Great Plains Daily Devotional for 10/22/2021

Today please be in prayer for

Omaha St. Paul UMC
Missouri River District
Omaha TRI Community UMC
Missouri River District
Omaha Urban Abbey
Missouri River District
Omaha Water's Edge UMC
Missouri River District

Today's Lectionary Text

Matthew 5:16

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Today's Devotional

When I was young, my self-confidence was pretty low, and I was a pretty shy country girl growing up in southeast Nebraska. My love was music, to play the piano and flute, but, the only people that ever got to hear me play were my instructors. Not even did I let my parents hear me. If they walked into the room where I was practicing, I was done, finished, no more. It wasn’t until after my dad passed away that I learned he would go to the basement, and sit directly under the room where I practiced, just so he could listen to my playing. My mom worked as the church secretary and when she would be at the church, it was such a joy to sit at the piano and organ, and oh, how I would play music for God. And again, if anyone walked into the sanctuary … I was done.
 
Then when I was 14 years old, I went through confirmation, and in my church, it was a tradition to receive a confirmation verse. My pastor hand-picked these scriptures for the youth based on family history, but more importantly, based on what he saw in us. My verse was Matthew 5:16, and oh, I worked hard to memorize it, but as a teenager, I never expected that I would have internalized it as much as I have.
 
This verse is such a great reminder for each of us that God has given us spiritual gifts. He has given us talents to use for His glory and His goodness, and we shouldn’t be hiding those talents and gifts under a basket. We shouldn’t be snuffing out each other’s lights. We should be using our gifts to help others, to share God’s Word, and to build each other up. Our light doesn’t shine brighter because we put someone else’s out, but all our lights shine brighter when we work together for the glory of God.
 
Fast-forward a few years (OK, maybe 35-plus years) and I’m not so shy anymore, and it is much easier to let my light shine, and to encourage others to do the same. My friends, we are called to be the light of the world, and just like the city on a hill, we cannot be hidden, so let your light shine!!
                                                                                                --Merri Leach
                                                                                                Atchison UMC
                                                                                                merricath@hotmail.com
 

Prayer for Reflection

Precious Lord, we thank you for the sun, and the moon, and the stars that are the permanent lights in the sky. May we use them as a reminder that we, too, are a light in this world and we are to be letting that light shine for your glory. May we not be afraid to use the gifts and talents that you personally chose for each of us, that we use them to share your Good News with others. In your holy name, Amen.
 

 

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