Something to Think About With Keith Lawder and Steve Waldorf
|Rev. Keith E. Lawder
|Rev. Stephen A. Waldorf
Regional Vice President
478-738-0048 #115 (Macon)
April 27, 2020
“Then the two disciples described what happened along the (Emmaus) road and how Jesus was made known to them as he broke the bread.” – Luke 24:35
Jesus gave us the sacraments so that we could be absolutely certain of His presence. I love the words of the Moravian blessing for a meal. “Come Lord Jesus our guest to be and bless these gifts bestowed by Thee.” It recognizes both the essential and the sacred nature of meals. We need physical food and fellowship to sustain us. And we need spiritual food and fellowship to sustain us. When you eat a meal, do you always invite Jesus to be your guest?
O God, I am so grateful for all your gifts and especially for the gift of your Son!
April 20, 2020
Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” – John 20:19
I didn’t always listen to my mother when she told me something. But if she said it three times, I knew I should pay attention. When Jesus entered that room of terrified disciples whose hopes for the Messiah had been crushed, He says to them three times, “Peace be with you.” Jesus wanted them to know that whatever happened, He would be with them. Therefore, they could face whatever happened with hope, confidence, and a sense of peace. Perhaps you are facing a challenge or even a crisis today. Be assured that Christ is with you! Peace!
Thank you, Jesus, for your peace. It means everything!
April 13, 2020
But the angel said to the women,”Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said.”
– Matthew 28:5-6
We can only imagine the fear the women must have felt as they approached Jesus’ grave that first Easter morning. All their hopes had been crushed. They had watched a terrible execution. Yet they went anyway. Easter morning still comes even in the most fearful of times. Peace comes even at the most violent of times. Hope comes to believers in the most hopeless of times. It’s all because Jesus isn’t in the tomb. He has risen just as He said He would.
Jesus Christ is risen today! Alleluia!
April 6, 2020
“When they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus gave the two disciples a task. He said to them, ”Go into the village over there. As soon as you enter, you will find a donkey tied up and a colt with it. Untie them and bring them to me.” – Matthew 21:1-2
Perhaps your experience is like mine. When I sense that God is telling me to do something, I start coming up with reasons I should do something else. What if someone should ask why I am doing it? What if I don’t feel equipped to do what God asks? Is there something in your life that God is asking you to do today? Can you answer like Isaiah? “Here am I; send me!”
O Lord, give me the discernment and the courage to go where you send me. And give me the knowledge and certainty that you are with me every step of the way.
March 30, 2020
“The Lord watches over you—the Lord is your shade at your right hand.” – Psalm 121:5
Take a deep breath! Look at God’s creation all around you. Realize that you are now in the shade of His presence. It is no longer a time to fear. It's a time to take comfort and assurance as God wraps you in His love.
March 23, 2020
“Indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” – Psalm 121:4
God created us, He knows us, and He cherishes us. He searches for us when we become lost in our own worries and sin. Peace is ours when we remember that God is always watching over us.
March 16, 2020
“He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber.” — Psalm 121:3
God is never too busy for me when I am feeling lost and desperate. He always finds time to seek me, hold me close, and set me on my way again so that I feel refreshed with Him by my side. If you experience this kind of pain and worry, slow down. Remember that God knows the way!
March 9, 2020
“My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” – Psalm 121:2
If we focus on our shortcomings and worries, we will completely miss the fact that God has come down to us from heaven. He has not secluded Himself from us but lives within us. He hears our calls, but we must respond so that we can experience His presence and rest in His love and grace.
March 2, 2020
“I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from?” – Psalm 121:1
This Bible verse is a song of assurance and promise. It provides comfort to those of us seeking help for our problems. We gain much by slowing down, looking at the world around us, and taking the time to realize that God both listens and guides us when we listen for Him.
February 24, 2020
“And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.” – 1 Corinthians 13:13
I love the biblical references which use the word abide: to live in or to pitch your tent in. Imagine faith, hope, and love all abiding in each of us. The world would be very different. Alas, that isn’t very likely. And yet, when we invite Jesus’ faith, hope, and love to abide in us, we can change the world!
February 17, 2020
“It [love] bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.” – 1 Corinthians 13:7-8
Often, we see the world through the “me” filter. We ask, “What’s in it for me?” By contrast, Christian love asks, “How I can serve you?” Let’s face it: all of our stuff will fade away. But the love we share will last forever. Think of a difficult person in your life. What can you do today to reflect God’s love for him or her?
February 10, 2020
“It [love] does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth.” – 1 Corinthians 13:5
We live in a time when lying, cheating, and name-calling have found new levels of acceptability. The common discourse has become constant disparagement. Jesus teaches us that love overcomes hate. How would the world change if each day we identified one person with whom we disagree and deliberately celebrated some common ground?
February 3, 2020
“Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude.” – 1 Corinthians 13:4-5
It seems fitting that the love passages should be the theme for our February devotions. While we hear these verses mostly at weddings, the context in Paul’s letter has more to do with how we use our spiritual gifts in our daily lives. Here is the question to ponder. How do we share God’s love in all our interactions with others?
January 27, 2020
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” – Matthew 25:40
We live in a world where we could give away clothes and goods all day to those without housing, wages, training, and connections, and still not fill the needs of where we live. But our calling is to “go out into the roads and lanes” (Luke 14:23) to take care of the lost. Where is Christ calling you to care for the least, the lost, and the last?
January 20, 2020
“But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son … ” – Galatians 4:4
So many things happen to fill up our time and space. We have the best of intentions. We want it all to work out perfectly in spite of our worry and stress. Go to a quiet place this week, take a deep breath, and find one thing to focus on when it comes to God's timing. I pray this brings you hope and a sense of God's presence amid your fullness!
January 13, 2020
“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.” – Exodus 20:2
May I encourage you to join me this week and the next in applying one of the Ten Commandments found in Exodus 20:2-17 to your daily life? How can these spiritual rules of conduct shape your outlook and actions for the next two weeks? How does this change the way we think of God working in our lives, as we work in the world?
January 6, 2020
“I believe in God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.” – The Apostles’ Creed
How do we stay spiritually and mentally strong while living out our Christian faith? Among United Methodists, The Apostles’ Creed and the sacrament of Holy Communion have been used for centuries to express and share our beliefs, and to shape our testimony we live for God's kingdom!