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

God – Father, Son, Holy Spirit,
You do some pretty amazing things. I am particularly fond of how you turn water into wine. You did it at that wedding in Cana long ago, and I wish I had been there to see it, and taste the finest wine you provide. But I can see how you do it even today. You take the water that falls on the earth, and you draw it into the roots of the vine, flavor it with nutrients from the soil and energy from the sun, and turn it into sap. You draw that sap up through the trunk of the vine, and out through the arms and the branches and the canes. And from those canes grow clusters of beautiful grapes. And those grapes – such fine wine they produce. Who says you don’t still work miracles?
God, I pray that you would root me in your love,
draw that love up through my trunk and my arms and through my very heart,
send it out through my voice and my hands and my feet,
so that I might bear the fruit of loving others just like you love me.
If there are parts of me that no longer produce that fruit of love,
then prune them from my life.
If I pull away from you, God,
then let my withering spirit remind me to turn back to you again,
and graft me again to the vine before it is too late.
Apart from you, I can do nothing.

During the season of Lent, there is so much going on to help you focus on our inside-out habits. We have a prayer service every Wednesday night at 7:00 pm, music for meditation and reflection at 12:05 every Thursday, experiential Lenten calendar (Daily Acts of Grace and Mercy), and more.  And… Palm Sunday picnic and Holy Week and Easter are coming. See the details for all our Lenten possible experiences here.

Our Easter offering this year supports AVDA – Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse. I hope you had the opportunity to hear about it in worship last week. AVDA takes a holistic approach by advocating for the safety and self-determination of victims, promoting accountability for abusers, and fostering a community response to abuse. Last year alone, AVDA served 4,042 adult and children victims and 901 abusers. The organization’s outreach efforts reached 16,000 adults and youth. From intervention to prevention, the AVDA staff works tirelessly on behalf of abuse survivors to end family violence in our community. If you want to know more, go tohttps://avda-tx.org/. You can give online here.

This week, we continue our sermon series “The Book of Glory,” looking at the last half of the gospel of John, which outlines the last few days Jesus spends with his disciples before the crucifixion. This week, we will look at Jesus’ “I Am” statement, when he says “I am the vine, and you are the branches.” Come and join us!

Sunday, March 31

Holy Lord, our world is full of sin and brokenness, and we don’t have to look far to see things that are evil and bad. Thank you, God, for sending your son, Jesus, to overcome the ways of the world. Guide us to stay strong in you and share the light of Jesus with the world. Help us to remember that the transformation of the world begins in us and flows through us. Amen.

Monday, April 1
Almighty God, you call us to serve you not because we are wise by human standards or influential or noble. You chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise. You chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. Our weakness is made perfect in your strength. Equip us to answer your calling. All honor and glory are yours. Amen.

Tuesday, April 2
Heavenly Father, you have searched my heart, and you know me. Help me to be honest with myself so that I may fully repent and surrender my heart to you. Guide me to let go of my worldly ways, and give me new habits that draw me closer to you. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Wednesday, April 3
Lord, in this time of Lent, grant me the self-discipline I need to spend time with you. I know that when I do my part and study your word, you break open the Scriptures and make them come alive for me. I know that when I pray, you are with me and you hear my prayers. Help me to remember the joy of spending time with you so that I make it a priority in my daily life. Amen.

Thursday, April 4
Dear Heavenly Father, teach us to abide in your word. Help us to see the truth, to live in the truth, and to be authentic. This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen. -Prayer by Frances Callender, Goodwill Sunday School Class

Friday, April 5
Our Father, please help us to fully surrender ourselves to you…to fully obey your two commandments to love…first, to love you with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our mind, and with all our strength…and second, to love our neighbors as ourselves. Help us to do just that every day, with each person, whoever they are, wherever they are from, whenever or wherever we happen to be. Please help us, dear Lord. Amen.

Saturday, April 6
Gracious God, I confess that I get distracted by the world around me. So, today, I pray that you would help me find a way to turn off the worldly distractions and turn my focus to you. Lord, give me a time and space for quiet meditation, reflection, and prayer. Speak to me and renew my spirit. Amen.