“Gaining Sight: Praying the Scripture”

We have been on this journey through Mark chapter 10 this month. Now, we are in the final verses of this chapter. To recap, we have encountered Jesus Christ in several different ways. Hopefully we have all grown closer in our faith in Christ.

This week, we’re going to do something different in our devotional time. We will be praying the scripture (the same scripture) daily and see what God speaks to our hearts. Praying the scriptures is something that helps us see and hear from God in fresh ways.

Today, and tomorrow, we’ll do something called lectio divina. To practice this, find a quiet place without any distractions. If this is your first time to do this exercise, it may be helpful to set a time limit (maybe 15-20 minutes). It may also be helpful to have a journal so you can write down your experience and anything you sense God speaking to your spirit.

The scripture (Mark 10:46-52) is below these four steps to this exercise.

Step 1) READ the passage

Simply read the passage. Don’t try to figure out what it’s saying, yet. Think about the passage for a minute or so, then read it again slowly.

Step 2) MEDITATE on the passage

What do you see in the passage? How do you picture yourself? Do you see yourself as the crowd? on the sidelines watching? as someone like Jesus trying to help? as the blind man crying for help and being ignored? Read the passage again, this time place yourself, intentionally, in the story and see what emotions come up.

Step 3) PRAY.

This is a time to seek God. Take time to ask Him what He is speaking to you. Ask Him to help you understand.

Step 4) CONTEMPLATE on the prayer and passage.

Thank God for this time together. What do you think God may be calling you to do? What are your emotions regarding this? How do you plan to accomplish what God may be leading you to?

Challenge yourself through this exercise. See how God is speaking to you through the scriptures. Read. Meditate. Pray. Respond. Do this for two days, and then we’ll try another exercise with this same scripture.


Mark 10:46-52 (CEB)
Healing of blind Bartimaeus
46 Jesus and his followers came into Jericho. As Jesus was leaving Jericho, together with his disciples and a sizable crowd, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus, Timaeus’ son, was sitting beside the road. 47 When he heard that Jesus of Nazareth was there, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, show me mercy!” 48 Many scolded him, telling him to be quiet, but he shouted even louder, “Son of David, show me mercy!” 49 Jesus stopped and said, “Call him forward.” They called the blind man, “Be encouraged! Get up! He’s calling you.” 50 Throwing his coat to the side, he jumped up and came to Jesus. 51 Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man said, “Teacher, I want to see.” 52 Jesus said, “Go, your faith has healed you.” At once he was able to see, and he began to follow Jesus on the way.

Who Do You Say That I Am?

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Buda United Methodist Church Saturday Evening Worship 11/8/14

Live Stream link for the message:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVGtquM0JHA

Youth Director, Ryan Stratton delivers this message on WHO DO YOU SAY THAT I AM.
Jesus Christ once asked his disciples “who do you say that I am?” and this is the same question he asks us today.
This 6 week series should help us answer this question for ourselves. We will be looking at the life of Christ from the cross to the cradle as we prepare to receive him once again into the world at Christmas time.

Grace and Peace to YOU!
Buda United Methodist Church
www.budaumc.org

You are invited to join us for worship anytime in person or online. Our mission is to empower people with the love of God and make disciples for Jesus Christ.

Worship Times:
Sunday 9:00a and 11:00a
Wednesday 6:30p
Saturday 5:30p (Live Stream message begins at 6:00p)

*All times CST

Prepare

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Saturday and Sunday is upon us. Most people are rushing home after work to enjoy the start of another weekend. To enjoy spending time with family and friends. To find time to veg out and not have to worry about specific schedules again until Monday. Then there are many people who try to fill up as much of the weekend as possible to do things and run errands that there was not enough time for during the week.

We all are excited about time to spend without the demands of work and people constantly expecting certain results from us. One of the things that begins to happen is a busy weekend that simply “includes” going to church instead of making it a priority.

For those of you who are religious, Saturday or Sunday is a time when we gather at our church, supposed to be praising God and lifting the name of Jesus Christ while living in and listening to the Holy Spirit. Many people (including me some weekends) have turned our time of worshipping Jesus Christ into another to do list item to simply check off and then go about our day.

I believe we are all challenged to look at church another way. John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, would begin preparing for Sunday worship on Thursday. This may make some people nervous thinking, “I just don’t have that kind of time to prepare.”

With the business of our schedules day in day out, week in week out, year in year out, we all should look at how we prioritize our schedules. Now, I do not presume to know, nor am I trying to judge or condemn people here in any way. I simply hope to encourage each one of us as we walk with Jesus Christ and allow him to transform our hearts which has a direct affect on our lives.

So, here are some questions I invite you to consider:

  • Why do I attend church? Is it for me and my inspiration? Or is it truly for God and allowing my heart an opportunity to hear from God and become recharged with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit?
  • How often do I pray for the worship time, church leadership, and the church as a whole?
  • How much time do I spend reading the Bible along with other sacred writings or devotionals during the week?
  • How is God moving in my life and through my life to make a difference in my community, state, nation, world?

These questions may be a little convicting; I know they are for me.

My prayer for each one of us is that we allow God is make himself known so that we can see the world through his eyes and allow our hearts to break for what breaks his heart. Let’s all take some time to prepare ourselves for the literal presence of God when we gather for worship.*

*On a quick side note: worship can be done anywhere, even during your personal quiet times with God.

Worship…Take Time to Worship this Weekend

Psalm 122:1 says “I rejoiced with those who said to me, ‘Let’s go to the Lord’s house.'”

How is it to you to go to a place of worship? The only thing that matters is that when we go to worship, we pause what we’re doing and allow the Holy Spirit of God to fill us once again. We all have busy schedules and an almost never ending to-do list, but we can also be excited to be around with other imperfect people so together we can worship the One who created each of us.

The joy of worshipping as a community comes from support and realizing we all have struggles in life but we can still be there for each other. Sharing the love of Jesus Christ with those around us in a worship service helps us to visibly see God moving in and through us to work with God and fill other hearts with peace and joy.

Where ever you might be this weekend, I hope and pray you find a place to worship and praise God (whatever that looks like for you), so that we can be filled together and go out together to bring the Kingdom of God closer to those who need it most (the outside world….and us!).

If you do not have a place of worship, you are invited to get a group of friends together and worship with us online Saturday night from 6:00pm-6:30pm central standard time. The message is “Seeking & Knowing God’s Presence” and we’ll look at and explore Exodus chapter 33.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZnpdwYGbVY (may have to copy and paste link)

We do not worship for ourselves, but to give honor and glory to God, our Creator.
Psalm 115:1 “Not to us, Lord, not to us–no, but to your own name give glory because of your loyal love and faithfulness!”

May the peace and love of God fill your heart and strengthen you today and forever more. Amen.

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