Ministry Updates for Monday, April 6th, 2020

*Scripture for Reflection*– Philippians 4:8**
Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.//

Reflection – Dream
In Paul’s letter, he has just reminded the people of Philippi to divert their energy away from worry and instead use that energy to go toward prayers of thanksgiving and prayers of petition. He promises them that the peace of God ‘which passes all understanding’ will come their way. Now, having moved them to that peaceful place, he sends them on a journey of the heart, mind, and soul, to mull over the very fine things life offers.

For me, oceans and lakes stand as great marvels in God’s creation. It’s kind of a silly thing, but in the 1999 movie ‘My Favorite Martian’, the ‘Martian’ named ‘Uncle Martin’, sees the ocean and turns to his earthling hosts and says ‘Do you have any idea how lucky you are?’ Seen through the eyes of the other 7 planets (eight other planets if you are ‘old school’ – sorry Pluto), oceans and lakes are a rare blessing. That thought occurs to me often when I see the ocean, or lake Michigan, or Torch Lake, at the edge of which rests the summer cottage of my parents. The beauty goes beyond what I feel like it is possible to comprehend, and fills me with awe.

God calls us to prayer that we might ask for what we need, that our worries may be quieted, and that his peace might fill our hearts. And he wants more for us than to just leave worry and return to a more stable state. He wants our hearts and minds to soar to the places that lift us to great horizons. Where does your focus go when you think about the honorable, just, pure, pleasing, commendable or excellent? Take a few moments to turn it over in your mind.* *

Gracious and loving God, thank you for hearing our prayers and setting in motion the fulfillment of those prayers. Thank you for quieting our worries when we pray. Thank you for sending your peace into our hearts. Today, help me lift my mind to some special place, a vacation spot, a celebration, a memory, an heirloom, a friend or loved one, or just some laughter. I am thankful that you want so much more for me than survival. You invite me into your kingdom of heaven, which is here and now. Help me learn to fearlessly and faithfully accept that invitation. Amen.

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