Great Plains Daily Devotional for 10/8/2021

Today please be in prayer for

Guide Rock UMC
Red Cloud First UMC
Prairie Rivers District
Shickley UMC
Prairie Rivers District
Genoa UMC
Monroe UMC
Silver Creek UMC
Prairie Rivers District
Belgrade UMC
Cedar Rapids UMC
Fullerton Community UM/Pres USA Church
St. Edward NE UMC
Prairie Rivers District

Today's Lectionary Text

Hebrews 12:14

Work at living in peace with everyone, and work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord.

Today's Devotional

As leaders and entrepreneurs, we work with internal and external resources and teams. Have you ever thought about how many people your relationships affect? Your reach goes far, and it even includes those that maybe you do not desire to be in a relationship with. But a value-based organization focuses on results in a positive manner. Maybe our viewpoint can be focused on whether people are serving as part of our value proposition. We live in a big society, a big world, and a big marketplace. It seems unreasonable to me to think that one company or organization will serve everyone successfully. There are only so many spots on a team at any given time. Where do you need to fill some spots? Where might you look in a place that you have never looked before for some new team members? How might we adjust our thought processes about those that are not on our team now so that we might add them? Today the challenge is to focus on our team's reach and who we might be able to add to extend it. What is the first thing that you can do about it in the next seven days? 

In sports, it is not uncommon to see fans and teams create or be involved in rivalries. I would bet that many engaged in rivalries do not know how the rivalry got started. A good question is where we might be living in rivalry in our own lives. What part of a rivalry, or the behaviors that we exhibit when engaged with rivalries, honors God? We read, "Work at living in peace with everyone, and work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord." Hebrews 12:14 NLT. It seems to be easy to cheer for the home team, our family, our church. But it is God's church and there is one Christ. We are all children of God. Where is the rivalry in that and what does that say for our behaviors today? Maybe we can be teammates first before we begin any competition. We can think of where we are putting our focus when we are engaged in rivalries.  The general attitude towards a rival is to beat them at whatever competition or game it is. Many times, rivals will do many unacceptable actions to get the win. Those actions would not be loving towards another. Rivalries generally will not help us to connect, to grow, or to serve. Rivalries restrict our actions. How might you change the focus of any rivalry so that love replaces its actions. What is the first thing that you can do about it in the next seven days?

-Mark Queen
Manhattan First UMC

Prayer for Reflection

Let us pray, Heavenly Father, we thank you for the gifts that you have placed in our lives. We thank you for all relationships. But we also know that some of those relationships that we are living with are not strong and positive ones. Let us begin to reconcile ourselves first to your love. Open our eyes to all the children of God. May we do no harm to one another for we do not want to separate ourselves, or them, from the love of Christ. In the precious name of Jesus, we pray. Amen


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