We often reprint prior devotions that now reflect on the coming lectionary texts. This is a reprint from a devotion originally published on February 19, 2016.
Prayer: Lord, speak to me as I gather for worship with my neighbor.
Reading: Luke 4:16-21 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: Some Sundays it is necessary to stay home from church. But I really miss it when that happens. Some Sundays I go to church looking for a particular person that I want to share something with or ask a question. I appreciate the opportunity to just listen to the Word rather than being responsible to proclaim it. God meets me in that Word and in hymns, liturgy, prayers, and sacrament. And, God meets me in the social time that follows worship when we have a snack (My wife, June, says, “Eat up, that’s lunch.”) and engage with my neighbors.
Jesus, too, worshipped in the community. He came to the synagogue, read and proclaimed the good news in the midst of the neighbor. Though it is possible to hear the word in the privacy of your TV room from a televangelist, it just isn’t the same as worshiping with your neighbors. In fact, I think that is the way Jesus meets us, in the midst of our neighbors. The Word is proclaimed and the sacrament is served in the midst of the neighbor.
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