First Steps – November 23, 2020

“Jesus answered her, ‘If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.’” (John 4:10 NIV).

Lately I’ve been thinking of the Greek word, Dorea. Often translated Gift, it denotes a free gift, stressing its gratuitous character. In the New Testament, it is always used to describe a spiritual or a supernatural gift given by God. When God gives, it is not just the object that is given, but the character of the one giving the gift.

In the text, the woman is slow to realize the gift of God given, Christ, and what that gift could do for her. I wonder how often we are like the woman at the well, because we are slow to recognize the gifts that have been given to us. On a large-scale, the gift of Christ.  On a small-scale, all the little ways God has blessed us.

Therefore, make a daily list for the next 30 days of the gifts that have been given to you. It will not be long before your thoughts will encompass the gifts and the one behind giving the gifts. Be fair warned! This will change your heart, for your cup will overflow with gratitude.


This Week’s Readings:
  • Monday – 1 Corinthians 7
  • Tuesday – 1 Corinthians 8
  • Wednesday – 1 Corinthians 9
  • Thursday – 1 Corinthians 10
  • Friday – 1 Corinthians 11
Please Pray for:
  • Families in crisis.
  • Friends and family members battling illness.
  • Those seeking to find their way.
  • The St. Paul Church family and our ministries.
  • The United Methodist Church family.
  • Our leaders, our country, and our world.

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done.” – Philippians 4:6

First Steps – November 16, 2020

1 Corinthians 3:5-6 says, “What then is Apollos? What is Paul? Servants through whom you came to believe, as the Lord assigned to each. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth.

Often when one thinks of their missional service, he/she thinks they have to do the work alone. One feeds and clothes the poor, another spreads the gospel, and still another one cares for the sick. What Paul reminds all is that God added to the work of Apollos and Paul or any person. Actually, the English version doesn’t fully express the thrust of the verse. It is more than a one-time past action. It is a continued action by God. A past action that continues and continues. The ripples never end.

In the text, God continually adds to the work of Apollos and the work of Paul so that it constantly grows. God does the same with us. Every good work, every gospel word spoken is added to by God and God continually adds and adds so that God’s Kingdom comes. The work of God never stops. I hope you take courage in everything you do in the name of God, regardless of how big or small, God will always add and add and add until it reaches its full effect. How great is His mercy for all—Thanks be to God!


This Week’s Readings:
  • Monday – 1 Corinthians 2
  • Tuesday – 1 Corinthians 3
  • Wednesday – 1 Corinthians 4
  • Thursday – 1 Corinthians 5
  • Friday – 1 Corinthians 6
Please Pray for:
  • Families in crisis.
  • Friends and family members battling illness.
  • Those seeking to find their way.
  • The St. Paul Church family and our ministries.
  • The United Methodist Church family.
  • Our leaders, our country, and our world.

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done.” – Philippians 4:6

First Steps – November 9, 2020

Everyone wants peace, but very few care for the things that produce it. God’s peace is with the humble and the gentle, and especially with the patient. If you will listen to God and act accordingly, you will enjoy much peace. Here is what to do. Care for nothing other than pleasing God. Do not judge others or meddle in things which do not concern you. Following this advice will spare you needless trouble. But remember that it is impossible to be entirely free of trouble and fatigue in this life… Peace can be found in offering your whole heart to God. Forget your own will, in great things and small things, thanking God equally for the pleasant and the unpleasant. Weigh everything in the same balance…

These words were written in the 15th Century, yet they still ring true today. Peace is never the absence of struggle, but the knowledge that you belong to God. What assurance we have as a child of God. As God gives himself to us, we give ourselves to him. A bond of faith is formed, meaning that as we give ourselves to him, he gives us his peace.

Peace is internal, something on the inside, a calm resolve that sees one through the struggles of life. Remember – you belong to a God of peace.


This Week’s Readings:
  • Monday – Galatians 3
  • Tuesday – Galatians 4
  • Wednesday – Galatians 5
  • Thursday – Galatians 6
  • Friday – 1 Corinthians 1
Please Pray for:
  • Families in crisis.
  • Friends and family members battling illness.
  • Those seeking to find their way.
  • The St. Paul Church family and our ministries.
  • The United Methodist Church family.
  • Our leaders, our country, and our world.

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done.” – Philippians 4:6