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It’s Friday. The weekend beckons. We have free time to enjoy and to worship. Paul writes to the Galatians, “For freedom Christ has set us free.” Freedom not only for the weekend, but for time and eternity. Now that’s what I call freedom. Free from the shackles of the law....
Lord, we want to live our lives for you and for others. Thank you for this kind of freedom in Jesus. Amen.
This week’s readings open with the dramatic scene of Elijah’s departure. As the prophet is taken into heaven by fiery chariots, his cloak falls to his successor, Elisha—symbolic of the continuation of God’s prophetic work. The psalmist praises the Lord for being the source of all good. The Lord gives guidance, protection, security, and joy. Paul reminds us that freedom in Christ comes with responsibility. We cannot live to satisfy our fleshly desires. If we live in the power of the Spirit, then our manner of life should stand out and bear godly fruit. In the Gospel reading, Jesus challenges his followers with the cost of discipleship. His statements here may seem extreme, but he is pointing out that we can be tempted to find excuses for not proclaiming the kingdom of God.
Read 2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14. When has fire—real or metaphorical—changed your life? How have you seen God working in this change?
Read Psalm 16. Recall a time when you needed God’s protection. How did you keep God in front of you?
Read Galatians 5:1, 13-25. Along with our freedom, we are given a responsibility. How do you use your freedom to serve others?
Read Luke 9:51-62. When have you heard Jesus’ call to follow? What have you had to leave behind to follow the one who has “set his face to go to Jerusalem”?
Respond by posting a prayer.
I have been in the military for over 18 years, working in Religious Affairs. The Upper Room has always been a crucial resource for our military members. It serves as a beacon of hope, a way to connect daily to God and a reminder of how we should act as Christians.”
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