Readings and Devotions for December 28, 2014 -January 3, 2015

Gods Story
Devotion: Use this resource at home to guide your household’s daily devotions. You can do this alone, as a couple, as a family; in the morning, during the day, or at night. Find a routine that works best for you.

Pray: Light a candle and open your devotion time with a prayer.
God of revelation, magi from the east came in search of a meaning for the bright star in the sky. We too, often search for meaning as we search for evidence of Jesus in our world. Show us Jesus’ presence in all things and at all times, for the glory of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Reflect: Reflect on the key verses from Sunday’s reading.
When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage.  Matthew 2:10-11a

Study: Study the reading and consider the background.
God revealed the birth of God’s son with the guiding light of a star. Magi from the east followed the star to Bethlehem, where Jesus was living. The star revealed to people beyond the borders of Jesus’ land that God’s son was given for all.

God makes God’s presence known in a variety of wonderful and mysterious ways. Sometimes we see God in the mysteries of this world, like the birth of a child or the majesty of the Grand Canyon. Other times we find God in the voices and actions of other people as they love and care for us. God’s presence can be found everywhere, if we are open and ready to see it.

Read: Read the following daily readings to deepen your understanding of Sunday’s text. After the reading, ask the follow-up questions.

Follow the visit from the Magi, and see how their gifts were used in their rites and rituals.
Sunday, Matthew 2:1-12, Magi Visit

Monday, Psalm 96:10-13, Psalm

Tuesday, Micah 5:1-6, The Ruler from Bethlehem

Wednesday, 1 Samuel 16:1-13, David Anointed as King

Thursday, Isaiah 6:1-8, A Vision of God; Burning of Frankincense

Friday, Exodus 30:22-32, Anointing Oil and Incense

Saturday, John 19:39-40, Preparing Jesus’ Body for Burial

What does it say about Jesus that the gifts the magi brought for Jesus were oils and resins used in a variety of rites and rituals?

Connect: Connect in conversation with others in your household. Discuss the following questions, or simply check in with “Highs” and “Lows.”

  • What was a high point of your day? What was a low point?
  • What rites and rituals does your community practice? What milestones are lifted up throughout the stages of life?
  • What does it mean to you that Jesus is a king? What other images for Jesus speak to you?

Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.
Look at your calendar for the year ahead. What milestones will you celebrate? How will you mark those occasions? Start planning now to celebrate important milestones in the coming year.

Bless: Close your devotion with a blessing.
God who guides the wise, illumine our lives through your word this day. Amen.

Copyright © 2014 Clergy Stuff.. Used and adapted with Permission. Find more at www.ClergyStuff.com. Blessing written by Pr. Chip Borgstadt. Scripture quotations from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

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