Home > Reading > Daily Reading – March 18, 2024

Monday of the Fifth Week in Lent

I lived for a while in Finland, the home of my grandparents. At the time, many single Finnish women went to various countries as missionaries, bearing the Good News of Jesus to those who have never heard. The joke was, then, that if a Finnish male heard the call of God to go as a missionary, he would reply, “Here I am. Send my sister!”There’s a scene from The Fiddler on the Roof, which takes place in a Jewish village during pre-communist Russia, where the father is faced with the challenge of marrying off his five daughters. The father, Tevye, is a poor Jewish milkman and says to God, “I know, I know. We are Your chosen people. But, once in a while, can’t You choose someone else?”
We are all not so different, nor was Moses. “Oh, my Lord, please send someone else.” And God did. He eventually sent a better Moses, a better Abraham, better Sarah, better Deborah, a better David, Solomon, Isaiah and Elijah, a better you and a better me.
He sent Jesus, God-with-us, who knew no sin. And for our sake, He set his face toward Jerusalem, to His sufferings and death, becoming sin on our behalf. He is the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, You are the author and perfecter of our faith. For the joy that was set before You, You took our place and endured the cross, despising the shame, and You are seated at the right hand of the throne of God. You are worthy to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing! Amen.

Devotion written by the Rev. Peter Lurvey

“Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem, 386”

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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