Saturday, April 20, 2013

Sunday, April 21, 2013

ACTS 13:14, 43-52; PS 100:1-2, 3, 5; REV 7:9, 14B-17

Reflection:  We are living our lives for the joy of eternity, not for the joy of the here and now.  Our life on earth can sometimes feel like a “time of great distress.”  We sometimes hunger and thirst, and feel as though we can not be quenched, but when we stand before the throne of God we “will not hunger or thirst anymore.”  Sometimes we can feel like our life is filled with struggles and tears, but when we stand before His throne, “God will wipe away every tear from our eyes.”  Jesus came and bore His cross so that He could give us eternal life.  In the same way, we are called to bear our crosses and sometimes face a life of trial, so that we might one day share in God’s glory and stand before God’s throne in the kingdom of heaven.  So do not despair, and “remain faithful to the grace of God” and you shall receive your reward in heaven.
Reflection for younger saints:  Our life on earth is not always easy.  Sometimes life is hard, and sometimes others are not nice to us, and sometimes we do not have all that we want.  But, if we love and serve God we will get to be with Him in heaven one day.  When we are with God in heaven we will be happy and we will forget about all the struggles we had on earth.

Big Picture:  “remain faithful to the grace of God”

Discussion Starters:

Younger saints:  Did God ever tell us our life would always be easy and happy?  Is life sometimes hard and sad?  What can we remember when we are sad or others are not nice to us?  (God loves us and one day we will be with Him in heaven and we will be very happy.)

Older saints:  Do you sometimes struggle with offering up your suffering and remembering that life is not supposed to always be easy and fun?  Reflect on Jesus’ death on the cross, the martyrs we have learned about, and the reading from the Book of Revelation.  What do we have to look forward to that makes our struggles and our suffering worthwhile?

Scripture Verse for the Week:  “These are the ones who have survived the time of great distress;* they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” Revelations 7:14

You are now entering the mission field:  Offer up prayers for someone who treated you unfairly this week  (Spiritual work of mercy:  to bear wrongs patiently).


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