Occasionally, we will reprint prior devotions that now reflect on the coming lectionary texts. This is a reprint from a devotion originally published on July 16, 2014.
Prayer: Listen to our groans, God. Amen.
Reading: Romans 8: 12-25 (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: Our text today tells us that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until now. I've seen the pains of labor up close twice in my life. It's not the most pleasant thing to witness. But it is bearable because in the midst of a woman's labor, you know that something good is coming. The birth of a baby is a miracle and is a beautiful thing to witness.
Perhaps that's why Paul used this imagery for the Romans. It reminds us that something good and better is coming. Even in times that are unpleasant, we know that God is with us and will help us get to better times. Even though we can't see it, we can wait with patience for the "baby" God will deliver. --Chad Hershberger
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