URC Daily Devotion 29 May 2024

John 1:1-14 (The Message)

The Word was first, 
the Word present to God, 
God present to the Word.
The Word was God, 
in readiness for God from day one.
Everything was created through him; 
nothing—not one thing!—
    came into being without him.
What came into existence was Life, 
and the Life was Light to live by.
The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness; 
the darkness couldn’t put it out.
There once was a man, his name John, sent by God to point out the way to the Life-Light. He came to show everyone where to look, who to believe in. John was not himself the Light; he was there to show the way to the Light.
The Life-Light was the real thing:
    Every person entering Life
    he brings into Light.
He was in the world,
    the world was there through him,
    and yet the world didn’t even notice.
He came to his own people,
    but they didn’t want him.
But whoever did want him,
    who believed he was who he claimed
    and would do what he said,
He made to be their true selves,
    their child-of-God selves.
These are the God-begotten,
    not blood-begotten,
    not flesh-begotten,
    not sex-begotten.
 The Word became flesh and blood,
    and moved into the neighbourhood.
We saw the glory with our own eyes,
    the one-of-a-kind glory,
    like Father, like Son,
Generous inside and out,
    true from start to finish.

Reflection

For many years I was a single parent. Everything felt so much harder being on my own. My church family would often pray for me and I so appreciated their prayers but sometimes, if I’m brutally honest, prayer didn’t feel enough. I needed them to be the answer to their prayers.
 
Ronald Rolheiser in his book The Holy Longing, writes about the need “for a God who has skin, that is, physically real and touchable”. But what does that mean or even look like?
 
There was only one, who was God made flesh, Jesus. However, as Spirit-filled followers of Jesus, we may not be God made flesh, but we do carry all that he is within us. We are responsible to share all that he is, his life, love and hope with our friends, family, colleagues and neighbourhood.
 
When we demonstrate our true child of God selves, showing that God is real, and recognisable. When we, not only show love for one another but love for our neighbours and the whole of creation, we become the answers to our prayers, and we are Jesus moved into the neighbourhood. Being the answer to prayer doesn’t mean that we have all the solutions or that we can fix every problem, it means being willing to be present, to show up, and to reflect the love and grace that we ourselves have experienced.
 
People are drawn to lives which have been transformed for the better, lives where the fruit of the Spirit blossoms in abundance. What if our neighbours discovered that fruit blooming in the semi next door?
 
The Church is called to help people discover that life with Jesus is better than life without Him and when our neighbourhood experiences life being lived out as a tangible witness to the good news of the Gospel, they may well discover that good news for themselves.

Prayer 

Lord Jesus, 
thank you for the places in which we live 
and for the people we live alongside.  
Thank you for the love and grace 
that you have poured into our lives.
Help us to reflect all that you are 
to those around us 
and to love our neighbours as we love ourselves.
May we be carriers of your light and life 
so you can blaze in the darkness 
and our neighbourhoods can be transformed. 
Amen

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.