Dr. Tom Pace, Dr. Tom Pace lll, Senior Pastor St. Lukes UMC, Sr Pastor St Lukes

A PERSONAL PRAYER

God of yesterday, today, tomorrow, and forever…

Sometimes, life just doesn’t seem at all right. I see the pictures from around the world where people are suffering. I catch a glimpse of families who work hard at two jobs and earn just a sliver of what I am so blessed to receive. I have been given a wonderful education, with every break possible provided to me, and yet others must go to schools which are little more than babysitting. Warfare is just something on television, a long way away from my door, but for others, battles ravage in their towns and families are destroyed because of tribe or race. Men and women who have plenty come into my office with broken hearts because of grief or betrayal or broken relationships. There is just so much sadness and pain to go around. Even in my own life, I get swept away in keeping up with the neighbors, following the gods of my own culture rather than following you, and find myself hollow. Sometimes, it seems quite a bit of a mess. Can it be fixed? Can it be put right again? It seems so beyond our human ability to make it right. “O that you would tear open the heavens and come down.”

Only you can put it back right again. It will only be by your power that the world is made right. You promise that one day, Zion, the new Jerusalem will come, and death and mourning and pain will be gone. You give me a glimpse of what will be, that I will be given a new body, powered by the Holy Spirit alone, that justice and righteousness will prevail, that broken relationships will be healed, that the lion will lie down with the lamb, and that no one shall hurt or destroy on your holy mountain. Hard to believe it to be true God. But I will continue to work, knowing that our work is not in vain, and that one day, someday, perhaps even tomorrow, you will finish what you started, that which I was blessed to be a part of. You will renew all of your creation, making all things right again. I look forward to it. Indeed, I long for it. I am marching upward to Zion, that beautiful city of God. Amen

SOME THOUGHTS TO SHARE
You are invited to be a part of a dinner this coming Tuesday, November 19, at 6:00 pm in the Fellowship Hall to support St. Luke’s Christmas Offering for Amazing Place, a faith-based ministry whose mission is to empower lives disrupted by dementia. (https://www.amazingplacehouston.org) You can RSVP here. To donate to the Christmas Offering click www.stlukesmethodist.org/ChristmasOffering.

Parents won’t want to miss a presentation this Sunday, Nov. 17, by Crystal Collier, addiction expert, called Technology: The Reshaping of Our Children’s Brains. Screen time affects mood, learning, memory, sleep, and relationships. Invite a friend to come with you Sunday from 4-5:00 pm in the Fellowship Hall.

This Sunday, we continue our sermon series called “Next,” and we will look at what the Bible teaches us about the final culmination of history, based on Revelation 21:1-7. What do we have to look forward to?

If you have not had the opportunity to make a commitment to our “Giving with Gratitude” generosity campaign to support the ministries of St. Luke’s for 2020, you can do so here.

Did you miss last week’s message, “Tomorrow” on November 10? Watch it here.

PRAYER CALENDAR
Sunday, November 17

Heavenly Father, we have been blessed by friends who share our interests, and we have wonderful friends at church but realize there are many lonely people in our world. Help us to follow Jesus’ example to intentionally make new friends who need to know about your love. Give us opportunities to invite new people into our community of faith here at St. Luke’s, and help us to lovingly share your Good News with them. Amen.

Monday, November 18
Heavenly Father, we get so entrenched in doing things the way they’ve always been done. Open our minds, our ears, our hearts, so that we may hear what you need us to do. And then, Lord, give us the courage to act. Amen.

Tuesday, November 19
Heavenly Father, we pray for the children in our world who are without a home. We pray that you would work through us to provide for their needs and that you would bless them with the gift of a forever family. Amen.

Wednesday, November 20
Heavenly Father, we thank you for the blessing of family. We pray that we are able to spend more time with our loved ones. We pray for those who feel lonely and are grieving the absence of a loved one. Please let them feel your peace and everlasting love. Amen.

Thursday, November 21
Heavenly Father, we give thanks for our Sunday School teachers and leaders who graciously and faithfully share your word with us each week. We pray that you would bless their time and help them to know how much we appreciate their efforts. Amen.

Friday, November 22
Father in Heaven, our hearts go out to those who have lost loved ones. Dear Lord, be with those who mourn. Comfort them and give them strength. Let them feel your presence through the holidays. Amen.

Saturday, November 23
Heavenly Father, we pray for those who are traveling during the holidays. Let their travels be full of ease, safety, and joy. Bless the time families are able to connect during this time. Amen.