Great Plains Daily Devotional for 1/3/19

Today please be in prayer for

Lexington First UMC
Gateway District
Minden UMC
Gateway District
Greeley, NE UMC
North Loup UMC
Scotia First UMC
Gateway District
Ord First UMC
Sargent: First UMC
Gateway District

Today's Lectionary Text

Luke 8:16-21
“No one after lighting a lamp hides it under a jar, or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a lampstand, so that those who enter may see the light. For nothing is hidden that will not be disclosed, nor is anything secret that will not become known and come to light.  Then pay attention to how you listen; for to those who have, more will be given; and from those who do not have, even what they seem to have will be taken away.” Then his mother and his brothers came to him, but they could not reach him because of the crowd.  And he was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.”  But he said to them, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”

Today's Devotional

“This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine. …”

It’s one of the first songs we learn in Sunday school. Most people — even some who rarely set foot inside a church — know at least the first few words of this song. The lyrics serve a great purpose because they teach very young children that they are supposed to shine in the world with God’s love for others. I think it’s one of the first ways children start to understand that they can be example for others.

“Hide it under a bushel? No! I’m gonna let it shine. …”

This passage about light from Luke comes immediately after Jesus teaches the parable about the sower, comparing types of soil to how people absorb the Word of God. Jesus has just taught the people about opening themselves up to learning more about their Creator and the Messiah. Many people see the parable of the sower as an illustration for each individual person’s life. But I tend to look at it as a challenge to us all of how we tend to the soil around us — how well we care for family, friends, colleagues and even the people we encounter in our day-to-day activities by sharing the gospel of Christ with them. In other words, we aren’t the plants in the parable, but the gardener caring for the soil.
Are we clearing the path? Are we removing the rocks? Are we digging out the thorns?
Are we making sure the “plants” are receiving enough light? John 1:5 describes Jesus this way: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.”

May we share the light of Christ in our dark world throughout this new year.
   — Todd Seifert, director of communications

Prayer for Reflection

Gracious God, we thank you for the light of Christ, a child sent to this world to live among us, to teach us, to die for us. Don’t allow us to leave this light under any bushel, jar, bed, or any other object. Allow us to glow with your glory for all the world to see. Amen.


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