A PERSONAL PRAYER
 
Gracious God,
 
Today, I choose you. I choose to love you with my heart, my mind, my soul, my strength. I choose to love the other people you love. I first chose you decades ago, a commitment I made to follow your son Jesus. But I know that there are days I haven’t chosen you, when I haven’t loved you with all my heart, mind, soul, and strength, and I haven’t loved my neighbor as myself. I am quite fickle in my faith – up and down based on events in my world and the circumstances in my life. 
 
While I seek to choose you each day, I celebrate that long before I chose you, you chose me. You marked me in baptism. You pursued me as the hound of heaven, chasing me down to draw me into a relationship of love with you. You put people into my life to love me in your name. Your love for me is no way fickle. Instead, your “steadfast love endures forever.” I am so grateful I can stand on your love, regardless of the state of my faith. 
 
Today, I am particularly grateful for my father, for his love and his wisdom, for his spirit of acceptance, for his keen mind, for teaching me how to think. I pray your blessing on him, and on all the fathers among us. May they represent you well in the lives of their children.
 
Thank you for choosing me every day. Today, once again, I choose you. Amen
 
SOME THOUGHTS TO SHARE
  • Over the last decades, three amazing faith leaders in our city developed a very special friendship. Today, Friday, June 19, at 11:00 a.m., these “three amigos,” Archbishop Joseph A. Fiorenza, Rabbi Samuel E. Karff, and Reverend William A. Lawson will present a virtual one-hour conversation and moment of prayer on racism, civil rights and the struggle for a more just society. This event, sponsored by Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston, is called“Fighting for Justice, Equality and Respect. The Dialogue Project – Vital Conversations with our Community. You can view it on their website, www.imgh.org.
  • This Sunday, we continue our new sermon series, “The Story of God and Us.” This summer, we are learning to tell the story that is the truest of all stories. The Christian faith is a story about a relationship between God, and God’s beloved children. It is the story that gives us the paradigm for understanding the world around us and seeing beyond the events we encounter to the spiritual truths underneath them. This week, June 21, we move to the third chapter of the story with a discussion of covenants. We have put together a workbook to help with learning the story each week, and you can download it on the website here. You also might like to discuss the sermon with a friend or your small group with our “Sermon Stretchers” video conversation and discussion questions. I will be speaking each week with one of our pastors to consider questions that might spur your own conversation. You can find the Sermon Stretchers on the www.stlukesmethodist.org/thestoryofGodandus/ page on our website.
  • Check out the resource page “Living and Loving like Jesus through Racial Reconciliation” on St. Luke’s website: https://www.stlukesmethodist.org/racial-reconciliation/
  • If you are a member at St. Luke’s, you each should have received an email from St. Luke’s detailing how to update you and your family’s personal information on your My St. Luke’s page. We hope you’ll help us with this project to update our records so we can make sure we have the most up to date information for your family. If you have not but would like to update your information, here is the link: www.my.stlukesmethodist.org/MyAccount/. If you don’t have a log-in for your My St. Luke’s account yet, here is an easy video tutorial to show you how: www.stlukesmethodist.org/mystlukes-tutorials/. Please log in and confirm or update your information. For assistance, please email Jamie Broach Byrd at [email protected] or call 713-402-5195.
  • If you are an adult looking for a bible study or small group, here is the place to look. You can still be a part of the Pastor’s Bible Study After Hours on Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. – just sign up on the adult groups page. We will be studying Acts 23 and 26 next week.
  • If you are looking for ministry with children during the distance loving time, just click here.
  • If you are looking for ministry with students during the distance loving time, just click here.
  • Did you miss last Sunday’s Sermon, “Sin,” on June 14, second in the series The Story of God? Watch it here.
 
PRAYER CALENDAR
Sunday, June 21 – Father’s Day
Almighty God bless all of our fathers on this special day. Our Lord Jesus Christ first called you Abba, so we know that you are not only our Creator but that you embrace us as your children. Give all fathers the wisdom to love and lead their families in a way that brings glory to you. Help them in the ways in which they may fall short of being the father you are calling them to be. Mend any brokenness and guide them and their families to live closer to you. Amen.
 
Monday, June 22
Dear Lord, I don’t know who or what will cross my path today, but You do. You are my Rock and my Fortress. You are my Shield and my Strong Tower. Help me to anchor myself to You today and every day. Teach me how to stand strong in You and to always choose to serve in a way that pleases You. Amen.
 
Tuesday, June 23
Dear Lord, help us to follow Jesus every day. With Bible study and prayer, lead us and guide us. Keep us focused on You and Your plan for our lives. Because we know You are working for our good, give us faith to follow wherever You may lead. Amen.
 
Wednesday, June 24
Heavenly Father, help us to set aside our worries and lay down our burdens. Let us move our focus out of the world and into your loving arms so that we may find peace. We pray that you would heal us from the inside out. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.
 
Thursday, June 25
Heavenly Father, we praise you and thank you for the entire community of St. Luke’s. We gratefully lift up our wonderful clergy, church staff, members, visitors, agency partners, and families. We pray for hope, healing, discernment, and peace. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
 
Friday, June 26
God of love and healing, even though there have been times in my life when I thought you had abandoned me, I am assured through my faith that you will never leave me. Thank you for holding me in your arms and for your grace in seeing me through the tough times. Amen.
 
Saturday, June 27
Heavenly Father, we thank You for the awesome privilege of prayer. We can come to You any place, any time, about anything, and know You are listening to the words from our hearts. Thank You for spending time with us and letting us build our relationship with You. Thank You for the priceless gift of prayer. Amen.