G.I.F.T. 6-23-19

Growing In Faith Together 
June 23, 2019

Isaiah 65:1-9
Psalm 22:19-28 
Galatians 3:23-29 
Luke 8:26-39

The universal embrace of God’s redemptive love remains something that we do not always grasp. Yet God continually surprises the people by sending prophets, then his Son, then the apostles into unexpected places, to bring grace to unexpected people.

Discuss in your household or small group: 
* How does Isaiah 65:1 show God’s willingness to reach out to everyone? 
* What do you find challenging in this week’s Gospel?
* Who are the ones excluded from our society? What chains have we placed upon them? 
* St. Paul says that when baptized, we are “clothed with Christ”.  How do you “wear” Christ in daily life?
* How can we encourage one another to claim freedom as “heirs of God”?

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 8:26-39
Monday 1 Corinthians 1:18-31
Tuesday Ephesians 2:19-22
Wednesday Luke 9:37-43a
Thursday Psalm 16
Friday Galatians 4:8-20
Saturday Luke 9:21-27
Sunday Luke 9:51-62

NEXT SUNDAY: 1 Kings 19:15-16, 19-21; Psalm 16; Galatians 5:1, 13-25; Luke 9:51-62

For the Week: Open my eyes and heart to those living among the tombs.

Throughout the Day: Let your love shine through me.

A Blessing to Share: Let go of the demons that bind you. Christ reaches out in love for you.

For mealtime say responsively: We were all baptized into Christ:  We are one in Christ.

Summer Mealtime Prayer:   
Lord, bless this food which we now take.  
We give you thanks for all you make.  

Devotional Practice: 
Jesus told the man who had been rid of many demons to “return home and declare how much God has done for you”.  In your devotion times this week, reflect on what God has done for you. Do you proclaim that news to others? If not, reflect on what stands in your way. Conclude with a prayer.

Summer Ritual: Summer is a glorious time to celebrate the goodness of God and the sacredness of life. Take some quiet time alone each week this summer. Become aware of what is around you (mindfulness is a popular word for this). Pay attention to the flowers. Delight in the colors.  Run water over your hand. Enjoy the coolness. Appreciate the miracle of the human body, the joy of laughter and friends, the freedom of a bird in flight, or the precious smile of a child. Give thanks to God the Creator of all things for this world and all that is in it.

Some people “live in the tombs” because they have no place to be welcomed, accepted, and valued. Who lives on the edges of our community? How have we driven them out? When you meet a stranger, do you see truly them as a person? Practice hospitality this week. Go out of your way to welcome another. Treat that person with respect, accepting, valuing, acknowledging that person as a child of God.

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