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2017 Daily Devotions

Daily Devotion Tuesday, October 17, 2017

by
Rev. Dr. Gary Kindley
Pastoral Counselor
CCIADallas.org

Scripture
Yet, my brothers, I do not consider myself to have “arrived”, spiritually, nor do I consider myself already perfect. But I keep going on, grasping ever more firmly that purpose for which Christ grasped me. 
Philippians 3:12-14 (J.B. Phillips New Testament)

A Word of Hope:  Spiritually Adult

“Oh Grow Up!!” Does that sound familiar?

Rarely are there words to which the human psyche is so universally attuned that it is cringe-worthy to almost anyone who hears it. It is that phrase which challenges us to stop being childish.

Most of us share a dislike of being called immature, but, if we are honest, we often weigh the maturity of others. When referring to friends, siblings or our own offspring we may consider whether someone has physical maturity, intellectual maturity, emotional maturity or even social maturity. What does it mean to be spiritually mature?

The apostle Paul said that it is something to seek, to strive for. We are called, invited by Jesus’ life, teachings and example, to a way of living and relating that changes us.
By so living, others are also changed. Being spiritually adult brings hope, faith and love into being and changes the world.

I cannot speak for you, but I have not arrived. There are days and times when I am more spiritually adult than at other days or times, but it is a process. It is ongoing. I am being changed and am (hopefully) at times helping others to discover what spiritual maturity can bring—serenity and fulfillment.

Blame, shame, pessimism, pettiness, small thinking and hurtful behavior take us in the wrong direction. Our spirit needs nourishing just as our body does, so we must consider what we read, whom we hang with, and what thoughts we choose to focus upon.

Consider living into a vision of one day conversing with the Christ face-to-face. Jesus smiles, places his hands upon your shoulders and lovingly says, “My beloved and precious {insert your name here}, look at who you’ve become!”

Prayer
Day by day, O Christ, may I become more like you. Amen.

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Daily Devotion Monday, October 16, 2017

by
Weber Baker

Scripture
But you, beloved, build yourselves up on your most holy faith; pray in the Holy Spirit; keep yourselves in the love of God; look forward to the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life…
Jude 20-21

 

A Word of Hope

The author of Jude’s letter is exhorting the faithful to “keep the faith”. The full letter warns of those who would pervert the faith, mainly through a lack of understanding of what has been given.

But these two lines are simple. No warnings, no fear of failure, no chastisement, are presented in these lines. Simple, clear instruction about building up one’s faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, and living in God’s love. I look at this as being present with God and love; but with an outlook of hope in the mercy of Jesus and eternal life.

Not a bad way to start a new week, don’t you think? Happy Monday!

Prayer

Loving and Merciful God, your love is beyond measure and spills out into us through your Holy Spirit and through the mercy of Jesus. Fill us to overflowing with your love so that love flows from us like a stream.

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Daily Devotion Friday, October 13, 2017

by
Dan Peeler
Minister for Children and Families

Scripture
Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” 
Luke 9.23

A Word of Hope

A few years ago, I taught a class about the history the symbolism of the cross. It has appeared in some form in virtually every other religion in the world. The cross as a religious symbol pre-dates Christianity by about 100,000 years.

Early in this century, in the Tata Caves of Hungary, archeologists discovered a chiseled rock disk that dates back that far. On the disk was carefully carved an equilateral cross, similar to the Greek Christian cross. This oldest depiction of the cross is a symbol of hope and healing (hence the Red Cross connection) and it has also been designated as a hieroglyph for the union of male and female, of divine and human, the spiritual and physical, heaven and earth and innumerable other unifications of diverse concepts. With a little graphic enhancements it has been seen in dozens of variations in Christian symbolism for at least 1,800 years, as the Maltese Cross, the Crusader’s Cross, St. Andrew’s Cross and many others.

One of the most recognizable variations of this equilateral cross is the Swastika, which for centuries has been a graphic element in cultures ranging across Eastern Europe, India, many Asian nations. We even see it in the blankets and pottery of a number of tribes of the native people of our own American continent. Infamously, however, the Swastika, a symbol which means in Sanskrit “It is good,” had its meaning changed irreparably when Adolf Hitler adapted it as the brand of the Nazi party. Its display has been, and still is, reviled, forbidden and even outlawed by many world nations ever since the mid-forties.

Teaching that class made me profoundly aware that the positive aspects of symbols can be so quickly and easily destroyed forever by the people who say they revere them the most. When we wear a necklace or otherwise display some variation of the Christian cross on our persons, we have the opportunity and responsibility to inspire others to recall the Christ who inspired it. –Or- we can be the cause of quite another response. How often have you heard someone glance at a cross on a necklace worn by someone who has just screamed at their child or thrown a Styrofoam cup in their yard and comment, ”If that’s how a Christian acts, I’m glad I’m not one.”

The cross is not a casual accessory. When we wear one, shouldn’t our actions reflect the life of the One who died on it?

Prayer

Make me a symbol of your love.

Daily Devotion Thursday, October 12, 2017

by
Winner Law
Cathedral og Hope Member
TCU Brite Divinity Graduate

Scripture
And Moses wrote down all the words of the Lord. He rose early in the morning, and built an altar at the foot of the mountain, and set up twelve pillars, corresponding to the twelve tribes of Israel. He sent young men of the people of Israel, who offered burnt offerings and sacrificed oxen as offerings of well-being to the Lord. Moses took half of the blood and put it in basins, and half of the blood he dashed against the altar. Then he took the book of the covenant, and read it in the hearing of the people; and they said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient.”

Exodus 24.4-7NRSV

A Word of Hope

It is a command from God that we worship the Creator of the Universe (Matthew 4:10). We might not all worship God the same; however, God has a need for us to praise and worship the Omnipotent One. Expressions of praise and worship come in many different forms which include singing, dancing, crying, and shouting.

In todays’ scripture reading, the people of Israel celebrated that God had given them “…the book of the covenant…” I can imagine them singing, jumping for joy, and dancing. It is a way, even today, to express our gratefulness of God’s generous grace and unconditional love for us as individuals and as a group.

Some churches have dance teams that celebrate God through this unique art form. Some churches have a time for testimonies during their church services. Other churches may have play productions. All of these types of activities allow individuals and groups of people to express their praise and worship of God’s generosity for their lives if they desire to participate in these creative performances.

One of the most common ways people praise and worship God is through songs by singing in the choir, singing in the car, or listening. “How I Got Over” by Aretha Franklin, “Amazing Grace” by Marvin Matthews, “The Best is Yet to Come” by Donald Lawrence, “Heaven” by Mary Mary and “Let Everything that Has Breath Praise the Lord” by Cathedral of Hope Choir are just a few songs that touch my spirit as I sit in the pews or listen on my car radio. I am sure each of you reading this devotional have your own way of showing joy and gratefulness to God. My hope today is that you praise and worship God in your own unique way and let Yahweh know how much you love the Author of Life.

Prayer

Dear God: We humbly worship You for all that You have done for us. We offer You joyful praise by our actions, words, and energy to let You know we love You as individuals and collectively with all of our heart and soul. In Your son Jesus’ name, we pray may it be so. Amen!

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Childcare is provided at all Sunday and Wednesday services.

Sundays
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1 p.m. – Sunday Worship in Spanish

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