10-24-14 Daily E-Votional

Posted October 23, 2014 by luciaoerter
Categories: God Stuff

m544Friday, Oct. 24

1Cor. 16:10-24

Have you ever had one of those conversations in which you’re near the end of a visit together and there’s a thought that comes to your mind that you won’t see each other ever again? You know the kind I’m talking about? You make a journey to see someone and you feel that there’s a very good chance that you may never see that person or that place again. Up until that moment, the conversation has been light and easy. Then that new thought comes upon you and it’s a whole new realization.

At the moment you have that feeling, there’s a shift into conversing in a very intentional way. In your heart you know you are supposed to listen closely.

I’m reminded of my graduation from eighth grade. Up until that graduation, all of my education had happened in the same building. When the school year ended and the graduating eighth graders finished their classwork, the eighth graders were released earlier than all the other students in the lower grades. I can’t remember if it was just an hour or a day or two ahead of the other students, but the timing was such that it would mark our leaving, or matriculating, and moving on.

Those eighth graders who had been members of the Madrigal group were invited to a post graduation tradition. In the downstairs hall, closest to the Kindergarten room, an upright piano was rolled in, and our music teacher accompanied us while we sang, The Halls of Ivy. Isn’t it cool that, for those of us who spent our first 9 years of school in that building, we were singing right outside of the room where we had started our first days of Kindergarden.

I was pretty jazzed about graduating, but when we were singing I could see that the music director had tears rolling down her cheeks. And no, it wasn’t because of our singing. I suddenly realized that my life in grade school and junior high was now complete and there was no going back. Miss Groff gave me a hug and said I had been a joy to her and that she would miss me and she knew that I would do well in life. Then she left to go back to the music room and I left the school, heading for home, crying all the way.

16:10   If Timothy shows up, take good care of him. Make him feel completely at home among you. He works so hard for the Master, just as I do.  11 Don’t let anyone disparage him. After a while, send him on to me with your blessing. Tell him I’m expecting him, and any friends he has with him. 

12   About our friend Apollos, I’ve done my best to get him to pay you a visit, but haven’t talked him into it yet. He doesn’t think this is the right time. But there will be a “right time.” 

13   Keep your eyes open, hold tight to your convictions, give it all you’ve got, be resolute,  14 and love without stopping. 

15   Would you do me a favor, friends, and give special recognition to the family of Stephanas? You know, they were among the first converts in Greece, and they’ve put themselves out, serving Christians ever since then. I want you to 16 honor and look up to people like that: companions and workers who show us how to do it, giving us something to aspire to. 

17   I want you to know how delighted I am to have Stephanas, Fortunatus, and Achaicus here with me. They partially make up for your absence!  18 They’ve refreshed me by keeping me in touch with you. Be proud that you have people like this among you. 

19   The churches here in western Asia send greetings. 

 Aquila, Priscilla, and the church that meets in their house say hello. 

20   All the friends here say hello. 

 Pass the greetings around with holy embraces! 

21   And I, Paul—in my own handwriting!—send you my regards. 

22   If anyone won’t love the Master, throw him out. Make room for the Master! 

23   Our Master Jesus has his arms wide open for you. 

24   And I love all of you in the Messiah, in Jesus. 

These are Paul’s ending words in his First Letter to the Corinthians. Paul told them to stand fast in the faith, to be brave with a sense of maturity. Paul’s command to do everything with love serves as a balance for all of these things. These are Paul’s words of parting.

When has it been time to move on to the next step, the next job, the next house, the next phase of your life? What things marked your leaving the old and beginning the new? What were some things people said to you as you were going to leave? Have a Day!

In Conversation with a child:    Ask a child to tell you what they most want to do when they grow up

Prayers for our soldiers and others fighting for our country: Nick Steele, Sgt. Zach Fessler, Peter Davidson

Remember in Prayer: Jacob, Judy, Jay, Nilkanti, Earl, Bonnie, Becky, Kelly, Marj, Dan, Tama, Jan & family, Gene, John G., RZ & family, Bill’s family, Christina, Earl, Gillian, Loretta & family, Friend of Julie, Sue, Roger & family, Tanner, Pattie, Frank & Jean & family, Ginger, Todd & family, Carol, Judith, Lynn, Bonnie, Alan, Al’s family, Carol M., Diane’s family, Linda, Vivian, Ron, Sue, Janine, Leigh, Kristen, Summer, Graham, Kevin, Karen

Prayer Request:  Please pray for Jacob who was stung by a bee and had an allergic reaction and was hospitalized.

And those experiencing loss – family & friends of: Karen, Bill, Dee, Cindy, Bernadette, Alice, Tom, Tony, Al, David Dale, Sr., Mary Scott, Don, Jim, Diane, David, Herm, Helen, Father Billy, Joe, Brian, Clarence, Mackenzie, Nate, Gertrude, Dion, Marshall

Prayer:    O God, you are so good and we thank you for your love. Thank you for the times when we can really listen to the important words that others speak. Help us, O God, to speak the important things to others and not do as much small talk. Amen

Your E-Votional Servant

Lucia

© 2014 Lucia Oerter

All rights reserved

Email Lucia

The Message Bible – contemporary translation

A ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Brandon, Florida providing for your daily walk with Christ!

10-23-14 Daily E-Votional

Posted October 22, 2014 by luciaoerter
Categories: God Stuff

maddie-204Thursday, Oct. 23

1Cor. 16:1-9

After my first read of the text today, I thought that it would lend itself well to being used during stewardship times in the church. Then another thought connected with me. I thought about the stewardship of love that we’ve been given. We are creatures who can love others. We might hold back at times, but we have the capacity to love others.

Ever since the day Madeline died some 11 years ago, I’ve thought about the moments I could have ignored the dirty dishes for later and spent a few more moments to hold her or play with her. What is it that gets us so busy in the work and the cleaning and all of the other stuff in life that we choose to do? Why do we lose ourselves in our work, our commuting, our finances, our whatever? I’m all for the stewardship of love today. Be gentle with each other, smile as if you were smitten with love, and may we be generous givers of love.

16:1   Regarding the relief offering for poor Christians that is being collected, you get the same instructions I gave the churches in Galatia.  2 Every Sunday each of you make an offering and put it in safekeeping. Be as generous as you can. When I get there you’ll have it ready, and I won’t have to make a special appeal.  3 Then after I arrive, I’ll write letters authorizing whomever you delegate, and send them off to Jerusalem to deliver your gift.  4 If you think it best that I go along, I’ll be glad to travel with them. 

5   I plan to visit you after passing through northern Greece. I won’t be staying long there,  6 but maybe I can stay awhile with you—maybe even spend the winter? Then you could give me a good send-off, wherever I may be headed next.  7 I don’t want to just drop by in between other “primary” destinations. I want a good, long, leisurely visit. If the Master agrees, we’ll have it!  8 For the present, I’m staying right here in Ephesus.  9 A huge door of opportunity for good work has opened up here. (There is also mushrooming opposition.) 

These instructions concern the offering Paul was taking up from the churches to help the needy believers in Judea. The principles involved may be applied to Christian giving in general: our giving should be voluntary, in proportion to God’s blessing, systematic, and handled honestly.

When you think of being generous with love, how can you see yourself being a bit tentative about the idea? Who do you think would be bothered by a person who loves generously? Who are some people you have known who have loved generously in their life? Have a Day!

In Conversation with a child:    Ask a child to tell you what they love about their friends and family

Prayers for our soldiers and others fighting for our country: Nick Steele, Sgt. Zach Fessler, Peter Davidson

Remember in Prayer: Judy, Jay, Nilkanti, Earl, Bonnie, traveling mercies for Nan & family, Becky, Kelly, Marj, Dan, Tama, Jan & family, Gene, John G., RZ & family, Bill’s family, Christina, Earl, Gillian, Loretta & family, Friend of Julie, Sue, Roger & family, Tanner, Pattie, Frank & Jean & family, Ginger, Todd & family, Carol, Judith, Lynn, Bonnie, Alan, Al’s family, Carol M., Diane’s family, Linda, Vivian, Ron, Sue, Janine, Leigh, Kristen, Summer, Graham, Kevin, Karen

And those experiencing loss – family & friends of: Karen, Bill, Dee, Cindy, Bernadette, Alice, Tom, Tony, Al, David Dale, Sr., Mary Scott, Don, Jim, Diane, David, Herm, Helen, Father Billy, Joe, Brian, Clarence, Mackenzie, Nate, Gertrude, Dion, Marshall

Prayer:    What a gift you have given us in the gift of love, O God. We ask that as tenders of your love, we will share love with all the others we meet in each day. Help our eyes see past any prejudices that may blind us to sharing your love. Thank you for the gift of healing. Please give that little Madeline spirit a big hug from her Marmee. Amen

Your E-Votional Servant

Lucia

© 2014 Lucia Oerter

All rights reserved

Email Lucia

The Message Bible – contemporary translation

A ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Brandon, Florida providing for your daily walk with Christ!

10-22-14 Daily E-Votional

Posted October 21, 2014 by luciaoerter
Categories: God Stuff

If-you-dont-likeWednesday, Oct. 22

1Cor. 15:51-58

Change. It happens. When my oldest child moved into the two’s phase, change happened. Before that time we were rolling along on a schedule that was almost like clockwork. Her schedule was something like wake up, eat, play, nap, eat, play, nap, eat, play, bath, sleep. Day after day I could expect her to be hungry at certain times, sleepy at other times, and times in which she just wanted to learn or interact. Her schedule helped in lining up my schedule. I knew when I had time to put in a load of laundry, load the dishwasher, and catch some TV shows. She always, always napped when “All My Children” and “General Hospital” were being aired on TV.

On one day, it was naptime and I rocked her and rocked her and those little eyelids were not the least bit droopy. At first I was worried that she was sick, but she was totally acting content and even more awake than what I had hoped.

The soap operas came on and her attention was drawn to the TV. I found myself in a real dilemma. All I wanted to do everyday at that exact time was sew and catch up on some needlework. It was my sanity time. Any woes that I might have had at that time were totally washed away by my watching the soaps. I needed to get her to sleep so I could watch my soaps. Before that day it felt as if my daughter and I had a contract, an understanding, that we work together for the good of our wellbeing. The doctor said that, at some point, children give up the need for two or three naps a day, but I was sure he wasn’t talking about my child. She couldn’t talk yet, but I remember asking her if she knew what I would be missing by her being awake at her regular naptime.

There were at least two lessons for me that day. 1) Change would happen and 2)and some things need to be changed. I went cold turkey on my soaps that day. Yup, change can happen!

15:51   But let me tell you something wonderful, a mystery I’ll probably never fully understand. We’re not all going to die—but we are all going to be changed.  52 You hear a blast to end all blasts from a trumpet, and in the time that you look up and blink your eyes—it’s over. On signal from that trumpet from heaven, the dead will be up and out of their graves, beyond the reach of death, never to die again. At the same moment and in the same way, we’ll all be changed.  53 In the resurrection scheme of things, this has to happen: everything perishable taken off the shelves and replaced by the imperishable, this mortal replaced by the immortal.  54 Then the saying will come true:  Death swallowed by triumphant Life! 

55    Who got the last word, oh, Death?

       Oh, Death, who’s afraid of you now? 

56   It was sin that made death so frightening and law-code guilt that gave sin its leverage, its destructive power.  57 But now in a single victorious stroke of Life, all three—sin, guilt, death—are gone, the gift of our Master, Jesus Christ. Thank God! 

58   With all this going for us, my dear, dear friends, stand your ground. And don’t hold back. Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for him is a waste of time or effort. 

Paul says that the living will receive a body that is not subject to death. The change would be so obvious, our earthly brothers and sisters would not recognize our resurrected body until their bodies were also resurrected. He says that Satan’s apparent victories in the Garden of Eden and at the Cross were reversed by Jesus’ death and resurrection.

What kind of questions do you have about death? Whose death was the most difficult for you experience? What things did you learn thru that experience? In what ways are you sure that change cannot happen? In what ways are you sure that change can take place?  Have a Day!

In Conversation with a child:    Ask a child to tell you what they hope will not change

Prayers for our soldiers and others fighting for our country: Nick Steele, Sgt. Zach Fessler, Peter Davidson

Remember in Prayer: Judy, Jay, Nilkanti, Earl, Bonnie, traveling mercies for Nan & family, Becky, Kelly, Marj, Dan, Tama, Jan & family, Gene, John G., RZ & family, Bill’s family, Christina, Earl, Gillian, Loretta & family, Friend of Julie, Sue, Roger & family, Tanner, Pattie, Frank & Jean & family, Ginger, Todd & family, Carol, Judith, Lynn, Bonnie, Alan, Al’s family, Carol M., Diane’s family, Linda, Vivian, Ron, Sue, Janine, Leigh, Kristen, Summer, Graham, Kevin, Karen

And those experiencing loss – family & friends of: Karen, Bill, Dee, Cindy, Bernadette, Alice, Tom, Tony, Al, David Dale, Sr., Mary Scott, Don, Jim, Diane, David, Herm, Helen, Father Billy, Joe, Brian, Clarence, Mackenzie, Nate, Gertrude, Dion, Marshall

Prayer:    Gracious God, we give you thanks for all that you are. We thank you that you never change in your great powers. Help us to realize that we live in an ever changing world, but you stay the same. May we live in that assurance this day. Amen

Your E-Votional Servant

Lucia

© 2014 Lucia Oerter

All rights reserved

Email Lucia

The Message Bible – contemporary translation

A ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Brandon, Florida providing for your daily walk with Christ!

10-21-14 Daily E-Votional

Posted October 20, 2014 by luciaoerter
Categories: God Stuff

Copy of DSCN6857Tuesday, Oct. 21

1Cor. 15:41-50

When I was growing up, our house was situated between the two houses of grandparent kind of neighbors. To the south, Mr. Means, and to the north, Grandma Bernice.

At some point in my early elementary years, Mr. Means got sick and the ambulance came to pick him up and take him to the hospital. I remember intently watching the ambulance people as they took Mr. Means out of his house on a stretcher. I looked up at my mother and I could see that she was crying. When I asked her what was happening, she was too choked up to speak. I think it was the next day that she told us Mr. Means had died.

Some months passed and the neighbor to the north apparently got sick in the night and the ambulance came and took Grandma Bernice away. In the morning I overheard my mother’s phone conversation as she was informing another neighbor that Grandma Bernice had died. She also told the neighbor that she knew when she saw the sun break thru, on what had been an otherwise cloudy day, that she was gone.

I wasn’t sure how to piece things together. I made a mental note that people on both sides of our house had died. I also thought that I needed to watch the sky more often and see if there were breaks in the clouds. I wasn’t sure what the cloud formations or sky would tell me, but I was pretty sure it must have communicated something about a person’s death. I also didn’t like ambulances coming up to houses and carrying people out on stretchers and then not ever returning them.

As a freshman in high school, when the ambulance came to pick up my mother, I knew she would not return. She did not.

15:41 sun, moon, stars—all these varieties of beauty and brightness. And we’re only looking at pre-resurrection “seeds”—who can imagine what the resurrection “plants” will be like! 42 This image of planting a dead seed and raising a live plant is a mere sketch at best, but perhaps it will help in approaching the mystery of the resurrection body—but only if you keep in mind that when we’re raised, we’re raised for good, alive forever!  43 The corpse that’s planted is no beauty, but when it’s raised, it’s glorious. Put in the ground weak, it comes up powerful.  44 The seed sown is natural; the seed grown is supernatural—same seed, same body, but what a difference from when it goes down in physical mortality to when it is raised up in spiritual immortality! 

45   We follow this sequence in Scripture: The First Adam received life, the Last Adam is a life-giving Spirit.  46 Physical life comes first, then spiritual—  47 a firm base shaped from the earth, a final completion coming out of heaven.  48 The First Man was made out of earth, and people since then are earthy; the Second Man was made out of heaven, and people now can be heavenly.  49 In the same way that we’ve worked from our earthy origins, let’s embrace our heavenly ends. 

50   I need to emphasize, friends, that our natural, earthy lives don’t in themselves lead us by their very nature into the kingdom of God. Their very “nature” is to die, so how could they “naturally” end up in the Life kingdom? 

Paul is making a contrast between a body subject to death and a body that is immortal. We will have glorified bodies like Christ’s body. We must remember that resurrection is not reconstruction. God does not reassemble the original body that has turned to dust.

How was death explained to you as a child? What sort of original thoughts did you have about death that later had to be updated with newer information? As an adult, what are some things you still don’t understand about death?  Have a Day!

In Conversation with a child:    Ask a child to tell you what happens to squished bugs

Prayers for our soldiers and others fighting for our country: Nick Steele, Sgt. Zach Fessler, Peter Davidson

Remember in Prayer: Nilkanti, Earl, Bonnie, traveling mercies for Nan & family, Becky, Kelly, Marj, Dan, Tama, Jan & family, Gene, John G., RZ & family, Bill’s family, Christina, Earl, Gillian, Loretta & family, Friend of Julie, Sue, Roger & family, Tanner, Pattie, Frank & Jean & family, Ginger, Todd & family, Carol, Judith, Lynn, Bonnie, Alan, Al’s family, Carol M., Diane’s family, Linda, Vivian, Ron, Sue, Janine, Leigh, Kristen, Summer, Graham, Kevin, Karen

And those experiencing loss – family & friends of: Karen, Bill, Dee, Cindy, Bernadette, Alice, Tom, Tony, Al, David Dale, Sr., Mary Scott, Don, Jim, Diane, David, Herm, Helen, Father Billy, Joe, Brian, Clarence, Mackenzie, Nate, Gertrude, Dion, Marshall

Prayer:    We love you, O God, and we thank you for this day. We thank you for the gift of relationship and being able to hold each other up in difficult times. May we walk in your love this day. Amen

Your E-Votional Servant

Lucia

© 2014 Lucia Oerter

All rights reserved

Email Lucia

The Message Bible – contemporary translation

A ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Brandon, Florida providing for your daily walk with Christ!

10-20-14 Daily E-Votional

Posted October 19, 2014 by luciaoerter
Categories: God Stuff

hc9utMonday, Oct. 20

1Cor. 15:30-41

While it was only for five short days, I was blessed with a Continuing Education event that called out to me in Montreat, North Carolina. The conference, More than Nones,  was just what my heart has needed. It was motivating, engaging, challenging, and humbling beyond compare. I loved the variety of worship styles and the way each worship style spoke to my heart. I loved the robust singing amongst the nearly 300 of us who gathered together. Conversations around the meal tables and special discussion gatherings were such a blessing to me.

I was reminded of the particular calling God has placed upon my heart. I was reminded that there is much work to do and that there is little time and that every single moment needs to be focused and pushing and striving.

My prayer continues to be that I accomplish just what God needs me to accomplish in each of the days of life God gives to me.

15:30   And why do you think I keep risking my neck in this dangerous work?  31 I look death in the face practically every day I live. Do you think I’d do this if I wasn’t convinced of your resurrection and mine as guaranteed by the resurrected Messiah Jesus?  32 Do you think I was just trying to act heroic when I fought the wild beasts at Ephesus, hoping it wouldn’t be the end of me? Not on your life! It’s resurrection, resurrection, always resurrection, that undergirds what I do and say, the way I live. If there’s no resurrection, “We eat, we drink, the next day we die,” and that’s all there is to it.  33 But don’t fool yourselves. Don’t let yourselves be poisoned by this anti-resurrection loose talk. “Bad company ruins good manners.” 

34   Think straight. Awaken to the holiness of life. No more playing fast and loose with resurrection facts. Ignorance of God is a luxury you can’t afford in times like these. Aren’t you embarrassed that you’ve let this kind of thing go on as long as you have? 

35   Some skeptic is sure to ask, “Show me how resurrection works. Give me a diagram; draw me a picture. What does this ‘resurrection body’ look like?”  36 If you look at this question closely, you realize how absurd it is. There are no diagrams for this kind of thing.  37 We do have a parallel experience in gardening. You plant a “dead” seed; soon there is a flourishing plant. There is no visual likeness between seed and plant.  38 You could never guess what a tomato would look like by looking at a tomato seed. What we plant in the soil and what grows out of it don’t look anything alike. The dead body that we bury in the ground and the resurrection body that comes from it will be dramatically different. 

39   You will notice that the variety of bodies is stunning. Just as there are different kinds of seeds, there are different kinds of bodies—humans, animals, birds, fish—each unprecedented in its form.  40 You get a hint at the diversity of resurrection glory by looking at the diversity of bodies not only on earth but in the skies—  41 sun, moon, stars—all these varieties of beauty and brightness. And we’re only looking at pre-resurrection “seeds”—who can imagine what the resurrection “plants” will be like! 

Our hope is not merely immortality of the spirit, but the actual resurrection of the body. The teaching of the New Testament is very plain on this. It will not be the same corrupt earthly body, but a spiritual body partaking of the nature of God’s own heavenly glory.

What is the most comforting thing in this passage as you think about your earthly body coming to an end, what questions come to your mind? Where do you believe your non-body self goes? When you take on your resurrection body, what are some things you will not miss about your earthly body?   Have a Day!

In Conversation with a child:    Ask a child to tell you what they like about their parents hands

Prayers for our soldiers and others fighting for our country: Nick Steele, Sgt. Zach Fessler, Peter Davidson

Remember in Prayer: Nilkanti, Earl, Bonnie, traveling mercies for Nan & family, Becky, Kelly, Marj, Dan, Tama, Jan & family, Gene, John G., RZ & family, Bill’s family, Christina, Earl, Gillian, Loretta & family, Friend of Julie, Sue, Roger & family, Tanner, Pattie, Frank & Jean & family, Ginger, Todd & family, Carol, Judith, Lynn, Bonnie, Alan, Al’s family, Carol M., Diane’s family, Linda, Vivian, Ron, Sue, Janine, Leigh, Kristen, Summer, Graham, Kevin, Karen

And those experiencing loss – family & friends of: Karen, Bill, Dee, Cindy, Bernadette, Alice, Tom, Tony, Al, David Dale, Sr., Mary Scott, Don, Jim, Diane, David, Herm, Helen, Father Billy, Joe, Brian, Clarence, Mackenzie, Nate, Gertrude, Dion, Marshall

Prayer:    Gracious God, for this day and for your love, we give you thanks. Thank you for the gift of love and relationship. Thank you for the gift of healing. May we be a blessing to you this day. Amen

Your E-Votional Servant

Lucia

© 2014 Lucia Oerter

All rights reserved

Email Lucia

The Message Bible – contemporary translation

A ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Brandon, Florida providing for your daily walk with Christ!

10-19-14 Daily E-Votional

Posted October 18, 2014 by luciaoerter
Categories: God Stuff

Look at God reflected in nature

Look at God reflected in nature

Sunday, Oct. 19

1Thess. 1:1-10

The mirror shows us much and the mirror shows only what is seen. Face value.

When we examine a photo of a person we do not know, we wonder what they are like, what their personality is like, what they sound like and what they do in their every day life. While others can tell us about the person we are seeing in the picture, we know only so much. When we meet a person face to face, we learn much more. When we share work or play or worship with another person, we learn even more. When the person in the picture becomes one of our family, we find out much, much more.

We are creatures who are constantly processing what we see. We process what a person in like as they move about in the world. We can experience how they interact with others and continue to make our assessment.

We are also people of judgment. We may say that we are not judging others, but we are most certainly judging. In just a glance, we can discount someone. In our avoidance of a person, we are judging. In the way we interact or do not interact with others, we are displaying the person who lives inside of the photo of who we are.

Jesus teaches that we are to walk about in the world in ways that help others know God, the loving God, the caring God, the God we call God who loves all of us.

As you move into this day, glance in the mirror and see what you see.

1:1   I, Paul, together here with Silas and Timothy, send greetings to the church at Thessalonica, Christians assembled by God the Father and by the Master, Jesus Christ. God’s amazing grace be with you! God’s robust peace!

2   Every time we think of you, we thank God for you. Day and night you’re in our prayers 3 as we call to mind your work of faith, your labor of love, and your patience of hope in following our Master, Jesus Christ, before God our Father.  4 It is clear to us, friends, that God not only loves you very much but also has put his hand on you for something special.  5 When the Message we preached came to you, it wasn’t just words. Something happened in you. The Holy Spirit put steel in your convictions.

 You paid careful attention to the way we lived among you,  6 and determined to live that way yourselves. In imitating us, you imitated the Master. Although great trouble accompanied the Word, you were able to take great joy from the Holy Spirit!—taking the trouble with the joy, the joy with the trouble.

7   Do you know that all over the provinces of both Macedonia and Achaia believers look up to you?  8 The word has gotten around. Your lives are echoing the Master’s Word, not only in the provinces but all over the place. The news of your faith in God is out. We don’t even have to say anything anymore—you’re the message!  9 People come up and tell us how you received us with open arms, how you deserted the dead idols of your old life so you could embrace and serve God, the true God.  10 They marvel at how expectantly you await the arrival of his Son, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescued us from certain doom.

Paul’s description of the believers in Thessalonica suggests that they typify an ideal congregation. Paul was grateful for their faith, hope, and love and that these Christian qualities revealed themselves in work, labor, and patience.

When have you walked into a group and you just knew that they got along well with one another? What were some of the ways you could see the people working together? Have you ever walked into a group and you could see that they did not work well together? Have you ever walked into a church and felt love? In what ways did you experience the feeling of love in their midst?    Have a Day!

In Conversation with a child:    Ask a child to tell you what they like about themselves

Prayers for our soldiers and others fighting for our country: Nick Steele, Sgt. Zach Fessler, Peter Davidson

Remember in Prayer: Nilkanti, Earl, Bonnie, traveling mercies for Nan & family, Becky, Kelly, Marj, Dan, Tama, Jan & family, Gene, John G., RZ & family, Bill’s family, Christina, Earl, Gillian, Loretta & family, Friend of Julie, Sue, Roger & family, Tanner, Pattie, Frank & Jean & family, Ginger, Todd & family, Carol, Judith, Lynn, Bonnie, Alan, Al’s family, Carol M., Diane’s family, Linda, Vivian, Ron, Sue, Janine, Leigh, Kristen, Summer, Graham, Kevin, Karen

And those experiencing loss – family & friends of: Karen, Bill, Dee, Cindy, Bernadette, Alice, Tom, Tony, Al, David Dale, Sr., Mary Scott, Don, Jim, Diane, David, Herm, Helen, Father Billy, Joe, Brian, Clarence, Mackenzie, Nate, Gertrude, Dion, Marshall

Prayer:    For the gift of this day, O God, we give you thanks. Thank you for the groups of folks who are a sweet fragrance to you when they gather together. In what we do and say, may others see our love for you today. Amen

Your E-Votional Servant

Lucia

© 2014 Lucia Oerter

All rights reserved

Email Lucia

The Message Bible – contemporary translation

A ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Brandon, Florida providing for your daily walk with Christ!

10-18-14 Daily E-Votional

Posted October 17, 2014 by luciaoerter
Categories: God Stuff

The Bucket ListSaturday, Oct. 18

1Cor. 15:12-29

Some of my packing and unpacking and repacking adventures take me past my movie collection. I watched the “Bucket List” the other night and was reminded why I love that movie so much. I’m reminded that our culture really doesn’t like to talk about death and cessation of life. Most people want to talk about cheery things so they don’t have to think about their life ticket being punched.

So many clips from the movie provide an opportunity to process what we believe about life and death. The two characters are as different as night and day in, but they share the fact that they are both cancer victims and they’ve both been given only months to live. Edward is a billionaire and that’s not the life most of us live. (Note: if there are any closet billionaires out there reading this, please contact me right away. I have an idea). The other character, Carter, is a mechanic in the work-a-day world. In the short time Edward and Carter are together, they carve out a list of things to do that they’ve always wanted to do before they kick the bucket. Their bucket list leads them on an adventure that spans the world. No matter where they go, they are reminded of the limited time they have to live their lives.

During their world travels, their conversations take them on a different kind of adventure as they confide in each other about faith and family. As they visit the pyramids, they talk about cremation versus burial with pros and cons on each side of the equation. There are moments when great facts are shared between the men. And there are deep profound moments when the two realize that those the facts do not, or will not, matter to them.

I just love that the deep conversations that occur as the two men face the realization that the moments of their lives are ticking away.

15:12   Now, let me ask you something profound yet troubling. If you became believers because you trusted the proclamation that Christ is alive, risen from the dead, how can you let people say that there is no such thing as a resurrection?  13 If there’s no resurrection, there’s no living Christ.  14 And face it—if there’s no resurrection for Christ, everything we’ve told you is smoke and mirrors, and everything you’ve staked your life on is smoke and mirrors.  15 Not only that, but we would be guilty of telling a string of barefaced lies about God, all these affidavits we passed on to you verifying that God raised up Christ—sheer fabrications, if there’s no resurrection. 

16   If corpses can’t be raised, then Christ wasn’t, because he was indeed dead.  17 And if Christ wasn’t raised, then all you’re doing is wandering about in the dark, as lost as ever.  18 It’s even worse for those who died hoping in Christ and resurrection, because they’re already in their graves.  19 If all we get out of Christ is a little inspiration for a few short years, we’re a pretty sorry lot.  20 But the truth is that Christ has been raised up, the first in a long legacy of those who are going to leave the cemeteries. 

21   There is a nice symmetry in this: Death initially came by a man, and resurrection from death came by a man.  22 Everybody dies in Adam; everybody comes alive in Christ.  23 But we have to wait our turn: Christ is first, then those with him at his Coming,  24 the grand consummation when, after crushing the opposition, he hands over his kingdom to God the Father.  25 He won’t let up until the last enemy is down—  26 and the very last enemy is death!  27 As the psalmist said, “He laid them low, one and all; he walked all over them.” When Scripture says that “he walked all over them,” it’s obvious that he couldn’t at the same time be walked on.  28 When everything and everyone is finally under God’s rule, the Son will step down, taking his place with everyone else, showing that God’s rule is absolutely comprehensive—a perfect ending! 

29   Why do you think people offer themselves to be baptized for those already in the grave? If there’s no chance of resurrection for a corpse, if God’s power stops at the cemetery gates, why do we keep doing things that suggest he’s going to clean the place out someday, pulling everyone up on their feet alive? 

Paul reminds the believers in the church of Corinth that the first man, Adam, transgressed God’s law and brought sin and death into the world; the second man, Jesus Christ, was the perfect sacrifice to take away sin and bring life an resurrection to those who believe in him. Paul goes on to explain that by one man’s sin all die, whereas by one man’s obedience in Christ all shall be made alive.

When people talk about death, would you rather get out of the room or see what the others have to say? When did you first begin to put together your own beliefs about life and death? Other than burial or cremation, what do you believe happens after to you after you take your last breath? Have a Day!

In Conversation with a child:    Ask a child to tell you what they would most like to do in their life

Prayers for our soldiers and others fighting for our country: Nick Steele, Sgt. Zach Fessler, Peter Davidson

Remember in Prayer: Nilkanti, Earl, Bonnie, traveling mercies for Nan & family, Becky, Kelly, Marj, Dan, Tama, Jan & family, Gene, John G., RZ & family, Bill’s family, Christina, Earl, Gillian, Loretta & family, Friend of Julie, Sue, Roger & family, Tanner, Pattie, Frank & Jean & family, Ginger, Todd & family, Carol, Judith, Lynn, Bonnie, Alan, Al’s family, Carol M., Diane’s family, Linda, Vivian, Ron, Sue, Janine, Leigh, Kristen, Summer, Graham, Kevin, Karen

And those experiencing loss – family & friends of: Karen, Bill, Dee, Cindy, Bernadette, Alice, Tom, Tony, Al, David Dale, Sr., Mary Scott, Don, Jim, Diane, David, Herm, Helen, Father Billy, Joe, Brian, Clarence, Mackenzie, Nate, Gertrude, Dion, Marshall

Prayer:    Gracious God, you give us moments of life and we give you thanks. We thank you walking with us as we truly take to heart the amazing gift you have given us. May our lives powerfully reflect your love this day. Amen

Your E-Votional Servant

Lucia

© 2014 Lucia Oerter

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The Message Bible – contemporary translation

A ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Brandon, Florida providing for your daily walk with Christ!


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