Only GodNew Every Morning | April 29, 2020
Words of Hope During COVID-19
Elza Soares, a staff member of Discipleship Ministries of the United Methodist Church, tells how she uses her imagination to place herself in a garden and talk to Jesus as she would to her best friend. She also shares what happens when she talks to God and how God speaks to her through other people. Elza then leads us through a prayer of intercession.
Only the Holy Spirit working in us can accomplish the new creation God intends each of us to be. We do not create the pattern of human holiness—it already exists and is shown to us in Christ. We do not make ourselves holy through great and diligent spiritual practice; only God can make us holy. We must be willing to change and open to the work of grace in us.
—Marjorie J. Thompson, Companions in Christ: The Way of Forgiveness (Upper Room Books, 2002)
With the help of the Holy Spirit, can you open yourself to the work of grace today? Join the conversation.
I am confident of this, that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by the day of Jesus Christ.
—Philippians 1:6 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace, your love, and your forgiveness.
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Yes, it is my desire to be open, to be aware of Spirit movement and direction. From Psalm 27 “Teach me Your way, O Lord, and lead me on a level path.” I think about why David, the Psalmist, requests a level path…so it won’t be so strenuous, so he can see what is coming before him? I suppose I am being a bit judgmental here, or maybe self-critical…as I too want God’s presence and guidance, but on my own terms. Like Peter – I want to walk with the Lord on the water, but I want it to not be turbulent. How quickly and easily I am distracted. How wonderful that He loves us while knowing our hearts. Yes, He knows our humanity and still runs towards us. What love!
Last night there was a Zoom session on Psalm 23. The leader began with having various participants read it from different translations/versions. Then, towards the end, he read it very slowly – and each time instead of the word “shepherd” – he used Jesus. It was really impactful. He had previously referenced the passage from John 10 where Christ is noted as our Shepherd and we know His voice.
I have been asking God to help me have the courage to follow Him fully, what He wants of me. I know I am weak and scared and need Him and HIs strength to help me overcome my reluctance. I need His courage.
Prayers for Jill and her small group who study Go’d word in such impactful ways. May they continue to gleen insights together and may all be safe and healthy.
Prayers for Ally and David. May David continue to grow stronger physically and mentally and may he suffer no long term damage from the virus. May Ally stay safe and healthy while she continues her very important work.
Prayers for Robert and his family, as they stay safe and healthy and connected despite moves and distance.
Prayers for April and her family as they stay safe and healthy while also enjoying gardening and connecting through technology.
Prayers for Lou as she struggles with the past, may she stay safe and healthy while focusing on the future.
Prayers for Andrea, BJ and Rick, may they and their loved ones stay safe and healthy.
My mom moved into her new apartment in the senior housing yesterday. I am thankful those who assisted her did not allow her to do anything. I had worried and prayed about this. She seems to be adjusting and has only several things to move today…with more help. She continues to complain that her new loveseat cannot be delivered due to the mandated closings. Sigh.
Prayers and thank you and stay safe and healthy dear UR
As I read today’s reflection, I thought of Zachariah 4:6: Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord Almighty. I can’t do it on my own, through my own merits. Through God’s grace is it possible for me to pursue holiness. My grandfather was a holiness preacher who preached the doctrine of being entirely sanctified. John Wesley called it “going on to Christian Perfection” I don’t think that means we will be made perfect in this life. I think it means that the pursuit of holiness is possible through the grace and power of the Holy Spirit. Some days (ok, a lot of days), my journey is 1 step forward, 1 step back. Thankfully, God is the God of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th chances.
David’s PT yesterday consisted of taking a shower. He told the PTA said it would wipe him out. It did for sure. He was very tired when I talked to him before bed last night. He also told me the PTA said they were taking things slow. He is still so weak. I need to speak with a nurse or case mgr. and am having trouble getting anyone to return my calls. I know the facility is full and they are very busy, but please continue to pray for David and that I can talk with someone today. I would like to know what goals they have set for him. I’m so encouraged to read each day how God is working in each of you. I pray for your concerns daily and that you will feel God’s peace. Be blessed!
Only with Chris and the help of the Holy Spirit, can I open myself to the work of grace today. Th action required of me is to turn them, acknowledge them, trust, listen, and obey. There are things we can do, God enabled us to do them. but they, as important as they are, are dwarfed God.
Thankful a ZOOM Moeller family reunion is being planned for the 5th of May, needs are met, painting in the kitchen is almost done, it is a beautiful day, David is progressing, having a shower has to feel good despite the effort needed. That was a helpful Psalm 23 lesson. Amen and thanks for each of Julie’s well worded intercessory prayers. You have a way with words. Thankful Julie’s Mom has help moving in to her new apartment, Not sure if this is accurate, but I feel I am dealing with some aspects of the past watching Korean historical dramas. The current one, The Jewel in the Palace, deals a lot with cooking and Soo Ok was a wonderful cook. Many years( almost 23) have gone by now since she passed away and we are still eating food she made.
Stay safe, follow medical advise, heath, physical, mental, and spiritual comes first for life to be possible.