can be a safe zone, but we mustn’t stay there. We must go back out – out to the unchurched and non-Believers.
    Snow falling while running this morning and the roads were more snow-covered than I would have liked. But made it around ok. Got out the door early for work, to find my neighbor across the street stuck at the end of her driveway. I would not have been able to get out of mine. So, I grabbed my shovel and eventually fetched some rugs – and got her free. My feet were 2 blocks of ice by then, but off to work I went. Glad I could be of assistance, wish I had had boots on instead of my work shoes. But, all is well. She sent me a nice text thanking me profusely.
    My god daughter made her first 3 pointer in college last evening. It was great to see her team so happy for her. Tonight her brother has a game.

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