Spiritual Homework June 24

June 24, 2020 

I continue to pray for all of you as we face fears of reopening, a rise in coronavirus cases, political tensions, cries for justice, stress related to employment, financial struggles, and distance from one another. I pray for your health, your sanity, your spirituality, and your future. If there is something that you need, please don’t hesitate to talk to myself or one of the other leaders at church. We want to help however we can. In the meantimeI’ve included the scriptures and prayers for this Sunday’s services, as well as some information on the Dead Sea Scrolls.  

 Peace, 

Chess 

 Sunday Worship 

Included here are the scriptures, reflection questions, and prayers that are thematically matched to our Sunday worship outline. 

Scriptures: Gen 22:1-14; Ps 13; Matt 10:40-42, Rom 6:12-23 

Questions for Reflection 

What is God asking me to return? Why? What might be the outcome? 

Morning Prayer: 

I rise this day in the power of your Holy Spirit, O God. lift up my hands, my heart, and my songs to praise you, O Christ. Be for me today, my Savior, the guardian in my weakness, a friend on my journey, and my aim for all I seek to do. May all who speak to me say, “Peace”; may all to whom I speak hear, “Love.” Give visions of Christ in pied beauty around tables of meeting, along paths of dappling shadows, and in the faces of loved ones and strangers. Whether the day is bright or gloomy, be my light. Then, when the night begins to fall, bid me home—be my home, that I may find my rest  in you, O Three in One. Amen. 

Evening Prayer:  

Be my light, O Creator of light, as evening comes to my home and to me. Let me see your name written in sparkling stars, glowing planets, dancing cosmic wind. Let me hear you pass gently in the cool of the night’s breeze, on the wings of the night-flying creatures. And if there are to be storms this night, so that I shall not see the sky, and a gale howls with fearful threats, let me still put my trust in you, rest in you. Or, because there is a need in the world, rise up as you give me strength to bear witness with heart and hands to the world’s true light, in whose name I pray. Amen. 

 

The Dead Sea Scrolls 

Even if you’ve been hiding in a cave, you’ve likely heard something about the Dead Sea Scrolls, which were also hiding in a cave until they were discovered by a boy throwing a rockbreaking a jar with scrolls inside. While the contents of the scrolls don’t contain an autograph of any of our biblical books, they are a priceless piece of history that has forever changed our understanding of biblical history. The scrolls aren’t all page turners (a large majority are detailed instructions on cleanliness and read like Leviticus), but there are several of the scrolls that contain bizarre stories, messianic expectations, and even treasure maps. The contents of the scrolls also contain some of the oldest copies of Hebrew Bible manuscripts, including a large majority of the prophets. So if you’ve ever heard of the Dead Sea Scrolls but never taken the time to read them, how about now? Here’s the link to a free full text copyOr if not now, at least save this link for the next time they are mentioned. You should always double check when someone references the scrolls and read them for yourself, especially considering many of them turn out to be forgeries 

Family Activities 

In our children’s classes this winter our kids were learning how to use their Bibles to look up scriptures.  Let’s not let those skills get rusty.  Make it a family activity—working together to complete the questions on this activity sheet.   

 

Previous Links 

Below are the links to resources I have mentioned in previous emails for your continued reference. 

 

Weekly Lectionary 

Daily Lectionary 

Bible Gateway Reading Plans 

Phyllis Tickle’s, Divine Hours 

The Way of the Heart, by Henri Nouwen 

Breath Prayers 

Awed to Heaven, Rooted in Earth , by Walter Brueggemann 

The Spiritual Disciplines Handbook by Adele Ahlberg Calhoun 

The Discernment of Spirits and workbook by Timothy Gallagher  

Blog on Prayer Labyrinths  

St. John’s Bible  

Christian Classics Ethereal Library 

Prayers for a Privileged People 

Shattering the Illusion: How African American Churches of Christ Moved from Segregation to Independence by Wes Crawford 

Jesus and the Disinherited, by Howard Thurman 

The Road Back to You by Ian Cron 

thriftychristianreader.com 

Sinners in the Hands of a Loving God, by Brian Zahnd 


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