Great Plains Daily Devotional for 7/5/2020

Today please be in prayer for

Saint Francis UMC
Hays District
Stockton UMC
Woodston UMC
Hays District
Grinnell UMC
Winona: First UMC
Hays District
Brady-Choteau-Dutton UMC, Mountain Sky Conference

Today's Lectionary Text

Romans 7:15-25a

I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.
Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. But in fact it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me.
For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do.
Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God in my inmost self, but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind, making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members.
Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?
Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!

Today's Devotional

I completely understand the apostle Paul’s frustration in today’s scripture. He is vocalizing what so many of us encounter in our daily lives: We know we should do something. We want to do something. But something prevents us from acting as we should.

It’s hard to believe now, with all my extra … let’s call it insulation … but when I was in high school, I struggled to put on weight. I didn’t understand it then, but I do now. I was just so active that I easily burned more calories than I took in on most days.

Now, I know I need to avoid certain foods and lay off sweets altogether, but yet I find myself drawn to sugary goodies, French fries and other things that I know are not good for me. Even though I want to avoid them, I sometimes can’t seem to help myself.

I’ve noted the same holds true for some people these days regarding masks in public, especially indoors. People read the science, and they listen to medical experts talk about the importance of wearing a mask. I think most people can grasp that wearing a mask can help themselves but especially can be beneficial to others. Yet, some of those same people choose not to wear a mask. In some cases, people even intend to wear a mask but forget them.

For example, I know I forgot to bring a mask with me a few times early on in the COVID-19 pandemic until my wife suggested I start keeping masks in both of our vehicles. I had to take that step to correct my behavior, and I think that’s what Paul is trying to tell us in this portion of the letter to the Romans. We have to be willing to take steps to change our behavior. And in terms of our sin, we need to seek and accept help from the risen Christ!

I wonder if He also would help with the sweet tooth?
   — Todd Seifert, director of communications 

Prayer for Reflection

Gracious and loving God, we thank you for providing the help we need to conquer sin in our lives. When we deviate from what we know we should be doing, please remind us gently and mercifully so that we can correct our behavior and live the kind of life that brings glory to you. Amen.


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