Verse for the week: “Make me understand the way of your commandments, that I may meditate on your marvelous works.” Psalm 119.27
Prayer for this week: “Almighty God, you set your Son over the works of your hands, so that even the rebellious spirits must obey him. Give power to your word that your kingdom may grow and increase and all creation be delivered into the glorious liberty of your children; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (K.B. Ritter, Gebete für das jahr der Kirche, 2nd ed. Kassel: Barenreiter Verlag, 1948, p.86 )
Bible reading for the day: Luke 4.22-30 (This is part of Jesus’ inaugural sermon; the hometown crowd quickly turns on him when he tells the truth.)
And all spoke well of him and marveled at the gracious words that were coming from his mouth. And they said, “Is not this Joseph's son?” 23 And he said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, ‘Physician, heal yourself.’ What we have heard you did at Capernaum, do here in your hometown as well.” 24 And he said, “Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his hometown. 25 But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heavens were shut up three years and six months, and a great famine came over all the land, 26 and Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. 27 And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.” 28 When they heard these things, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. 29 And they rose up and drove him out of the town and brought him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they could throw him down the cliff. 30 But passing through their midst, he went away.
Prayer (based on TRIP** method): Gracious and almighty Father, thank you for fulfilling your promise in Jesus. Repent us of wanting to tame him and of wanting him just for ourselves. Uproot us from our wills, tear us down… and build us anew… send us to the outsiders in the name of love, Jesus’ love. I ask this in his name, amen.
“What is the significance of baptizing with water?”
What does this mean?
It signifies that the old Adam in us, together with all sins and evil desires, should be drowned by daily sorrow for sin and repentance and be put to death, and that the new person should come forth every day and rise to live before God in righteousness and purity forever.
(from The Small Catechism, by Martin Luther ©Reclaim Resources, Sola Publishing, 2011)
Benediction: The God of hope fill us with all joy and peace in believing, that we may abound in hope, in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen. (Romans 15.13)
*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: 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.