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ULC - Universal Life Church - Daily Thought and Prayer For 8.18.14

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Daily Thought & Daily Bible Readings Courtesy
of the Universal Life Church World Headquarters

Large streams from little fountains flow.
—David Everett

Somewhere nearby, no matter where we are, runs a creek. We've seen plenty of them, narrow and rocky. In summer it's hardly a creek at all, but in the spring, it feeds a mighty river.

Each of us is like that creek, a trickle contributing to some greater plan. Sometimes we feel dried up, contributing nothing. Often we feel small, rocky, not up to the task - when we can understand what the task is.

Sometimes the task seems too simple - get up each morning, love and work and live the day as honestly as we can. What kind of contribution is that? Sometimes it seems too complicated. How much more we could contribute if we could see the whole river - where it begins and ends - if we knew what would happen tomorrow.

So we ebb and flow. And in our moments of contentment, we know we are doing the best we can each day.

What contribution, however small, can I offer the world today?

Daily Bible Readings From The Universal Life Church World Headquarters

Reading 1, Ezekiel 24:15-24

15 The word of Yahweh was addressed to me as follows,

16 'Son of man, at a blow I am about to deprive you of the delight of your eyes. But you are not to lament, not to weep, not to let your tears run down.

17 Groan in silence, do not go into mourning for the dead, knot your turban round your head, put your sandals on your feet, do not cover your beard, do not eat the usual food.'

18 I told this to the people in the morning, and my wife died in the evening, and the next morning I did as I had been ordered.

19 The people then said to me, 'Will you not explain what meaning these actions have for us?'

20 I replied, 'The word of Yahweh has been addressed to me as follows,

21 "Say to the House of Israel, the Lord Yahweh says this: I am about to profane my sanctuary, the pride of your strength, the delight of your eyes, the joy of your hearts. Your sons and daughters whom you have left behind will fall by the sword.

22 Then you will do as I have done: you will not cover your beards or eat the usual food;

23 you will keep your turbans on your heads and your sandals on your feet; you will not lament or weep but will waste away for your crimes, groaning among yourselves.

24 Thus Ezekiel is a sign for you. You will do exactly what he has done. And when this happens, you will know that I am Lord Yahweh!"

Responsorial Psalm, Deuteronomy 32:18-19, 20, 21

18 (You forget the Rock who fathered you, the God who made you, you no longer remember.)

19 Yahweh saw it and, in anger, he spurned his sons and daughters.

20 'I shall hide my face from them,' he said, 'and see what will become of them. For they are a deceitful brood, children with no loyalty in them.

21 They have roused me to jealousy with a non-god, they have exasperated me with their idols. In my turn I shall rouse them to jealousy with a non-people, I shall exasperate them with a stupid nation.

Gospel, Matthew 19:16-22

16 And now a man came to him and asked, 'Master, what good deed must I do to possess eternal life?'

17 Jesus said to him, 'Why do you ask me about what is good? There is one alone who is good. But if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.'

18 He said, 'Which ones?' Jesus replied, 'These: You shall not kill. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not give false witness.

19 Honour your father and your mother. You shall love your neighbour as yourself.'

20 The young man said to him, 'I have kept all these. What more do I need to do?'

21 Jesus said, 'If you wish to be perfect, go and sell your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.'

22 But when the young man heard these words he went away sad, for he was a man of great wealth.
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