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God Ever Comes

Today’s Reflection

WE EMBRACE THE DARKNESS, but God knows we can no longer see, at least not clearly. We have all but forgotten home; we search for that which we can no longer name. But in compassion God sends us a Shepherd, a Guide and Guardian. We are wounded, deny it as we will, and life is pouring out of us. … We look for security, for comfort, in all the wrong places — such is our madness, the ancient chaos, the dark night of our soul’s world. Into that very darkness God comes; God ever comes. God does not abandon us to our own self destruction but sends light, speaks promise, and gives new life.

– Thomas R. Steagald
Sacred Days

From page 20 of Sacred Days: Following Jesus Through the Christian Year by Thomas R. Steagald. Copyright © 2014 by Thomas R. Steagald. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

Describe a time when God has come to you in the darkness. Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

Jesus answered, “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” After that no one dared to ask him any question.
Mark 12:34, NRSV

This Week: pray for refugees. 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: Donald M. Baillie (October 31).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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{ 8 comments… add one }

  • robert moeller November 4, 2018, 5:02 am

    As best I can remember I think I have only experienced God coming to me in the darkness of sorrow. I think it makes no difference what the circumstances were, that God came is most important. In my situation it made a difference I am still trying to fully comprehend. God always does what is best even though that may be a tough experience for us. Knowing that God also cares for us.

    My wife’s very unexpected passing, due to scaring on her heart that prevented the electrical impulses from the brain making the heart beat, brought a sudden and painless passing. Peace was immediate. Accepting this, and knowing that her heart and other health problems would make life harder, made it easier though still traumatic. It took almost a year before I learned the autopsy results. In 10 days it will be 21 years since that happened.

    God has enabled me to recover, has helped with other life issues, and life continues. Thank You, Lord.

    It won’t be long and Advent will be here. With a star for light a Savior will be born and we are saved. Light came in the darkness and the darkness could not overcome it. Thank You, Lord.

    May any darkness you encounter be given up to God who will help you through it. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

  • robert moeller November 4, 2018, 5:09 am

    Knowing that God also cares for us, those still here, made the experience of grief helpful.

  • Jill November 4, 2018, 5:12 am

    Father God – You come to us in the darkness, as we cry out to You. Thank You for hearing our cries, for tending to us.
    A little over a year ago, when I was battling fatigue and insomnia – I would lay there at night, looking at the clock, thinking if I fall asleep now, I will get 4 hours of sleep. I was so concerned about not being rested enough to do my job well. Yet, each day, He saw me through, with the ability to think and the strength to do my job well. I was finally able to surrender to Him and say – I trust You with my rest, my fatigue – I trust You will sustain me, regardless of how much or how little sleep I get. And not only did He continue to sustain me physically, but He flooded me internally with His peace – which passeth understanding – and there were no more anxious thoughts while lying awake in the middle of the night. Oh to trust in Him, as He desires us to do. Have Thine own way, Lord, have Thine own way. Grateful submission to Him, not reluctant – what will be will be submission. But – Yes, Lord – Here I am – I am Yours – I know You’ve got this. You have a plan for me and You ask me to trust. With Your help, I will.
    Please continue to grow my trust in You where my mother is concerned. I know You have a plan for her. Use me as part of Your plan, as You see fit. Ready me with the words, the love, the gentleness needed. I surrender, again, my impatience and short-sightedness.
    Grateful for time yesterday for my sister and I to walk and talk with dad. The sun came out yesterday afternoon and the Fall colors are beautiful. Grateful to attend the cancer support group this morning and to meet Jennifer.

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling November 4, 2018, 5:44 am

    Thank you God for coming to me in the darkness many times. Even as I was considering retirement, God provided a job and extra income through tuition.

    Blessings!

  • Joan November 4, 2018, 7:40 am

    Today in reading this – thank you so much

  • Julie November 4, 2018, 8:06 am

    First, welcome Joan. These fellow posters have been God’s light for me for several years. So, I hope that you too find a home here.
    God came to me when I was struggling with to find a diagnosis for the sores and pain afflicting my fingers. After a doctor at the Cleveland Clinic told me that “I was doing it to myself” I was directed by another doctor to try the hand doctor I now see. He knew that it was Reynaud’s immediately and sought cutting edge treatment.
    God continues to elude me currently. But I continue to turn to Him in prayer and ask for His guidance and His peace.
    Prayers for Robert and an upcoming painful anniversary.
    Prayers for Jill and God’s love to reach Gloria.
    Prayers for Mary and thanksgiving for her new job and increased income.
    Prayers for Marcy. May she be safe.
    Prayers for Lou and her children. Prayers for Betsy and her family and prison ministry. Prayers for Andrea and her family and their relationships. May they all be cognizant of their words and may they always use kind and affirming words only. Prayers for Connie and her family and her wonderful example of gratitude lived fully.
    Prayers for UR family members and their concerns shared and unshared. May we shine God’s light in someone’s life today

  • Connie November 4, 2018, 8:07 am

    God has always been with me in “the darkness of the soul” and has never failed me. In my mind I sometimes picture myself at His feet laying my burdens there.
    Thankful for:
    The extra hour. However, the early darkness inhibits ones who don’t drive at night. I do, but don’t like to.
    The rain that fell on the remaining blooms.

  • April November 4, 2018, 9:15 am

    Good morning to my UR family who faithful pray for each other. I start the day with you and hold you each in my prayers. Please forgive me for not posting on a regular basis.
    Today’s Scripture reminded me of a sermon series we had on Shema Yisrael, the first two words of a section of the Torah, “Hear O Israel,” and the title of a prayer that serves as a centerpiece of the morning and evening Jewish prayer services. The words in Deuteronomy 6:4 are the same as those here in Mark 12:34. Observant Jews consider the Shema to be the most important part of the prayer service in Judaism. It is traditional for Jews to say the Shema as their last words and parents to teach their children to say it before they go to sleep at night.
    From the Old Testament and also the New, we are reminded to make time for God in our lives. I believe that this is a “healthy habit” so that when my days are dark, I am reminded that I am never alone. And then I wait for the Peace of Christ to come over me, oh how wonderful that feeling is!
    I have been planning and now moving forward with changes in my work, so that I can “repurpose” those hours to enjoy and spend with family, friends, church. Thank you for your faithful prayers for me and I ask that you please continue so that I might say yes to the opportunities to always be a light in our world or shake the shaker.
    Today we will celebrate All Saints Day….where would we be today without those faithful ones who have gone before? God knows that I am not perfect, He asks that I be present so that
    Morning by morning new mercies I see
    All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
    “Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lord, unto me!

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