Kindness

Occasionally my wife and I minister to someone just before they die.  Sometimes the person is very anxious.  The dying person might be very upset and concerned about what is going to happen to loved ones when the person passes on to the next life.    It is a very moving moment. My wife addresses the person: “You can go home to Jesus now.  Your family loves you and wants you to be at peace and free from suffering.”  At that very moment, we’ve seen the person simply relax and die.  It is as though they have been given permission to pass away.

Before Moses can die, he has to be sure that careful instructions are given to the people about how those placed under his care are to be treated. You’ll read verses about being kind to those in need.  

How will you fulfill these commands of Moses on his deathbed—commands that the Holy Spirit longs for you to keep alive in your heart?  

 Deuteronomy 15:1-11

The Saturday passages follow the reading list that Jewish people use in their synagogue worship throughout the world. They are taken from
“The Torah,” the first five books of the Bible from Genesis to Deuteronomy that are read each year beginning with autumn.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

Lifted High to See Jesus

When Jesus came to that spot, he looked up and said, “Zacchaeus, come down at once. I must stay in your home today.” 
So Zacchaeus came down at once, happy to welcome Jesus.
Luke 19:5-6

When you were a little child, watching a parade go by, you likely couldn’t see very well because the people in front of you were much taller than you. Maybe your Dad put you on his shoulders so that you could see better.

For the past ten chapters in the Gospel of St. Luke, all the stories and teachings of Jesus happen while he is making his way to Jerusalem; there he will suffer, die and rise from the dead. Great crowds followed Jesus; it was just like a parade!  A very short man named Zacchaeus wanted to see Jesus as he passed by.  Zacchaeus was too heavy to sit on someone’s shoulders, so he climbed up a tree so that he could see Jesus.  Watch him; then catch the smile of love on Jesus’ face when he sees Zacchaeus sticking out way up in that tree.

So many people in our lives have shared their faith and love with us, for they too, wanted to wiggle their way through the events of their lives so that they could see Jesus better.   We get to see Jesus, because it is as though we are sitting on the shoulders of these faithful ones, so that we too can see Jesus. 

Luke 19:1-28

Fridays are dedicated to the Gospels. This being Year C,
the third year in the cycle, we generally read from the Gospel of Luke.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

Final Encouraging Words

One of the purposes for the letter to the Hebrews, was to encourage Jewish Christians who had suffered so much persecution from the Roman emperors.  These are the final chapters.  What beautiful verses the writer shares!  Knowing that he would be closing the letter, his love, care and encouragement gets stronger and stronger. 

When we do what is right before God, there is joy in our hearts that no one can take from us.  God’s love is so much greater than the hatred of the worst enemy.  Take these special expressions of the writer, one at a time, perhaps having one chapter in the morning, the other in the afternoon or evening.      

Schools are opening soon.  Listen to the words of this reading; they will encourage you and lift you up as you get ready for another year.  Children in school bring fresh joys to parents’ own desire to grow in learning.

Hebrews 12—13

Thursdays are dedicated to the letters of Paul, other letters,
the Book of Acts, and the Book of Revelation.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.