'God’s presence' Tagged Posts

'God’s presence' Tagged Posts

Daily Devotions

Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them? says the Lord. Do I not fill heaven and earth? says the Lord.” vs. 24 Jeremiah 23:23-26 Twenty-five hundred years ago Jeremiah refused to believe that God could be manipulated or avoided. God was no idol of stone or wood hanging out in temples and having no connection to daily life.  Like many of us, Jeremiah believed that the Lord filled the universe, that God was present in…

Daily Devotions

Rejoice with Jerusalem, and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice with her in joy, all you who mourn over her—that you may nurse and be satisfied from her consoling breast…” vss. 10-11a Isaiah 66:10-12 When Israel returned from captivity, Jerusalem was a mess–the walls were destroyed and the temple was a wreck. And the people who greeted them, those who had remained in the land, were not at all friendly. The prophet, instead of lamenting, tells…

Daily Devotions

You show me the path of life. In your presence there is fullness of joy; in your right hand are pleasures for evermore.” vs. 11 Psalm 16:7-11 We wouldn’t know it from the television and streaming programs we watch in our leisure time, but there is a good and decent way to live, and it is possible to find joy and pleasure in daily living. We don’t have to have one crisis after another and be so afraid that we…

Daily Devotions

Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.” vs. 1 1 Corinthians 12:1-6 Paul had written to the Corinthians to address a multitude of problems, but took a couple of chapters to address the issue of spiritual gifts, something that had become hugely divisive in that congregation. Some had begun to flaunt their spirituality, claiming a kind of superiority because they could speak in tongues, what they called a special gift of the…

Daily Devotions

Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heaven was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.’” vss. 21-22 Luke 3:15-17, 21-22 When John began baptizing by the Jordan, people came out from all the area to hear him preach and to receive a baptism…

Daily Devotions

Are any among you suffering? They should pray. Are any cheerful? They should sing songs of praise.” vs. 13 James 5:13-15 James imagines that the community to which he is writing has close connections, not only to other members of the community, but to God, the Divine Presence and Source of all Being. This means, he believes, that in every situation of life the people will turn to God, not only with prayers for healing when there is suffering, but…

Daily Devotions

Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.” vs. 8a James 4:7-8a James had figured some things out about God that are worth reviewing in our own search for intimacy with the Divine Presence. So often we imagine that the empty feeling we occasionally feel comes because God has moved away. The truth is that God just doesn’t operate like that–God is always present to us. That’s the nature of God. So when we feel alone, guess…

Daily Devotions

When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears, and rescues them from all their troubles.” vs. 17          Psalm 34:15-22 The psalmist was convinced that the Lord was just and would make sure that the righteous would ultimately be vindicated. He recognizes that good people will sometimes have bad things happen to them but firmly believes that God will listen to their cries for help and rescue them. We applaud such convictions and want badly to affirm them, but sometimes…

Daily Devotions

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” vs. 1 Psalm 23:1-3 It’s doubtful that the psalmist thought of himself as a sheep. But there’s no doubt that he thought of the Lord as his shepherd! He’d had plenty of opportunity to watch shepherds out in the fields with their flocks. Since there were no fences, and sheep can’t care for themselves, each flock needed constant care. The shepherd went out with them from the fold in the morning,…

Daily Devotions

All who obey his commandments abide in him, and he abides in them. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit that he has given us.” vs. 24       1 John 3:23-24 We do a lot of talking about the Holy Spirit in our congregations and some people are eager to claim that they possess the Spirit, thereby implying that there are many who don’t. As a result there are folks who go through life wondering…

Daily Devotions

Then Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom.” vss. 37-38 Mark 15:25-39 According to Josephus, a Jewish historian of the first century, the curtain of the temple was a Babylonian tapestry, a blue veil embroidered with a panorama of the heavens that kept the Holy of Holies from being seen. After Jesus’ death, it was said by some that at the very moment of…

Daily Devotions

Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.” vs. 8 Mark 9:7-9 Most people have a variety of spiritual and religious experiences as they search for a unitary expression of faith, one that will stand the test of time and withstand the doubts that stalk them. There are days that our faith is strong, buttressed by internal certainties rising from what we perceive to be divine encounters. On those days there’s a…
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