Disciplines is available in a variety of formats: print, digital, and print/digital combo packages. A digital subscription includes access to author bios, the ability to comment, and audio lectio.Sign Up Today
A healthy relationship with God requires both faith and works. Faith acknowledges the relationship we have with God, both individually and as a community. It understands and holds dear the privileges that such a relationship brings, as well as the responsibilities that such a relationship requires. Faith is simply a...
Lord, may we not only see and speak about the needs of our neighbors but work to alleviate their needs. Remind us that our faith dies when we do not support it with loving works. Amen.
It has become an uncomfortable subject for many in our society, but God does have ethical standards. The author of Proverbs declares that those who act unjustly, particularly if they oppress the poor, will provoke God’s judgment. The psalmist repeats the refrain that God blesses the righteous but is not pleased with those who choose a consistent lifestyle of rebellion against God. James challenges us practically on this point. Do we judge people by their wealth or status? This is not from God. Truth faith shows no partiality and prompts action. Jesus models this in Mark when he heals two Gentiles. Jews and Gentiles generally remained separate (an ancient form of racism), but Jesus did not discriminate based on their ethnicity. He cared only about their hearts.
• Read Proverbs 22:1-2, 8-9, 22-23. How has God shown you that there is no difference between persons who are rich and persons who are poor?
• Read Psalm 125. When have you seen righteousness in someone your church or community has labeled “wicked”?
• Read James 2:1-17. How do your works support your faith in God?
• Read Mark 7:24-37. God calls us to love all our neighbors, no matter their abilities or place of origin. How can you be a good neighbor to those your community has excluded?
Respond by posting a prayer.
. . . The police were getting the closest families to evacuate. My house was close enough that we could see things happening but far enough away to be safe. The police had told some people to wait in front of our house where it was safe. There was a father and his young son outside our house, and they were getting cold. We invited them to come inside until it was safe. Thankfully, the situation was resolved without anyone getting hurt." Read more from Pockets magazine.