Scripture Reading & Reflection #1 | Psalm 35:5-10 

(take a few moments to invite the Lord into your space and thoughts, acknowledge who He is, and the Spirit’s work.)

Let them be like dust on the wind—
    and let the Lord’s messenger be the one who does the blowing!
Let their path be dark and slippery—
    and let the Lord’s messenger be the one who does the chasing!
Because they hid their net for me for no reason,
    they dug a pit for me for no reason.
Let disaster come to them when they don’t suspect it.
    Let the net they hid catch them instead!
    Let them fall into it—to their disaster!

But I will rejoice in the Lord;
    I will celebrate his salvation.
10 All my bones will say, “Lord, who could compare to you?
    You rescue the weak from those who overpower them;
        you rescue the weak and the needy from those who plunder them.”

Scripture Reflection & Response #2 | Psalm 148

(Praise Him for who He is.)

Praise the Lord!

Praise the Lord from heaven!
    Praise God on the heights!
Praise God, all of you who are his messengers!
    Praise God, all of you who comprise his heavenly forces!
Sun and moon, praise God!
    All of you bright stars, praise God!
You highest heaven, praise God!
    Do the same, you waters that are above the sky!
Let all of these praise the Lord’s name
    because God gave the command and they were created!
God set them in place always and forever.
    God made a law that will not be broken.

Praise the Lord from the earth,
    you sea monsters and all you ocean depths!
Do the same, fire and hail, snow and smoke,
    stormy wind that does what God says!
Do the same, you mountains, every single hill,
    fruit trees, and every single cedar!
10 Do the same, you animals—wild or tame—
    you creatures that creep along and you birds that fly!
11 Do the same, you kings of the earth and every single person,
    you princes and every single ruler on earth!
12 Do the same, you young men—young women too!—
    you who are old together with you who are young!

13 Let all of these praise the Lord’s name
    because only God’s name is high over all.
    Only God’s majesty is over earth and heaven.
14 God raised the strength of his people,
    the praise of all his faithful ones—
        that’s the Israelites,
        the people who are close to him.

Praise the Lord!

“I’ve said these things to you so that you will have peace in me. In the world you have distress. But be encouraged! I have conquered the world.” -John 16:33

QUESTIONS FOR PERSONAL REFLECTION

  1. What trials and tribulations have you faced – either broken parts of your human experience or due to your faithfulness to Jesus.
  2. How have you experienced Jesus’ victory (overcoming the world) in the middle of trials and tribulations?

CLOSING PRAYER

Jesus, thank you for giving us a clear perspective of our human experience in its ups and downs, but also for overcoming the world and giving us the capacity to overcome in You. We live between our human experience and new creation; we see the groaning of the world for your newness and thank you that in You and through the power of your Holy Spirit we already experience your victory, though often in glimpses and pockets. We stand strong in your promise. May we be a canvas for your light to shine into our broken world.

Take a few moments to consider giving to our mission.

Giving cheerfully and sacrificially of our finances is part of our worship. A believer labours not to accrue personal wealth or possessions, but to steward God’s resources well and model Jesus to our brothers, sisters and community. Jesus gave everything for us, and it is our joy to give back to him.

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