Great Plains Daily Devotional for 12/15/2021

Today please be in prayer for

Beloit: First UMC
Salina District
Brookville UMC
Salina District
Burr Oak: First UMC
Salina District
Cawker City UMC
Glen Elder UMC
Salina District

Today's Lectionary Text

Isaiah 11:1-9

A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jesse,
    and a branch shall grow out of his roots.
The spirit of the Lord shall rest on him,
    the spirit of wisdom and understanding,
    the spirit of counsel and might,
    the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
His delight shall be in the fear of the Lord.

He shall not judge by what his eyes see,
    or decide by what his ears hear;
but with righteousness he shall judge the poor,
    and decide with equity for the meek of the earth;
he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth,
    and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked.
Righteousness shall be the belt around his waist,
    and faithfulness the belt around his loins.

The wolf shall live with the lamb,
    the leopard shall lie down with the kid,
the calf and the lion and the fatling together,
    and a little child shall lead them.
The cow and the bear shall graze,
    their young shall lie down together;
    and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp,
    and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder’s den.
They will not hurt or destroy
    on all my holy mountain;
for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
    as the waters cover the sea.

Today's Devotional

I remember as a kid we had a picture book where the cover was of a lion and a lamb. We would get this book out at Christmas time and read it. As a child, I never understood what this image was supposed to say; I just thought it was cute because I loved lambs and lions.

t probably just made me think of the many stuffed animals which filled my brother’s and my room. I’m sure many of us have seen the image of the lion and the lamb or sung songs with these phrases. As a child, I didn’t understand the importance of this imagery. Why was the lion and the lamb sitting together so important?

After reading Isaiah’s words today, we know this image is not just about the strongest in the animal kingdom sitting with their prey -- or even lunch. But it shows the peaceful kingdom where those who hold the most power, are willing to lower themselves to sit with the lambs -- those who have no status in society. For the rich to listen to the poor and befriend them. For those with homes to ensure everyone one as a safe place to stay. For those in power to not respond with violence or hatred -- but to be peacemakers.

Each of us has the power to humble ourselves like the wolf and the leopard, who watch out for the lambs and goats. It might mean we have to go against our very nature, to ensure all our taken care of. But when we live like this, making sure everyone has enough and everyone is protected and cared for, we bring about this peaceful kingdom. We ensure it is not just a lofty dream, but we make it a reality for all the earth.

-Maddie Baugous
Pastoral Intern
Omaha First UMC



Prayer for Reflection

Peaceful God, may we be peacemakers in our world-humbling ourselves to make sure the least of these might be cared for and loved. For when we work together, we can bring about the peaceful kingdom of love. Together we pray. Amen.


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