Great Plains Daily Devotional for 6/8/2022

Today please be in prayer for

Broken Bow UMC
Gateway District
Burwell UMC
Taylor Calvary UMC
Gateway District
Callaway UMC
Morning Star UMC
Gateway District
Bartley: Kemper Memorial UMC
Cambridge Trinity UMC
Indianola UMC
Gateway District

Today's Lectionary Text

Psalm 48 

In the city belonging to our God,
    the Lord is great and so worthy of praise!
His holy mountain is a beautiful summit,
    the joy of the whole world.
    Mount Zion, in the far north,
    is the city of the great king.
God is in its fortifications,
    revealing himself as a place of safety.

Look: the kings assembled themselves,
    advancing all together—
    when they saw it, they were stunned;
    they panicked and ran away frightened.
Trembling took hold of them right there—
    like a woman giving birth,
    or like the east wind when it smashes
    the ships of Tarshish.
Just like we had heard,
    now we’ve seen it for ourselves
    in the city of the Lord of heavenly forces,
    in the city of our God.
        May God make it secure forever! Selah

We dwell on your faithful love, God,
    in your temple.
Your praise, God, just like your reputation,
    extends to the far corners of the earth.
        Your strong hand is filled with righteousness.
Let Mount Zion be glad;
    let the towns of Judah rejoice
        because of your acts of justice!

Walk around Zion;
    go all the way around it;
    count its towers.
Examine its defenses closely;
    tour its fortifications
    so that you may tell future generations:
“This is God,
    our God, forever and always!
    He is the one who will lead us
    even to the very end.”

Today's Devotional

The news the past few weeks has left my soul feeling weary and deeply troubled. It is hard to witness innocent lives being taken away at the hands of violence. After the events in Uvalde, all I could do was cry.

I thought about the elementary school close to our church in Omaha and all the children who go there who might be living in fear. I thought about the fact that schools around the United States must have active shooter drills. I thought about the fact that when the nearby school in our neighborhood has a threat made to the school or children are at risk of being harmed, our church building is the one they walk to.

This past year, they had to have a practice drill and hundreds of children walked into our building, so they knew where to go in case of an emergency. We are this school’s safe place. We are there in case of emergency. After the events of the week, I prayed I never have to be the place where parents, friends, siblings, teachers, or anyone else must find out if someone is still alive.

Our church is a safe place, but I want it to be a place where children grow in their love of God, neighbor, and self. I want the church to be a place where children can question and discern who they want to be with the support of others. And our churches need to continue to be safe places. The places where we embrace the diversity of all persons and support one another, whether in good times or hardships. For everyone who walks in our sanctuaries for them to know the love of God and know refuge is found in our church.

Our church will continue to be a safe place for the elementary school by us, but we are the safe place for all people to enter and know they can find rest. I hope we never have to be a place where people grieve as they did in Uvalde, but we will be people who continue to show love and compassion no matter what. Let us make our sanctuaries ones where we all know this is a safe place.
-Maddi Baugous
Pastoral Intern
Omaha First UMC
maddi.bauguous@fumcomaha.org

Prayer for Reflection

Comforting God of refuge, be with those who are grieving and disheartened today. May we continue to create safe places for all people and a safer world. Together we pray. Amen.
 

 

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