February 14 Devotional

Come to Stillness: Take a few minutes to allow your mind and heart to be still before God.

Opening Prayer: Our Father, giver of all gifts, You love and choose us, your least ones. Increase our humility so that we might rejoice in the generosity of Your love and be mindful that the good in us comes from You, Creator, Redeemer, and Giver of Life, now and forever. Amen. - Macrina Wiederkehr

Scripture Reading for the Day: James 1:2-12

Reading for Reflection: Joy ignores suffering or laughs at it or even exploits it to purify itself of its greatest obstacle, selfishness. (Seeds of Contemplation by Thomas Merton)

Joyful persons do not necessarily make jokes, laugh, or even smile. They are not people with an optimistic outlook on life who always revitalize the seriousness of a moment or event. No, joyful persons see with open eyes the hard reality of human existence and at the same time are not imprisoned by it. They have no illusion about the evil powers that roam around, “looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8), but they also know that death has no final power. They suffer with those who suffer, yet they do not hold on to suffering; they point beyond it to an everlasting peace. (Lifesigns by Henri J.M. Nouwen)

Reflection and Listening: silent and written

Hymn of the Day

Prayer: for the church, for others, for myself

B. and H. and their two children currently reside in Asia. Pray today for their family as they get settled in a new city where they are working with migrant workers. Pray today forthe national ministry with whom they partner so the ministry can cover increasingly more areas and people. Pray for the individuals, fellowship groups, and house churches that raise up through the ministry’s efforts to stay true to the gospel.

Bridges International serves the needs of international students adjusting to living and studying at the University of Tennessee. Pray today for the international students on campus that they may understand the love of Jesus during this Spring semester.

Closing Prayer: Lord, we shout with joy for your goodness today. Remind us that you are the Sovereign of the earth and that you alone are worthy of our praise. Gather us to you and let the entire world know the peace of your reign. Amen. (A Guide to Prayer for All Who Walk with God by Rueben P. Job, Norman Shawchuck, and John Mogabgab)

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