Spirit of the Living God, come and be with me.

Awaken me to your presence.

Spirit of the Living God, come and sit with me.

Guide me in your wisdom and truth.

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Then he said to them, “Therefore, every legal expert who has been trained as a disciple for the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings old and new things out of their treasure chest.”

Matthew 13:52

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Some of us like being leaders. We like being in charge, to be the one delegating tasks and encouraging team members. Even if the task is difficult, we prefer to be the one leading rather than the one following. There are also, however, difficult choices to make as a leader. Being an effective leader isn’t about having the loudest voice. Much of strong leadership depends on healthy habits, a disciplined way of living in the world.

In today’s passage, Jesus describes the work of the gospel as being trained as a disciple for the kingdom of heaven. Training involves a focused effort, regimented time commitment, and clear goals. In this sense, training is less fun and more work. But the payoff is worth it. The payoff is the joy involved when sharing the good news through our actions, the compassion and prayers of community, and experiencing the providence and mercies of God working in the lives of people who need it most. The payoff of grace sure is worth the hard training of discipleship.

Aram Bae

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God of infinite wisdom, help me to be a disciple of your gospel. Guide what I say and do so that others may be encouraged and inspired to seek you in their lives. May your kingdom of heaven be real in this world today. Amen.

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May the God of Love bless me and keep me.

May Jesus the Christ smile upon me and be gracious to me.

May the Spirit of Truth lead me in the path of wisdom and peace.

Aram Bae

After ten years in New York City, Aram moved to Charlottesville, VA and is the Associate Pastor for Youth & Mission at First Presbyterian Church. She continues to teach Christian education courses as an adjunct professor at the New York Theological Seminary, but does so remotely. In addition to her passion for youth ministry, there is nothing she loves more than a (large) plate of fried chicken, barbecue ribs, and collard greens. Cornbread sweetens the pot, too.

Walking Towards Morning: Wondrous Love

Ken Medema

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