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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

Litanies offer a radical welcome to people in that they remove intimidation participants may feel in entering into communal prayer. Litanies say, We are here, and the grace is that we can connect without the pressure to conjure, perform, or be anything other than what we are. Litanies are a rhythmic dance laced with the lamentations and joy of old spirituals, a sacred inhale and exhale for when we find ourselves asking, What will we say when we gather?

—Shane Claiborne, in Rally: Communal Prayers for Lovers of Jesus and Justice, edited and compiled by Britney Winn Lee (Fresh Air Books, 2020)

Today's Question

When have you prayed with a group before participating in a political demonstration? Join the conversation.

Today's Scripture

Let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as [we] see the Day approaching.
—Hebrews 10:24-25 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

ONE: Come marchers, intercessors, artists, and prophets.
Come newcomers and those who have tried, tried again.

ALL: Get close, get close, get closer now.
Draw near, ask questions, sing songs, take steps.
We need you together.
Prayer by Britney Winn Lee
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

The final litany from Rally was written by Britney Winn Lee in the beginning days of the global pandemic. This prayer reminds us that hope endures; goodness prevails; people surprise us; and love cannot, has not, will not fail. Watch and listen.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

2 Comments | Join the Conversation.

 

Today's Reflection

Conversation is the most important part of creating shared ministry. Before we can share ministry, we need to share our stories through ordinary conversation. If we really listen, our ordinary conversation can lead to an understanding and awareness of how other people live and of the forces that make some people’s lives harder than others. When we allow ourselves to be moved by stories, we find ourselves in solidarity with people who live in poverty. And this feeling of solidarity makes us want to work with them to change the systems blocking their way forward. Small conversations make a big difference in our relationships.

—Elizabeth Mae Magill, Five Loaves, Two Fish, Twelve Volunteers: Growing a Relational Food Ministry (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today's Question

When has a small conversation made a big difference in your relationships? Join the conversation.

Today's Scripture

Therefore encourage one another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing.
—1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

God is great!
God is good!
Let us thank God for our food.
Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Join our global prayer community on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Leave your sorrows, worries, or praises, and they will be seen and responded to by hundreds of people around the world. Visit the Prayer Wall at UpperRoom.org/prayer.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

5 Comments | Join the Conversation.

 

Today's Reflection

Churches should engage in food ministry, providing food in ways that acknowledge the systemic nature of poverty; treating food-insecure individuals as people who have gifts, strengths, and dreams; and recognizing food-secure and food-insecure people as equally loved and in possession of God-given gifts. The primary strength churches bring to food ministry is not their excess of food resources but the excess of Jesus’s love, care, and grace and our ability as church members to recognize that all of us need that love, care, and grace regardless of how much food we have.

—Elizabeth Mae Magill, Five Loaves, Two Fish, Twelve Volunteers: Growing a Relational Food Ministry (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today's Question

How can you share the love, care, and grace of Jesus? Join the conversation.

Today's Scripture

Be the best in this work of grace in the same way that you are the best in everything, such as faith, speech, knowledge, total commitment, and the love we inspired in you.
—2 Corinthians 8:7 (CEB)

Prayer for the Week

God is great!
God is good!
Let us thank God for our food.
Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Join our global prayer community on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Leave your sorrows, worries, or praises, and they will be seen and responded to by hundreds of people around the world. Visit the Prayer Wall at UpperRoom.org/prayer.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

2 Comments | Join the Conversation.

 

Today's Reflection

When I imagine Jesus within a person who is food insecure or who has limited material resources, I see him or her as an equal participant in ministry. And I know that Jesus’ presence in others can only improve whatever ministry I am serving. Eating and serving together builds the reciprocity that Jesus modeled. Shared ministry is about welcoming Jesus into ministry with us through the gifts, talents, and offerings of others.

—Elizabeth Mae Magill, Five Loaves, Two Fish, Twelve Volunteers: Growing a Relational Food Ministry (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today's Question

When have you seen a ministry improve because everyone shared their gifts? Join the conversation.

Today's Scripture

And serve each other according to the gift each person has received, as good managers of God’s diverse gifts.
—1 Peter 4:10 (CEB)

Prayer for the Week

God is great!
God is good!
Let us thank God for our food.
Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Join our global prayer community on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Leave your sorrows, worries, or praises, and they will be seen and responded to by hundreds of people around the world. Visit the Prayer Wall at UpperRoom.org/prayer.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

3 Comments | Join the Conversation.

 

Today's Reflection

Ministries that make space to eat and volunteer with people who need material resources make it possible to see Jesus in people in need. Once I recognize Jesus in the person before me, I find myself better equipped to listen to and appreciate his or her story. I trust that Jesus has much to teach me through other people.

—Elizabeth Mae Magill, Five Loaves, Two Fish, Twelve Volunteers: Growing a Relational Food Ministry (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today's Question

What have you learned from listening to someone’s story? Join the conversation.

Today's Scripture

Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.
—Philippians 4:9 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

God is great!
God is good!
Let us thank God for our food.
Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Join our global prayer community on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Leave your sorrows, worries, or praises, and they will be seen and responded to by hundreds of people around the world. Visit the Prayer Wall at UpperRoom.org/prayer.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

3 Comments | Join the Conversation.

 

Today's Reflection

For church-based charities, our goal is more than providing food; our goal is demonstrating Christ’s radical welcome, inviting others into the family of God. One of the most distinctive traits of Christianity is radical welcome—opening our arms to people on any faith journey. The relational work of the church is inviting people who are food insecure to be part of our church, part of our ministry, even leaders of our program.

—Elizabeth Mae Magill, Five Loaves, Two Fish, Twelve Volunteers: Growing a Relational Food Ministry (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today's Question

When have you experienced Christ’s radical welcome? Join the conversation.

Today's Scripture

Then Jesus said to the person who had invited him, “When you host a lunch or dinner, don’t invite your friends, your brothers and sisters, your relatives, or rich neighbors. If you do, they will invite you in return and that will be your reward. Instead, when you give a banquet, invite the poor, crippled, lame, and blind. And you will be blessed because they can’t repay you. Instead, you will be repaid when the just are resurrected.”
—Luke 14:12-14 (CEB)

Prayer for the Week

God is great!
God is good!
Let us thank God for our food.
Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Join our global prayer community on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Leave your sorrows, worries, or praises, and they will be seen and responded to by hundreds of people around the world. Visit the Prayer Wall at UpperRoom.org/prayer.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

3 Comments | Join the Conversation.