Meditation and Prayer for Tuesday, April 7, 2020
Dear Waldwick UMC Families and Friends,
Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior!
How’s your weekend? I hope all of you had a blessed time of worship service, and the Holy Communion Service at your home.
As you know, this week is Holy Week. I want you to remember and celebrate Jesus’ suffering, death, and resurrection during this week. This Holy Week takes on a new significance this year, for the whole world is suffering.
All our lives have been utterly changed in the past few weeks: loved ones have died, schools closed, public worship services are closed, hospitals are under pressure, unemployment has risen, people are in lock down.
There is much worry and confusion. However, as Jesus overcame and raised from the dead, he will give us strength, hope and new life!
Today, let me share a holy week’s devotion and prayer with you.
1 Listen to me, you islands;
hear this, you distant nations:
Before I was born the Lord called me;
from my mother’s womb he has spoken my name.
2 He made my mouth like a sharpened sword,
in the shadow of his hand he hid me;
he made me into a polished arrow
and concealed me in his quiver.
3 He said to me, “You are my servant,
Israel, in whom I will display my splendor.”
4 But I said, “I have labored in vain;
I have spent my strength for nothing at all.
Yet what is due me is in the Lord’s hand,
and my reward is with my God.”
5 And now the Lord says—
he who formed me in the womb to be his servant
to bring Jacob back to him
and gather Israel to himself,
for I am honored in the eyes of the Lord
and my God has been my strength—
6 he says:
“It is too small a thing for you to be my servant
to restore the tribes of Jacob
and bring back those of Israel I have kept.
I will also make you a light for the Gentiles,
that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”
7 This is what the Lord says—
the Redeemer and Holy One of Israel—
to him who was despised and abhorred by the nation,
to the servant of rulers:
“Kings will see you and stand up,
princes will see and bow down,
because of the Lord, who is faithful,
the Holy One of Israel, who has chosen you.”
< Isaiah 49:1-7>
The Jews of Jesus’ day hoped that when God acted, God would heal their nation (v. 5).
At that time, the nation of Israel was occupied and run by the Roman government.
Religious and Roman leaders maintained a tense relationship.
Jesus’ actions in the Temple (turning over the money changers tables) revealed God’s care for all people, including those exploited by their leadership.
Jesus’ ministry was a “light” that invited hope for all.
I hope all of you can find HOPE through Jesus’ light in this darkness world.
Let us pray.
Gracious God, as we remember Jesus’ last week, remind us that through bad times and good times, you are with us.
Help us notice the suffering in the world around us.
Help us find ways to offer the blessings of Easter to those in our community who are in need.
Do not let us pass too quickly over the suffering just to get to the joy of Easter.
Remind us that you are there for us in both bad times and good times.
Let us have hope through your light in the midst of darkness.
In the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, we pray. Amen!