Prayer: God, help us to recognize the gifts you have graciously given us so that we may share them with others. Draw us nearer to you so that we may know only heavenly wisdom. In Your Name we pray, Amen.
Reading: James 3: 13- 14:3, 7-8A (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: Most likely you have been asked the question: “if you could have any superpower, what would it be?” But have you ever thought about what you would do with that power? If you would use the power to fulfill some sort of desire that you have for yourself, then that is not the kind of wisdom that James is writing about in this passage.
James writes of a wisdom that cannot be gained from studying a textbook. It is a practical wisdom. It is a wisdom that spurs you to do good, simply for the well-being of others. The words used to describe this wisdom in this passage (considerate, full of mercy, peace-loving, impartial, sincere, etc.) are very similar to the words Paul uses to describe love in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (patient, kind, not self-seeking, and does not boast, etc.). This heavenly wisdom that James is writing about is rooted in LOVE. And love is a superpower given to us by God. That was our theme for the staff this summer at camp. As we went through staff training, we learned about superpowers counselors use every day, and we learned about love last (because you always save the best for last).
So be wise, do everything in love. Be a selfless superhero. God gave you the gifts to be so.
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