G.I.F.T. 7-22-18

 Growing In Faith   Together 
 July 22, 2018

 TODAY’S TEXTS 
 Jeremiah 23:1-6
 Psalm 23 
 Ephesians 2:11-22 
 Mark 6:30-34, 53-56

 GATHERED BY GRACE 
The disciples returned from being sent and share with Jesus what they have done. After listening, Jesus suggested that they go away to a deserted place all by themselves to rest. They had been enormously busy. They had been preaching and healing and sharing the gospel and participating in people’s lives. Now it was time to take a breather, to go away, and be alone to rest, for “many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat”.

Discuss in your household or small group: 
* Each of us could probably underline v. 31 in our Bibles. It accurately describes the fast pace of our current culture. When were you last too busy to even eat?
* How do you feel about that life style? Do you ever feel like a “sheep without a shepherd” in that chaos?
* What do you think God has to say to this life style? (Ps.23)

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 Mark 6:30-34, 53-56
Monday Psalm 100:1-5
Tuesday Zechariah 9:14-17
Wednesday Luke 15: 1-7
Thursday Psalm 145:15-18
Friday Colossians 3:12-17
Saturday 2 Kings 4:42-44
Sunday John 6:1-21

Next Sunday: 2 Kings 4:42-44; Psalm 145:10-18; Ephesians 3:14-21; John 6:1-21 

PRAYERS FOR THIS WEEK
For the Week: Shepherd me, O God, beyond my wants, beyond my fears, from death into life.

Throughout the Day: Restore my soul, O Lord.

Blessing to Share: God’s goodness and mercy shall follow you all the days of your life.

For mealtime say responsively: 
 The Lord is my shepherd: I shall not be in want.

Mealtime Prayer:   
      All here gathered, food from the land,
      all is gift from your gracious hand.
      feed us today; feed all who hunger;
      teach us to feed one another.

FOR FURTHER REFLECTION  
Devotional Practice: 
Sit quietly and reflect on your daily/weekly schedule. Where does the “crunch” come? What it is that keeps you stressed or overly busy? Then reflect on Jesus’ invitation to go away and rest awhile.  Write down one thing you will actually do in order to rest: one walk with a friend or spouse, one game you will play with a child, one opportunity you will take to sit and to contemplate your blessing and abundance. Put this note someplace you will see it all week to remind you of this commitment to yourself to rest.

Summer Ritual: 
This summer start each morning with a simple prayer: Lord, show me something incredible. Amen. Then watch to see what the treasure is. When you find it, in your mind add a tag “Made by God”.

SCATTERED TO SERVE 
Ephesians tells us that Christ is our peace. In Christ all are one. The dividing wall between us is broken down. Where in our community do you see a dividing wall between people? What in the name of Christ can be done to break it down

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Written by Pam Larabee-Zierath


Gathered by Grace, Scattered for Service
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