G.I.F.T. 3-5-17

 Growing In Faith Together 

 March 5, 2017

 TODAY’S TEXTS
 Genesis 2:15-17;  3:1-7 
 Psalm 32
 Romans 5:12-19 
 Matthew 4:1-11



 GATHERED BY GRACE
Jesus' temptation in the desert and forty-day fast becomes the basis of our Lenten pilgrimage. In the early church, Lent was a time of intense preparation for those to be baptized at the Easter Vigil. This focus on the meaning of faith is at the heart of our Lenten journey.
- Sundays and Seasons, 2016, Augsburg Fortress
Discuss in your household or small group: 
* What are the wilderness places in your life?
* Which temptation would have been the most difficult for you to resist?
* Where do you cut God out of your life?
* What people or things test your commitment to God?

DAILY BIBLE READINGS
These readings are related to the Sunday readings. M-W reflect upon the past Sunday’s readings and Th-Sa prepare for the next Sunday.  Try to take time each day to read the assigned Bible passage.
Sunday  Matthew 4:1-11
Monday  1 Kings 19: 1?8
Tuesday  Hebrews 4:14-16
Wednesday  Matthew 18:10-14
Thursday  Psalm 121
Friday  Micah 7:18-20
Saturday  Romans 3:21-31
Sunday  John 3:1-17

Next Sunday: Genesis 12:1-4a; Psalm 121; Romans 4:1-5, 13-17; John 3:1-17

PRAYERS FOR THIS WEEK

For the Week: Forgive my failings and renew me.

Throughout the Day: Strengthen me, O God.  

A Blessing to Share: Look to the Son given to heal you and set you free.

At mealtime, say responsively: 
Be glad you righteous: Rejoice in the Lord.

Mealtime Prayer:
Lord, we gather by your grace
Forgiven much, we seek your face
Fed with these gifts of yours so kind 
Lead us to love all whom we find. Amen.

FOR FURTHER REFLECTION  

Devotional Practice: 
How are you going to observe Lent this year? Lent calls us to struggle against everything that leads us away from love of God and neighbor. The “traditional” discipline of Lent is repentance, fasting, prayer, giving, and works of love.
COOL THINGS TO DO FOR LENT:
1. Skip one meal a day and give the money to World Hunger. 
2. Start a prayer rhythm. Say a prayer every time you brush your teeth, see a commercial, or check your e-mail. 
3. Forgive someone who doesn't deserve it (maybe even yourself).
4. Spend 15 minutes a day in silence.
5. Say one nice thing to someone each day.
6. Pray for others on your way to work or school.

Lenten Ritual: 
 Try this at least 3 times a week: At the end of your day, take a few moments to review your day in the presence of God. 1) Ask to see your day with God’s eyes. 2) Give thanks for the gift of the day. 3) Review your day. 4) Face any mistakes you may have made and give them to God.  5) Look toward the day to come.

SCATTERED TO SERVE
Do you know someone who may feel like they are in the “wilderness”? Perhaps someone who has recently moved, or who is facing a difficult illness, or who is having a problem in a relationship? Send them a letter of encouragement to show that you are thinking of them and hold them in prayer.



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Written by Pam Larabee-Zierath


Gathered by Grace, Scattered for Service
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