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, I think, borrow our children from God, nor from one another. In my imagination, the call of God on a mother, on Hannah, on Mary, on the rest of us is not to hold our children more lightly—nor more tightly—but to love them more fiercely. I do not understand myself as a deputy to God in mothering to my children but as a stargazer, looking in wonder at the ongoing work of creation standing next to me, awed and frequently perplexed by the heavenly creature that God has sent to live with me.

—Rosalind C. Hughes, A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing (Upper Room Books, 2020)

Today’s Question

How does spending time with children help you experience wonder and awe at God’s creativity? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we abound in love for you.
—1 Thessalonians 3:12 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

God, who is both Father and Mother, I give thanks for your unconditional love, protection, and guidance.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

Join The Upper Room on September 30–October 2, 2021, as we create space to reflect on the past 18 months of individual and collective trauma. Our virtual event, RESILIENCE | Healing Practices for Mind, Body, and Spirit, will include storytelling, time for personal reflection and conversation, guided spiritual practice, and worship. Don’t miss out on Early Registration pricing that ends August 30. Learn more here.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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

Save 45% and get free shipping on the regular and enlarged-print editions of Disciplines 2021 with the promo code DISC45. Offer good while supplies last.


  • Julie Posted August 4, 2021 8:28 am

    I remember being pregnant with Megan and how I marveled at the reality of another human being actually being creating within my body. That a new and distinct human being was forming under my heart. I was in such awe of the process and took very seriously my stewardship of her life while it was so very dependent my my body and therefore my choices. Once she was born, I continued to be cognizant of her total dependence on me. Yes, I took seriously that I was to love and care for her fiercely as she was a child of God and a distince individual who would grow into an adult. I think too few parents recognize this fundamental truth. That the baby in the womb and then a small dependent bundle will be an adult who needs to be equuipped by us as best we are capable to assume their role in society. The process alone reveals to me God’s creativity.
    Prayers for Ally and her job search or disability application, may one prove successful in alleviating her financial needs. Prayers for her and David as they continue to recover from long term physical issues. Prayers for April and her family and Lou and her children. May Lou spend a wonderful time with her daughter when she is able to visit and celebrate her birthday a bit late. Prayers for Jill as she struggles with Larry’s health and isolation and her impending school year beginning. May Larry’s health improve. James Taylor was in our area last night but instead of our outdoor ampitheater, he played at the hockey arena. I am not a big fan but I saw it on the news as people would have to wear masks. Prayers for Robert and his family as he continues to visit with his granddaughters and prepares to travel home. May his travel be safe. Prayers for Erich as he struggles, may Robert’s return help the situation. Prayers for Marti and her staff, may God bless them. Thank you for your prayers and may God bless all who visit here.

  • Lou Posted August 4, 2021 10:05 am

    Not only my own children but the children I work with in therapy also teach me and inspire me daily. What miracles these tiny creatures are that are given to us for just a short while to try to raise in the way of Jesus. I am thankful my children are all believers – I pray that they will return to regular worshipping for now it is inconsistent. What a blessing – my most important work in my life and I continue to support and be there for them from afar. My greatest days were in the day to day raising of them- I loved being a mom that played with them and volunteered in all of their activities- loved going to every soccer volleyball lacrosse football swim and track meet- everything- Loved cooking and baking and hosting their birthday parties and sleep overs – everyone was included – our house was the gathering place and when their was a big tangled pile of shoes at the front door I was my best. Children are truly God’s most perfect gift – thankful so thankful for mine and for the children I am fortunate to work with.
    Blessings to all – another beautiful day and I am thankful it is a very busy work day starting very early and ending late. Thankful for my job.
    I echo all of Julie’s prayers for us all.

  • Ally Posted August 4, 2021 10:24 am

    Good morning, all. I start by referencing yesterday’s reading, as I studied but our busy day prevented me from continuing. Numerous saints watched over my sister and me, including parents and grandparents, aunts, uncles teachers, and friends. I am thankful for what I learned from each one. Nearly all are members of the communion of saints, where they still love, pray for, and encourage us.
    Re: today’s reading: I don’t have children of my own, but there are children I helped raise and I love like my own. They amaze me with their accomplishments and the tenderness they show others. Some have been through difficult things. The strength of their faith humbles me. They are grown and making their way in the world. They will change the world for the better. Not sure this is an answer to today’s question, but its what is in my heart.
    David and I are exploring some programs which can help us get through our current challenges. Thanks so much for your prayers as we navigate these waters.
    Robert, praying for a safe journey as you travel home. Prayers for Lou as she misses her children. Prayers for Jill as she works out first week of school and jury duty. Praying healing for Larry and that he will pace himself as he recovers. Prayers for Julie ax she contacts her lawyer. It is a daunting task. Been there, sister. Praying for you and Megan during this process. I pray everyone stays safe. Be blessed.

  • Jill Posted August 4, 2021 2:06 pm

    Being around maturing, young adult students inspires me to be my best for them, each day. I hope to teach them to navigate struggles well, to face obstacles more boldly, to confidently express themselves. Sure, sometimes I am able to anticipate their questions, but most of the time I need to be on my toes, with my A game, ready to field their inquisitive thoughts and comments.
    I never realized how much teaching was for sure my gift from God, until I had a student teacher about 10 years ago. I never had to think about my questioning skills, my ability to keep the conversation going in my classroom. I never planned for it and never realized that I was a natural. My student teacher was on her second career and had spent her previous career sequestered in a cubical, doing highly inventive work. She was practically frozen in front of my classroom and I was unable to help her become a better “questioner”, or to anticipate what students might throw at her (not literally, of course). It isn’t even my second nature – it is just who I am. I am grateful to God for this gift and look forward to re-engaging with my students in a few weeks.
    I spoke with dad just a bit ago and he pronounced himself ready to golf tomorrow morning. Here’s hoping he is close to having this thing licked. The counseling pastor at his church asked him to be trained in GriefShare – which is the program he went through shortly after mom passed. He will not be an instructor this year, but will work in tandem with instructors, and fill in if needed, when the groups begin this fall. He will be training the next three Wednesday evenings. I think this will be really good for him as these past few weeks – he has been more isolated and has had feelings re-surface as he sits alone in his condo. I have even thought he would benefit from counseling. Am hoping this is all part of God’s perfect timing.

  • robert moeller Posted August 4, 2021 7:36 pm

    As a teacher, then parent, and now grandparent, children are so precious, even the challenging ones.
    Surely hope the solution to the problems Erich faces will be found. It has been a life long and varied problem journey. Glad to read the NEM news, join in with prayers, and be on my way home tomorrow. It has been great at times, troubling at others, and a challenge filled two weeks blessed by time with granddaughters and their friends. Prayer requests fir safe travels. Thank You, Lord.


Add Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *