Check out the bible readings for this week.
One of the ways we can all participate in the Church Renewal Lab on an ongoing basis is through reading one chapter of the Bible each day, five days out of seven, and pondering a question intended to help us think through what we’ve just read and how it applies both to our life together and our life as part of our broader neighborhoods and community. Imagine what God might do through us as we ponder and pray together! With that in mind, here are the readings and questions for the week of May 19 - May 25, 2019.
Read: Philippians 1:1-11
Questions to ponder: Paul often begins or ends his letters by mentioning “grace and peace” (v 2). How does that summarize the gospel? What emotions does Paul feel for the Philippians? What qualities are really important in a church family (vv 9-11)? How can those qualities help us impact our communities for Christ?
Pray for our church Worship Team, chaired by John Drohan.
Read: Philippians 1:6
Consider: “Over his lifetime [Michelangelo produced] a body of work that was as diverse as it was distinguished….His most monumental
chievement, though, is [his famous statue of Jesus and his mother Mary called] the Pieta….Michelangelo…spent months in [the city of] Carrara, where, with paternal care, he selected the marble, oversaw its extraction and arranged its transportation….[Then] the young Michelangelo went to work. He labored over it for almost two years, sweating over it in the sweltering heat of summer and shivering over it in the biting cold of winter….From its overall structure to its smallest detail, the Pieta is a work of unsurpassed beauty….If Michelangelo worked this passionately on the Pieta, how much more passionately must God be working on His art? We are God’s workmanship…, and God, as an impassioned artist, won’t rest until that work is everything he envisioned it to be….We are a masterpiece in the making. And not just any masterpiece. His masterpiece. More magnificent than the Pieta.”*
Pray for the Church Renewal Lab team focusing on Worship: Eileen Crawford, Andrew Brindisi, Marg Christians, Judy Straayer, and Lori Sylvester.
Read: Philippians 1:12-30
Questions to ponder: What criteria does Paul use to decide whether his imprisonment is good or bad? How could his example encourage others? What is Paul’s main concern (v 21)? What does he mean by that? What does it mean to “conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ” (v 27)? In what sense can suffering be a blessing (vv 29-30)?
Pray for the Church Renewal Lab team focusing on Adult Discipleship: Barry Priest, Henry Huizinga, Anne Hulstein, and Jim Melough.
Read: Philippians 1:21
Consider: “I can say that I never knew what joy was like until I gave up pursuing happiness, or cared to live until I chose to die. For these two discoveries I am beholden to Jesus.”**
Pray for Bev Kaldy, our church secretary.
Read: Philippians 1:29-30
Consider: “Jesus has many who love his kingdom in heaven, but few who bear His cross. He has many who desire comfort, but few who desire suffering. He finds many to share His feast, but few His fasting. All desire to rejoice with Him, but few are willing to suffer for His sake. Many follow Jesus to the breaking of bread, but few to the drinking of the cup of His passion. Many admire His miracles, but few follow Him in the humiliation of the cross.”***
Pray for the church Support Team, chaired by Dave Hiskes.