Clearly Defined

Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, “Truly this was the Son of God.” – Matthew 27:53-55 (KJV)

It was “those things that were done” to Jesus, under pressure, in the worst of situations, that shouted out to everyone that He could only be the Son of God. Not just Mary’s son, a carpenter, a teacher, and certainly not a criminal as condemned.

Like Him, it is in the most stressful times that who we really are comes through. That which we are willing to do, to be, to sacrifice, will be that which defines us to the world. Who will others say you are?

Prayer Starter – I contemplate today that which I am willing to do for You. It is easy to say that I would stand for You in all situations, but how will I respond under real pressure? Help me prepare for those moments, so that I can with confidence, stand.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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Holiness

Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory. – Isaiah 6:3

“Holy”means to be set apart or separated from sin. Jesus came, died and rose again to show us the way to live a holy life. He is not just the God of Easter, but of every day that follows. He reminds us of this in all the world around us, if we just open our hearts and look.

Prayer Starter How can I be holy, Lord? I can keep my heart set on You as my compass and North Star. Help me walk the way of holiness. I know I can with You.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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Connection

We know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know Him who is true. And we are in Him who is true by being in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. – 1 John 5:20

God’s power was displayed by His creation. His intention was spoken through the prophets. His plan described in the scriptures, but we would never truly know Him until we could understand His heart. Only the opportunity for us to see Him with our eyes, to hear His voice and follow where He walked, would help us comprehend the depth of His love.

There is no substitute for experience and through the human existence of Jesus Christ we could have a personal encounter with the infinite God of the universe. In all of space and time, Jesus became the intersection with life and love. He is still our connection to eternity and the only truth we will ever need.

Prayer Starter Thank you, Father, for connecting to me in such a personal way. I feel You all around me and I speak to You with my every breath.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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Servants

This, then, is how you ought to regard us: as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the mysteries God has revealed. – 1 Corinthians 4:1

The servant’s role was to bear the weight of the Master’s household – entrusted to maintain the property, spend money wisely, care for the family’s needs and work with other to bring stability and comfort to the home.

Jesus did all that as God’s Servant and showed us how we should do the same. When it seems a burden to carry the weight of responsibility and relationships, may we remember that Jesus also bore the weight of the cross.

Prayer StarterYou gave us the example of service that you expect of Your followers. May I remember that in serving others, I serve You!

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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The Fifth Sunday of Lent – Availability

…their eyes were opened and they recognized Him, and [then] He disappeared from their sight. – Luke 24:31

After His resurrection from death, on the road to Emmaus, Jesus walked and talked with disciples that did not recognize Him – so blinded by their small understanding of the greatest story ever told – in which they were living.

But eventually it became clear, and they realized that Jesus had completed His part in the plan of salvation. Now it is up to us to realize our place in the Father’s on-going mission to the world.

Prayer StarterOpen my eyes Lord, to the lives and needs of those around me. Point me to those who I can serve in Your love.

Delve Deeper – Be a part of something greater than yourself, something that can further the love that Jesus has shown to you. Volunteer with any church or other nonprofit organization in your community whose mission is important to you. Giving of yourself, your time, your talent – asking for nothing in return – is a powerful gift. Remarkably, you will likely find that you will reap the greatest reward. Be sure to include your experience in your Lenten journal.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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Reality Check

But don’t begin until you count the cost. – Luke 14:28

Jesus was clear throughout His ministry, that being His follower would come with a cost. There was no “sugar coating”, no “rose-colored glasses,” for the truth of discipleship. The road was hard then, it is still hard today.

He would pay the ultimate price, and every follower should be ready to do the same. Many have done so through the ages around the world. We cannot follow in hiding, so sit down at the beginning of each day, decide what you are willing to sacrifice as you follow Him out of yourself and into the world.

Prayer Starter Lord, the road ahead is not easy, but I know that I do not walk it alone. I will honestly express my fears and failures, so that You can work in me to grow stronger, more resilient and better equipped to serve You.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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Jesus, the Water of Life

Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” – John 4:13-14 (NIV)

There is such a thing as “dead” water. It may be polluted with toxins or so clean that it is stripped of its nutrients from over filtering. It can sustain life, but not real health. “Living” water not only brings hydration, but essential minerals necessary for bone growth, muscle function and connective tissue. It is also special on a molecular level, more alkaline than acidic, more quickly passing into our cells and fully nourishing our bodies.

Jesus is Living Water to our souls, bringing cool, refreshing relief to the dryness of our lives. He changes us from our atoms outward, ridding us of toxic thoughts and acidic desires that drain us of the little life we have. Drink Him in deeply, immersing yourself in the flood of His love and splashing with joy into eternity.

Prayer Starter Lord, submerge me in Your Living Water. Surround me, fill me, wash over me with Your love and may it spill over onto all others that you put in my path.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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Bread of Heaven

The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world. – John 6:33 (NLT)

The Jews were well aware of how God sent manna as their ancestors wandered desperately in the wilderness. This flour-like substance made into bread saved their lives. While God’s “chosen” hungered in the desert forty years, deferred from entering the Promised Land because of their sin, God sustained them.

Jesus, the Messiah, came to save an aimless, starving world. We are all now “chosen” and offered the Bread of Life that will sustain us as we await our promised final destination. We are born hungry into a wilderness of uncertainty and endless choices. That which we chose to satisfy our hunger will determine the quality of our health and the hope of life worth living.

Prayer Starter: As the song writer wrote, “Bread of Heaven, feed me til I want no more,” I will sing of your faithful provision. Both my physical and spiritual needs are met by You, day by day, and I will express my gratitude!

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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The Son

Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” – Matthew 16:16 (NLT)

Why would God reveal Himself as “the Son”? He could have appeared as a powerful prophet, easily accepted in the Jewish culture. He could have come as a political king, much desired by the people of Israel oppressed by Roman rule. He could have burst onto the scene as a conquering warrior, expected by many to battle and bend the world into their vision of the future.

He could have come in any form, but He chose to arrive as a child, a Son. One of us, responsible to a family, obedient to the Father, accessible to everyone. Only the sacrifice of a true Son, spilling His own blood, breaking His heart, would be enough to speak the Word, end oppression and make a better future beyond any vision we can foresee or imagine.

Prayer Starter That You would come to live like me in order to reach me is almost beyond my ability to comprehend. I humble myself to the Son who brought me into His family.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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The Way

Jesus told him, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” – John 14:6

When we are lost, there is no relief like finding the way home. When we are accused, confused, or living a lie, only the truth can bring us peace. When we merely exist from day to day, the promise of real life brings joy unspeakable to endless cloudy days.

Jesus was, is, and will be the answer to the questions that haunt us, hunt us down, and keep us trapped in meaningless pursuits. He provides the way out of despair and truth that you can depend on. He gave His own life so that we could have life that was abundant in every way – full, free, motivated and miraculous.

The Way is before us. Accept His Truth and take the Life that is just one step away.

Prayer Starter Lord, when my way is cloudy, light Your way before me.

  • Sue Breland, Worship for One 2019
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