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Spiritual Exploration

Today’s Reflection

WE LIVE BETWEEN the stories of the Garden and the Exile. The tension between these stories sends us on our journey of spiritual exploration. If we refuse to break the tension and don’t give ourselves over to either the fear of the prospect of death or the fantasy of the utopian dream of returning to the garden, then we are ready to begin our voyage of discovery. When we resist minimizing God’s story to a story of fear or to a story of fantasy, we can embark on the surprising journey beyond fear and fantasy.

—Michael E. Williams, Spoken into Being: Divine Encounters Through Story (Upper Room Books, 2017)

Today’s Question

What is the story of your journey with God?  Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

“For thus says the LORD: Only when Babylon’s seventy years are completed will I visit you, and I will fulfill to you my promise and bring you back to this place. For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.”
—Jeremiah 29:10-11 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

I love to tell the story
For those who know it best
Seem hungering and thirsting
To hear it like the rest.

From “I Love to Tell the Story” by
Katherine Hankey, The United Methodist Hymnal, No. 156

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room or share it in the comment section.

Something More

During Advent we think about a wondrous mystery: that God chose to become human and lived among us. Rediscover The Wondrous Mystery this Advent.

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

7 Comments

  • Jill Posted November 2, 2019 5:15 am

    My story continues to evolve. He is faithful, beyond measure, beyond comprehension. My Great Author, my faithful Companion. Father – thank You for how You have revealed Yourself, thus far. It is beyond imagination – the work You will continue to do. Have Thine Own Way.
    I heard from dad yesterday. He is enjoying being in the warm temps in Florida and seems to be doing ok with his ailment. Hopefully he will see improvement as the meds kick in.
    Prayers here for this group, for needs and concerns. May each one find the comfort of The Father sufficient.

    • Cheryl Posted November 4, 2019 2:41 pm

      Thank you for your devotion today from Saturday. It was exactly what I was praying for. Blessings.

  • Julie Posted November 2, 2019 7:56 am

    How can one write a succinct post regarding our faith journey? It has been and will continue to be an ongoing process that is full of many twists, turns, backtracking and standing still. It involves numerous people, places and random encounters. It is informed by reading, contemplation, interaction and stillness.
    Prayers for Jill and Larry, may Larry recover quickly and may both enjoy their time to recharge and focus on other people, places and things.
    Prayers for Robert and Erich, for continues health, employment and engaging activities.
    Prayers for Mary and her free time to enjoy hobbies and worship.
    Prayers for BJ and her mother and their health and closeness.
    Prayers for April, Betsy, Connie, Lou and Marcy.
    Prayers and thank you UR sojourners

    • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted November 2, 2019 8:14 am

      Thanks Julie!

      I using all my time to pray for someone who is going through a very tough time and her family. Reading the Bible for verses that can uplit and comfort her family.

      Blessings!

  • Robert Moeller Posted November 2, 2019 8:03 am

    Exposure to God through church from a baby through high school, sort of a pause in college, some what restarted in the army, then another pause until I got married, from then on a mild roller coaster ride until I lost my wife. A real transformation began and I am, as best I know, a believer. Recent challenges to my faith ave not shaken me. Talking to non-believers who want physical evidence, scientific, and historical proof is challenging. They do not recognize
    spiritual truth and thus do not believe.

    After warmer days, in the 60s, it’s now back to frost and a high of 41.

    Thankful for resources that sustain me and my son. He starts work on the 5th.
    Pray it goes well.

    Prayers for Julie, especially hands and safety. Saw a girl working as a cashier at a grocery store with many small not so attractive cuts on her face. I pray for her and her courage to come to work being exposed to so many people. Very tough emotionally doing that. Im sure she is not contagious or they wouldn’t let her work there.

    Thankful for Bj and other new posters who give us all a boost with their enthusiasm and wonderful scripture passages.

    Prayers for Larry. may he quickly recover from c-diff. This was a new term for me.

    Thankful that Jill has some time to herself. Caregivers need breaks too.

    Mikie, another friend of Anneliese’s is about to have open heart surgery, a valve does not shut properly and he passes out.

    Prayers for Marcy, Betsy, Connie, Lou, Andrea and Lowell. I pray God’s blessing to you.

    Getting the rolled roof on the station, it’s starting to look finished.

    Peace be with you, this and every day, so glad I can read posts from previous days. Thank You, Lord.

  • Andrea Posted November 2, 2019 12:42 pm

    Though I haven’t posted much lately, I have been reading the reflections and following the comments. I am down at times, new aches and pains, new medications, more physical therapy, more adjustment to a new reality. So much has changed in the last five years. My grandparents were good role models for aging, and I tell myself to have acceptance of the process rather than fighting it or focus on it.

    I spend one or two afternoons a week with my 4 1/2 year old grandson, which means a lot of driving into Minneapolis and back, which is tiring. He is so sweet and bright, and he adores me, which is a joy. I still have concerns about my daughter’s parenting. There is no abuse, just great inconsistency of routine as well as inappropriate, fluctuating expectations of the little guy. I stay silent and pray that God will show me how best to support the little family, be a role model for my daughter, and especially, be there for my grandson to affirm him.

    With prayers for UR friends, I wish all a blessed day.

  • Daniel Posted November 2, 2019 8:25 pm

    This week has been a time of sadness and fear. However, thanks to our Father and his word, I’ve have used this time for growing and insight. God is with me and watching over my family. God never abandons us and he is our source of strength and stability. Amen.

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