Home > Reading > Daily Reading – March 10, 2024

Fourth Sunday in Lent

We are half-way through the season of Lent. Many Christians choose to fast during Lent by giving up things like sweets, alcohol, or social media. Others adopt new disciplines such as attending mid-week Lenten worship, participating in Bible study or creating a more active lifestyle. How are you doing with your Lenten discipline? Some of us might be successful, while others may be disappointed that we haven’t kept to our disciplines as we had hoped. Many things in our lives are not as we had hoped they would be. We’re disappointed when that new job possibility goes to someone else, a relationship ends, or the weather ruins our plans. We hope for better days for ourselves and others in our lives. We even speak of hope for our communities, government, and churches.
In today’s text, Paul reminds us of our mortality—the flesh is weak, we live in fear, and even creation has been cursed through the Fall in the Garden of Eden. But more importantly, Paul reminds us that we are not just flesh and bones but are children of God, having the very same Spirit living in us that raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Living with the power of the Holy Spirit, we have hope for the glory of God that is to be revealed to us.
Shopping at a local gift store, I bought a sign that read, “Hope changes everything.” This little wooden sign reminds me of the hope to which Paul spoke—the same hope that was with the Israelites as they wandered in the wilderness, the same hope with which the prophets proclaimed, and the same hope that was with Mary and Elizabeth as they were with child.
Hope is one of the words that can be both a noun and a verb. It’s something we have, or hold, or something we can do. In hope, we trust that God’s promises are true. Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection allows us to live in hope, as we patiently wait for not only our redemption, but the redemption of all creation. And hope changes everything.

Prayer: God of mercy and grace, You are present in our joys and our sorrows. Let us look not to our own strength, but to You. Help us to remain hopeful of the glory You have promised through Your son, Jesus Christ. Give us patience while we wait, and courage to share our hope in You with others. In the name of Jesus, amen.

Devotion written by the Rev. Kristine M. Dohrmann

This daily prayer and Bible reading guide, Devoted to Prayer (based on Acts 2:42), was conceived and prepared by the Rev. Andrew S. Ames Fuller, director of communications for the North American Lutheran Church (NALC). After several challenging years in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been provided with a unique opportunity to revitalize the ancient practice of daily prayer and Scripture reading in our homes. While the Reading the Word of God three-year lectionary provided a much-needed and refreshing calendar for our congregations to engage in Scripture reading, this calendar includes a missing component of daily devotion: prayer. This guide is to provide the average layperson and pastor with the simple tools for sorting through the busyness of their lives and reclaiming an act of daily discipleship with their Lord. The daily readings follow the Lutheran Book of Worship two-year daily lectionary, which reflect the church calendar closely. The commemorations are adapted from Philip H. Pfatteicher’s New Book of Festivals and Commemorations, a proposed common calendar of the saints that builds from the Lutheran Book of Worship, but includes saints from many of those churches in ecumenical conversation with the NALC. The introductory portion is adapted from Christ Church (Plano)’s Pray Daily. Our hope is that this calendar and guide will provide new life for congregations learning and re-learning to pray in the midst of a difficult and changing world.

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