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Space for Quiet

Today’s Reflection

THE PSALMIST emphasizes that we need to be still to know God. Perhaps this is why our souls yearn for stillness. In their restlessness they long for that silent communion with God for which they are created. Aware of this, Desmond Tutu writes, “Each one of us wants and needs to give ourselves space for quiet.” It is in stillness we come to know what our hearts long for: the Divine Presence alive in us. In this way, we can see the importance of fostering a life of outer and inner stillness.

—Trevor Hudson
Pauses for Lent: 40 Words for 40 Days

From page 7 of Pauses for Lent: 40 Words for 40 Days by Trevor Hudson. Copyright © 2015 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

Have you scheduled time to be still today? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

“Be still, and know that I am God! I am exalted among the nations, I am exalted in the earth.”
—Psalm 46:10, NRSV

Prayer for the Week

Create in me a clean heart, O God.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

On March 1, 2019, the World Day of Prayer, join staff of The Upper Room in responding to prayer requests submitted on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Click here to learn more about the event.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Life with Abba

Today’s Reflection

HOW CAN WE describe life in the kingdom? It is an intimate life in which we come to know God personally as Abba. It is a shared life through which we come to discover ourselves as a part of God’s family. It is a transformational life in which we are gradually changed into the people that God wants us to be. It is a powerful life in which God acts together with us for the good of others and the healing of our world. It is a loving life in which we become more responsive to those around us. Above all, it is an eternal life that cannot be snuffed out by death.

—Trevor Hudson
Pauses for Lent: 40 Words for 40 Days

From page 5 of Pauses for Lent: 40 Words for 40 Days by Trevor Hudson. Copyright © 2015 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

How do you describe life with God, your Abba? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.”
—Mark 1:14-15, NRSV

Prayer for the Week

Create in me a clean heart, O God.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

On March 1, 2019, the World Day of Prayer, join staff of The Upper Room in responding to prayer requests submitted on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Click here to learn more about the event.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Ashes

Today’s Reflection

TO THINK that one day we will be nothing but ashes is a pretty grim reality. Not surprisingly, many of us avoid facing this truth. We don’t want to reflect on it or speak about it or even read about it. After all, when we begin to sense how near to nothing we are, we can easily find ourselves in despair. Being born to die is not good news.
However, the fact that we are marked by the sign of the cross tells us we are infinitely more than dust. We are God’s beloved, and nothing—not even death—can separate us from God’s love through Jesus Christ. Our dust is charged with God’s own life-sustaining and death-defeating breath. We are beloved dust.

—Trevor Hudson
Pauses for Lent: 40 Words for 40 Days

From page 1 of Pauses for Lent: 40 Words for 40 Days by Trevor Hudson. Copyright © 2015 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What things make you feel separated from God? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

… you are dust, and to dust you shall return.
—Genesis 3:19, NRSV

Prayer for the Week

Create in me a clean heart, O God.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

On March 1, 2019, the World Day of Prayer, join staff of The Upper Room in responding to prayer requests submitted on The Upper Room Prayer Wall. Click here to learn more about the event.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Burning Bush Moments

Today’s Reflection

WE ALL have experienced what could be called a “burning bush” moment. These moments occur when we sense that God is seeking our attention, speaking to us, and calling us to participate in what God is doing in our midst. Burning bush moments change our lives and the lives of those around us. They draw us into a deep engagement with the living God, who is always active in our lives and in the lives of those who suffer. Tragically, we often miss these moments, therefore missing out on partnering with God in God’s great work of liberation.

—Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ
Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent

From page 48 of Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent by Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ. Copyright © 2018 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

When have you experienced a moment in which you felt God was trying to get your attention? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of a bush; he looked, and the bush was blazing, yet it was not consumed. Then Moses said, “I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why the bush is not burned up.” When the Lord saw that he had turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.”
—Exodus 3:2-4

Prayer for the Week

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

Are you looking for Lenten resources? Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent reminds us that God deeply desires friendship with us. During the month of February, Daily Reflections readers will receive a 30% discount when buying Divine Friendship from The Upper Room Bookstore. Visit our store this month, and use the following promo code when you check out: REFLECT30

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

 

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In the Wilderness

Today’s Reflection

JESUS’ EXPERIENCE in the wilderness (see Luke 4:1) reminds us that temptation is not a sin. Additionally, Jesus is not surprised or shocked by our temptations. However sinful they may seem to us, he knows how it feels to be tempted. Admitting our temptations to Jesus may be the most difficult part of our spiritual journey. We would rather see ourselves as virtuous and good, but this denial is not helpful to us in the long run. When we refuse to admit our temptations—our jealousy, our greed, our cowardice, and so on—our shame and guilt can cause us misery. Instead, let’s share our temptations with Jesus—and perhaps also with a trusted friend, mentor, or counselor—so that he will provide us with the grace we need to overcome.

—Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ
Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent

From page 19 of Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent by Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ. Copyright © 2018 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What temptations are you facing today? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Blessed is anyone who endures temptation. Such a one has stood the test and will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
—James 1:12

Prayer for the Week

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

Are you looking for Lenten resources? Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent reminds us that God deeply desires friendship with us. During the month of February, Daily Reflections readers will receive a 30% discount when buying Divine Friendship from The Upper Room Bookstore. Visit our store this month, and use the following promo code when you check out: REFLECT30

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Follow

Today’s Reflection

JESUS SAYS to Levi, a tax collector, “Follow me.” Levi leaves everything and follows Jesus immediately and then throws a party for him. The party gets tense when the Pharisees and their scribes question Jesus for spending time with “sinners.” They know that Levi’s life and profession are messy and, according to their standards, unclean. But this does not stop Jesus from wanting a relationship with Levi. Jesus knows that our lives are messy. He knows about the issues that drag us down and hold us back from becoming the kind of people God wants us to be. Even so, Jesus says to us, “Follow me,” believing that we possess the gifts and potential to be his followers.

—Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ
Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent

From page 16 of Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent by Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ. Copyright © 2018 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What messiness in your life is holding you back from accepting Jesus’ invitation to follow him? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

After this he went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax booth; and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up, left everything, and followed him.
—Luke 5:27-28

Prayer for the Week

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

Are you looking for Lenten resources? Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent reminds us that God deeply desires friendship with us. During the month of February, Daily Reflections readers will receive a 30% discount when buying Divine Friendship from The Upper Room Bookstore. Visit our store this month, and use the following promo code when you check out: REFLECT30

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Outrageously Lavish Love

Today’s Reflection

THE PARABLE of the prodigal son captures the essence of a loving and merciful God. Jesus, in telling this parable, not only assures us of just how outrageously lavish God’s love and mercy are but also presents us with his image of God. This parable is probably one of the most powerful pictures of God that Jesus offers. In the story, the younger son asks for his inheritance while his father still lives, which, in that time, is akin to wishing his father dead. After receiving his payment, the son takes off. He squanders his father’s hard-earned money and soon is left lonely and desperate. Not only does he lose his dignity but also his identity; he does what no good Jewish boy would ever do by coming into direct contact with pigs and eating their food. In desperation, he comes to his senses and decides to go home to his father, presenting himself as a servant and not a son. The father, we learn, has been longing for his son’s return, and when he sees his son, he refuses to consider him a servant. No matter what the son has done, he can never lose his identity or his father’s affections. His father embraces him, kisses him, and clothes him. He puts a ring on his finger, symbolizing the son’s identity as a member of the family. The father throws a party because his son was lost and is found, was dead and is now alive.

—Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ
Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent

From pages 45-46 of Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent by Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ. Copyright © 2018 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

When have you, like the prodigal son, experienced God’s loving embrace? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Then the father said to him, “Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life; he was lost and has been found.”
—Luke 15:31-32

Prayer for the Week

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

Are you looking for Lenten resources? Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent reminds us that God deeply desires friendship with us. During the month of February, Daily Reflections readers will receive a 30% discount when buying Divine Friendship from The Upper Room Bookstore. Visit our store this month, and use the following promo code when you check out: REFLECT30

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Sobering Choice

Today’s Reflection

DEUTERONOMY puts a sobering choice before us: life or death? Moses tells the people of Israel what leads to life and what leads to death. We sense Moses’ urgency when he declares to the Israelites, “You shall not live long” (Deut. 30:18), indicating that their attention is needed now. Moses describes the meaning of life: living in the love of God, obeying God’s commandments, clinging to God, and dwelling in the Promised Land. Today, we find our Promised Land in a relationship of deep friendship with God.

—Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ
Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent

From page 12 of Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent by Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ. Copyright © 2018 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

How can you make Jesus a priority in your life today? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

… I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying him, and holding fast to him …
—Deut 30:19-20

Prayer for the Week

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

Are you looking for Lenten resources? Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent reminds us that God deeply desires friendship with us. During the month of February, Daily Reflections readers will receive a 30% discount when buying Divine Friendship from The Upper Room Bookstore. Visit our store this month, and use the following promo code when you check out: REFLECT30

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Frayed Friendships

Today’s Reflection

IN THE BUSYNESS of our lives, our relationship with God can fray like the ends of a rope. Friendships can lose their momentum when we become engrossed in the grind of daily life and don’t make time to hang out with friends. This can also happen in our relationship with God. During Lent, Jesus invites us into a renewed friendship. He invites us to “catch up” on the things that have happened in our lives that we have not told him about. … Jesus invites us to put God at the center of our lives. He knows that in doing so we will reclaim our true identity as beloved sons and daughters of a God who deeply desires friendship with us.

—Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ
Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent

From page 10 of Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent by Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ. Copyright © 2018 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

In what ways has your friendship with God become “frayed”? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father.
—John 15:15

Prayer for the Week

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

Are you looking for Lenten resources? Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent reminds us that God deeply desires friendship with us. During the month of February, Daily Reflections readers will receive a 30% discount when buying Divine Friendship from The Upper Room Bookstore. Visit our store this month, and use the following promo code when you check out: REFLECT30

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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Affected by Friendship

Today’s Reflection

FRIENDSHIP WITH GOD, in the person of Christ, changes everything about us. It affects the way we see ourselves, others, and the world around us. It changes what we most deeply desire. It gives us the grace to become the people God wants us to be: “fully human and fully alive,” as the words ascribed to Saint Irenaeus tell us.

—Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ
Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent

From page 7 of Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent by Trevor Hudson, Anthony Egan, SJ, and Russell Pollitt, SJ. Copyright © 2018 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

How does friendship with God change the way you see yourself, others, and the world around you? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!
—2 Corinthians 5:17

Prayer for the Week

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart.

Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

Are you looking for Lenten Resources? Divine Friendship: Reflections for Lent reminds us that God deeply desires friendship with us. During the month of February, Daily Reflections readers will receive a 30% discount when buying Divine Friendship from The Upper Room Bookstore. Visit our store this month, and use the following promo code when you check out: REFLECT30

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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