Great Plains Daily Devotional for 12/22/2018

Today please be in prayer for

Tecumseh, KS UMC
Topeka District
Topeka: Asbury Mount Olive UMC
Topeka District
Topeka: Countryside UMC
Topeka District
Topeka: Countryside UMC
Topeka District

Today's Lectionary Text

Luke 13:31-35 

At that very hour some Pharisees came and said to him, “Get away from here, for Herod wants to kill you.” He said to them, “Go and tell that fox for me, ‘Listen, I am casting out demons and performing cures today and tomorrow, and on the third day I finish my work. Yet today, tomorrow, and the next day I must be on my way, because it is impossible for a prophet to be killed outside of Jerusalem.’ Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! See, your house is left to you. And I tell you, you will not see me until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.’”

Today's Devotional

This time of the year is a season for all kinds of emotional ups and downs. Today, I visited some friends with my annual plate of cookies and candies, along with seeing their lovely tree and decorations. All about us are people who are happy to be shopping for Christmas gifts, others who are grumbling about all the people out shopping and what do they still need to get. We have gifts to buy, gifts to wrap and perhaps some to mail; decorations to put up along with the Christmas tree, cards to write and mail, baking, guests coming … and little or no time to do it all. Perhaps we have lost a loved one recently, so this time of year is full of sorrow and perhaps regrets for things undone.  Yes, many emotions abound this time of year.
 
In the verses from Luke, I feel such sorrow for Jesus. Here the Pharisees tell Jesus to leave because Herod wants to kill him. We know better, don’t we? It is the Pharisees who want to get rid of Jesus because He threatens their cushy lives. Jesus tells the Pharisees what He still has to do; He is not afraid; He knows what is ahead even before they do. Jesus is not rushing around, frantically.
 
What are we missing in all this shopping, cooking, rushing? We are missing the Christ Child, the real reason for the season. It sorrows me that too often we miss the Christ Child for most of this season amidst the holiday overload.
 
We need to be more like Jesus, longing for His children, wanting to gather them around Him like a hen gathers her chicks. That is such a loving picture. Yet Jesus knows that is not to be. Let us take time to gather and worship and praise our Lord. Let us pray that we will know when to say, "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord."
-Judy Attebery
Certified Lay Servant, Nehawka (Nebraska) UMC
 

 

Prayer for Reflection

Lord Jesus, help us to see those around us who may need us more at this time of year.  As your loving arms surround us, guide us to share that love with others. Amen.
 
 

 

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