Psalm 25:7 (“surprise me”…)

14 Dec Psalm 25:7 (“surprise me”…)

Let’s welcome God by reflecting on this short Living In Faith Exchange (LIFE) Group devotion (website, Facebook), based on Living Faith. All whatsoever you do in word or in work, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Col. 3:17

Remember no more the sins of my youth; remember me only in light of your love. Psalm 25:7 (full readings)

Living Faith snippets: “God forgets our sin and remembers us in love. Jesus’ beautiful parable of the Prodigal Son illustrates this incredible truth. But next comes the difficult part. We are called to love others as God loves us. This means we must forget the sins of others…the ungrateful child, that cranky spouse, that inconsiderate neighbor. No revenge. No brooding. No silent treatment. Forget it! Then we must remember these individuals only in light of our love. St. John of the Cross said, “Where there is love, put love and there you will find love.” Where can I put love today?” by Sr. Melanie Svoboda

Pat’s nuggets:
* Advent Prep: Sr. Francelle suggested that we pray for people as we write their Christmas card. At the post office last week, I heard a person ask for Christmas stamps. The teller said, “Mother & Child, or snowmen?” The person said, “surprise me.” Let’s surprise people with “Mother & Child” this Advent!
* 2nd Year Anniversary: The LIFE Group began as a Living Faith devotion conversation between coauthor Rich and me…we wanted to simply begin each day by welcoming God’s direction. We later felt called to invite others to join this life saving conversation. On 10 Dec 2007, the first LIFE Group devotion was emailed out to 17 disciples of Christ (now 260+). In that first devotion, Rich wrote…”God works subtly. God is all around us, but because of our daily distractions we usually have our blinders on and cannot see Him. We need times in our day to be quiet and to listen. I choose the early morning to do my readings and then to reflect, to listen to God speaking through His inspired words. This time set aside will allow you to become more focused with what you need to do for the day. We need to let everything we do be a prayer to God. ” I responded…”With eyes of faith, we will see God working in these grandiose and subtle ways everyday. This is what I call a “God sighting.” If we have “living faith,” we will see God’s finger prints all around us, everyday!”

Faith Challenges: Let’s generously share our LIFE Group by forwarding a devotion to others or by using the “invite people to join” link on the Facebook Group. Steve, Rich, or Pat will gladly add others to the email list.
* NEW: Welcome, Stephen Bennett! ‏Let’s surprise someone with an invitation to join the LIFE Group devotions…a free Christmas gift.
* NEW: Check out Pastor Don’s devotion on Christian Character.

* Let’s never forget the horrific reality of abortion (images), #1 cause of death in America (23% of pregnancies). Let’s courageously share ProLife Truth to create social tension for exposing abortion’s unjust peace, rebuilding a Culture of Life for setting the unborn (and parents) free!

Our Prayers: Those who pray together stay together. Fasting ideas in footnote below.
* Prayer to end abortion, abused children, chastity, peace, our enemies, our troops, depression/despair, prisoners, politicians, illnesses/injuries, jobs, natural disasters, refugees, addictions, persecuted believers, Peters family (JP, Rebekah), Health care reform bill, Brenda Alvine’s father (pancreatitis)
* NEW: Scott Casmer (Helene Couchon, accident recovery)

Feast Day: St John of the Cross, “Above all, he was concerned for those who suffered dryness or depression in their spiritual life and offered encouragement that God loved them and was leading them deeper into faith.”

Faith Quote: “Praying to go deeper this Advent, it’s easy to let it rush by without being changed.” Fr. Jonathan St.Andre

Through Christ our Lord,
Phil 4:13

* Prayer: Prayer connects us with God’s will & His miracles, changing us & helping others. ‘If you pray that God will move a mountain and He doesn’t, assume Christ wants you to climb it instead.’
* Fasting: Let’s fast from things that take our eyes off Jesus (selfishness, pornography, bitterness, criticalness, impatience, gossip, excessive video games, etc) and take on things that fix our eyes on Jesus (selflessness, kindness, compassion, forgiveness, patience, understanding, caring, helping, listening).
* Defend the unborn: ‘Rescue those who are unjustly sentenced to death; don’t stand back and let them die’ (Prov 24:11). ‘Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you’ (Jer 1:5). ‘It is a great poverty that a child must die that you might live as you wish’ (Blessed Mother Teresa).
* Evangelization: Let’s make room for unbelievers (be a friend, make a friend, lead a friend to Christ) and perpetual re-evangelization of self and those near us, by way of daily prayer (relationship) and following Christ’s example of selfless love, mercy, and service (Matt 28:19).

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