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Seeing the Marginalized

Today’s Reflection

IT SOUNDS TRITE but it is true: If you want to move from handout to ministry, if you eschew the world of “drive by charity,” if you are ready to stop “playing church” and want to “be the church,” then pray about it. If you belong to a local congregation that wants to make a difference, and you wonder what God has in store for your future, then pray about it. Pray for God to direct your congregation to ministry with, not to, the poor and marginalized. Pray for God to open your eyes and the eyes of your congregation to see those who experience marginalization among you.

Not Just a One-Night Stand

“From page 63 of Not Just a One-Night Stand: Ministry with the Homeless by John Flowers and Karen Vannoy. Copyright © 2009 Discipleship Resources. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Discipleship Resources.
“http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

When do you encounter folks who are marginalized? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Accept my offerings of praise, O LORD, and teach me your ordinances.

Psalm 119:108, 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 }

  • Jill July 13, 2017, 5:56 am

    Panhandlers have become ever more visible in my city. The exit ramp I use returning home always has a person at the bottom of it. On my run in the morning, I pass by a panhandler at a different exit ramp – the one from the other direction.
    Is the young mom I assist marginalized? To some extent, yes, I would say that she is. Her morning texts have become a bit more regular, requesting a ride to work or a ride to take her daughter to day care. I fight the voice inside of me saying – Jill, she is taking advantage of you. The conversation continues…Jill – she is 8 months pregnant – and you have the time to do it.
    Father – I confess that I don’t always have a servant’s heart. I pray for more compassion and for more selfless reactions. What would you have me do when I am stopped at the light and my eyes meet the panhandlers eyes? Is it more important to provide a ride for Ashley than to remain in my blue chair quietly with You?

    • Betsy July 13, 2017, 6:58 am

      You are such a strong prayer warrior, Jill. God will direct you how best to assist your young mom. Just keeping your heart open to what ways He wants you to do. You are already helping her rise to independence by providing transportation for her to get to work. You are planting seeds….

  • Julie July 13, 2017, 7:40 am

    Jill, perhaps you could have a meeting with the young woman and ask her what is preventing her from being able to get to work, etc., without relyingon you. The two of you could brainstorm how she could be more independent.
    I, too, encounter homeless individuals, though not as frequently and struggle with the proper Christian action.
    Blessings and prayers for all who visit here.
    Robert, I hope moving went well and you are not sore.
    Prayers for those who are hurting, homeless, hungry or otherwise in need.

  • Judy July 13, 2017, 2:48 pm

    When our group serves dinner at the shelter…we are becoming a community with the shelter as well as with the guests. People who serve the meal often have been victims of homelessness themselves…from Family Promise or neighborhoods nearby who want to encourage others. We are in the presence of the mystery of God.

  • robert moeller July 14, 2017, 1:54 am

    Thank you Julie, I’m packed up, moving help and the truck come today, and I’m on my way. Am a little sore, will, will be more so by the end of the day, but it is what happens when the work is done.

    I see panhandlers in cities. Marginalized people don’t stand out in the same way in the countryside, but they are there. Gave a man a ride one Sunday morning. Deciding what to do is always an issue.

    Thankful for Jill’s straightforward comments and help to the woman who calls. Betsy makes a good point. It goes back to deciding what to do and when.
    It’s like helping someone learn to ride a bike, when do you provide support and when do you let go.

    Am thankful that Anneliese has made such good progress in many areas, health, house sale – although it’s not done yet, finding her ancestors, being more independent, losing weight. Thankful my son is making progress, it wouldn’t be possible with out a way to work, couldn’t provide that without being there.

    Prayers for community unity. Amazing how the word unity is in community.
    If things were always so simple. Prayers for those who come to the UR.

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