Archive for June

Daily Walk June 28 – July 4

Monday, June 28, 2010 Matthew 27:32-66
An account of Jesus’ death is found in 45-46. In verse 46 Jesus is not questioning God; he is quoting the first line of Psalm 22. This prayer reveals the fact that God had forsaken him when he took on the sins of the world, which caused him to be separated from his father (2 Corinthians 5:18-19, 21). Jesus suffers death so that we will never have to experience eternal separation. For whose sins did Jesus die on the cross? Is Jesus’ death and resurrection a dispassionate fact or an emotional experience for you? Why? What is significant about the centurion’s words (54)? What might the disciples believe about Jesus now? Is Jesus truly the Son of God in your life? How do you live that out in your daily life?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010 Matthew 28
Verses 1-10 describe the resurrection. After Jesus was crucified, the Jewish religious leaders persuaded the Roman governor to make sure the tomb was sealed and guarded. Despite this, Jesus couldn’t be kept in the tomb. He arose! How do the women react to the news of the resurrection? How do the guards react? The chief priests? The disciples? Why do the chief priests and elders want to spread rumors that the disciples came and stole Jesus’ body (11-15)? Has the reality of the resurrection dawned upon you? Are you a quick believer or a slow doubter? Verses 16-20 reveal the great commission. What is it? In what ways can you fulfill it in your family? Work? Community? Are you ready for your assignment? Why or why not?

Wednesday, June 30, 2010 Galatians 1
Paul is accused by some Jewish Christians of diluting Christianity to make it more appealing to the Gentiles. They even tell some of these Gentile converts that they have to be circumcised. In response to this, Paul writes a letter. What does Jesus do voluntarily for Paul, and the Galatians, and us (4)? What is Paul called to do (15-16)? How does Paul view his Jewish traditions? Which church traditions help you in your faith? Which ones hinder you? How does your past affect your present life? What do you need to put behind you, knowing that you are forgiven? Pray that God will empower you to share his message with others.

Thursday, July 1, 2010 Galatians 2
In verses 11-21 we read about Paul confronting Peter. What disagreement does Paul have with Peter? Why is Paul so adamant about not demanding that Gentiles follow Jewish customs? What does the concept of justification mean to you? How is a person justified in Christ (16-17)? Have you ever been guilty of double standards, a “do as I say, not as I do” sort of thing? Applying the spiritual concept in verse 20, who is alive in your life right now: “I” or “Christ in me?” If you are a self-made person, how does the gospel of undeserved grace strike you?

Friday, July 2, 2010 Galatians 3
If we belong to Christ, then we are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise (15-29). How is the human covenant of a will similar to God’s covenant-promise with Abraham (15-16)? Who is the seed that fulfills this promise to Abraham? Since the law does not replace the promise, what is its purpose (24-25)? Do Christians today fall prey to legalism? What kind? How is your faith liberating you from this bondage? Where do you need to have more faith in your life?

Saturday, July 3, 2010 Galatians 4
Paul shows his concern for the Galatians (8-20). How does Paul express the following emotions in his letter: Concern (11)? Nostalgia (13-15)? Self pity (16)? Jealousy (17)? Compassion (19)? Anxiety (20)? To which weak and miserable principles do the Galatians revert (9)? Paul says that their joy is no longer evident (15). What takes the joy out of our Christian life? Have you slipped back into any bad habits or old ways? Which ones? What can you do about it? Spend some time in prayer.

Sunday, July 4, 2010 Psalm 66
God continues to answer prayers, individually and as a body of believers. We should always praise and worship God. This writer recalls God’s rescue of the Israelites by parting the Red Sea during the exodus. God saved the Israelites then, and he continues to save his people today. The writer reminds us that God listens to prayer and our confession of our sins. We must live with an attitude of confession and obedience. What could you say that God has done for you lately? What sacrifices will you make this week for the Lord? What will be your equivalent of bulls and goats? Lift up your voice in prayer and confession!

Daily Walk June 21-27

Monday, June 21, 2010 Matthew 24:1-28
These verses combine events that would happen at the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. with events that would happen at Jesus’ final coming. Compare Mark 13:1-37 and Luke 21:5-36. What events lead the disciples into thinking the end has come (4-7)? What keeps us from being deceived by the false prophets (11, 14)? How does this passage affect your lifestyle? Has your love for God and others grown cold (12)? What does Jesus promise for those who remain firm (13)?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010 Matthew 24:29-51
Verses 36-51 tell us that the day and hour of Christ’s return is unknown. In what way was the flood like the second coming of Christ (37-39)? What does it mean to be ready for Jesus’ return if we do not know when he will come? What does the story of the wise and faithful servant teach you about readiness (45-47)? About stewardship? Judgment? Responsibility for serving and witnessing to others? How does the knowledge that Jesus will return one day affect your decisions and behavior now?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010 Matthew 25
In this passage, Jesus tells three parables to clarify what it means to be ready for his return, and how we are to live until he returns. In the story of the ten virgins (1-13) we learn that of each of us is responsible for our own spiritual condition. What is the “oil” that keeps your “lamp” lit? In the parable of the three talents (14-30), God reminds us of the necessity of using well all that God has entrusted to us. If Jesus returned today, how much of your talents would he say you are using for him right now? In the parable of the sheep and the goats (31-46), God defines our role in serving others. What do these verses teach us about Christian responsibility?

Thursday, June 24, 2010 Matthew 26:1-35
Verses 6-13 relate to us Jesus’ anointing at Bethany. The woman is Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus, who lives in Bethany (John 12:1-3). Verse 8 tells that the disciples are indignant, and John 12:4 singles out Judas Iscariot as being especially indignant. What justifies this woman’s act (12)? Why are the disciples, especially Judas, so upset? How does this relate to what happens in 14-16? The woman gives lavishly for Jesus, and Judas wants to see what he can get from him (7). In what ways are you like Judas? Like the woman? What beautiful thing could you do this week for Jesus, or the least of these? Spend some time in prayer.

Friday, June 25, 2010 Matthew 26:36-75
Verses 36-46 tell us about Jesus in Gethsemane. What emotions must Jesus be feeling in Gethsemane? What does he ask of his disciples? Of God? What is God’s will (39,42)? What prayer does Jesus model for us here? How are you at praying “not my will, but thy will, be done?” What has been the Gethsemane in your life, a place where you wrestled with God? Who would you want to watch and pray with you the next time you face a Gethsemane? What do you appreciate the most about Jesus’ emotions and prayers in this story?

Saturday, June 26, 2010 Matthew 27:1-31
Verses 11-26 describe Jesus’ trial before Pilate. (Read also Mark 15:2-5, Luke 23:1-5 and John 18:28-38.) The religious leaders have accused Jesus of blasphemy (claiming to be God), but they need to find a different crime, because that one is meaningless to the Romans. The new charges are: encouraging others to not pay taxes, claiming to be a king, and causing riots. What was Pilate’s real concern in this trial? Identifying the Messiah? Hearing Jesus out? Doing justice? Appeasement? Is Pilate more concerned about his wife? His conscience? How does he know envy is a motive (18)? How concerned is Pilate about Jesus’ innocence? Who do you identify with in this story: Jesus, Pilate, Pilate’s wife, the crowd, the chief priests, or Barabbas? Why? If Jesus came today, who would crucify him? What would be the charge against him? Where would you be? Does reading this passage deepen your appreciation of what Christ did for you? Spend some time in prayer, expressing your feelings to him.

Sunday, June 27, 2010 Psalm 22
This psalm, written by David, carries us from great suffering into great joy. Despite apparent rejection from both his friends and God, David believes that God will lead him out of despair, and that one day God will rule the entire earth. The suffering in this psalm is an amazing description of the suffering the Messiah will endure hundreds of years later. How do you express yourself when you are stricken with grief, feeling even abandoned by God? Tears? Anger? “Woe is me?” Bargaining with God? Faith in spite of a bleak outlook? This psalm reminds us that others have suffered and felt despair, even Jesus! How does that help you? Spend some time in prayer turning all of your grief, fear, anxiety and pain over to God. “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you” (1 Peter 5:7).

Daily Walk June 14-20

Monday, June 14, 2010 Matthew 18
One of the greatest barriers to spiritual growth is knowing what to do about forgiveness. The rabbis taught that people should forgive those who had offended them three times. Peter raised that number to seven times. What does Jesus’ answer say about forgiveness in the Kingdom (22)? How does the parable of the unmerciful servant extend Jesus’ teaching on forgiveness (23-35)? What do we deny ourselves when we refuse to forgive (31-35)? What is helpful to you when forgiving those who have wronged you? What keeps you from forgiving? Is there a connection between forgiveness and health and wholeness?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010 Matthew 19
The focus is on verses 16-30. What appears to be the young man’s view on how to obtain eternal life? What is Jesus’ reply (17-19; also read Exodus 20)? What is the general subject of the six commandments that Jesus mentions? When the young man says that he has kept the commandments, what does Jesus ask him to do (21)? Why is it so difficult for the rich to enter the Kingdom? On what basis, rich or poor, is it possible for anyone to enter the Kingdom of heaven (26-30)? Jesus hit the young man where it hurts: his wallet. If Jesus were to address you where it hurts, where would that be? What have you given up to follow Jesus? How is your life different because of it?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010 Matthew 20
Do you ever get frustrated when life just isn’t fair? The focus today is on verses 1-16. We learn that God’s grace and mercy transcend all human ideas of fairness. If you had been one of the first workers hired, how would you have felt at pay time? Why is this parable told here (see 19:30 and 20:16)? In this parable, Jesus is the landowner and the believers are the workers. Have you ever been jealous of what God has given to another person? How do you feel about last-minute converts getting the same benefits as you in the Kingdom? Would you recommend that people wait until they are dying to accept Christ, so that they won’t have to work so hard and give up so much? Why or why not? Lift up your heart in praise and thanksgiving for the generosity of our God. Thank him for his gracious benefits to you; be thankful for what you have.

Thursday, June 17, 2010 Matthew 21
Today’s focus is on verses 33-46 (read also Mark 12:1-12 and Luke 20:9-19). In this parable, the main elements are: 1. the landowner – God; 2. the vineyard – Israel; 3. the tenant farmers – the Jewish religious leaders; 4. the landowner’s servants – the prophets and priests who remained faithful to God and preached to Israel; 5. the Son – Jesus; and 6. the other tenants – the Gentiles. To whom does Jesus direct the parable? Jesus uses this parable to show that one truth can affect people in different ways, depending on how they relate to it (see Isaiah 8:14-15 and 28:16; also Daniel 2:34, 44-45). At different times in your life, how have you received Jesus? Is Jesus the cornerstone of your life?

Friday, June 18, 2010 Matthew 22
Verses 34-40 are the focus for today. Here an expert in religious law asks Jesus to identify the most important law. Jesus quotes from Deuteronomy 6:5 and Leviticus 19:18. What is his answer? Why does Jesus emphasize loving God with all of our heart, mind and soul? How is loving God related to loving people? If we truly love God and our neighbor, will we naturally keep the commandments? In what way do you want to grow right now? Toward God? Toward those in your family? Toward the needy? Toward yourself? Pray about how you might do so.

Saturday, June 19, 2010 Matthew 23
What, according to Jesus, is the Pharisees’ main evil? How can the disciples keep from falling into the same evil? What distinction does Jesus make between his followers and the Pharisees? Compare the path to greatness followed by the Pharisees with that taught by Jesus (5-12). In what way are the religious leaders condemned to repeat the past, because of their failure to learn from their forefathers (29-36)? What is Jesus saying to you in this passage? How can you avoid “talking the talk” but not “walking the walk”? What does this passage say to today’s leaders and pastors?

Sunday, June 20, 2010 Psalm 84
This psalm reminds us that God’s living presence is our greatest joy! Going into his dwelling place helps us step aside from the busyness of life and quiet our souls through meditation and prayer. We find joy, strength, and fellowship with other believers. What a special place it is. Praise God for our freedom of religion and our temple!

Daily Walk June 7-13

Monday, June 7, 2010 Matthew 12:22-50
These verses begin with the power of Jesus being questioned. Where did the Pharisees say his power was coming from (24)? What three defenses does Jesus give in answer to their accusations (26-27, 29)? What is Jesus saying in 30-32? What is meant by “blasphemy against the spirit” (31)? How have the Pharisees committed this sin? Why? What reasons does Jesus give for the Pharisees’ hostility (34-37)? What difference does Jesus’ power against evil make in your life? Jesus reminds us that what we say reveals what is in our hearts. Spend time in prayer asking God to fill you with new attitudes and motives.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010 Matthew 13
This chapter is filled with parables. The focus for today is the parable of the sower (1-23). Jesus uses this parable to explain why some people show the results of a healthy, balanced spiritual life, and some do not. What kind of soil were you when you first heard the gospel: hard, rocky, thorny, or good? Which kind of soil best describes you now? What do verses 18-23 reveal about the seeds? The various soils? The farmer? What can we do to produce deep roots that can help our soil remain good and faithful? What steps can you take right now to improve the soil of your spiritual life? Make a commitment to spiritual growth.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010 Matthew 14
The focus today is 22-32, immediately following the feeding of the five thousand. Why do you think Jesus separates himself from the crowd and the disciples to spend some time alone in prayer? What does his example say to us today? Why are the disciples so terrified (25-26)? How does Jesus calm their fears? What do these verses tell us about Peter? What makes him sink? How about you? Are you good at stepping out of the boat and taking risks? Are you like Peter, afraid but still looking to Jesus? Do you realize Jesus is always with you, and is really the only one who can help? Pray about where in your life God is asking you to get out of the boat.

Thursday, June 10, 2010 Matthew 15
The focus today is 1-20, where once again the Pharisees and teachers of religious law have come to scrutinize Jesus. In these verses, Jesus addresses three groups (1, 10, 12). When is Jesus the harshest? Why? How does Jesus support his charge of hypocrisy? What example does he use (5-6)? What does Isaiah say to the Pharisees in 7-9? What does he say to us today? Why does Jesus call them “blind guides?” It is not enough just to act religious. Our actions and attitudes must be sincere. It isn’t important that our outside appearance is attractive; it is what we are like on the inside that is important to God. What is something that you need to change to get your heart and your mouth more in line with each other?

Friday, June 11, 2010 Matthew 16
The focus for today is 13-20. In these verses, Jesus is asking his disciples who people say the Son of Man is. Why do they say he was one of these: John the Baptist (John 1), Elijah (1 Kings 17), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 2) or one of the great prophets (Deuteronomy 18:18)? What is significant about Peter’s confession? How do you interpret the insight (17), power (18), and authority (19) given to Peter? Peter confesses Jesus as divine, and as the long-awaited Messiah, something all subsequent believers would do. If Jesus asked you this question, how would you respond? Is he your Lord and Messiah?

Saturday, June 12, 2010 Matthew 17
The focus for today is 1-13, the transfiguration of Jesus. This is a foretaste, a special revelation of Jesus’ divinity to three of the disciples. It has been six days since Peter confessed Jesus as the Christ, and Jesus predicted his own death. Who does Jesus invite as witnesses? What does it mean to be transfigured? Why Moses and Elijah? (Read Deuteronomy 18:15-19 and Malachi 4:5-6 for a better understanding.) Moses and Elijah were the two greatest prophets in the Old Testament, and their presence confirmed Jesus’ messianic mission to fulfill God’s law and the words of God’s prophets. It was very important for them, and for us today, to know that Jesus is far more than a great leader, a good example, a good influence or a great prophet. He is the Son of God! Reflect on when and how you came to recognize Jesus as your Messiah.

Sunday, June 13, 2010 Psalm 32
This is a psalm of forgiveness. It records the joy and relief David found in God’s forgiveness. David tells how unconfessed sin sapped his strength like water evaporating in the summer heat (3-4). God freely forgives those who trust him and confess their sins. How has that message been real to you lately? How has God’s forgiveness spilled over to the other relationships in your life? Has God’s forgiveness helped you see yourself in a new light? Make this psalm your prayer for the day.

Daily Walk May 31 – June 6

Monday, May 31, 2010 Matthew 7
Jesus reminds us not to judge others, as we have faults, too (1-6). He invites us to ask God for what we need (7-11). The “golden rule” is found in 12. The road to God is narrow; the wide path leads to destruction (13-14). We can distinguish good and bad prophets, and good and bad disciples, by their fruits (15-23). Like a strong building, disciples must have a solid foundation (21-29). Practicing obedience to Jesus Christ becomes the solid foundation for battling the storms of life. To be a wise builder at this point in your life, do you need to learn more or practice what you already know? Are you walking on the wide road or the narrow? What will you have to do to build on the solid rock? What materials will you use in the coming weeks to build or maintain a firm foundation? Pray that God will fill you with the desire to build your life on him!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010 Matthew 8
Peter’s mother-in-law is sick with a high fever (14-15). When Jesus touches her hand, her fever leaves her, and she immediately gets up and prepares a meal for him and his disciples. She immediately acts on her gratitude to Jesus in service. God continues to bless and heal, and we, like Peter’s mother in law, must look for ways to serve him now. Jesus tells the crowd that many religious Jews would be excluded from the kingdom due to lack of faith (10-12). Entrenched in their religious traditions, they cannot accept Christ and the new message. The Jews should know that Jesus’ blessings would be for the Gentiles, too (Isaiah 66:12, 19), but they are so wrapped up in their personal affairs and destiny that they refuse to see that God wants to reach all people. Jesus’ message is for everyone. What are we doing as a church to further his kingdom? What are you doing? What keeps you from wanting everyone to know the good news? Are there people that we keep out because of our religious traditions?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010 Matthew 9
The Pharisees use Jesus’ association with “lowlife” as an opportunity to trap him. Do we think some people aren’t right for God’s message? God’s message is for all people: the poor, lonely, and outcast, not just the rich, popular and powerful. When Jesus calls Matthew to be his disciple, Matthew follows. He gives up a lucrative career and follows Christ. How about you and me? Are we willing to give up the trappings of this life to be a disciple? Do we find the calling of Christ too difficult or painful? Pray for a heart like Matthew’s, that truly knows what riches are in Christ, and for the courage and passion to give our lives totally to God.

Thursday, June 3, 2010 Matthew 10
Jesus calls common people to be his disciples: rich and poor, educated and uneducated. From the twelve disciples until now, God proves he can use anyone, no matter how ordinary he or she appears, to do extraordinary work. What is verse 16 saying? Who would persecute them, and why? What problems will they face? How should they respond? What would you need to hear from Jesus in order to represent him? When, or why, is it difficult for you to talk about your faith? What does the paradox in 39 mean to you? How can you lose yourself in Christ this week, and show others that the kingdom of heaven is near?

Friday, June 4, 2010 Matthew 11
How does prison give John doubts (3)? If John’s job is to prepare the way for the Messiah, why is he in prison instead of preaching to the crowds? Does Jesus answer John with promises or evidence? What does Jesus say about John? How do the people respond to John? How are they like the children? What kinds of “prisons” make us doubt Jesus? What renews our courage and faith? How can we encourage others? Pray that God will break down the bars of your prisons and give you passion for your journey.

Saturday, June 5, 2010 Matthew 12:1-21
The Pharisees establish 39 categories of actions forbidden on the Sabbath based on interpretations of God’s law and Jewish custom. Jesus illustrates that human need has precedence over ritual law. Mercy, not legalism, is the heart of God’s moral imperatives (see Luke 11:37-52; 13:14-17). Reacting to the Pharisees’ hostility (14) , how does Jesus fulfill prophecy? How does Jesus’ example encourage you when people are hostile to you? Isaiah 42:1-4 says that Jesus is the Messiah and King, but it illustrates a gentle ruler who brings hope and justice to all nations. We must remember this when we expect a king who brings visible victories. Christ’s work is often quiet. Pray that this gentle King will overflow in your heart.

Sunday, June 6, 2010 Psalm 103
This is a psalm of praise for God’s great love for us. What God does for us tells us what God is really like. David focuses on the good things that God is doing for him. We should also praise God for his mercies and blessings. No matter how difficult your journey, you always have blessings to count. When you feel as though you have nothing to praise God for, read this psalm and share David’s list with him. He redeems our souls and crowns us with love and compassion! Thanks be to our wonderful God!

June 2010 Crosstalk & Calendar

Resurrection’s monthly newsletter Crosstalk and printable calendar of events for June 2010 can be found by clicking on the following links.

June 2010 Crosstalk

June 2010 Printable Calendar

Preschool VBS

Preschool Vacation Bible School will be June 1st – 4th from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30.  Three to five year olds are welcome!  There will be a large group gathering and closing with small groups rotating from station to station to be involved in learning the Bible story of the day.  LCR will be using the Sonquest Rainforest curriculum this year.  Watch out for toucans and frogs!!!  Please register by filling out the form (available by clicking the link below) or stop by the church and pick one up in the Gathering Space.  The fee is $10 per child or $15 per family.  There is always a need for volunteers, so please join us for the fun! Contact Angela Tastad  202-4021 or angelatastad@yahoo.com

Printable version of Preschool VBS registration form