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

The legal status of guns in churches—in pockets in the pews or in the holsters of professional or volunteer security teams—varies across states and denominations and bears close and advised study by any church that is considering inviting guns into the sanctuary. The biblical status of a weapon designed long after the original writers had rested their hands likewise calls for careful, prayerful, and humble examination of the relevant texts. In sections of American culture, the gun has taken on weightier symbolism than its materials might suggest. To some, it is a smelted and cast idol; to others, an heirloom. To some, it is a uniform; to others, an accessory. To some, it is a necessary evil. To others, the phrase “necessary evil” flies in the face of the goodness of God’s creation.

—Rosalind C. Hughes, Whom Shall I Fear? Urgent Questions for Christians in an Age of Violence (Upper Room Books, 2021)

Today’s Question

When determining what you believe about guns, how does the biblical text guide you? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

At that hour Jesus said to the crowds, “Have you come out with swords and clubs to arrest me as though I were a bandit? Day after day I sat in the temple teaching, and you did not arrest me.”
—Matthew 26:55 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

Even though I walk through lonely and dark times, I will fear nothing, because you are with me; your guidance and authority comfort me. (Adapted from Psalm 23:4)
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

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Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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  • robert moeller Posted July 10, 2021 6:36 am

    For me the Bible says no weapons of any kind in or near church. The use of weapons to protect people in church from those trying to kill or harm them is a last resort. I would not be pleased to see someone with a gun at church.
    A dry day after a lot of rain, not sure how much came, but it was gentle and long. Hope it helped our drought situation.
    Due to technical problems there was no breakfast with the pastor yesterday.
    Both in person and ZOOM worship tomorrow. Communion is available every Sunday.
    Prayers the NEM family is safe, healthy or recovering, and needs are being met. Thank You, Lord.

  • Julie Posted July 10, 2021 8:55 am

    Jesus preached against violence. The disciples continued his example. I find the Bible in part clear cut on this yet the Old Testament speaks of wars and conflicts and retribution. In a way the great flood is violence. That said I do not condone owning guns.
    Since Bruce is home and Megan will be with him I am planning on going to church. It is the one I belonged to before I moved and joined the church which I feel is insular and not community oriented.
    Prayers for Ally, David and Marcy’s health and financial issues. Prayers for Scout, may the vet find a non life threatening and treatable reason for his symptoms and may his pain and suffering be abated. Prayers for Jill, Larry, Becky, Robert and Erich as they spend time together, may they do so in true harmony and forgiving love. Prayers for Pastor Carol as she takes her place in Robert’s churches pulpit, may God guide her. Prayers for Marti and her team and their kindness and hard work. Thank you for your prayers and God bless everyone who visits here.

  • Jill Posted July 10, 2021 6:28 pm

    I rarely think about guns. I have given minimal thought to owning one, for protection as I live in the city. But – I can’t imagine actually doing it. I think if I felt I needed it for safety – I would be looking to move out of the city. I know many of my neighbors own guns for safety purposes. I would be naive to think guns have not been in my school. I can’t think about it, or else I would probably drive myself deep into anxiety. I know that my former church had many people who carried guns “undercover”. My dad’s church likewise has these “undercover” lay people.
    So very good to see my god son play tournament baseball last evening, and again this afternoon. They won both games and are now the top seed for bracket play tomorrow. Unfortunately – looks like rain most of the day tomorrow. If the forecast is wrong, I hope to catch an art show prior to his first afternoon game. Tennis this morning – with no wind and comfortable sunshine. Good tennis, as always, with these ladies. I came home and mowed the yard – more weeds than anything else growing. I enjoy the neatness of a freshly mowed lawn.
    Julie – praying now and in the morning for your trip to church. I pray God will put you in the path of welcoming people and that you experience His presence in a poignant way.

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