The First 15

Monday March 21, 2022

by Sharon Reid

Today is Monday, March 21 and this week, as we pray through scripture, we are reflecting on our great need for salvation.

Opening Prayer

As I enter into prayer, I pause to be still, I slow down my breathing, and I seek to be more fully present with God in these holy moments.

Pause and Pray

Holy Spirit, help me release my worries and distractions into your capable care as I rest with you in these moments of stillness. Amen.

Scripture Reading

I sense I am in God’s presence here and now, as I join with the ancient praise of all God’s people in the words of Psalm 62.

Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him. Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him. Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is my mighty rock, my refuge. – Psalm 62:1-2, 6-7 NIV

Pause and Pray

Titus, a Gentile, was one of the Apostle Paul’s “sons in the faith” and his representative on the island of Crete. As I read Paul’s words of teaching in his letter to Titus, I recognize that Paul is including himself, Titus, the people of Crete, and me in his description of what our lives were like before we came to know God’s salvation through Jesus Christ.

At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone. – Titus 3:3-8 NIV

Reflection

Paul vividly describes, and helps me remember how lost I became when God’s image in me was broken by my selfish and willful ways. In response to my need for healing, the “kindness and love of God” appeared for us, even for me, in Jesus Christ our Savior, who is Immanuel, God with us. He did not come because of righteous things I had done, but because of God’s great mercy. Paul goes on further to describe how our triune God is continuously in operation, generously pouring out the Holy Spirit through Jesus Christ, to save us and restore the image of God originally created in us.

Ask: What do I remember from my past about the attitude of my heart and my need for salvation? How am I in need of salvation today?

Pause and Pray

Holy Spirit, help me notice a particular word, phrase or thought you want me to carry with me throughout this day as I slowly read the passage once more.

At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone. – Titus 3:1-8 NIV

Ask: What word, phrase or thought from this passage does God’s Spirit guide me to? How will I carry this with me throughout the day?

Pause and Pray

Lord, help me look inward and pay attention to what you have led me to see and hear. I invite you to transform me in these moments so that I might reflect the thoughts and actions of Jesus Christ throughout this day. Amen.

Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people. – Jude 2:3 NIV

Closing Prayer

Lord, as I leave this time of prayer, make me ready to be faithful to you in every way. Jesus, make me ready to serve others with your compassion and grace. Holy Spirit, transform my inner thoughts and motivations so that all I do, I do to please you. Amen.

The First 15

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