Readings and Devotions for February 8-14, 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 plenty, show us the wealth of heaven that is ours because you are a generous God of abundant blessings. Stir our hearts to desire more of you and less of what we can obtain in this world, for the glory of your son, Jesus. Amen.

Reflect: Reflect on the key verses from Sunday’s reading.
[Jesus said,] “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal.”  Matthew 6:19-20

Study: Study the reading and consider the background.
In any culture and in any time, the accumulation of more is a temptation. The religious leaders of Jesus’ day professed to live rightly, praying publically eloquent prayers and acquiring praise and accolades for their “righteousness.” Their desire for more was misplaced, as their desires could only be met with material goods or praise from others. Jesus didn’t want empty words or rituals. Jesus wanted action. He wanted people to treat each other with kindness and generosity, and to speak with God honestly and authentically. Jesus encouraged people to seek treasure that would last far beyond the years on this earth. He showed that investing in God would pay far more dividends than investing in anything we can receive in this world.

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

Follow these stories of Jesus’ miracles, teachings, and healings.

Sunday, Matthew 6:7-21, Treasure in Heaven

Monday, Matthew 6:25-34Treasure in Heaven, pt 2

Tuesday, Matthew 7:1-29, Teachings of Jesus

Wednesday, Matthew 8:1-17, Healings of Jesus

Thursday, Matthew 8:18-27, Miracles of Jesus

Friday, Matthew 8:28-9:8, Healings of Jesus

Saturday, Matthew 9:9-17, Call of Matthew

How are Jesus’ miracles, teachings, and healings connected? What do they tell people about Jesus’ role in the world?

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?
  • How is the accumulation of more encouraged in your community? What media or messages could you stop listening to so that you could limit your exposure to those messages?
  • Name three things you wish you had more of. Reflect on how the desire for more shapes your behaviors and attitudes.

Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.

Limit your exposure to TV, internet, and other media this week. First, notice how you spend that recovered time. Second, notice how you feel after limited exposure to messages that encourage the accumulation of more.

Bless: Close your devotion with a blessing.
God who provides what we need, encourage our faith through the reading of your word. Help us listen, hear and understand. Amen.

Copyright © 2014 Clergy Stuff.. Used and adapted with Permission. (reading for Monday has been changed) 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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