Mission Devotional - November 19, 2016

Opening Prayer: What are you trying to say to me these days, Lord? Help me to slow down my life and quiet my heart this day, that I might be able to hear whatever it may be. Amen.

Scripture: Luke 8:16-18

Journal: Take care then how you hear. How are you hearing these days?

Reflection: It is amazing how many times in the eighth chapter of Luke that the words hear or listen show up. There must be something to that. It must be a significant part of living life with God, or Jesus never would have mentioned it so often. And here it is once again, this time preceded by the words take care how you (hear). Take care, in the Greek, is the word blepō, which means to look carefully at. It also is translated see, take heed, behold, and beware of. Therefore, hearing is something we are asked to pay special attention to. And it is not take care of what you hear, but take care how you hear, which changes things completely. It gives the impression that Jesus wants our hearing to be done with great thoughtfulness and intentionality. How we hear is of great importance.

What role does listening play in your current life with God? Do you really believe it is an important part of life with him? How often do you set aside time and space specifically for that practice? How will you, or do you, make space to hear from God? And when you do set aside space and time to hear from him, how will you go about it? All important questions if we are to take seriously Jesus' words.

Prayer for the church, for others, for myself

Kenton and Ariana Wood serves in Guadalajara, Mexico as a church planter. Pray today for Kenton who oversees a mother church that has six services on Sunday. Pray also for the Purépecha Indians in the nearby state of Michoacan that they may be reached with the gospel. Kenton has recently married Adriana. Pray today for the Woods as they serve together.

Navigators Collegiate ministry at UT Knoxville has this mission: "To advance the gospel of Jesus and His Kingdom into the nations through spiritual generations of laborers living and discipling among the lost." Pray today for the leaders of this ministry and the students as they finish the Fall semester.

Closing Prayer: Lord Jesus, you told me to take care how I hear. That means that listening to your voice must be pretty important to you. For once I learn to hear your voice, the more often I will hear you speak. And the more often I hear you speak, the more confident I can be that I am actually walking according to your will. Help me to make time and space this day, O Lord, to hear your voice. Amen.