Verse for the week: “For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him.” Psalm 62.5
Prayer for this week: “Lord, open our ears and hearts, that we may heed your hidden wisdom and let your word be a light to our path. Speak to us through your living word, that we may obey your call and follow him whom you have sent, Jesus Christ our Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (K.B. Ritter, Gebete für das jahr der Kirche, 2nd ed. Kassel: Barenreiter Verlag, 1948, p.180 )
Bible reading for the day: I Corinthians 7.25-35 (note: In first century A.D., Christ’s return is perceived to be imminent. As we wait, Paul gives not a command from the Lord but his own judgment on how we ought to wait whether we are married or single persons. I encourage you to take a few minutes to read the whole 7th chapter…it will stay in your head & heart for life)
25 Now concerning the betrothed, I have no command from the Lord, but I give my judgment as one who by the Lord's mercy is trustworthy. 26 I think that in view of the present distress it is good for a person to remain as he is.27 Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek to be free. Are you free from a wife? Do not seek a wife. 28 But if you do marry, you have not sinned, and if a betrothed woman marries, she has not sinned. Yet those who marry will have worldly troubles, and I would spare you that. 29 This is what I mean, brothers: the appointed time has grown very short. From now on, let those who have wives live as though they had none, 30 and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no goods, 31 and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away.
32 I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. 33 But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife, 34 and his interests are divided. And the unmarried or betrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband. 35 I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.
Prayer (based on TRIP** method): Gracious and almighty Lord, thank you for setting our hopes and confidence not on things of this world which will all pass away…but on Christ and his eternal promise for your people. Thank you! Now, as we wait for the new day that you alone will bring, grant me such devotion to you that my citizenship in your kingdom may be clearly evident in my relationship with my spouse and with the rest of my neighbors…so that even through us the world may receive a glimpse of your kingdom to come. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Hymn: follow this link to a beloved classic hymn which gives further voice to today’s conversation with the Lord: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcNLvufzbz0
The Sixth Commandment: You shall not commit adultery.
What does this mean?
We should fear and love God so that in matters of sex we are chaste and disciplined in our words and actions, and that husband and wife love and honor each other. (from The Small Catechism, by Martin Luther ©Reclaim Resources, Sola Publishing, 2011)
Benediction: Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Eph 3:20-21)
*There are many patterns for devotions. This pattern has been followed by God’s people for centuries.
**The T.R.I.P. approach to prayer is based on the way Martin Luther prayed and taught others to pray. It was later developed by Walter and Ingrid Trobisch and then adapted by Mount Carmel Ministries (
www.dailytext.com). The method is founded on scripture and easy
to remember: T:
thanksgiving Alexandria, MN
R: regret (repentance)
I: intercession (asking God to take a specific action)
P: plan or purpose
Reading a biblical text and then applying this method gives one a sound, simple way to form one’s prayers...not to mention that it helps one learn how to faithfully reflect on God’s Word and talk to God.