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How, Lord … can I face what seems impossible?

nullHow, Lord … can I face what seems impossible?

In the Word

I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonders. I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High. Psalm 9:1-2

Of the Word

Lies. Arrest. Torture. Imprisonment. Darkness. How would most of us react to such a series of events? Anger and fear? Demands for a lawyer?

In Acts 16, the apostle Paul and his friend Silas experienced horrible treatment. They were slandered, beaten, thrown into the prison, and fastened down. Unimaginable today in the United States! What did Paul and Silas do? They prayed and sang praises to God in the middle of the night, in the middle of the prison, in the middle of their pain! Unimaginable anywhere!

They did not know that God’s amazing rescue — an earthquake that freed them and all the other prisoners — was only moments away. They did not know that the jailer would come to faith that very night. They did not know that they would be released by the city magistrates the very next day. But they sang anyway! Even in the midst of our troubles, we, too have reason to pray and sing. Our God knows where we are, and He is in control.

Walking with my Lord

Dear God, when my life is one difficulty after another, help me to pray and sing praises to You, for You are my Deliverer. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: How, Lord? Marcia Gomulka and Myrna Lou Meyer, authors. 21/32 ©2011 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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How, Lord … can I find strength?

nullHow, Lord … can I find strength?

In the Word

“…Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20b

Of the Word

Test results came back — the Big C. Sorrow, anger, fear, and frustration followed. Cancer happened to other people, to older people, to anyone but her. What now? She had work to do, children to care for.

Tears followed as family and friends offered love and support. As shock wore off and reality set in, she was able to say, “I have the Big C. I have Christ!”

Treatment was long and difficult, but she carried this thought with her on each trip, “My true Big C is Christ, my Savior. No matter what this treatment gives, He has already treated me to eternity with Him.”

Those words are eternally true for every Christian. No matter what other Cs life may hold — cold, cough, controversy, confusion, or even cancer — the cross of Christ is stronger. He has conquered sin and death, and He promises to keep us, His faithful people, with Him forever.

Walking with my Lord

Dear Jesus, forgive me when I forget You and Your cross. No matter what befalls me today, keep me close to You. In Your name I pray. Amen.


Mustard Seed: How, Lord? Marcia Gomulka and Myrna Lou Meyer, authors. 20/32 ©2011 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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How, Lord … can I find peace?

nullHow, Lord … can I find peace?

In the Word

“Be still, and know that I am God …” Psalm 46:10

Of the Word

The volunteer at the zoo’s butterfly garden identified the beautiful insects as they fluttered through the blossoms. She showed visitors the monarch that had burst from its chrysalis only moments before. She smiled and her eyes sparkled.

When a visitor complimented her work and thanked her, she said, “I love my job! The butterfly garden is peaceful and serene. Some volunteers are bored here, but this is my favorite spot.”

God wants His children to have a quiet, peaceful, serene spot within the busyness of life. Why? So we can know that God is God.

Where is your place to be still and know Him? Your porch swing? A mountain cabin? Your favorite rocker or recliner? Be still there and know God’s presence. He is waiting for you!

Walking with my Lord

Lord, when I get too busy, slow me down and make me still enough to know that You are my God. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Mustard Seed: How, Lord? Marcia Gomulka and Myrna Lou Meyer, authors. 19/32 ©2011 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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Simple Trust: God’s Protection Assured

nullGod’s Protection Assured

In the Word

“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they” (Matthew 6:26)?

Of the Word

What thought-provoking message was once found in a bird’s nest?
“We trust in the Lord our God.”

In a tree marked for limb trimming, city workers in Hamilton, Ontario, found a nest of baby robins. They agreed to not touch the limb until the young birds flew away. When the nest was abandoned, the workers found a little scrap of paper in the bottom. The parent robins had used the paper in the building of the nest. The tattered paper read, “We trust in the Lord our God.”

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life … Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they” (Matthew 6:25a, 26)?

Those birds were out on a limb. We may one day find ourselves in the same place. It is then we can be certain that, just like the birds, we can be at rest knowing our Lord God can be trusted for protection.

Walking with my Lord

Thank You, Father, for constantly caring for me. Knowing I am valuable to You, may I never doubt the assurance of Your guidance and protection. In Your loving name I pray. Amen. 


Mustard Seed: Simple Trust. Elaine Bickel, author. 21/29 ©2011 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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Simple Trust: The Real Meaning of Life

nullThe Real Meaning of Life

In the Word

… the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23b

Of the Word

Would anyone pay to know the answer to the question, “What is the meaning of life?”
Yes!

Eight bids were placed in an online auction and ultimately the meaning of life was sold for $3.26! While we do not know what the bidder was told for the price he paid, we can know the meaning of life for free if we read God’s Word.

Life is created by God. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1). … the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being (Genesis 2:7).

Life is a gift from God! For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23).

It would be difficult to trust in words auctioned for $3.26, but we can trust the One who gives life here and in eternity. God’s certain promise is, “Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Revelation 2:10b).

Walking with my Lord

Life-giving God, You made me, redeemed me, and promised heaven to me. Make my life a song of praise to You! In Jesus’ name. Amen. 


Mustard Seed: Simple Trust. Elaine Bickel, author. 20/29 ©2011 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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Simple Trust: Wise Words

nullWise Words

In the Word

A wise man’s heart guides his mouth, and his lips promote instruction. Proverbs 16:23

Of the Word

What can happen at 90 degrees below zero on the Fahrenheit scale?
Your breath freezes in midair and falls to the ground.

Cold, icy words become the building blocks for icy walls that separate people from each other. The best way to avoid those walls is to be quiet when your heart turns cold. Pause. Ask God to warm your heart and your words. A wise man’s heart guides his mouth, and his lips promote instruction (Proverbs 16:23).

If the icy wall has already been constructed, chisel away at it with God’s Word. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs (1 Corinthians 13:4-5). When God enables us to live out these words, icy walls melt.

Spend time in prayer today. Ask God’s forgiveness for your cold, icy words. Ask Him to help you forgive a person who has hurt you. Then stand back. Watch God change that icy wall into a refreshing mountain stream.

Walking with my Lord

Lord, forgive me for the cold, icy words that come out of my mouth. Help me forgive those whose words have hurt me. In Your forgiving name I pray. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Simple Trust. Elaine Bickel, author. 19/29 ©2011 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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Joyful, Joyful: The Lord’s My Shepherd

nullThe Lord’s My Shepherd, I’ll not Want

In the Word

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. Psalm 23:1 KJV

Of the Word

The Lord's my shepherd, I'll not want;
He makes me down to lie
In pastures green; He leadeth me
The quiet waters by.

Psalm 23, a favorite of many people, is the basis for this hymn. In verse one, the Shepherd meets the needs of the flock by providing the nourishment of green pastures. Thirst is quenched at quiet waters where the sheep can drink their fill.

The psalmist and the poet remind us that the Lord, our Good Shepherd, is with us at all stages of our lives. He comforts us and restores us. He daily provides for us and watches over every facet of our days. He is with us even in our final days. He takes us to our forever home in heaven.

“Goodness and mercy all my life Shall surely follow me; And in God’s house forevermore My dwelling place shall be.”

Walking with my Lord

Loving Shepherd, I, Your wayward lamb, have too often gone my own way when I should have followed You. Please forgive and restore me. Give me faith to follow wherever You will lead. In Your trustworthy name I pray. Amen.


Mustard Seed: Joyful, Joyful. Rev. Larry and Shari Miller, authors. 18/31. Hymn Text: LSB 710. ©2011  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 (KJV) are taken from the King James Version. Public domain.
All hymns are public domain with the text reprinted from Lutheran Service Book, ©2006, Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, MO.
 

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