G.I.F.T. 12-31-17

 Growing In Faith Together 

 December 31, 2017

 TODAY’S TEXTS 
 Isaiah 61:10-62:3 
 Psalm 148
 Galatians 4:4-7
 Luke 2:22-40

 GATHERED BY GRACE 
During the Christmas season, our rejoicing reflects our confidence that God makes things happen. We rejoice with Anna and Simeon who proclaim the amazing good news of God’s way through Jesus for all nations.

Discuss in your household or small group: 
* Based on Simeon’s words, what do you imagine he hoped Jesus would do? 
* Based on Anna’s actions, what do you imagine she hoped Jesus would do?
* What does it mean to “see” God’s salvation?
* What challenging words do you hear today? What encouraging words?

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 Luke 2:22-40
Jan 1  Luke 2:15-21
Jan 2  Psalm 148
Jan 3  Psalm 110
Jan 4  James 4:13-17
Jan 5  Proverbs 22:1-9
Jan 6  Matthew 2:1-12
Sunday  Mark 1:4-11

Next Sunday: Genesis 1:1-5; Psalm 29; Acts 19:1-7; Mark 1:4-11

PRAYERS FOR THIS WEEK
For the Week:  Thank you, God, for the gift of your son, Jesus.

Throughout the Day:  Shine your light in me that I may shine for others.

Blessing to Share: Rejoice, God’s love is revealed.

For mealtime say responsively: 
Our hearts are full of peace: The Christ Child has come.

 Mealtime Prayer:
      Come, Lord Jesus, be our guest; 
      And let these gifts to us be blest.
      Every day your praise we sing; 
      help us shine the light you bring.
      
FOR FURTHER REFLECTION  
Prayer for New Year’s Eve: 
Stop for a moment today, New Year’s Eve, or tomorrow, New Year’s Day, to give thanks for the past year and to ask for God’s blessing upon the year to come. 
Eternal God, you have placed us in a world of space and time, and through the events of our lives you bless us with your love. Grant that in the new year we may know your presence, see your love at work, and live in the light of the event that gives us joy forever—the coming of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Christmas Ritual: 
We are just over half way through the season of Christmas. Light a candle each day this week. It reminds us of the good news of God’s love that comes to us through Jesus. Light the Christ candle each day and pray: God, we thank you for the gift of Jesus, the Light of the World.

SCATTERED TO SERVE 
Who has made a positive difference in your life this past year?  Take some time this week to write thank you notes to these people.  Say a prayer of thanks for them, asking God to bless and protect them in the year to come.


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Written by Pam Larabee-Zierath


Gathered by Grace, Scattered for Service
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