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Living as a Woman in Mission: Beyond Tears

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionBeyond Tears

In the Word

"Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes.” Revelation 21:3b–4a

Of the Word

Our nine year old daughter Carrie lay in pediatric ICU, my husband and I at her bedside. The doctor’s words were devastating! “She is in heart failure. We can’t give you any hope for her survival. We’ll do everything we can. We don’t know what caused this or how to treat it.”

We knew all we could do was to cry out to God. Beyond tears, I turned to Him and prayed, “What did I miss? What could I have done, Lord? Through Baptism we know Carrie is Yours, so take her if You must, but we love her so much.” Softly these words came to mind: “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life” (John 9:2b–3).

God answered our prayers with a magnificent “Yes!” Today Carrie is an active woman, pastor’s wife, and mother of two. She has known difficult days and has had three dangerous heart surgeries, but she shines with the glory of God as He faithfully displays His work in her life.

Walking with my Lord

Thank you, Lord, that in moments of hopelessness I can rely on You to hear my prayers and work everything for my good and Your glory. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Helen Roenfeldt. 24/32 ©2009 Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, 3558 S Jefferson Ave, St. Louis, MO 63118. www.lwml.org
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations were taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved worldwide.
 

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Living as a Woman in Mission: Conquering Our Fears

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionConquering Our Fears

In the Word

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship … No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Romans 8:35a, 37

Of the Word

After years of struggle and suffering, my husband’s debilitating illness was finally named. It was bipolar disorder, commonly known as manic depression. We learned that the ailment is genetic, hereditary, and permanent. There are medications and treatments, but no cure. We had to learn to live with it.

With the diagnosis came other questions: Christians don’t have mental illness, do they? What will our friends and family think? Why did God allow this to happen? Who should we tell?

We decided to be honest and open, to share the good days and the bad. We decided that God can use us to help others face the pain and uncertainty of living with brain disorders. We accepted the fact that the disease is a permanent part of our lives, but so is a loving God, who will help us conquer our fear. “Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not be afraid” (John 14:27b).

Walking with my Lord

Lord, thank You for always being with me. Nothing can keep me from Your love. You share each moment of my life, the good and the bad, the joyful and the tearful. Thank You that You love me and can use me just as I am. Take me, wrap me in the righteousness of Jesus Christ and send me out to show the world that God is love. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Helen Roenfeldt. 23/32 ©2009 Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, 3558 S Jefferson Ave, St. Louis, MO 63118. www.lwml.org
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations were taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved worldwide.
 

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Living as a Woman in Mission: Patience and ...

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionPatience and Forgiveness

In the Word

Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. Colossians 3:13

Of the Word

Providing physical care for a loved one who is sick, disabled, or injured is a very difficult  task. Many patients are not easy to care for. They can be cranky, demanding, or abusive and may not even be aware of the pain and discontent they are causing for the caregiver.

Sometimes I act the same way with God, even using prayer to make demands of Him. Then I must confess my sinfulness and selfishness to God. I can be sure of His forgiveness each and every day. He is patient with my shortcomings, my crankiness, and my impatience.

How can I respond to my sick and hurting loved one? St. Paul writes, Forgive as the Lord forgave you (Colossians 3:13b). Only by God’s grace can I forgive and patiently continue the role of caregiver. Will that be easy? Maybe not. But God will be my strength. I can do everything through him who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13).

Walking with my Lord

Dear Lord, forgive me when my patience wears thin and I want to lash out in anger and dismay. Calm me and strengthen me so that I can serve You with a loving heart. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Dianna Jenkins. 22/32 ©2009 Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, 3558 S Jefferson Ave, St. Louis, MO 63118. www.lwml.org
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations were taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved worldwide.
 

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Living in Joy: Joy in Sharing the Gospel

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionJoy in Sharing the Gospel

In the Word

“Come and see,” said Philip. John 1:46b

Of the Word

“Mommy, Mommy, come and see!” All mommies — and daddies, too — have dropped whatever they were doing to share the excitement of that moment. Whether it was a fuzzy caterpillar, the first fish caught, or a sunny yellow dandelion, the event had to be shared.

When Jesus found Philip, He said, “Follow Me.” Philip was so impressed by Jesus that he told Nathanael, “He’s the One we’ve been waiting for!” When Nathanael was unimpressed, Philip simply said, “Come and see.” (John 1:43–46) He could have debated, might have argued, but he simply extended the invitation. Today we may apply Philip’s words in two ways. First of all, what people have invited us to “Come and see”? Did Jesus use them to bring us closer to Him? Secondly, to whom can we lovingly say, “Come and see”? We are the tools the Master uses, just as He used Philip.

Walking with my Lord

Dear Lord, thank You for the people who have touched my life in positive ways. Thank You especially for those whose invitations and examples have helped me in my walk with You. Please help me to lovingly, boldly say, “Come and see.” Use me, Lord, to show Your love and spread Your joy. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living in Joy. Authors: Dcs. Betty Knapp, Irene Mensing, Myrna Lou Meyer, Margaret White. 24/30 ©2005 Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, 3558 S Jefferson Ave, St Louis, MO 63118. www.lwml.org
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations were taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved worldwide.
 

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Living in Joy: God’s Many Spiritual Blessings

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionJoy in God’s Many Spiritual Blessings

In the Word

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose … If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:28, 31b

Of the Word

Have you had days when everything went wrong, when it seemed that the weight of the world was on your shoulders? Occasionally, everyone has those days. Then it’s time to hear God’s comforting words.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight (Ephesians 1:3–4).

We were chosen! God chose us before creation. He redeemed us on Calvary. And today the Holy Spirit calls us to faith and gives us daily strength.

Bad days come and go, but If God is for us, who can be against us (Romans 8:31b)? Even the weight of the world is nothing compared to the power of our loving God.

Walking with my Lord

Dear God, forgive me when I am weak and full of doubts. Help me to remember that You chose me, redeemed me, and sanctified me. Give me the joy of living for You today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living in Joy. Authors: Dcs. Betty Knapp, Irene Mensing, Myrna Lou Meyer, Margaret White. 23/30 ©2005 Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, 3558 S Jefferson Ave, St Louis, MO 63118. www.lwml.org
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations were taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved worldwide.
 

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Living in Joy: Joy in God’s unbroken promises

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionJoy in God’s unbroken promises

In the Word

The Lord is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. Psalm 145:13b

Of the Word

“I will. Yes, sir. Tomorrow I will get it done.” “Yes, Johnny, I will read to you just as soon as I finish this.” “Yes, Doctor, I’ll start exercising tomorrow.” Everyone has made promises such as these only to break them. God makes promises too, but He always keeps them. When Noah and his family left the ark, God spread His rainbow across the sky, a reminder of His everlasting covenant. (Genesis 9:12–16) He promised to be with Moses and the Israelites as they fled from Egypt. The pillars of cloud and fire were constant reminders of His presence. (Exodus 13 and 14)

Knowing that He has kept His promises in the past assures us that His promises are just as certain today. With the psalmist we can say, For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe … (Psalm 27:5a). And God’s best promise of all is this: Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life (Revelation 2:10b). As we see God’s promises unfold before us, we can look forward and say with faith-filled hearts, “The best is yet to come.”

Walking with my Lord

Dear Lord, forgive me for doubting Your promises. Help me to remember that You are faithful and always keep Your promises. I look forward to being with You in heaven. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living in Joy. Authors: Dcs. Betty Knapp, Irene Mensing, Myrna Lou Meyer, Margaret White. 22/30 ©2005 Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, 3558 S Jefferson Ave, St Louis, MO 63118. www.lwml.org
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations were taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved worldwide.
 

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Comfort from the Psalms: One True God

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionOne True God

In the Word

I will praise you, O Lord, with all of my heart; before the “gods” I will sing your praise. Psalm 138:1

Of the Word

King David, the author of Psalm 138, lived when people worshiped many false gods. They worshiped inanimate objects, elements of nature, and even other rulers who claimed to be gods. David did not claim to be a god. Rather, in this psalm he states boldly that he will praise and worship the one true God.

But what about the “gods” that creep into our own lives — the things we become involved with that push God out of the way? Anything that regularly takes the place of spending daily time with God in prayer and Bible reading or keeps us from worshipping and receiving the Lord’s Supper becomes our “god.” False gods can come disguised as our career, gambling, sports, shopping, drugs, appearances. The list is endless, but the sacrifice is the same. By focusing on them we give up the close relationship the triune God wants with us.

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise — the fruit of lips that confess his name (Hebrews 13:15).

Walking with my Lord

Jesus, help me to put all other “gods” out of my life so my praise is for You alone. I know that nothing can give me the peace and joy that come from You alone. In Your name I pray. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Comfort from the Psalms. Authors: Marcia Gomulka & Myrna Lou Meyer. 24/30 ©2009 Lutheran Women’s Missionary League, 3558 S Jefferson Ave, St Louis, MO 63118. www.lwml.org
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations were taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. All rights reserved worldwide.
 
 

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