Invitation — Psalm 111:10
"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise."
Bible Song — Psalm 37:34-40
Hope in the Lord
and keep his way.
He will exalt you to inherit the land;
when the wicked are destroyed, you will see it.
I have seen a wicked and ruthless man
flourishing like a luxuriant native tree,
but he soon passed away and was no more;
though I looked for him, he could not be found.
Consider the blameless, observe the upright;
a future awaits those who seek peace.
But all sinners will be destroyed;
there will be no future for the wicked.
The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord;
he is their stronghold in time of trouble.
The Lord helps them and delivers them;
he delivers them from the wicked and saves them,
because they take refuge in him.
Bible Reading — Genesis 45:1-7
Then Joseph could no longer control himself before all his attendants, and he cried out, "Have everyone leave my presence!" So there was no one with Joseph when he made himself known to his brothers. And he wept so loudly that the Egyptians heard him, and Pharaoh's household heard about it.
Joseph said to his brothers, "I am Joseph! Is my father still living?" But his brothers were not able to answer him, because they were terrified at his presence.
Then Joseph said to his brothers, "Come close to me." When they had done so, he said, "I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt! And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will be no plowing and reaping. But God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance."
Read again slowly ... find a word or phrase that catches your eye or moves your heart ... slowly repeat it ... pray your thoughts, desires, needs, and feelings from your meditation ... enjoy the presence of your Lord and Savior.
- for the church to work for the common good and benefit of all people
- for deep care, bold love, and rich community to be experienced in the church
- for those who have left your church community
Prayer — HC 126
Debt-canceling God, my capacity to forgive others is a measure of how well I know you. Remind me every day that both I and those who have hurt me together form a community of debtors to your grace. May my determination to forgive display how deep the gospel lives in me. Amen.
Blessing — Jude 2
"Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance."