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    Rhythms of Growth is like a 12-month garden tour through countries of the spiritual life. Each month Linda Douty explores a different aspect of spiritual living, using the language and metaphors of field and garden.”

    –Sybil MacBeth, author of Praying in Color: Drawing a New Path to God

     

    “Insightful daily reminders that inspire us to live a deeper life.”

    –John McQuiston III, author of Always We Begin Again: The Benedictine Way of Living

     

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    Set aside your stress for a bit and consider how the interruption you are going through may actually be an opportunity to feel God’s presence.

     

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    Bishop, The Mountain Sky Episcopal Area
    The United Methodist Church

    Through this book of poetry and reflections about the death of her mother, Roberta Bondi offers a gift to all who have lost a loved one.

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    Pastor and author of The Way: Walking in the Footsteps of Jesus

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    Travel with Rob Fuquay to the Holy Land and see the places where Jesus stood as he disclosed his identity and the context in which he spoke the “I Am” statements from the Gospel of John.

    The gospel comes to life as we move from the Judean wilderness to the Gaililean hills and into the heart of Jerusalem in this fast-paced, interactive video journey that helps us discover Jesus anew. The DVD includes Group Guides for adults, youth, and children.

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October 20, 2014

Preparing the Next Generation

Article from The Upper Room Disciplines 2014, reading for October 20.
 
Read Deuteronomy 34:1-12.

Mountain ClimbersCome to the top of Mount Nebo with me. Even on a hazy day, the view 4,030 feet above the Dead Sea impresses. I stand there on a 100° day looking out over Jericho and the Dead Sea contemplating the deep soul tremor that Moses might have experienced. He knows his leadership is transitional between God’s promise to Abraham and future generations. His unique task of leading two generations from Egyptian slavery comes to a close, and Joshua’s task of leading the current generation in conquest begins.

Imagine the memories that flood Moses’ mind and heart: the story of his birth, the pitch-lined basket, the princess rescuing him from the river, growing up in the palace, murdering the Egyptian, tending sheep, the burning bush he could never erase from his soul, the plagues, the daunting Red Sea, forty discouraging but trusting years in the wilderness, Mount Sinai’s Commandments, and finally Mount Nebo.

You, too, are a transitional person of God’s promise for the next generation. Hebrews 11 lists generations of those who lived with “the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen,” and then concludes with deep irony: “All of these died in faith without having received the promises . . . since God had provided something better so that they would not, apart from us, be made perfect” (vv. 1, 13, 40). The challenge: Be faithful so the next generation will step up and follow with fresh faith.

What is the story of your calling? How do your gifts of leadership and God’s purpose connect in service? What is your vision and strategy for preparing the next generation to follow God? If you reviewed your personal history, what experiences would stand out?

God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses—and the church—grant me a fresh vision of your purpose and fresh energy to follow you with renewed commitment for the next generation. Amen.


The Upper Room Disciplines is a best-selling book of daily devotions published annually by Upper Room Books. Each week’s readings are reflections on scripture passages from the lectionary for that period. On Mondays the first reading for each week is posted here.

 

Gary BarckertGary Barckert is a pastor in the Presbyterian Church (USA).  A member of the Seattle Presbytery, Gary is the executive director of Sharing Alongside, a pastoral outreach ministry to families that have no faith community.  He holds two degrees from Princeton Theological Seminary: a Master of Divinity and a Master of Theology.

 
 
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