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Seek God’s Reign

Today’s Reflection

LIFTING UP a further image of God’s desire for us, Jesus declares that above all else, we are to seek God’s kingdom or reign (Matt. 6:33). Jesus makes it plain that seeking the kingdom is anything but a private escape down some romanticized spiritual pathway. A genuine quest for the reign of God allows no withdrawal from the world’s wounds. To live within this kingdom is to pour forth healing love lavishly, as Jesus did. It is to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick and imprisoned, and welcome the stranger (Matt. 25:31-46). With this particular portrait of God’s yearning, Jesus does not lay out a fixed map that we must follow step by anxious step. Rather, he paints a broad canvas of human need and invites us to add to that canvas with the brushstrokes of our love. According to our unique opportunities and gifts, we may create scenes as beautiful as a child cradled, a hand held, a hot hatred soothed, or an ancient injustice set aright.

—Marjorie J. Thompson and Stephen V. Doughty
The Way of Discernment Participant’s Book
Companions in Christ Series

From page 28 of The Way of Discernment Participant’s Book, Companions in Christ Series by Marjorie J. Thompson and Stephen V. Doughty. Copyright © 2008 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What passages from scripture remind you what the right path looks like?  Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.
—Matthew 25:35-36 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

Creator God, Show me the way that is good and acceptable and perfect. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Something More

Join the staff of The Upper Room in praying for the victims and their families of the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton.  Pray with us.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.

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{ 6 comments… add one }

  • Julie August 11, 2019, 7:32 am

    I would find it difficult to point to a certain Biblical passage that speaks to me of the right path. Most every verse in the Bible illustratesthe way to (or not to) live.
    Home alone with h today. Lord give me strength and protect me.
    Prayers for healng for Andrea, Lowell, Connie, Erich, and Marcy.
    Prayers for new beginnings for Betsy, Erich, Lou and her daughter and Robert.
    Prayers for safe travel for Jill.
    Prayers for a joy filled sabbath for Mary.
    May Connie’s garden be filled with light and color and hummers.
    Prayers, blessings, warm hugs and thank you UR family

  • robert moeller August 11, 2019, 7:48 am

    My immediate response to today’s question is like Julie’s. Then I saw this.
    “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” Think in recent years I have been trying to do this in a variety of different ways.

    Thank you Julie for your UR family prayers. Hopefully this coming week Erich’s skin will finally be healed. I’m making new beginnings here in NH. Prayers for your safety, well being, and hands.

    Getting ready for church, another beautiful day here in the Mount Washington Valley. Blessings to all on the Sabbath. Thank You, Lord.

  • lou August 11, 2019, 8:32 am

    I echo the comments regarding scriptures above and love that this reading today helps steer me in the right direction. I admit that I stray off the path and I am easily tempted and easily swayed into shooting off emails and responding negatively to the ex who continues to make life complicated and stressful when it doesn’t have to be. I know I need to rise above and take the right path- it is easier for me in other relationships but I feel so protective and vulnerable and I react with almost immediate anger. I do not like what this situation has done to me and I pray that God will lead me and help me do the right thing. He did not promise us that it would be easy – He suffered for us- I pray to see the right path. I pray for His guidance to co to us to lead me through. My daughter leaves for college this week- I will miss her but am thankful for her wonderful opportunities. I definitely thought the empty nest would be different for me – I was so looking forward to a different life and now I have to set my sights on something different. Prayers for eyes to see what God is calling me to do in this next chapter.
    Prayers for all of you as lives unfold in unexpected ways – many of you describing that here- prayers for all of us to see the right path and to follow in the way that He will lead us.

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling August 11, 2019, 10:10 pm

    Thank you Julie for praying for us every day.

    Although there are many passages from scripture that remind us what the right path looks like, my favorite is Psalms 1.

    May God show us the way that is good and pleasing to Him!

    Blessings!

  • Alejandra August 12, 2019, 2:00 am

    El pasaje que más me marca el camino correcto es el que dice: Mira los lirios del campo, no trabajan ni hilan; sin embargo ni el rey Salomón con toda su riqueza se vistió como uno de ellos… Y habla Dios de lo importante que es No pensar nosotros en nuestro trabajo sino en Escuchar Su Voz y en Cumplir Su Voluntad!!! Esa Obediencia nos llevará a tenerlo TODO!!!
    DIOS los colme de Bendiciones queridos HERMANOS!!!
    Besos y Abrazos en el SEÑOR!!!

  • robert moeller August 12, 2019, 7:17 am

    Si, Alejandra! Gracias por su mensaje.

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