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Ordinary Missionaries

Today’s Reflection

BAPTISM IS A COMMITMENT to raising ordinary missionaries. It is not possible to enter the kingdom of God as a follower of Jesus and not become a participant in his mission. For one thing, all the teaching of Jesus is about what it means to participate in the kingdom as both citizen and servant. For another thing, being obedient to the Great Commission is itself part of the “everything” we are meant to teach others, from generation to generation.

– Philip R. Meadows
Remembering Our Baptism

From page 22 of Remembering Our Baptism: Discipleship and Mission in the Wesleyan Spirit by Philip R. Meadows. Copyright © 2017 by Philip R. Meadows. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Discipleship Resources. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

How are you a missionary for Christ? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

May we shout for joy over your victory, and in the name of our God set up our banners. May the LORD fulfill all your petitions.

Psalm 20:5, NRSV

This Week: pray for those who need comfort. 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: Anthony of Padua (June 13).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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{ 22 comments… add one }

  • Jill June 13, 2018, 4:52 am

    I aspire to be ready to share Christ with others, when the moment is right/the opportunity arises. I try to exemplify Him in my words and actions.
    Andrea – I love what you shared yesterday from Isaiah 42. A few weeks back, just when I needed it, I received a text from a friend at church – the one who has helped me find my footing through my diagnosis. She, too, has been having a difficult year, as her daughter is battling anxiety and depression, as a result of seizure meds. She told me to check out Isaiah 42:16. “I will lead the blind by a road they do not know, by paths they have not known I will guide them. I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground. These are the things I will do, and I will not forsake them.” I read the passage when I had a moment at school. Later during the school day – I realized how perfectly that verse married with a passage from Psalms I had been meditating on for a while. Psalm 25:4,5: “Make me to know Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation, for You I wait all day long.” The pleading of my heart and His sure response. Father, increase my faith when I waver.

    • Marcy June 13, 2018, 11:53 am

      Jill, I continue to keep you, your Mom, Gloria, your Dad, Larry, your sister, Becky and sweet Roger in my prayers. I am praying for your sister in Christ, as her daughter fights off the side effects of the anti-seizure meds. This is also the type of migraine maintenance medication I was taking. As I already have anxiety, depression and PTSD, I have stopped the medication after my mental health worsened. This medication also caused bladder issues and pain in my right kidney.
      You are a prime example of faith in action, Jill, as you are able to reach out to your students and all the other opportunities you take to enlighten others. Your faith and mission are stronger than you may think. Prayers for you when you waver, as we all do at times. Thank you for including me in your prayers.

  • robert moeller June 13, 2018, 5:57 am

    Powerful and helpful passages from Andrea and Jill. Thank you! I believe in them. They are sustaining words, we do not live by bread alone.

    I am a missionary for Christ through the power of the risen Christ and the Holy Spirit, without them I can do nothing. I try my best, fall down, but get up and try again. I know no other way. As to my success I leave that to Christ’s judgement.

    Prayers for Marcy’s breathing and medical needs, Julie’s well being, house search, and problem resolution, Anneliese’s right lower back, medical bills, and the sale of the condo, Gloria’s comfort and peace, support for Larry, Jill and Becky, Andrea’s trip, daughter, grandson, and husband, Lowell; Connie, Betsy, April, Francesca, Chloe, Rusty and K, Mary, hers students and parents.

    Lord more wisdom is needed for the leaders of North Korea and the USA, results of the summit are mixed in my view, but at least both sides are talking. There is much more to be done.

    Thankful that the makings of an HO scale Henschel Bismarck type steam locomotive should soon be on the way.

    Blessings to all on this beautiful day, thankful always for your sharing, prayers, and support.

    • Marcy June 13, 2018, 12:19 pm

      Robert, you and Erich, Annaliese, your daughter and your sister (I don’t have their names) and your family in whole, along with dear Pearl, remain in my daily prayers. I am also praying for your church members; Joan, who has stage 4 cancer, and Rob Jones, who has thyroid cancer. O God of the heavenly realms, I pray that You would please wipe this disease from the face of the earth, as You provide more knowledge to our medical capabilities in treatments and cures. I am also praying for Arnolds continued healing and health, and that he is able to attend church.

      I see you also, Robert, as one who does mission work when provided the opportunity and in my take how mission work can be applied to believers and unbelievers alike. You are certainly an encouragement and voice of reason and knowledge among the UR family and beyond. The words you write have come straight from the Holy Spirit and I aspire to such a connection. My words, at times, come out wrong, bring unable to articulate what I’m trying to say. We are so blessed to have you here.

      Yes, falling down, getting up and trying again is one of my specialties! Thankful for a patient and forgiving God, who knows our hearts!

      Are all of your trains HO? I haven’t been able to catch up on my notes of the things I wanted to ask you. I have looked up some pictures, but wish I could get out and go to the library. I still very much enjoy the feel of books in my hands, and have always loved reading!

      Blessings, Robert! Thank you for your prayers for me!

      • robert moeller June 14, 2018, 9:52 am

        Congratulations Andrea on your 20th anniversary!

        My sister’s name is Christine, Chris for short, and my daughter is Jennifer, Jenny for short.

        Yes, Marcy, all my trains are HO. Have my Dad’s 1925 American Flyer, think that is O gauge, long ago as a kid I had an S gauge American Flyer.

        Working on the St.J&LC combine, one last grab iron I discovered in a photo and then the remaining roof rain gutter. When the weather dries up, it gets a coat of grimy black paint.

  • Andrea June 13, 2018, 6:08 am

    I pray for those who need comfort. For your friend, Jill, and for her daughter. For your parents and Mary’s parents. For Marcy, Julie, and Anneliese. For Lou and her children. For all UR friends and visitors, and for your prayer concerns.

    We got home yesterday evening. Marcy, we chose to drive through Webster and Waubay so we would be on the road to a small western Minnesota town that my mother lived in as a child – Appleton. It was interesting to see the South Dakota range country transform into lovely glacial lakes terrain around Waubay. We stopped for ice cream in Waubay and, with our binoculars, we looked at stunning yellow-headed blackbirds (rare in MN). In Appleton, we found the small Congregational church my mother attended, where my grandparents were the music director and organist, and we found the lovely old Methodist church where my quilting friend’s father was pastor for many years. The small country-like churches looked so pretty against the evening sky.

    I thank God for the great beauty we witnessed vacationing in our neighboring state.

    Today, my husband and I celebrate our twentieth wedding anniversary. I give thanks for our marriage and pray for my husband’s health.

    Blessings, all.

    • Connie June 13, 2018, 8:10 am

      Happy Anniversary to you and your husband. May you have many, many more. Thank you for sharing the beauty of your trip. A Yellow-headed Blackbird, how amazing!

    • Marcy June 13, 2018, 12:53 pm

      Oh Andrea! Blessings on your twentieth anniversary today and the Love you share with your husband! I am praying, always for you, Lowell, your daughter, son-in-law and the sweet child you have in your grandson. I am praying extra prayers for Lowell’s health. May God bless both of you and keep you safe and well.

      Your descriptions of God’s beauty in nature are wonderful and uplifting and are a kind of mission work. Your mission trip to Sri Lanka and work with Father Edwin come to mind today. Thank you for your mission work of all kinds, Andrea.

      Had I known you’d be traveling through Webster and Waubay, I would have mentioned the small museum on the outskirts of Webster. There, my father’s family, the Hemenways, are featured with early settlers to the area. There are some old buildings that were moved there from Waubay and other small towns and information of their history. There is still, around the land the family farmed, a feature called the Hemenway Grade. The old family farmhouse can be seen from Route 12 in Waubay, on Blue Dog Lake. Your whole trip through South Dakota, makes me want so badly to go there. All the family I knew well have passed, but there are still more distant members living there, in Webster. My father is buried next to my grandfather, great-grandfather and small children who died from diseases and illnesses for which there were no cures at the time. Dad has a military WWII grave marker. Thank you for these memories, Andrea!

      And thank you for praying for me. I am trusting in God, but am still in need of prayers for life-giving breath.

  • Betsy June 13, 2018, 7:00 am

    Thank you, Andrea and Jill, for placing us in the Word this morning. Isn’t it a wonderful thing that scripture can speak to us in such needed ways to comfort and strengthen. Happy 20th anniversary to you, Andrea! Sounds like your trip has been a success.

    God calls us as true missionaries to go out and make disciples; a daunting task but our calling. I pray that God support me in all encounters that I have this day. Praying for this family of believers: Robert, Marcy, Andrea, Jill, Mary, Julie and others who visit to drink in the Word of God.

    “There is nothing so sweet….than that of continual conversation with God. Those only can comprehend it who practice and experience it.” — Brother Lawrence

    • Mary Ng Shwu Ling June 13, 2018, 7:47 am

      Thanks Betsy for your prayers and quote

      Blessings

    • Marcy June 13, 2018, 1:10 pm

      Betsy, thank you for your comment today. Yes, mission work is a daunting task indeed, in today’s world. Especially among younger people, turned off by judgmental Christians, and those who simply never had God in their lives. They cannot comprehend our supernatural God, our God, the center of everything. Frankly, neither can I; He is above our thoughts and understsnding. My faith goes beyond what I do know of God and is in what I cannot see. Also, God does not deal in instant gratification, a real issue among not just the younger people these days. However, God has the answers and His patience allows time for many to come to know and believe in Him. In His timing, not ours. Blessings in all your encounters today, Betsy!

      Thank you for your prayers for me. And the quote from Brother Lawrence. My daily readings and continued listening are a blessing to me. Thanks be to God!

    • Marcy June 13, 2018, 1:21 pm

      Betsy, you and Grace and all of your family are in my prayers. I just wanted to make sure you know, as I hit the submit button too soon!

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling June 13, 2018, 7:03 am

    Thank you Robert, Marcy, Julie, Andrea and all who keep me and my parents in prayers. I am very grateful for all the prayer warriors here.

    Tomorrow will be a challenging day as none of my colleagues will be around. Thankful that an intern is coming to help me manage the children but only from 10 am till 6 pm. I have to start work from 7am till 7pm and tonight i still had to go to the book shop to buy ceramic markers for the students to devorate mugs for father’s day gift.

    May God be our strength and ever present help. HE NEVER FAILS US!

    BLESSINGS

    • Mary Ng Shwu Ling June 13, 2018, 7:05 am

      Sorry, i mean decorate mugs

    • Marcy June 13, 2018, 1:19 pm

      Sweet sister Mary, I am praying for you in your challenges tomorrow. Praise God you have the intern to help you eight hours of your twelve hour day tomorrow!
      You have so much to do, but the Dad’s receiving those cups will be so blessed! Thank you for your hard work and dedication.

      I continue to keep you in my prayers, along with your Mom and Dad, siblings and niece. And all your students. Prayers for the intern coming in to help you!

      Thank you for your prayers, Mary. I am grateful.

      • Mary Ng Shwu Ling June 14, 2018, 6:59 am

        Thanks so much dear Marcy. You are amazing!

        Blessings

  • Julie June 13, 2018, 7:52 am

    Thank you Andrea and Jill for the words from scriptures that you shared. They are quite comforting. Again, I am amazed by the manner the Lord uses to sustain us as we suffer. His words continue to soothe our troubled minds these many centuries later.
    Prayers for Mary. May God strengthen her and ease her strength. May He share her yoke and her burdens.
    Prayers for Robert, Erich, Anneliese, Jill, Goria, Larry, Becky, Andrea, Lowell, Lou, her children, Marcy, Betsy, and all who visit this warm and supportive group.

    • Marcy June 13, 2018, 1:39 pm

      Julie, I am fervently praying for you and your daughter. I can relate to the circumstances you are experiencing, but don’t claim to know your personal anguish. I am only sure of one thing: God will see you and your daughter through it all. He will be with you every step of the way, every hill and valley. And when you make a new start in your future home, God will be with you then and alesys. You’ll be free to make new memories with your daughter, in peace and harmony. Along with your dear little cats! (I’m sorry, what are their names again?) You will look back at this time and praise our Triune God in bringing you to a happy place, all your own. Our heavenly Father loves you and will provide what you need. He will never forsake you.

      Thank you for your prayers for me, Julie. I am going to the hospital tomorrow to see the neurologist and if my breathing still has not improved, I am going to the ER, as the pulmonary doctor ordered. Praise God I have a dependable ride through the transportation vendor tomorrow! I am sending my Love and hugs to you, my very first sister here in the UR family!

  • Marcy June 13, 2018, 10:44 am

    UR family, I am leaning heavily on God and this Loving community. I am sorry ahead of time for this outpouring. Yesterday, my friend showed up too late for my extremely important Pulmonary doctor. My medicine to try to bring up my O2 arrive this afternoon. If there isn’t a significant improvement within 24 hours, the nurse told me I am to go to the ER. There is a rescheduled appointment (not til July 11) and I am on a list to be called in the event of a cancellation, but I have the very strong feeling the ER is in my future. I could be sent there directly from my Neurologist appointment tomorrow afternoon. Thank you, UR family, for your prayers. I am seeing the auras that precede a migraine. I have taken the Sumatriptan for onset, but this hasn’t performed well in the past. Asking for your prayers for both situations. Jesus, I am trusting in You.

  • Marcy June 13, 2018, 11:41 am

    Blessed day to you, Loving UR family! You all show mission works in so many varied ways. Even though missionary work is to bring those who don’t know Christ to our faith, I believe mission work can be done among those of us who already are believers, too. Consider those who are thinking of leaving faith communities, those who have heard nothing but judgment from certain circles of “godly” people who claim to be all and know all. We are losing so many younger people because of this. Also, if they never knew Jesus Christ at all, their instant gratification these days, makes missionary work all the more difficult and needed right here at home. I remain steadfast in my belief that Jesus will bring many believers and unbelievers back to God. There is time. I currently can’t point to any missionary work of my own as I am not on Facebook, or any of those types of social media where I’m sure I’d find plenty of unbelievers. Also, my outreach consists of my personal story of faith. That’s the only way I know how to spread the Word. I need to be out and about and I’m definitely not physically able….yet.

    I am so very thankful to Robert, Andrea, Mary, Betsy, Julie, Lou and all who have and are praying for me in this time of need. Your prayers have lifted me to God, this I know without doubt. I cannot state strongly enough how much I am filled with Love for you. I say this truly meaning it, and do hope you know and feel my Love and caring for you. I am thankful to God for each and every one of you, whether I now your name or not. PTL!

    I pray for each and every one of you, UR family, every morning, those here posting or reading and beyond. The Lord knows who you are and cares for you infinitely! I pray for our Almighty God to heal those who are dealing with mental, emotional, relational, physical, spiritual issues and feeling the loss of loved ones who have gone on before us. I am praising God for all celebrating birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, answered prayers and have health, happiness and harmony in their lives.

    And these three remain: Faith, Hope and Love, and the greatest of these is LOVE!

  • Kevin King June 13, 2018, 11:06 pm

    Unfortunately I must take a different perspective with what I find to be an absolute statement from your devotional.

    “It is not possible to enter the kingdom of God as a follower of Jesus and not become a participant in his mission.”

    Although I sincerely believe that once you understand “the kingdom of God” you will want to be a participant, some of those believers may in fact commit the “sin” of acting contrary to their beliefs. Or others may join the kingdom and shortly thereafter pass away.

    I believe that only God the father shall judge the quick and the dead.

    • robert moeller June 14, 2018, 7:58 am

      Kevin, I agree on all your well made points. Thank you.

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