G.I.F.T. 9-2-18

Growing In Faith Together 
September 2, 2018

TODAY’S TEXTS 
Deuteronomy 4:1-2, 6-9 
Psalm 15 
James 1:17-27
Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23

GATHERED BY GRACE 
Jesus protests against human customs being given the weight of divine law, while the essence of God's law is ignored. True uncleanness comes not from external things, but from the intentions of the human heart.
-  From SundaysandSeasons.com, ©2011 Augsburg Fortress.
Discuss in your household or small group: 
* Do you believe the Pharisees and scribes wanted to positively resolve this conflict?  Why?
* How might this conversation be updated for a modern-day audience?
* Is it possible to hold on to traditions of God, but lose God in the process? How so?
* Do evil actions flow from within or do evil actions result from outside forces– social, economic, familial, environmental, and others?

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 Mk 7:1-8,14-15,21-23
Monday Psalm 106:1-5
Tuesday Psalm 106:13-23
Wednesday Psalm 106:47-48
Thursday Psalm 146
Friday Isaiah 35:4-7a
Saturday Isaiah 33:1-9
Sunday Mark 7:24-37

Next Sunday: Isaiah 35:4-7a; Psalm 146; James 2:1-17; Mark 7:24-37

PRAYERS FOR THIS WEEK
For the Week: Transform my life from deep within. 

Throughout the Day: Fill my heart with your Spirit.

Blessing to Share: Be God’s love for the world.

For mealtime say responsively: 
 We are the people of God: We are a people of love.

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: 
Re-read the passage from James. Make a list of three beliefs you hold as important for Christians to have and another list of three actions you do as a disciple. Reflect on how your understanding resembles (or not) James’ definition of religion and how your actions are similar (or not) to that which is described in James. End with a prayer.

Summer Ritual: 
Summer is almost over. Savor these last couple of weeks! 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 
As we celebrate the last “unofficial” week of summer, take some time to clean up the great outdoors. Find yourself some rubber gloves and a trash bag. Pick up the trash at a park near you. Gather all that litter along our roads and streets. Take care of the creation that God has provided.

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Written by Pam Larabee-Zierath


Gathered by Grace, Scattered for Service
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