Great Plains Daily Devotional for 12/21/2020

Today please be in prayer for

Richard Randolph
Lincoln Christ UMC
Blue River District
Beth Graverholt
ConnectioN Point
Lincoln Christ UMC
Blue River District
Kirstie Engel
Lincoln First UMC
Blue River District
Todd Karges
Lincoln Havelock UMC
Blue River District

Today's Lectionary Text

Luke 1:46-55

And Mary said:

“My soul glorifies the Lord
    and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has been mindful
    of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
    for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
    holy is his name.
His mercy extends to those who fear him,
    from generation to generation.
He has performed mighty deeds with his arm;
    he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
He has brought down rulers from their thrones
    but has lifted up the humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things
    but has sent the rich away empty.
He has helped his servant Israel,
    remembering to be merciful
to Abraham and his descendants forever,
    just as he promised our ancestors.”

Today's Devotional

Last year I did an Advent sermon series on Mary’s Magnificat looking at the themes of justice and joy. Spending so much intentional time with this text opened it up in new ways for me. I came to deeply appreciate how Mary embodied both deep joy and an unwavering commitment to justice. I learned to cherish anew how both joy and justice are needed to truly follow Jesus.
I decided to rewrite or paraphrase the Magnificat in my own words for this time. I think it may resonate this year, too.

A Magnificat for Advent 2019

And Mary said,
“I celebrate God with every ounce of my being!
With gladness and joy
I praise God who surrounds me
with love and light.
Something about who I am pleases God
And I consent to God’s plan.
For years upon years, folks will tell my story
Of how God is working
In and through me
In and through this child
Enwombed within me Holy is God
Holy are God’s ways.
God’s grace is poured out
On the entire world
On one and all
Year after year
Century after century
Millennium after millennium
I know God’s power
I see evidence of God’s handiwork
All around
God shakes up

The thoughts of the proud
Offering insight and wisdom
Fresh ways of understanding
God is the great leveler
Bringing down and
Lifting up
Filling the empty
Emptying the full
Until there is true equitability
Between the destitute and the wealthy
Between the classes
The genders
The races
The ages
The abilities
Resources for each
Resources for all
Possibility for all
Possibility for each.
God remembers all the promises
They made to my ancestors
God remembers who I am
Who you are
Who we are
Created in
Their image
God remembers all that has been
And all that may be.
Thanks be to 
God Now and forever more.
-Rev. Mary Kay Totty, Dec. 3, 2019
Seward UMC

Prayer for Reflection

God of Mary and Elizabeth, God of Joy and Justice, work in our hearts this day that we might renew our commitments to work for justice; and that we might embrace joy. In the name of Jesus, the Star Child, Amen.


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