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Maintaining Relationship with God

Today’s Reflection

YOU CAN THINK OF SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE as a way to maintain a healthy relationship with God. Beth and I have been married for more than twenty years and have been friends for more than thirty years. Yet if one of us neglected the relationship — never talking, rarely coming home, squandering money, and so on — the legal marital relationship would remain for a while, but the quality of the relationship would be pretty poor, and the foundation would crumble fast!

So it is with our relationship to God. God is faithful and has done everything for us that we need to know and grow in God. Yet we have plenty of impediments to mature faith, including fear, mixed motives, stubbornness, and an inability to see the future. The Bible itself indicates that God can seem silent and distant at times. People faithful to their relationship with God have times of doubt, trouble, and anxiety, as we’ve seen from the Bible psalms and stories —so much more for those of us whose prayer life, fellowship time, charitable giving, Bible reading, and so on are “catch as catch can.” Meaningful spiritual discipline helps us grow and remain open to God’s Spirit.

– Paul E. Stroble
You Gave Me a Wide Place

From pages 142-143 of You Gave Me a Wide Place: Holy Places of Our Lives, by Paul E. Stroble. Copyright © 2006 by Paul E. Stroble. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What are you doing to maintain your relationship with God? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and drank, and rose and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.

Genesis 25:34, NRSV

This Week: pray for unity within communities. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center website.

This week we remember: Kateri Tekakwitha (July 14).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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{ 6 comments… add one }

  • robert moeller July 11, 2017, 6:35 am

    Yes, staying connected to God is a daily task. God stays with us, we have to do our part. Quiet Time, early in the day, visits to the UR, posting there, prayers and follow up posts during the day, church, caring for others, and advocating for this earth and the people who live here are ways I try to stay close to God.

    Thankful for plans to finish my move. It begins early tomorrow morning as I leave to catch a bus. Thankful Erich has a few days off from work. He’s working hard, is appreciated, making friends, and starting to support himself. Thankful for help from my daughter. Pray that all went well yesterday at pain management for Anneliese and recovery goes well. Thankful for the first harvest from the garden, mixed lettuce and spinach. Together with other vegetables and tuna it made a great supper salad. Thank You, Lord.

    Glad to hear Mary is better, had a visit from a former student, those are always good. News from Lou, thank you, prayers for Betsy, Grace and family, Julie and her situation, and Andrea’s broken arm. Good news that Chad who had a mishap with a chain saw is doing well. He can walk on the leg and it is healing. Blessings to all the UR family. Staying connected with you is staying connected to God, when two or more are gathered in His name, Jesus is there too.

  • Betsy July 11, 2017, 7:08 am

    Yes, staying connected to God does take discipline. Prayer, quiet time and sharing concerns and praises with other Christians helps me to keep that connection strong. There are many times when I feel a distance from Him; times of stress, failure, loss and grief. But I know that is of my doing, not God’s. We’re so fortunate to know a loving, forgiving God who is always there when we come out of the cloud of disconnectedness.

    So glad to hear of Erich’s success at his job, Robert. I know you are very proud of him. Prayers for Mary, Lou, Andrea for healing, and Jill’s continued enjoyment of her summer. You are all my prayer warriors and and friends in Christ. Blessings this day.

    • Mary Ng Shwu Ling July 11, 2017, 8:00 am

      Thanks so much Betsy for your prayers. Praise God that Erich is making good progress .

      May Erich excel in everything he does and may God’s favor and blessungs be upon him!

  • Julie July 11, 2017, 7:32 am

    Prayers throughout the day, reading the daily devotional in the Upper Room, visiting this forum for believers and reading eveyone’s wise words written in love and Christian helpme to grow in my connection with aand understnding of the Lord.
    Prayers for you Robert as you undertake the daunting task of moving. I’m thankful you will have help. Praise for Erich’s success, it was a long time coming and much deserved.
    Thank you everyone for your kind prayers and wise words. I have gained so much since finding this forum.
    Blessings to all who visit here you are among friends

  • G.Weeks July 11, 2017, 8:40 am

    I know my weaknesses and that’s to fully trust and obey the Lord. Each morning before I get up, I have quiet time with my Heavenly Father.Next I recite The Lords’ Prayer followed by a prayer that I wrote about trust and obedience to the Lord. All of this plus answering requests at the prayer wall anchors me for the coming day. My main focus through the day is to trust and obey the Lord. I surely stumble but the Lord catches me or picks me up. In praise and gratitude I continue my walk with Him.

  • Connie July 11, 2017, 8:45 am

    In staying connected with God I sometimes find myself lacking. I think that may be a good thing, as it focuses my mind even more on Godly thoughts. I pray, I love the scriptures, I love the Upper Room and all it has done over the years to enhance my faith, and I have gained many insights from this site. (Betsy, I remember you from years back, I believe. Did you lose a son?) Perhaps someday I will revisit the archives. As for now, “Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold”.

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