The First 15

Monday February 1, 2021

by Mike Ramsdell

Opening Prayer

In the busyness of our everyday lives, we often fail to prepare our hearts and minds for reading God’s word and experience God in this time. Take a moment to allow this prayer to lead you into your time with God today.

As I enter into this time of prayer and reflection, I pause to be still; to breathe slowly; to re-center my scattered senses upon the presence of God.

Holy and loving God, in this new season I invite you to shape my soul with your words and inspire my life with your works. Teach me to walk in the way of peace and grace. AMEN.

Scripture Reading

Matthew 5:13-16

You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless how will it be made salty again? It is good for nothing any more, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men. You are the light of the world, a city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor to men light a lamp, and put it under the peck-measure, but on the lampstand; and it gives light to
all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify
your father who is in heaven.


Part of the theme beginning this year is the idea that we are entering a new world. The world has changed. How do we respond? How can you reflect this as Christians? How does the church reflect this?

If we pay close attention to today’s bible reading (the words of Jesus) and we use the analogy that the world has been pretty dark lately; how do we respond, what do we do, how shall we live?

Shine brighter!
Get saltier!

When times get dark, the church shines brighter, when the lights dim, the Christian glows brighter. When the flavor goes out in our world, when things get bitter and rancid, then the Church gets saltier, Christians season the world with flavor and savor.

Jesus uses the term “good works” to show us more specifically how Christians spread flavor and brighten the world.

We do good!
The Church does good!

When the world is out of control, do good; when it is a dark season, do good; when bitterness and rancidness seem to surround us, do good.

The Christian can never say, “I don’t know what to do,” and the Church can never say, “I don’t know what to do?”

In the new year, new church, new world, “Do Good.” Spread a little salt, shine a little light today and so glorify God.

I may not be able to control the darkness of our world, but I can shine a little light in it. I may not be able to control the bitterness we too often see, but I can scatter a little salt.

Closing Prayer

Father, help me to live this day to the full, being true to You, in every way.

Jesus, help me to give myself away to others, being kind to everyone I meet.

Spirit, help me to love the lost, proclaiming Christ in all I do and say.


*Our opening and closing prayers are adapted from Lectio 365, a mobile application developed by the 24-7 Prayer Network. To find out more about this resource, visit this link.

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