Devotions and Readings for March 15-21 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 good gifts, you entrust the gifts of your kingdom to our care. Help us to be prepared for your coming at all time, for the glory of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Reflect: Reflect on the key verse from Sunday’s reading.
Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour. Matthew 25:13

Study: Study the reading and consider the background.
In following the theme of abundant invitation and grace of the past few weeks, this story moves now to the expected response to such an invitation. The bridesmaids who came prepared ultimately were invited into the banquet. Those who came unprepared missed the opportunity. This suggests that we come to God’s house and work in God’s world with attention, intentionality, and respect.

In both parables, the bridegroom/master were gone for a time, and then returned at an unexpected time. In both instances those waiting were expected to be prepared for the return. The bridesmaids were expected to bring enough oil to last while they waited. The servants were expected to invest what they had been given, so that at the master’s return they would have even more to return. Both of these parables expect action on the part of those who wait.

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

Follow the parables and teachings of Jesus, as Jesus challenged followers to do more for God’s kingdom.

Sunday, Matthew 25:1-13 Bridesmaids

Monday, Matthew 25:14-30 Talents

Tuesday, Matthew 22:15-33, Questions for Jesus

Wednesday, Matthew 22:34-46, The Greatest Commandment

Thursday, Matthew 23:1-36, Woes

Friday, Matthew 23:37-39, Lament over Jerusalem

Saturday, Matthew 24:1-28, Teachings of Jesus

How is the tone of these later chapters different from earlier chapters? What was Jesus trying to tell people?

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?
  • Do people live as if Jesus might return any day? How might your community look different if people behaved as if Jesus was on his way?
  • What is one thing you can change about your routine or behaviors so that you are behaving as if Jesus was going to return at any moment?

Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.
Make a bucket list of 5-10 things you would like to do before Jesus’ return. Challenge yourself to plan and do one of the things on your list. Consider how the items on your list benefit others, and how they might change you for the better.

Bless: Close your devotion with a blessing.
O God most wise, speak wisdom to our lives in your word today. Amen.

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