Verse for the week: As you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me. Matt 25.40
Prayer for the week: “Merciful God, kindle in our hearts the fire of your love, that we may serve you and our neighbor, according to your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen” (K.B. Ritter, Gebete fur das jahr der Kirched, 2nd ed. Kassel: Barenreiter Verlag, 1948, p. 199).
Bible reading for the day: Deuteronomy 4.1-9
1 “And now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and the rules that I am teaching you, and do them, that you may live, and go in and take possession of the land that the Lord, the God of your fathers, is giving you. 2 You shall not add to the word that I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God that I command you. 3 Your eyes have seen what the Lord did at Baal-peor, for the Lord your God destroyed from among you all the men who followed the Baal of Peor. 4 But you who held fast to the Lord your God are all alive today. 5 See, I have taught you statutes and rules, as the Lord my God commanded me, that you should do them in the land that you are entering to take possession of it. 6 Keep them and do them, for that will be your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples, who, when they hear all these statutes, will say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’ 7 For what great nation is there that has a god so near to it as the Lord our God is to us, whenever we call upon him? 8 And what great nation is there, that has statutes and rules so righteous as all this law that I set before you today?
9 “Only take care, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things that your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. Make them known to your children and your children's children—
Prayer (based on T.R.I.P. method**): Gracious and almighty Father, thank you for not being a silent God nor a vague spirit. Thank you for speaking directly to us in your living word, especially in Jesus Christ. Repent me and your church of monkey-ing around with your word, of adding or taking away what we like or don’t like. Today and every day, take hold of my congregation and me that we may hold fast to you and teach your word to our children and grandchildren…so that all the nations may know that you, Lord, are so great and so near. I ask this in Jesus’ name, amen.
Hymn: follow this link to a hymn that gives further voice to today’s conversation with the Lord: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrGvRtdRdno
The Third Commandment:
Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.
What does this mean?
We should fear and love God so that we do not despise his Word and the preaching of it, but acknowledge it as holy, and gladly hear and learn it. (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:
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.