Devotionals
 

Devotionals are short essays written by GSLC members and staff that explore the ways the Holy Spirit works within our every day lives.  There are several ways we invite you to use these devotionals:

  • Make them a part of a prayer practice - read a devotion and consider the ways that Christ has worked similarly in your life or works in unexpected ways.
  • Make them a part of a journaling practice - read a devotion and journal about what the Holy Spirit is stirring in you as you reflect on the essay.
  • Use them as a reminder that God works in all things, the bad and the good.

With over 400 available devotions, you can use these daily, weekly, or monthly.  It's up to you!  We just hope that by reading these inspiring stories provided by Good Shepherd's flock you are able to better see where Jesus is present in all things!  Thank you to all of our members that have provided devotionals throughout the past couple of years!

 
Daily Devotion
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church

Daily Devotion

Colossians 3:12-17- NIV

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

About 3 years ago, Pastor Heidi preached a sermon on this text from the book of Colossians, the first Sunday after Christmas.  The sermon spoke to me that day because in it she encouraged us, as we were beginning a new year, to use these verses as our new year’s resolution for our faith.  I was engaged, and the phrase that stood out was, “clothe yourselves with compassion.”  I began to consider what being compassionate might mean for me as I lived my life that year as a disciple of Jesus.

Do you know that some suggest there is threefold path to compassion that includes the courage to see, the courage to feel and the courage to act?  For you see compassion is love in action and not just a state of mind. 

One of the most well-known stories about compassion in our Christian tradition is the parable of the Good Samaritan, Luke 10:25-37.  In the parable, the Good Samaritan not only sees that an innocent traveler who has been robbed and beaten, he feels for him because he comes near and then he acts.  The passage says, “He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them.  Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn and took care of him.”  According to this parable, there are two others on the road that day, who see this man who has been beaten and robbed but their lack of compassion is a failure to act.  Compassion is love in action.

But here is what I find challenging.  There are parts of the three-fold path which are not easy for me to do.  I do not always see or act.  Sometimes I am so busy, I do not see the hurt that is happening around me.  The acting is challenging because the problems I may need to address with compassion seem so complex that I wonder, what can I do? But here is the invitation from the story of the Good Samaritan, do what you can and act as you are able, because the world needs us to act.  At the end of the parable, Jesus encourages us by saying, “Go and do likewise.”   This reminds me that compassion was the wallpaper of Jesus’ soul and the contour of his heart, so I am trying to do the “likewise” each day, as I clothe myself with compassion.

What part of the three-fold path of compassion is most challenging for you to practice?  Who do you know acts with compassion in our church and in our community?  What actions do they take?

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