Great Plains Daily Devotional for 6/3/2020

Today please be in prayer for

Kara D Hillhouse
Lincoln St Mark's UMC
Blue River District
Jay H. Stewart
Lincoln St Mark's UMC
Blue River District
Amy Slater
Lincoln South Gate UMC
Blue River District
Jeff Slater
Lincoln Trinity UMC
Blue River District

Today's Lectionary Text

Brothers and sisters, we ask you to respect those who are working with you, leading you, and instructing you. Think of them highly with love because of their work. Live in peace with each other. Brothers and sisters, we urge you to warn those who are disorderly. Comfort the discouraged. Help the weak. Be patient with everyone. Make sure no one repays a wrong with a wrong, but always pursue the good for each other and everyone else. Rejoice always. Pray continually. Give thanks in every situation because this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Don’t suppress the Spirit.

Today's Devotional

In the rush to reopen the country as COVID-19 appears to be loosening its grip on us, I have noticed that there is a lot of noise in the news about people who are dissatisfied with the speed that things are happening. After weeks of separating ourselves from others, eating our own cooking, missing those salon appointments, and --for so many – worrying over finances when jobs were lost, we are all ready for life to return to something that more closely resembles what it was at the end of December, before we’d never heard of this novel coronavirus. But a lot of the noise of frustration I have heard seems to disparage the efforts of those making decisions about when certain things can happen -- or openly derides the advice of epidemiologists and public health officials.

Then I happened across the above verses from the first epistle to the church at Thessalonica. Yes, sometimes it is very hard to respect the advice we get from leaders because it is not the advice we want to hear. It is so much easier to doubt that they know more than we do. Yet, as believers, we are expected to respect those in leadership – and live in peace with one another.

I am not seeing much living in peace reflected in the actions of those who discount advice, allow their own prejudices to overcome their better selves, and strive to create chaos in the world. Some think wearing masks is a sign of weakness (or lack of faith in God’s ability to care for us), while others see mask wearing as an act of love for others. Some choose intimidation, others choose kindness.

The wisdom laid out in the above text speaks loudly to me – although I admit that I don’t practice it as well as I should. Be patient with everyone. 15 Make sure no one repays a wrong with a wrong, but always pursue the good for each other and everyone else. 16 Rejoice always. 17 Pray continually. 

None of us is perfect. We let our tempers get away from us. We allow our own fears and wants to overtake our good sense. But, if we call ourselves Christians, then we are claiming to be followers of Jesus, who taught his followers to love one another. Love means being patient, doing good, and rejoicing in our present situation. It means considering the needs of all and respecting the efforts of those in leadership – whose jobs are to make the best decisions they can in the face of vast amounts of contradicting information. I don’t want to be in their shoes. Do you?

 

                                                                     --Rev. Robbie Fall (retired elder)
                                                                     Hutchinson, Kansas
robbie.fall@gmail.com

Prayer for Reflection

Help us, Great God of Wisdom, to respect our differences of opinion, rejoice in the life you have given us, pray often, and always to pursue good for one another. Amen.

 

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