We pray. We study the Bible. We make friends. We tell our stories. We give ourselves away in generosity and service.

A PERSONAL PRAYER

God,
Sometimes, I feel confused. There are so many things going on in the world—politics and elections, race relations, killings of police officers, concerns of police brutality, terrible conflicts and wars around the world, the threat of ISIS, natural disasters, concerns about the price of oil and the local economy, environmental concerns, debates dividing our denomination. So many voices shouting to pay attention to them. “Hey, what about me?” the voices all say. And there are voices closer to home as well. Work, family, friends, community, even my own physical body – they all cry out for attention: ”what about me?” How, God, am I to sort through these voices, these calls for attention in my life?
God, I pray for discernment, that in the midst of all of these voices, I might hear your voice, not calling out for attention, but calling my name, and pointing me to the things I have the opportunity to do. Let me hear your voice calling me to be courageous enough to act, and humble enough to know that it is not all up to me. And most of all, let me hear your voice, reminding me how much you love me, and giving me peace.
Amen.

KEY VERSE FOR THE WEEK

David said to Michal, “It was before the Lord, who chose me in place of your father and all his household, to appoint me as prince over Israel, the people of the Lord, that I have danced before the Lord.” – 2 Samuel 6:21 Read the whole passage for the sermon here: 2 Samuel 6:12-22  

QUESTIONS FOR CONVERSATION

Has there been a time in which you really questioned your own motivations for doing something that appeared to be good? How do you discern and guard against doing things for applause or approval? 

SOME THOUGHTS TO SHARE

Why do you do what you do? This week, we will talk about David’s heart, and the motives that drove him. Was he driven by a desire for power and ego? Or was he motivated by a love of God and a desire to be a king God would be proud of? Did he dance for the Lord, or for the applause of the people? Come and think about this with us this Sunday morning.

This Sunday, July 24, is our all church workday. We will be bagging rice and beans for our Christian Community Service Center food pantry in our new Canterbury Hall on our Gethsemane campus, 12:30-2:30 pm. If you haven’t been to the Gethsemane Campus, the address is 6856 Bellaire Blvd, just a few blocks east of highway 59. 

A week from today is opening night for our Tapestry Players presentation of The Music Man in the Rotunda Theatre. Come and enjoy!

As the summer continues, I want to encourage you to stay connected to the church while you are traveling by watching any of our three traditional worship services on livestream here:http://www.stlukesmethodist.org/livestream

PRAYER CALENDAR

Sunday, July 24
Heavenly Father, we thank you for the gift of your children. We pray that you would be with all of our children and keep them safe. God, we ask that you would grow them in your ways and that you would bless them and be with them always. Amen.

Monday, July 25
God of all things, help us to follow you with all of our hearts. Guide us to think of whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, and whatever is admirable. Amen.

Tuesday, July 26
Heavenly Father, we ask that you would be with us always. We ask for your guiding presence so that we will live according to your ways. Help us to bear the fruits of the spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Amen.

Wednesday, July 27
God of power and might, we know that with you all things are possible. Help us to remember how to seek you when we need help. Help us to follow you so that our lives will be used for your purpose. Amen.

Thursday, July 28
Gracious God, you tell us that a happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit. Help us to give you our whole heart, help us to be content in you, and help us to seek you always so that we may be filled with your unending joy. Amen.

Friday, July 29
Heavenly Father, there are many temptations in this world. Sometimes, it is hard to be strong in Kingdom ways. God, we ask that you would give us the strength we need to stand firm in times of trial. Help us to tell the world, “As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Amen.

Saturday, July 30
Everlasting God, we are weak and tired and weary. Yet, you give us rest and restore our strength. Help us to soar on wings like eagles, help us run and not grow weary, help us walk and not be faint. Amen.