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

EVERYTHING THAT IS, including we ourselves, is held forever in God’s love, in God’s grace and mystery. Mama is in it, as am I.
Grief is real and also held in God’s mystery. Yet love is the greatest mystery in our amazing universe. It is given to us as a way to
participate in life. It is the root and cause and completion of all things in God.

—Roberta C. Bondi, Wild Things: Poems of Grief and Love, Loss and Gratitude (Upper Room Books, 2014)

Today’s Question

How can you embrace the mystery of God’s love today?  Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

“Without question, the mystery of godliness is great: he was revealed as a human, declared righteous by the Spirit, seen by angels, preached throughout the nations, believed in around the world, and taken up in glory.”
—1 Timothy 3:16 (CEB)

Prayer for the Week

Creator God, As you draw us closer to you, draw us closer to each other. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room .

Something More

Who came up with the idea of using nativity scenes to celebrate Christmas? Many might be surprised to learn that Francis of Assisi, the well-known thirteenth-century saint, is credited with creating the first nativity scene. The Living Nativity: Preparing for Christmas with Saint Francis introduces readers to Saint Francis and his joyous reenactment of the birth of Jesus, complete with a manger and animals. Discover 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 November 17, 2019 5:02 am

    Embracing the mystery of God – His love, His vast love for us, lavished on us. I am so encouraged by April’s words from yesterday – and believe we embrace God and His will by continuing to seek out relationships here – even though the potential for hurt is great. The potential for emotion is great. But, the potential for living into His desire for us to be relational vertically with Him and horizontally here with people He has placed in our path is so much greater. April – I am sorry for your loss and the grieving which lingers. May our great Father comfort you, as only He can.
    I wrote a note to my mom’s friend who lost her husband this summer. And yesterday, I received a card back from her. In it she said my note brought tears to her eyes, as did her note yesterday, for me. But as she said in the note, not all bad tears and it is ok. Surely it is. It hurts, it tugs at us – because it was so meaningful. Thank You, Father, for allowing us to experience deep, meaningful relationships – may You be glorified in them.
    I found some beautiful words in Psalm 84 this morning. “1 How lovely is Your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts. 2 My soul longs, indeed it faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. 5 Happy are those whose strength is in You. 11 For the Lord God is a sun and a shield; He bestows favor and honor. No good thing does the Lord withhold from those who walk uprightly.
    Come quickly, Lord Jesus.

    • April Posted November 17, 2019 8:35 pm

      Thank you Jill. And yes, the grieving process takes time as you well know. Today’s message of being held forever is comforting. Blessings to all.

  • robert moeller Posted November 17, 2019 6:40 am

    Yes, there certainly are both good and not so pleasant tears. Memories can bring both kinds.

    Had a good visit with my elderly train and East Asia military service friend yesterday. Very thankful I met him. So many common, similar experiences even though he is 16 years older than me.

    Today the collection of food for 20 Thanksgiving food baskets comes together
    and there is charge conference.

    The love of the Lord is with everyone, thank You, Lord.

  • Julie Posted November 17, 2019 7:54 am

    I long to connect to others. It is difficult as an adult to meet new people. This is something that has been in the news of late. There are even services designed to facilitate friendships among adult strangers.
    Prayers for Jill and her mom’s friend. I wrote a note to a woman from church when she lost her husband and she was very appreciative. It is never wrong to show kindness.
    Prayers for Robert and his new friend, may they enjoy many times together. It is especially heart warming to meet someone who has so much in common with us.
    Prayers for Mary that she had a full day of worship, singing and fellowship.
    Prayers for April and her recent loss, may she be kind and patient with herself.
    Prayers and thank you UR

    • April Posted November 17, 2019 8:39 pm

      Thank you Julie. I will be kind to myself and let the love of God hold me close. Same to you and all of our UR family and friends….I am grateful.

    • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted November 18, 2019 12:19 pm

      Thank you Julie!

      May God bless you abundantly!

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