Moments of SweetnessNew Every Morning | July 9, 2020
The gardenia prompts our awareness of life’s high moments of sweetness that can sustain us through the not-so-sweet times—the embrace of a loved one, the adoring smile of a child, the strains of great music, the delectability of a piece of chocolate, the smell of rain . . . or a homemade corsage. Those charming delights strengthen our spirits and nourish our souls if we pay attention and say thank you.
—Linda Douty, Rhythms of Growth: 365 Meditations to Nurture the Soul (Upper Room Books, 2014)
What moments of delight can you notice and say “thank you” for today? Join the conversation.
How sweet are your words to my taste,
sweeter than honey to my mouth!
—Psalm 119:103 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
Thank you, God, for sun and showers
Thank you for each lovely flower
Thank you for each stately tree
Through all these, you speak to me.
—A Gardener’s Prayer
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
Through rich and moving stories from various people, author Frank Rogers Jr. shows ways to incorporate compassion in our daily lives. Start practicing compassion with Rogers.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.
I am meeting my sister for a walk in a very shaded park this morning. When we spend time like this together – things generally go quite well. I want to be sure to be grateful for this time together. I am also trying to be mindful of savoring time with dad. Yesterday – he shot his age in golf – 86. He was so thrilled. He hasn’t been happy with his game this summer, although there have been signs of improvement recently. Well – he rocked it yesterday and was so happy. We enjoyed lunch outside at a local BBQ joint and had ice cream on the way home.
Julie – continuing to pray for your situation, your ability to hold true to God and His promises. If I may offer a few words. I have been reading a lot of books on suffering these past few years and I believe the “joy in the suffering” in some ways, refers to the joy and peace of knowing you are not alone, that your Saviour and Comforter is ever present with you. The whole “God never gives you more than you can handle” is non-Biblical. I believe He does give us situations and scenarios which ARE more than we can handle – because it is then when we utterly depend on Him. In “The Message” – Sermon on the Mount – Matthew 5 – “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and His rule. You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.” Yes – He is transforming you. So hard to understand. But, I absolutely believe and affirm – He will not waste your suffering.
Thank you for sharing about your trip Ally. Glad it was such a good thing.
Yesterday it was a phone call with my sister, today, at least so far, it’s been building handrails with drop steps for a diesel locomotive.
Thank you Jill for your post today. Great wisdom in that. We most obviously can not handle every situation and in those “we are over our head” situations God makes all the difference.
Prayers for members of my wife’s family to have lost both parents and a cousin, for Anneliese and dental care, Meesook recovering from post surgery caused pain and depression. Lord, Your wisdom is very much needed as the world deals with the pandemic. Overcoming systemic well established, deeply rooted racism needs Your guidance, mercy, grace, wisdom, and love. Your Word became flesh and dwelt among us. May the words of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution be fully realized with everyone treated equally under the law and life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness be real.
Thankful for the resources that enable life. Thank You, Lord
First thing every morning, I delight inseeing my two kitties gobble their “kitty kibble appetizers.” Each day with each of them is such a blessing and I delight in all they are and mean to me.
Thank you Jill and Lou for your kind words. Each message as different as each of you but both spoke to and buoyed my heart. I continue to feel plummeted over and over from many sources, h and Chai’s accumulating health issues. Then yesterday my mother called to tell me that there is a neo-nazi rally planned in my hometown the weekend I am to visit her. The issues are never ceasing.
Prayers for Jill and Becky as they connect as they can and find common ground. Prayers for Larry and his moment of delight yesterday. May he have more and more and may Jill be present to witness each.
Prayers for Robert and all he prays for and his delight in his models.
Prayers for Ally and I am also happy to hear of the joy filled visit that revived her spirit.
Prayers for April and Lou and their families as each deals with their own issues and navigate this new world.
Prayers and thank you and stay safe dear UR one and all
What moments of delight can you notice and say “thank you” for today?
Yesterday we were out on our walk and noticed a Mommy duck by the bank. Then we saw that under her wing was her baby, just resting by Mommy. A bit later we heard the shrieks of the baby duck and noticed that Mommy had flown away and was swimming some ways away from the chick. The chick was paddling as fast as he/she could to get to Mommy and Mommy had turned around and was swimming back to baby. As soon as baby saw Mommy, the shrieks stopped and they swam off together. I thought of how God races back to us when we shriek and say thank you. But then after God returns, do we stay close to God or do we become separated again? Whatever we do, God is faithful, even when we are unfaithful
Last weekend we took a drive in the country and came upon an onion field. The plants were so green because they were being watered. This field was watered with ditch water and laterals. Ditch water is water that is diverted from a river into smaller canals until it reaches each field. Often the canal is located below the level of the field, but no worries, the farmer has “fixed” the problem by a siphoning mechanism whereby a lateral (small tube) is submerged in the canal and by keeping one end of the lateral in the canal and creating suction on the other end by tapping and releasing the open end, the lateral fills completely with water and then when it is carefully introduced into the row by the onions, the water flows freely to water the plants. The water will continue to flow until the seal is broken. How many times in the Bible is the scene set by the water? Life giving water to us and also to all other animals and plants. Yes, the water is abundant, but does it do much good if it is not connected to us? This is where I see a way that we can become the hands and feet of Christ. For, just as each lateral must be activated by a human’s hands in order to be useful, so we who have hands (to pray, work, praise,etc) have the opportunity to share the Good News of God and water the world. This makes me say thank you for a way to show the world how being connected with God brings life.
The Linda Douty chapter for July as the subtitle, The fruit forms. The Fruit of the Spirit and also the crops of the field. I meant to include this with my season yesterday so that it might make more sense to my looking forward to fall and the harvest. I am as a plant, growing with nutrients from the ground and water, but by myself, I cannot make fruit appear. God makes it. What I can do is give God my heart as a place for the fruit/Spiritual Gifts to grow and then share them with the world at harvest time. Not only my fruits/Spiritual Gifts, but all fruits/Gifts, that the barns will be full, ready to feed the world during the winter and still have seed enough to plant in the spring. Thank you God, for the circle of Spiritual Gifts/fruit.
Prayers for our UR Family. May we be Blessed and Blessed by our Father today, no matter what else is happening in our lives and world, we are Beloved Children of God….God love us
I delight this morning that I am sitting at the beach close to my home reading this- my first time at the beach this summer- I have had a few very very busy work days and decided to give myself this simple pleasure this morning – am meeting a friend and social distancing – she is late so I have this moment to myself and it is a wonder and a pleasure. I love the lake and am so thankful that I live so close to a beautiful creation. My prayers go out to all this morning- May you all find moments of peace and beauty today- even in the hard times.
Thank you Jill especially for your post today-
I take delight in watching David grow stronger each day and become more like himself. Neither is the same and that’s ok. We have both changed for the better. I of course take delight in our kitties. Their antics and cuddles bring joy each day. I take delight in nature: our lovely flowers. Day lilies and crape myrtles are in full bloom. They make evoke beautiful memories of my parents’ yard and how they nurtured their flowers. I take delight in summer’s bounty of fruit and veggies: sweet corn, heirloom tomatoes, squash, eggplant, fresh peaches, and blackberries. I take delight in family and friends, including my UR family. Today’s reading truly helped me see there is much to rejoice in today. Praise the Lord.
Thank you Jill, for sharing about your time with your sister. Rejoicing with you that you two have found some common ground. I’m so glad that Larry can enjoy playing golf and attained a good score. Julie, prayers continue for your situation. I know God is giving you wisdom and ordering your steps. Be strong and courageous, knowing our prayers cover you. Robert, thank you for the wisdom you shared today. I to pray that we as a nation will repent of systemic racism and work for peace and justice. April, thank you so much for your illustrations and analogies from nature of God’s love for us, especially for the mama and baby duck story. God runs to us when we need him as the loving father ran to his prodigal son. Lou, there is no place like to beach to find peace and beauty. I hope you have enjoyed your time there. I lift up call of you and pray you feel the Lord’s presence. I pray all is well with Marcy, Andrea, Rick, and other regulars. Please continue to lift up David and me, that we continue well and for my job search. May the joy of the Lord be our strength today and every day.