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Living in Faith: ... Included with Christ

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionFaith is … Remembering that We are Included with Christ

In the Word

And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Ephesians 1:13a

Of the Word

“If only I had faith like his!” People are often heard to make such a remark. But in admiring the faith of a fellow Christian, we dare not overlook the fact that we, too, have been greatly blessed by God. You, too, are a part of Christ’s Church. Paul reminds us of this:… you also — as an individual — were included in Christ … What an honor it is to be numbered along with great men and women of faith, people like Abraham, Sarah, Paul, Peter, James, John, Martha, and Mary! With them you also are … included in Christ.

At your baptism, the Triune God entered a covenant with you alone. God’s grace was planned to give you strength in every conflict with sin. God’s grace is given to you to comfort you in the midst of many sorrows in life. You are included in God’s special family! Yes, we may admire other Christians and look up to the Bible’s heroes and heroines of faith. But we must remember we all have the same Savior and the same Word of Truth.

May God’s peace ever dwell in our hearts and cause us to overflow with joy.

Walking with my Lord

“Just as I am, without one plea But that Thy blood was shed for me And that Thou bidd’st me come to Thee, O Lamb of God, I come, I come!” In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living in Faith. Author: Rev. Darold Reiner. 12/30 ©2007 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.
“Just As I Am, Without One Plea” words by Charlotte Elliott, music by William B. Bradbury – Public Domain.
 

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Living in Faith: Believing in God’s Grace

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionFaith is … Believing in God’s Grace

In the Word

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8–9

Of the Word

One of the biggest obstacles we deal with as the Holy Spirit calls us to faith is our prideful attitude, our inflated opinion of ourselves. We are tempted to imagine we can manage quite well on our own.

God’s greatest work with us is to constantly teach us that without Him we can do nothing. We are deluded into thinking that because we go to church regularly or give of our tithes regularly, we are self-sufficient and therefore able to manage without the Lord.

Have you ever said, “I do the best I can”? Do we actually think that what we are able to do is good enough to stand before God?

What are you actually able to do by yourself? Convert yourself? Break with sin? Believe? Repent? Pray? Live a God-pleasing life? We fail at all of these without the Holy Spirit and His power working in us through Word and Sacrament. We can do none of these on our own power or strength. When we have come to the place where we see this truth clearly, as it really is, then we can recognize our need for God’s grace.

Walking with my Lord

Dear Lord, I confess I can do nothing without You. Help me each day to recognize my need for You and to believe in Your love for me. In Christ’s name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living in Faith. Author: Rev. Darold Reiner. 11/30 ©2007 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 Faith: Living One Day at a Time

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionFaith is … Living One Day at a Time

In the Word

[His mercies] are new every morning … Lamentations 3:23a (NKJV)

Of the Word

God has a great secret we all need to learn. Do you know what it is? Live one day at a time!

Oh, to be able to do this. It sounds so simple, but it is not at all easy to implement. It seems easier for all of us to borrow a great many troubles in advance. We allow ourselves to become anxious and uneasy about so many things long before they happen — perhaps even about things that will not happen at all.

Why do you fear the harm you may never see? God will not forsake you; that can never be!

We can depend on this: as the day is, so also our strength will be. God does not give His power in advance. Today we receive the power we need today. The power we need tomorrow we will get tomorrow. The grace of God is new every morning. A child of God never needs to live on what once was. We will always be able to draw from God’s inexhaustible well all that we need each day.

“Yesterday is past, tomorrow is unknown, but today the Lord helps” is another way of saying: “Live one day at a time!”

Walking with my Lord

Help me, Lord Jesus, to learn to trust You for each day’s needs. In Your name I pray. Amen. 


Mustard Seed: Living in Faith. Author: Rev. Darold Reiner. 10/30 ©2007 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.
Scripture notations marked NKJV are from the NEW KING JAMES BIBLE, © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
 

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Living as a Woman in Mission: Hope in the ...

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionHope in the Midst of Sorrow

In the Word

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

Of the Word

When facing life after the death of a loved one, it’s difficult to adjust to the fact that life for others goes on as usual. Our very being can feel pierced by all that is happening around us. We live with aching hearts and raw emotions. Friends try to help, but it’s difficult for them to find the right things to say. We often hear words that are meant to encourage us, “Come join us. It will be good for you.”

In our sadness we come to Jesus. He holds us close, tenderly loving us and giving us hope — hope to get through the next five minutes, hope for tomorrow, hope in God’s promise of eternal life. With the Apostle Paul we can witness to the faith God has given us, … a faith and knowledge resting on the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time … (Titus 1:2).

With hope in our hearts we can face the future, knowing that His grace surrounds us. 

Walking with my Lord

Heavenly Father, You are the Cornerstone of our faith. You are the Foundation upon which we build. You give hope and peace to the suffering and the sorrowful. Fill us with faith, hope, and peace. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Ida Luebke. 9/32 ©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: Ouch!

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionOuch!

In the Word

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. Romans 8:18 (RSV)

Of the Word

Ouch! Here I am again, Lord, with yet another ailment. I know that in the scope of all things, this is quite minor. Yet it hurts to do the normal things of life. My aching body makes me want to cocoon at home.

But You have taught me there is relief in being with others. Perhaps it is the smiles on their faces as they greet me when I arrive. Could it be the conversations and the wonderful laughter that we share? Whatever it is, it makes me forget — at least for a while — the pain I am experiencing.

Remembering how You suffered on the cross gives me strength to face my own challenges. I take comfort in Your Word. I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us (Romans 8:18 RSV). Wow, Lord, I can hardly wait for that promised glory!

Walking with my Lord

Thank You, Lord, for taking my worst days and making something good out of them. I am able to face each day because You are with me. May my eyes look to You as my source of comfort and strength. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Sally Krueger. 8/32 ©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.
Scripture quotations marked “RSV” are taken from the REVISED STANDARD VERSION, Thomas Nelson and Sons, New York, NY. Copyright © 1952. All rights reserved. www.lwml.org
 

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Living as a Woman in Mission: Patience!

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionPatience!

In the Word

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Ephesians 4:2

Of the Word

At times, I feel overwhelmed with the responsibilities of caring for my aging parent. My formerly strong and independent mother now depends on me. Our roles have been reversed. In my frustration I say to myself, “Patient! Be more patient!” God reminds me … clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience (Colossians 3:12b).

I wonder. Does God lose patience with me? I find comfort in His Word, Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail (Lamentations 3:22). He promises to be “… slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness …” (Exodus 34:6b).

How grateful I am that God is patient with me! His steadfast love enables me to persevere. He loves me even when I’m feeling frustrated and overwhelmed. What love! What compassion! What patience!

Walking with my Lord

Lord, when I become impatient, remind me of Your great patience and love for me. Help me to be slow to anger so that I may show Your love to those who look to me for care. Grant me a patient attitude. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Sally Krueger. 7/32 ©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: Finding Joy in the Unbearable

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionFinding Joy in the Unbearable

In the Word

In my anguish I cried to the Lord, and he answered by setting me free. The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. Psalm 118:5–6a

Of the Word

In 1 Samuel, we read that barren Hannah prayed earnestly for a child, and God heard and answered her prayer. In 1 Kings we are told that Elijah believed that he was the only prophet left in Israel, but God assured him that there were many others who had not bowed to Baal. In the book of Jonah, we hear of a fish, a prayer, and a rescue. King David faced many times of anguish during his lifetime, and God heard and helped.

The scriptures are filled with examples of people who experienced deep anguish and received hope and joy from the Lord. Though the causes of our anguish in the 21st century are different, we have the same Lord and Savior. His answers — given to us in the right way and at just the right time — bring freedom from anguish and fear. True joy can be found only in Him!

Walking with my Lord

O Lord, help me to face my fears with the certainty that You are with me. As You dispel my fears one by one, help me to grow in faith and knowledge of You. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living in Joy. Authors: Dcs. Betty Knapp, Irene Mensing, Myrna Lou Meyer, Margaret White. 9/30 ©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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