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The Faith Community

Today’s Reflection

PARENT GOD, you have placed the solitary in families and church is your family of faith. Yes, we can find you in our moments of solitude and contemplation, but we need the support, presence, and love of a faith community. Amen.

– Richard Morgan
Settling In

From page 170 of Settling In: My First Year in a Retirement Community by Richard Morgan. Copyright © 2006 by Richard Morgan. 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 role does faith community play in your spiritual life? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

In Christ we have also obtained an inheritance, having been destined according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will, so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, might live for the praise of his glory.

Ephesians 1:11-12, NRSV

This Week: pray to know God’s deep love for you. 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)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2018 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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{ 20 comments… add one }

  • Jill July 14, 2018, 5:19 am

    The role my faith community plays is huge. I still marvel in gratitude how God led me from the church I was attending for over 15 years to the church I am currently at – just in the perfect timing of all the change I have experienced in the past year. The small group I joined for Bible study – there are a few who took a deep interest in me quickly and have stood beside me through all of this – sending texts and emails at just the right time. And my stalwart friends who listen and listen and listen. This UR community is never overlooked – I so appreciate your fervent prayers and words of support and concern.
    Julie – I am glad you have surgery scheduled to help out your finger. I am glad you are not currently in discomfort.
    Robert – continued wisdom and discernment for you and Erich as you seek out the optimal situation for him.

  • robert moeller July 14, 2018, 7:10 am

    I am very thankful for the church I attend, the small group I keep in contact with, worship, music, the choir, different activities, Bible study, and fellowship. Weekly I am recharged by worship and fellowship.

    Wonderful, Jill, that you have great support from church at this time. It makes a big difference. I hope that it flows through you to your Mom,Dad, and Becky

    I, too am glad Julie has relief for her hand and surgery coming soon.

    Lots of preparation, planning, research, and effort going into finding the right place and work environment that will produce the desired results. Prayers for God’s guidance and wisdom.

    Prayers for Marcy and Anneliese, their health and well being. Hope that Marcy got the help she needs at the pulmonary appointment. Praying that she receives the insurance and financial assistance she needs. Anneliese has a lot of pain, was at the ER, meds they gave her didn’t help, she finally took medicine that helped her sleep. On top of this heart and thyroid prescriptions have not been filled. There was a change in pharmacies, but that problem has been resolved.

    Lord, when do we not need You! So thankful You are always with us.

  • Betsy July 14, 2018, 7:21 am

    My “new” faith community of two years have been a real support to me in my move from our church of 30 years. The choir family and my women’s Bible Study have helped to connect me to others and build strong friendships, while growing my faith. I’m so grateful for that.

    Continuing to pray for you, Marcy, as you meet with a specialist to help with breathing issues. Robert, praying for Erich and that decisions are made that are best for him. Jill, I’m enjoying following you and your dad as you continue uour golf “tour”. That is such a great respite for him! Prayers also for your mom.

    Praying that all that come here to this site will feel the deep love that our Lord has for us. Amen

  • Connie July 14, 2018, 7:51 am

    I love my church. I could ask anything of my church family and it would be addressed. When I lost my daughter they rallied to support me. I can’t attend as faithfully as I once did, but I have a t.v. ministry from a local church that has wonderful sermons. I hope to become as active as I once was very soon-that is my prayer.
    We had a nice rain last night and we needed it after a very hot spell. The grass really “greened up”.
    Have a blessed weekend, my dear ones.

  • Julie July 14, 2018, 7:59 am

    As i have related, the church I attended for years never felt inviting. I never felt as if I was an accepted member. I joined small groups, I was an active member in several committees, I gave freely to every cause. But, I never felt accepted. However, I had tried many churches in my area prior to finding this one and they were worse. So this is my faith community and I watch a church service on TV each week. I find the sermons given on this broaadcast very moving and helpful.
    Thank you again for your kind words.
    Jill, have you received help for your hand yet? I am glad it does not prevent you from golfing with your father. Prayers for you and your family.
    Robert, what exactly does Erich seek? My daughter is trying to discover what best manner to use her degree. Prayers for you and Erich. May he find his way in the world and his way to the Lord through your faithfulness and love.
    Prayers for Betsy and her family and her new church home and new neighbors.
    Prayers for Marcy, Anneliese, Mary, Gail, Andrea, Lou and all who visit this warm ans welcoming faith community. May all their physical, emotional, relationship, financial, and spiritual issues be resolved.
    In Jesus’ name, Amen

    • robert moeller July 14, 2018, 8:35 am

      Erich has a certificate in resort management and his BS degree in business management. Experience in resort- mountain operations, hotel, and retail, he’s interested in management. Looking at a town now that offers opportunities in all of these in a more suburban setting than rural VT. He needs to be near places to ski. Being able to walk or bike to work is a goal. Likes having the necessities of life close by. A dream job would be to manage his own small inn.

      The town we are looking at, studying, has all of this, and for me a model railroad club, and both the Conway Scenic Railroad and the Mount Washington Cog Railway. We are quite hopeful.

  • Gail July 14, 2018, 8:14 am

    My aged mother moved from her home to a Methodist retirement community and passed away 2 years later from illness. She was 93. Mother was never really solitary, but she benefitted immensely from her new faith community. I marvelled at her courage in giving up her so-called independence. But I was very thankful because it took a big burden off of me.
    I do not always agree with some things at my church. Many times the problem is me! Not the church or its members. I pray that each of my sons would find a faith community/church. I am thankful for all the posters and readers here. To God be the glory! Remember to have HOPE!

    • robert moeller July 14, 2018, 8:44 am

      Amen, Gail to those prayers for your sons. Thankful for your post.

      Despite feeling very close to my Mom and having her until she passed away at almost 97, I realize now that I don’t know my Mom so well. Know things she loved, but she kept her views on many things to herself, and didn’t reveal her inner self. Still I am very thankful for her, she was always, as long as she could, a support and help. She had amazing strength despite her small size.

      My sister and I cared for her from 2008 to 2015. It was a labor of love. Am very grateful that we were able to do that.

      • Gail July 14, 2018, 9:09 am

        Thank you Robert. My initial reaction was that your post expressed my thoughts about my relationship with my mother. On reflection, my situation was different. My mother did not want to hear about my search for my biological mother and she told me that. Consequently I did not share this aspect of my life with her. From my perspective this was a barrier between us. Perhaps our parents are close-mouthed for a reason. My parents were very good to me

        • Gail July 14, 2018, 9:15 am

          The specific burden was the proper disposition of her stuff, i.e., house, personal property, etc. Still I cling to some things from her house, which Mom tried to sell at an “estate” sale before she moved. China, figurines, collection of angels, etc.

        • robert moeller July 14, 2018, 9:19 am

          Thankful the Mom you lived with was very good to you, that’s as it should be. Not knowing why you had two Moms, that’s a tougher story.

          My Mom lost a baby before I was was born. Didn’t learn that from her. Things were a lot different in those times.

          She went to a doctor in a nearby town when I was born. He had a very good reputation.

          • Gail July 15, 2018, 7:37 am

            I was adopted when I was 5 months old. My adoptive parents, i.e., my parents, raised me. At age 62 I discovered who my biological mother was. She and her two children were deceased. At age 64 I discovered who my biological father was. He too is deceased. It is a long story.

  • April July 14, 2018, 9:24 am

    This is one of my faith communities and I read it every morning. It is such a joy to feel the love of this family, whether you are a poster or reader. My other sisters/brothers are a friend I text every Friday night to check on her week, a friend that I write to/call a few times a week, my neighbor who we just helped make a decision regarding her spouse, a co-worker who lost her soldier son in Afghanistan, my email Christian friends from the state we moved from, Facebook friends and 2 former churches we attended besides our current one where we join in unison for world problems.
    Our children were brought up in a Christian home and now I believe/pray that Christ is a part of their lives as they make decisions for/with themselves, spouses, children.
    I believe that God created families and communities so that we can be the hands and feet of Christ to all of God’s children. I feel so blessed to be connected to so many Christians and cannot imagine what life would be like without each of you. I echo the prayers that have been lifted on this site……truly this is a community that believes in community and reminds me of the song “This land is your land, this land is my land” for I know that is really God’s land we are to share with all.

  • Marcy July 14, 2018, 12:17 pm

    Jill, it’s a blessed gift from God, who led you to your present church, at just the time it was needed! I experienced the same, when was led to my church home in 2007 and joined our Bible study, targeting those who both sought God’s Word and were hampered by health issues. They have all passed now, except for two. This was in the last two years of the “marriage,” and the before my physical issues became disabling. I was blessed to be a helpful member. I am keeping you, your Mom and Dad, Becky and Leslie in my prayers.

    Robert, I see every Sunday, Monday, how your church has been such a blessing for you in many ways! To God be the glory! I am continuing to keep you and Erich in my prayers, as the two of you focus on the priorities for Erich’s employment. It is so good for him to have you as his Dad. I am keeping you, all your family members, Annaliese, and your church members in my prayers. Thank you for your prayers and thank you for your encouragement.

    Betsy, we are indeed blessed in the gathering each Sunday to pray for others, sing praises to God, and gain knowledge as we attend church. I am missing this, like a lost limb. I listen to a podcast on Tuesdays of the sermon, but the whole service is not included. I believe they would if they could. I am in contact with my Pastors and they are taking much-needed back to back vacations, starting this Monday. I am praying for you and your family, Betsy, and Grace especially at this time. Thank you for your prayers.

    Connie, yes! We love our churches! We share God’s Love for one another in our church homes. This also is my prayer, to become active again in my church, greeting people, ushering, volunteering for various requests, serving at the two homeless shelters. My Hope remains, my Faith remains, and Love strengthens all. You and your husband are in my prayers each day, my sister in faith!

    Julie, I’m sorry you have had these church experiences, and yes, you have shared this with us in the past. However, we can indeed, have our time with God in other ways. Your television “church” time is meaningful and you gain God’s teachings and celebrations in your own way, as do I. You most certainly have the support and acceptance here, in the UR family, as you once told me! You remain at the top of the prayer list, as I am praying for your surgery at the end of the month. Your daughter and your future are also in my prayers. When you are on the other side, things will be much improved, and different, but God will guide you to a peaceful lfe. Thank you for your prayers, Julie.

    Gail, I am thankful for the wisdom you share with us! I look forward to reading your comments. I know my Mom loved me, but she was somewhat detached and quite eccentric. Very intelligent and gifted, too. My parents marriage was not matched up well, and they both had resentments. I overheard much as a child that I understand now. She had a brain hemorrhage that burst, and had to be medically monitored for the seven years of her life in a nursing home. My parents are both with God in heaven now, and I love the thought of seeing them again! You and your family are in my prayers. And yes, my Hope is steadfast and in God!

    April, you are truly blessed by a wide variety of Christian friends and family. Your church sounds intetesting! I appreciate your upbeat comments when you post. Prayers for your friend who lost her son serving in Afghanistan, and all the special people you help. I am keeping you and your family in my prayers.

    I am continually praying for our UR family here in Reflections and am ever thanking God for guiding me here. Andrea, Lou, Mary, Francesca, Pamela, Rusty and K, Carol and Robin — you and your families are all in my prayers. I pray for all who visit Relections, posting or reading, and those whose burdens or joys are unspoken — our Father knows them.

    I missed the Thursday appointment, regarding this untreated issue, due to another migraine. Wednesday, I made it to the Pulmonary doctor and I am to see a cardiologist, so I will request the referral when I see my primary next week. I have known this was coming, so I remain full of Hope, stoked by Faith, encompassed by Love. Jesus, You are the Way, and the Truth and the Light! And I trust in You!

    I am thankful and grateful to each one of you, as you are my family, my loved ones. I really cannot convey, properly describing the depth of God’s Love I have for you all. Thanks be to God in heaven!

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

    • Pamela July 14, 2018, 3:29 pm

      Welcome BACK, Marcy! You were so missed!

    • robert moeller July 15, 2018, 1:25 am

      Thank you dear Marcy, for the very personal, thoughtful posts for me, Erich, Anneliese, and UR family members. God talks through you! There is time before we can move, if that is what is needed, can go now, although I wish that were possible. The new year brings the possibility.

      The etched plate of parts to build an HO scale Henschel Bismarck steam locomotive have arrived. I’m in the process of translating the direction sheet for the model. Thankfully I have the running gear, a frame, and a motor on which I’ll mount the cab and boiler made from the etched parts, more that I salvaged from another locomotive, and possibly sone I need to buy. I’m also reading and studying articles from the 1982-83 issues of Model Railroader that explain how to build a steamer from metal parts. Have a modeler who is advising as well. So far so good.

      Hope to get photos today of an old GE 70 ton diesel locomotive to help someone doing an article on a small branchline railroad that interchanged with the Central Vermont.

      Church today! That’s a blessing and much needed.

      Glad you made it to the pulmonary appointment, hope you can get help with those migraines and your heart. Your spiritual hearty is as well as your soul.
      Those are great blessings. God is providing what the world can not.

      God’s peace and healing to you.

      • Gail July 15, 2018, 7:30 am

        Robert, Are you translating the instructions from German, or ther language? Or are you just figuring out what the instructions mean? Either way I’m impressed.

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling July 14, 2018, 8:55 pm

    I am very grateful for the methodist church i attended as a child till adult. Then i was posted to another church to serve.

    This place is another community of faith where we uplift one another in prayer, edify and build up one another in the body of christ.

    Grateful for time to prepare my work this saturday morning and had a good rest in the evening.

    Blessings to all

    May Julie’s operation be smooth and Marcy health improve. May Robert and Erich find a place where Erich can find a job that fit him.

    Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

    • robert moeller July 15, 2018, 1:31 am

      Thankful Mary that you had time to prepare work Saturday morning and a restful evening. Thank you for your prayers for Erich and me. Yesterday was a tough day, but we made it.

      Church today and some activities that will be helpful to us and others.

      Blessings on this Sunday.

      • Mary Ng Shwu Ling July 15, 2018, 6:19 am

        Thanks Robert!

        Hope things will improve both for you and Erich.

        May God be your inspiration and strength!

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