God's Word: Live It!

Persistent Widow and the judge: Luke 18: 1-8

Yesterday we heard Jesus strongly remind us of our need to pray always and not to lose heart. It is a challenge to pray regularly. Our lives are full of distractions. O ur prayers often seem to go unheard. Some of us struggle to believe prayer is worth the effort. Yet, Jesus tells us over and over to pray and assures us God hears and cares about us. Not to pray is not to invite God into our lives and life challenges, fears and hopes. We need God to help us.

Answers to prayers are a tricky business. God's answer is often complex and comes in God's time rather than our own time. Here are some suggestions for enhancing our prayer life:

  1. If you are a parent, pray with your child daily. Don't just say, "It's time for your prayers." Pray WITH them, share your concerns and hopes in prayer so your child can know you in a different way.
  2. Pray anywhere, anytime. In the shower, in the car, in the locker room, in the waiting room, in the grocery store, while you're half watching TV. Time and place doesn't matter to God. DOING it matters.
  3. Remember entering into prayer is as important as receiving an answer to prayer. Being in relationship with God through prayer is much better than facing something alone.
  4. Don't give up. Keep praying, and praying and praying.
  5. Don't let frustration break your relationship with God. God loves you, God listens to you.


One Leper Made Clean By Jesus Gives Thanks: Luke 17: 11-19

Yesterday we learned the 5 things a leper did after he was cured by Jesus:

  1. He saw Jesus, meaning he recognized who had healed him,
  2. he returned to Jesus so he could,
  3. 3) praise Jesus,
  4. 4) thank Jesus and
  5. 5) go on to tell others about Jesus' love and mercy.

Martin Luther described this story as what true worship looks like. We return each Sunday to seek Jesus, we sing hymns and use the liturgy to praise him, we pray prayers of thanksgiving, and we leave worship ready to tell others about Jesus' love and mercy. We leave forgiven, healed, and hopeful. Don't be afraid to tell someone you know that you went to church and came out feeling hopeful, healthier and loved. Invite them to come with you, to "return" with you so that they might "see" Jesus too.