Weather Alert:

Church programs for Monday, Jan. 22 will resume their normal schedule at all locations this evening.

Programming Note:

Leawood’s Sunday night in-person worship has been moved to 4 pm for Sunday, February 11. 

Close this search box.

Prayer Tip: The Purpose and Power of the Church

August 20, 2023

Daily Scripture

Matthew 16:15b-18 (CEB), 1 Peter 2:9-10b (NRSV), 1 Corinthians 12:27 (NRSV), Matthew 5:14-16 (NRSV)

[Jesus asked his disciples], Who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Then Jesus replied, “Happy are you, Simon son of Jonah, because no human has shown this to you. Rather my Father who is in heaven has shown you. I tell you that you are Peter [which means “rock”]. And I’ll build MY church on this rock. The gates of the underworld won’t be able to stand against it.”

You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people.

Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.

“You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.”

Daily Reflection & Prayer

We know the church is more than a building. We know we are the church–but what does that mean? The New Testament refers to the Church as the Bride of Christ. This is challenging imagery for me. But when we consider we are called by the most important commandment to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind,” it makes more sense. Jesus wants us to love him, to be devoted to him and to want to be with him. Out of that deep love a desire forms which makes following Jesus second nature.

Through history, too many churches have failed because their leaders forgot the first commandment. Things other than the love of their life, Christ, catch their eye. They begin to love attention, money, themselves, and sadly sometimes they are unfaithful to their earthly partner as well as the church.

If Resurrection, with thousands of people, in and out of the church building, stays focused on leading all our worshippers to fall deeply in love with Christ, what would our community look like? We could be a church that truly would be built on a rock, that would be an amazing force of love in the world.

Prayer Practices

  1. If we love someone, we show gratitude for things they have done for us. Try to keep a prayer of gratitude going all day long. Thank you for the start of the morning, thank you for my shower, thank you for being able to complete my tasks, right until thank you for the end of this day. Notice how much Christ lovingly provided for you that day. From sunrise to sunset, from flowers to music, it truly is a world filled with wonder.
  2. We spend time with those we love the most. Spend time with God in prayer or meditation. Start with five minutes alone with God where you ask that the Spirit will be with you. If you have difficulty with that, you might sit quietly and listen to a hymn or meditative worship piece that makes you feel close to Christ. (I like to listen to “Be Still,” by Loud Harp.)
  3. When you love someone, you do things to please them. So many things are pleasing to Jesus, and many of them don’t even cost money. We please Jesus by being kind to our neighbors, by holding doors open, by smiling at people and wishing them a good day. We please Jesus by picking up a few extra cans at the grocery store for those in need. Whatever you are able to do for Christ, do it with great love and it will please him.

Dear Jesus, I love you. Help me continue to grow more and more in love with you. I want you to be my first thought in the morning and my last thought at night. I want to think about you all through my day and put nothing above you. Guide my focus and gently correct me when I get distracted. Amen.

GPS Insights

Picture of Ashly Cooley

Ashly Cooley

This week's prayer tip is by Ashly Cooley. She has been on staff since 2015 and this is the best job she has ever had. She is passionate about serving the Lord, normalizing mental health care, and is a self proclaimed bibliophile. She enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter, extended family and friends as well as dancing badly and snuggling her dog, Bessie.

© 2024 Resurrection: A United Methodist Church. All Rights Reserved.
Scripture quotations are taken from The Common English Bible ©2011. Used by permission. All rights reserved.