G.I.F.T. 1-31-16

Growing In Faith Together 
January 31, 2016
Underground Railway "conductors" lived agape love 

Today’s Texts
 Jeremiah 1:4-10
Psalm 71:1-6
1 Corinthians 13:1-13 
Luke 4:21-30

Gathered by Grace
We are talking about the call from God for how we live our lives. The call to speak as Jeremiah did... loving the people enough to call them to account.  The call to love as Paul urged the people of Corinth to do. The call to live and serve and heal and teach and die as Jesus did. We are formed, equipped, and called to live God’s agape love, even when surrounded by challenges, obstacles, or hostility.                                                                    -Janet Hunt, Dancing with the Word, 2013.               
Discuss in your household or small group: 
* Why do you think Jesus didn’t leave “well enough” alone --why do you think he confronted the crowd that day in the synagogue?
* Can tearing down be a form of agape?
* How necessary is it to tear down the old before one can build the new? ...in your spiritual life? …in social change?
* How can you live out your call to God's agape love?

Try to memorize:          Faith hope, and love abide, these three;
          and the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13
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 4:21-30                   Thursday Psalm 99
Monday 1 Corinthians 2:11-13 Friday Acts 10:1-8
Tuesday Psalm 56:11-13          Saturday Deuteronomy 9:15-19
Wednesday Luke 19:41-44 Sunday Luke 9:28-43

NEXT SUNDAY: Exodus 34:29:-35; Psalm 99; 2 Corinthians 3:12-4:2; Luke 9:28-43

Prayers for this Week

For the Week: Fill me with faith that speaks your word, with hope that does not disappoint, and with love that bears all things for your sake.

Throughout the Day: May I live your love, O Lord.

A Blessing to Share: May God’s hope revive your soul.

For Mealtime say responsively: Love is patient and kind:  Love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude.

Epiphany Mealtime Prayer:
Christ our light, shine upon us.  
Refresh us by this meal 
to reflect your love to others. Amen.

For further reflection  

Devotional Practice: 
Each evening this week read 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. Reflect on what you did and thought that day. Compare that with Paul’s description of love. Pray for insight into ways to move closer to that Pauline image

Ritual for the Epiphany Season: 
Place a bowl of water in the center of your meal table. Take a few moments each day – perhaps at a meal, or the beginning or ending of the day - to remember your baptism.  Dip a finger in the water and sign the mark of the cross on your forehead.  Say these words:  “Remember and be thankful – you are a baptized child of God, marked with the cross of Christ forever.”

Scattered to serve
Next Sunday, 2/7, is loose change Sunday at worship. Save your change this week (if you haven’t already been doing that) and put it in the offering. All of it will go to the ELCA World Hunger fund.

Weekly Reflection on these texts at gatheredbygrace.org

Sculpture by Ed Dwight - Last stop of the underground railroad, which smuggled slaves to freedom in Canada, on the banks of the Detroit River looking towards Windsor, Canada - Photo by Jim West 

How to Find Us

Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Iowa City

Gathered by grace. Scattered for service.

123 E Market Street
Iowa City, IA 52245