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The Institute of Lutheran theology not only provides programs to train pastors and teachers, but it also provides educational and devotional resources for individuals and congregations. These resources are provided free of charge and made available through our web page. Please subscribe to and use any of these resources.

The Institute of Lutheran theology not only provides programs to train pastors and teachers, but it also provides educational and devotional resources for individuals and congregations. These resources are provided free of charge and made available through our web page. Please subscribe to and use any of these resources.

The Fourth Sunday after Pentecost A

The Fourth Sunday after Pentecost A

What a reassuring word from Jesus!  He has just delivered prophetic words anticipating the kind of persecution and troubles that will be visited upon his disciples as they are sent out into the world.  In the face of such persecution and troubles, Jesus tells them “Fear not!”  Why should they “fear not?”  They should fear not because they are valuable.  How valuable are they?  They are of more value than many sparrows.  How much are sparrows worth?  They are worth two for a penny (vs. 29).  Yet even these tiny birds of such insignificant worth do not escape the Father’s attention.  Their every death is noted.  So, too, for those who are commanded, “Fear not!”  Their persecution… their troubles… their death… will certainly be noted by the Father who lets nothing, not even the death of insignificant birds, escape his notice.  Now to you, your life also is worth more than many sparrows… your life is noted by the Father… all of its circumstances—persecution, trouble, and even death—do not escape the Father’s attention.  So now you can hear the promise:  your life is of so much value to the Father that he did not send sparrows to be your salvation, but he sent his Son… his only Son… Jesus Christ… to redeem you.  In Christ, you live out the command, “Fear not!”  Thanks be to God!  Amen

Prayers from one whose ears have trouble hearing the “fear not…”

Heavenly Father, gather me safely into your bosom that I may know my worth to you as I live in a world of persecution, hate, betrayal, and death.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen

Heavenly Father, gather me safely into your bosom that I would have no fear of those who can only destroy my flesh but cannot touch the future you have promised me.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen

Heavenly Father, gather me safely into your bosom that I would be confident of your faithfulness for your Son has given his life for mine.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen

Heavenly Father, gather me safely into your bosom and grant that I would be joined by many neighbors, known or not known, so that together we would be the communion of saints.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen

Heavenly Father, gather me safely into your bosom so that in the communion of saints present there I would know their conversation and their consolation.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen

Heavenly Father, gather me safely into your bosom that I would witness within the Institute of Lutheran Theology to the surpassing worth we have in the person of Jesus Christ.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen

Heavenly Father, gather me safely into your bosom so that my wait for Jesus’ manifestation in glory would be one of contentment in my usefulness to family, community, and congregation.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen

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