G.I.F.T. 7-9-17

 Growing In Faith Together  
 July 9, 2017

 TODAY’S TEXTS
 Zechariah 9:9-12 
 Psalm 145:8-14
 Romans 7:15-25a 
 Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30




GATHERED BY GRACE 
In today’s reading from Matthew, Jesus invites those who are tired to find rest in his presence. When we labor without recognizing Christ among others and even within us, we may overlook the peace God promises to provide.

Discuss in your household or small group: 
* Why do we not like to ask for help?
* Name a time when you were feeling too weary to continue without help.
* Jesus invites us to take up his yoke. How do you hear this invitation in your life?
* How are you able to share the burdens of others and lead them to rest?

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 11:16-19, 25-30
Monday Romans 7:15-25a
Tuesday Zechariah 9:6-12
Wednesday Psalm 131
Thursday Psalm 65:1-8
Friday Psalm 65:9-13
Saturday Isaiah 52:1-6
Sunday Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23


Next Sunday: Isaiah 55:10-13; Psalm 65:1-13; Romans 8:1-11; Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23

PRAYERS FOR THIS WEEK
For the Week:  Thank you, dear Savior, for giving rest for my soul.  

Throughout the Day:  May I be gentle and humble of heart.

Blessing to Share: May your burdens lift as you look to God.

For mealtime say responsively: 
The LORD is gracious and full of compassion: slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.

Summer Mealtime Prayer:   
Thank you for the world so sweet.
Thank you for the food we eat.
Thank you for the birds that sing.
Thank you, God, for everything. Amen

FOR FURTHER REFLECTION  
Devotional Practice: 
Breathe deeply! At least once each day this week, pause and take a deep breath and let it out slowly. Feel the tension leave your body with the exhaled air. You can turn that deep breath into a prayer. As you breathe in think about how that air is charged with the power and presence of God. As you exhale imagine that you are breathing out all impurities and stresses in your body. Feel your whole body becoming relaxed and energized as it is filled with God’s Spirit.

Summer Ritual: 
The color of this season after Pentecost is green. For these days of summer, create a special green area in your home. Green is a color associated with growing things, so allow this focus area to grow over these weeks. It can become an exciting challenge to bring new green things into the area each week as you pay attention to what is extraordinary about this color and this season.

SCATTERED TO SERVE 
Reach out to someone who needs help or a favor this week. Perhaps they have a physical need – like food or shelter; perhaps they have an emotional need - like a word of comfort; perhaps it is a spiritual need – like the good news that they too are loved and chosen by God. Remember this is what you are called to do as a disciple of Jesus. 

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Written by Pam Larabee-Zierath


Gathered by Grace, Scattered for Service
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