Friday, January 19, 2018

As the Mountains Surround Jerusalem

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.30
As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people, from this time on and forevermore.
—Psalm 125:2

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Our Help Is in the Name

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.29
Our help is in the Name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
—Psalm 124:8

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Our Eyes Look to the Lord

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.28
As the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, until he has mercy upon us. 
—Psalm 123:2

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Peace of Jerusalem

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.27
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May they prosper who love you.
—Psalm 122:6

Monday, January 15, 2018

Forevermore

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.26
The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore.
—Psalm 121:8

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Nazareth Is Big Enough


Can anything good come out of Nazareth? —John 1:46

I. O Lord, It’s Hard to Be Humble

The Gospel According to John isn’t exactly light reading. Of the four gospels, it is probably the heaviest, the most theological, the deepest. I don’t know anybody who’d characterize it as in any way funny. Take the prologue, for instance. In the beginning was the word. And the word was with God. And the word was God. Wow, now that’s some deep stuff. Or later, in chapter 6, when we get to John’s account of the Feeding of the Five Thousand. It’s a story found in all four gospels. But only John records Jesus as saying, I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.

And so when I get to lighthearted moments in John, I feel a bit like Robert Frost’s little horse when the poet stops by woods on a snowy evening. You know the one—He gives his harness bells a shake to ask if there is some mistake. I can’t imagine that when John wrote the story of Jesus meeting Nathanael, he wasn’t chuckling at how we’d read it in the 21st century. But maybe he really wasn’t trying to be funny.

Here’s what I’m talking about.

He Who Keeps Israel

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.25

He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
—Psalm 121:4

Saturday, January 13, 2018

I Lift Up My Eyes to the Hills

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.24


I lift up my eyes to the hills—from where will my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
—Psalm 121:1-2

Friday, January 12, 2018

In My Distress

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.23
In my distress I cry to the Lord, that he may answer me.
—Psalm 120:1

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Like a Lost Sheep

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.22
I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek out your servant, for I do not forget your commandments.
—Psalm 119:176

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Great Peace

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.21

Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble. 
—Psalm 119:165

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Life According to Your Justice

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.20

Great is your mercy, O Lord; give me life according to your justice.
—Psalm 119:156

Monday, January 8, 2018

Rise Before Dawn

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.19



I rise before dawn and cry for help; I put my hope in your words. 
—Psalm 119:147

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Another Road (Communion Variation)


We’ve all played telephone at some point in our lives—you know, that game where there’s a line of people (usually kids) and the person at one end whispers a message in the ear of the person beside them, and they whisper it to the next person and so on. The person at the opposite end of the line gets to announce out loud the message they have received. It’s seldom the same as it started out.

And so it is with many stories from the Bible. They start out one way—which is usually their written form—but end up as something very different. And I think the best example of this odd game of scripture telephone is the story at the beginning of the second chapter of Matthew’s gospel. It’s a story that really catches our fancy, but the story we tell ourselves isn’t necessarily the story that’s in the Bible.

For example, there’s nothing in the story that refers to the men who visited Jesus as kings.

Small & Despised

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.18

I am small and despised, yet I do not forget your precepts.
—Psalm 119:141

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Another Road (Word Variation)

We’ve all played telephone at some point in our lives—you know, that game where there’s a line of people (usually kids) and the person at one end whispers a message in the ear of the person beside them, and then they whisper it to the next person and so on and so forth. The person at the opposite end of the line gets to announce out loud the message they have received. It’s seldom the same as it started out.

And so it is with many stories from the Bible. They start out one way—which is usually their written form—but end up as something very different. And I think the best example of this odd game of scripture telephone is the story at the beginning of the second chapter of Matthew’s gospel. It’s a story that really catches our fancy, but the story we tell ourselves isn’t necessarily the story that’s in the Bible.

For example, there’s nothing in the story that refers to the men who visited Jesus as kings. They were seeking a King. And they visited another king.

The Unfolding of Your Words

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.17

The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple. 
—Psalm 119:130

Friday, January 5, 2018

More Than Gold

PSALM OF THE DAY 1255.5.2.16

Truly I love your commandments more than gold, more than fine gold.
—Psalm 119:127