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

ONE OF THE MOST SIGNIFICANT theological questions centers on whether our lives make a difference to God. In other words, is God a distant observer, uninvolved in the messiness of our lives and unconcerned with the intricacies and conflicts of relationships, economics, and politics? Or, does God’s love for the world mean that God actually experiences our lives as they unfold and that God is rejoicing or mourning our particular life decisions?

I believe that Benedict asked similar questions as he sought to respond to spiritual needs in his time. Benedict believed that God acts in the world and that conversely what happens in the world matters deeply to our Creator.

– Bruce G. Epperly
The Mystic in You

From page 42 of The Mystic in You: Discovering a God-Filled World by Bruce G. Epperly. Copyright © 2017 by Bruce G. Epperly. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

Do our lives make a difference to God? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

“Can anyone withhold the water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?”

Acts 10:47, NRSV

This Week: pray growth of body, mind, and spirit. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center website.

This week we remember: Athanasius (May 1).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2018 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA


  • Jill Posted April 30, 2018 3:35 am

    This, too, was part of my conversation with dad Saturday evening. Where is God in all this? Why does bad happen? I tried to say that God is not distant, that in His permissive will, He is going to work all of this according to His glory. It’s hard. It’s hard to see my dad spiritually staggered in this way. Or, possibly, I just assumed his views on things of this gravity were similar to mine. I firmly believe God is working on mom’s heart – and I told dad that.
    Mom, dad and my sister go back to the oncologist today to see how to move forward. Unfortunately, I am not able to be there – it is right in the middle of my senior classes – and I just can’t miss them. My seniors test Wednesday and Thursday for me, and I had specifically planned out today and tomorrow ahead of the test. I am not happy about not being able to attend the appointment, but it is how it must be.
    It was good to be at church yesterday. Good to be encouraged and embraced by several from my small group and other acquaintances. Such good support from new friends. Was able to begin some yard work yesterday afternoon. So grateful for functional, pain-free hands.

    • Betsy Posted April 30, 2018 6:47 am

      God is there for your dad, Jill. You are the face of Him as you support and help him and your mom grapple with this disease. His hand is also over you, giving you the strength while carrying on with your life’s work in th classroom. I believe your dad’s questioning is God working on him and in him. I will be praying for positive news for them as they go back to the oncologist.

  • robert moeller Posted April 30, 2018 7:07 am

    Yes, Jill, situations like you and your family are facing make people wonder where God is. The same goes for tragic accidents, farms burning to the ground, natural disasters and the like. People ask, “If God loves us why do these things happen.?” I certainly don’t believe that God makes these things happen. I can’t explain the why, but know that God can and does help us through them even when things happen that we wish did not. God is with us always no matter whether here or there. Spiritual truths are hard to prove by non-spiritual means.

    Thankful you are able through all of this to be there for both students and family. Glad you had some time to yourself in the garden, have support from church. God is working through these activities.

    Despite rainy weather, I believe there was an excellent turnout at the fire station for the Wallace’s fund raising dinner. The results will be known soon.

    A very light and spotty snow fall last night.

    Blessings and prayers for all the UR family, may your needs be met and thanks be given for the joys you receive.

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted April 30, 2018 7:42 am

    Grateful for public holiday tomorrow.

    Yes, i believe our lives do make a difference to God

    We are created to glorify God

    Blessings to all and may all be well

    • Julie Posted April 30, 2018 7:56 am

      Prayers for you, Mary, and your parents. I pray you have a restful day.

  • Julie Posted April 30, 2018 7:49 am

    Prayers for you, Jill, as well as your parentsaand sister. I pray Gloria receives encouraging news. Times such as these often lead us to question our faith. I am heartened by the fact that your father feels that he can be so open and honest with you regarding his fears aand doubts.
    Prayers for Betsy and her family.
    Prayers for Robert, Erich and Pearl. I pray Erich’s job is going well. Thank you for your description of the translation you are working on, how fascinating.
    Prayers for Lou and her youngest. Transitions are difficult at any age, but teenage years are already frought with high emotions. Prayers for Lou’s son as he takes his licensure test today.
    Blessings and prayers for and thank you to all of the UR family
    Don’t wait until you know who you are to get started.
    Austin Kleon

  • Connie Posted April 30, 2018 7:53 am

    I hope my life matters to God. He matters in mine…..beyond measure.
    Thankful for:
    A telephone visit with my cousin who lost her husband last week.
    Watching the Robins build their nest. (gathering the mud and grass and then taking a bath calls for fresh water in the bird bath!)
    The flowering tree on the corner is in full bloom.
    God’s constant care.

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