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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

We do not have to travel to foreign lands and serve in another culture to practice the self-denial Paul believes is part of Christian living. . . . He wants us to give up our practice of score-keeping when it comes to our religious observances and our subtle beliefs that there are Christians and then there are superior Christians who have done more, know more, or have accomplished more than others. Paul does not recommend that we give up our spiritual disciplines like reading scripture, prayer, fasting, or giving, but that we give up the idea that these practices somehow earn us more credit with God than those who practice them less. Paul calls us to use these disciplines to train our body, mind, and soul to be more aware of God’s grace at work in us. We practice spiritual disciplines to gain greater awareness of God, not to master the discipline.

—Max O. Vincent, Because of This I Rejoice: Reading Philippians During Lent (Upper Room Books, 2018)

Today’s Question

In what ways do you focus on other people’s needs rather than your own? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

[Jesus] said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross daily, and follow me.”
—Luke 9:23 (NLT)

Prayer for the Week

Free me, Lord Jesus, from anything that obstructs my way to you. Create space in my life for more kindness, greater generosity, and fewer self-centered needs. Enlarge my heart with a spirit of gratitude this Lent. Help me to recognize the simple gifts that lie in abundance all around me. In your sacred name, I pray. Amen. [adapted from “A Prayer for Lenten Simplicity” on sharecatholic.com]
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

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Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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

5 Comments

  • Rick Reule Posted March 15, 2024 6:39 am

    Mr.Vincent is right on point in his words about not having to go very far at all to find needy hearts broken by grief. All one needs to do is LISTEN to whatever another person is saying or more so NOT SAYING, but acting out.
    If you find yourself at a point in your day today where you can feel as though GOD is speaking to you, and the only person nearby is the checkout girl before you being “grumbly” and just plain not nice, or she appears to be ready to cry and run, compliment her on something.
    Show just a “tad” of interest (truthfully), and be prepared for the response from her side.
    We ALL have SOMEKIND of Grief issue dogging us like a hungry wolf, and believe it or not, like it or not, sometimes we HAVE TO BE the Hunter/Trapper to help the other person.
    Just by LISTENING Honestly, Openly, Lovingly, we can allow that “Griever” the opportunity to vent, perhaps for the VERY FIRST TIME, because no one else REALLY chose to just listen.
    One does not have to actively seek out anyone to listen to, believe me.
    If you are sincere in your love for others, GOD WILL provide!!!
    AMEN.

  • Julie Posted March 15, 2024 9:05 am

    I sent an email to Robert. He did not respond.
    I pray he is well.

    • Jim Ligon Posted March 15, 2024 9:36 am

      Julie, I too sent an email to Robert. He is well and I received the following response which I posted late last night.

      “Jim, I am posting almost every day. My posts get an “awaiting moderation” notification. I have contacted The Upper Room twice about this issue. They told me that it could take some time, due to the many posts each day, for the issue to be resolved. I tried twice yesterday to reply to a post from Rusty and the same result.

      THANK YOU, JILL, JULIE, ALLY, LOU, APRIL, RICK, ANDREA AND ALL THE NEM POSTERS WHO KNOW ME FOR YOUR CONCERN LOVE IS ALWAYS APPRECIATED, AND MY LOVE IS SENT TO YOU.

      BOB MOELLER”

  • Jill Posted March 15, 2024 1:44 pm

    Grateful to know that Robert is well. Thank you, Jim.

    Yes, our outward “works” are not to earn anything with/from God. Instead of sacrifice, He seeks acts of humility, kindness, justice as well as looking after orphans, widows and others in need. Which, truly are sacrifices…the kind which “cost” us something, not the sacrifice of an animal, burnt offering. Out of gratitude, as a sacrifice of/in praise – we offer the gifts He has bestowed on us – to others for His glory. May it be so.

  • Ally Posted March 15, 2024 3:04 pm

    I’m very glad to hear that Robert is ok. Praise the Lord.

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