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Comfort from the Psalms: Held Hostage

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionHeld Hostage

In the Word

Cast your burden on the LORD, And He shall sustain you … (Psalm 55:22a NKJV)

Of the Word

After her release, a woman who had been held hostage by a foreign government was asked, “How did you survive? How did you pray? What did you pray for each day?” The woman’s answer was that she did not always pray for courage for the day. Rather, she prayed for courage for just the next moments.

Undoubtedly, few of us will endure that kind of hostage situation. But we may be held hostage in other ways — providing care for a loved one who is ill or mentally disabled, “parenting” elderly parents who can no longer attend to their own needs, living with our own aging and inefficient bodies.

The psalmist has comforting words, Cast your burden on the LORD, And He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved (Psalm 55:22 NKJV).

So when can we give Jesus our burdens, our pains, our heartaches? Each and every day, each and every moment. And when will He provide help for us? Each and every day, each and every moment. His Word is true.

Walking with my Lord

Dear Lord, You know my burdens. You know what things hold me hostage today. Lift my burdens and set me free. Help me to trust in You for each moment’s need. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Comfort from the Psalms. Authors: Marcia Gomulka & Myrna Lou Meyer. 8/30 ©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.
Scripture quotations marked NKJV are taken from the NEW KING JAMES VERSION © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.
 

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Comfort from the Psalms: But God Knows ...

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionBut God Knows …

In the Word

For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling … Psalm 27:5a

Of the Word

“Alzheimer’s disease.” The very words bring sadness, fear, dismay. The disease has an effect on both the afflicted and the caregivers.

Simple tasks become difficult, then impossible. Familiar names and places become jumbled and blurred. Life seems to be not a day of trouble but rather a long sequence of troubles.

What then? Christians turn to God and His Word. They take comfort in His promises. “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you …” (Isaiah 41:10a).

Alzheimer’s blurs memories, destroys abilities, and changes personalities, but the Holy Spirit’s love does not change. The victim of Alzheimer’s may not remember Him, but the Father still knows and loves His child. Jesus Christ’s loving hands reach out to support, strengthen, and reassure.

Walking with my Lord

O Lord, help me to cope with the trouble that surrounds me. Wrap me in Your love and strengthen me to face tomorrow. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Comfort from the Psalms. Authors: Marcia Gomulka & Myrna Lou Meyer. 7/30 ©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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Living as a Woman in Mission: Trusting

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionTrusting

In the Word

But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. Psalm 13:5

Of the Word

Cancer is a disease that takes many forms and touches many lives. Usually the diagnosis of cancer is devastating news. Yet there are those who receive the news and proceed to look for ways they can continue living their life – for however long that may be.

Such was the case of my friend and mentor. After receiving treatments for breast cancer and being declared cancer free, she was found to have two brain tumors. Yet, even through radiation treatments, hair loss and other symptoms, she maintained her trust in God. Referring often to her favorite hymn “How Great Thou Art,” she continued to claim and proclaim the greatness of God.

Though she lost her earthly battle with cancer, she is rejoicing in God’s presence. Despite the pain and trials here on earth, we know that we can always trust in God’s unfailing love. When it is His time, He will take us home to be with Him in heaven.

Walking with my Lord

Dear Lord, help me to trust only You. Send Your Holy Spirit to help me believe with certainty that You will lead me, guide me, and supply what I need for each and every day. In Jesus’ holy and precious name I pray. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Cheryl Petersen. 32/32 ©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: Making Good Choices

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionMaking Good Choices

In the Word

Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right. Proverbs 20:11

Of the Word

The Holy Spirit guided the author of the book of Proverbs to write, Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it (Proverbs 22:6). Helping to train and guide young children is a privilege for those of us who work in an educational setting.

When the words “What Would Jesus Do?” became a popular phrase, they were often used at our Christian school. In pointing out the example of Christ that we are to follow, we give our children a lesson in responsibility and decision making.

Throughout Jesus’ earthly life He not only spoke God’s Word, but He lived it as well. Through His sermons and parables He gave examples of God’s will and purpose for His people. Throughout His ministry Jesus spent time with His followers and showed them exactly what God wanted them to do. He has showed you, O man, what is good. … To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8).

Walking with my Lord

Lord Jesus, as Your children we know what You did for us when You died on the Cross. Direct our decisions so that all we do is in accordance with Your will for our lives. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Cheryl Petersen. 31/32 ©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: Sundays with Grandma

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionSundays with Grandma

In the Word

Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." Matthew 19:14

Of the Word

“Grandma, you’re too sweet to be called Grandma. We should call you Sweetie,” my toddler-aged brother announced. It was an apt description of a remarkable woman of strong character and an even stronger faith. Although without formal education, Sweetie said that the Lord gave her all the education she needed.

She insisted that Sundays be given to church attendance and activities. After church she supplied a never-ending flow of scrumptious food. More importantly, her home was a place for positive interactions among family members. During meals she and other God-fearing adults gave sage advice, firmly grounded in Scripture that shaped our lives.

Because many families today are separated by miles and/or emotions, the church family can provide a warm and nurturing environment. We can become the Sweeties in the lives of youngsters by being “Jesus with skin on.”

Walking with my Lord

Eternal Father, give me the mind and attitude of Christ as I interact with the people You place on my path. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, help me demonstrate in word and deed Your great love and care for them. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Dr. LuJuana R. Butts. 30/32 ©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: A Modern-Day Martha

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionA Modern-Day Martha

In the Word

Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Romans 12:13

Of the Word

As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him (Luke 10:38).

The concept of hospitality was practiced within Martha’s Jewish community. My husband’s African-American parents were an example of this characteristic, too. They offered their modest home as a stop on the “over-ground railroad.” Dozens of southern friends and relatives stayed for periods of time lasting anywhere from a few weeks to a couple of years as they sought opportunities in the North.

My mother-in-law was often viewed as a Martha in terms of her priorities. Her hospitality was evidence of her strong faith and appreciation of God’s many gifts.

If you are a modern-day Martha, take heart. Continue to offer hospitality as she did. That can be your expression of faith in Christ and thanksgiving to God.

Walking with my Lord

Dear Heavenly Father, help me to do everything out of thanks to You for all that You have done for me. In the true spirit of hospitality, grant that I may share with others the gifts You have given me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Living as a Woman in Mission. Author: Dr. LuJuana R. Butts. 29/32 ©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 with Christ

Mustard Seed Daily DevotionJoy with Christ on Earth — and Forever in Eternity

In the Word

When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Colossians 3:4

Of the Word

We live in a disposable society — disposable plates and cups, disposable wipes, disposable diapers, disposable syringes. What then is permanent? What is lasting?

Someone once said, “Nothing’s sure but death and taxes.” Wryly, we may smile at the thought, but our hearts know better. Hearts blessed with faith know that God is permanent and lasting, the one sure thing in a transient, disposable society. He assures us, I the Lord do not change (Malachi 3:6a). Neither does His plan for us change. Jesus says, For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life (John 6:40a).

Each one of us is part of God’s will and plan. Eternal life is ours through His gift of faith in Christ Jesus. Daily burdens and challenges come and go, but our eternal destiny is certain because of God’s promises to us.

Walking with my Lord

Dear Father, thank You for being a permanent force in my life. Thank You for sending Jesus to be my Savior, and thank You for the gift of faith. Help me to face each day with the assurance that You are always with me, leading me to glory. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


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