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Nicholas Hood III Ministries

Make a Difference in the World!

Lord, if you choose…

Lord if You Choose…

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There comes a point in each of our lives when we are faced with a choice- do I continue down the road I am traveling, or am I prepared to travel in a different direction? This question becomes more dramatic when we hit rock bottom- a relationship becomes filled with chaos and we are not sure if we are going or coming; a lover refuses to commit; your pay and professional responsibilities are frozen; your health descends to an unacceptable plateau and you begin to wonder, “Is this how I will live for the rest of my life?”

There is a story which is recorded in Mark, Matthew and Luke about a leper who approaches Jesus and in faith, asks the Lord to heal him. Leprosy was thought to be incurable. Public health concerns prohibited lepers to have contact with the general population. Jesus heals the man and the man becomes a great testimony to what the Lord can do. The man begins be saying, “Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.” Look at what happens next.

“Jesus is moved with pity.” (Mark 1: 41) Lesson: Jesus is moved by our human condition. In like manner, you and I should take pity on those who suffer. Next, Jesus touches the man, even though public health policy forbid anyone to come in physical contact with those who had this disease. (vs. 41). Let us not overlook that the sick man has the nerve to approach Jesus. (vs. 40) You and I should resist the temptation to fight our battles alone and should always feel welcome to approach the Lord for direct assistance. Last, the leper, now healed begins to become a one man testimony for Jesus and spreads the story of his healing grace and power throughout the entire region. (vs. 45)

If the Lord has made a difference in your life, whom will you tell? If the Lord has washed you, cleaned you up from the life you once knew, to whom will you share the good news? Tell your story! Tell someone about the transformation in your life! Tell of the grace, mercy and love of Jesus Christ!

Mark 1: 40 A leper came to him begging him, and kneeling he said to him, “If you choose, you can make me clean.” 41 Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, “I do choose. Be made clean!” 42 Immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean. 43 After sternly warning him he sent him away at once, 44 saying to him, “See that you say nothing to anyone; but go, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.” 45 But he went out and began to proclaim it freely, and to spread the word, so that Jesus could no longer go into a town openly, but stayed out in the country; and people came to him from every quarter. [1]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. The leper in this story begins to tell all who will listen about what the Lord has done in his life. When have you felt compelled to share your story about what Jesus means to you?
  2. How do you feel when you tell others about the difference Jesus Christ is making in your life?
  3. Why do you think Jesus told the leper not to tell others what he had done for him?

 

Prayer: Lord, I have made my decision and today I choose you! I choose you because there is none like you. I choose you because you are smarter than the smartest person, stronger than the mighty, more loving than the greatest lover and above all, you promise redemption from our sins and eternal life in that kingdom which has no end. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry mission and publications of Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mk 1:40–45). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Do Not Judge!

Do Not Judge and You Will Not be Judged!

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One of the most powerful moments in our worship service happens after the announcements and the welcome to the visitors when the young acolytes step up to the lectern to lead the worshipers in the following teaching of Jesus:

Luke 6: 37 “Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; 38 give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.” [1]

The children lead the congregation in preparation for the Sunday offering by reminding us to refrain from judging and condemning others, a call to forgiveness and a reminder to share what we have with others and the promise that the Lord will return unto us what we have shared with others, particularly the poor, the tired, and those who suffer.

Questions for Reflection:

  1. Why are these words of Jesus so challenging?
  2. In what ways do these words of Jesus enhance your faith?

 

Prayer: Lord, teach me not to judge others. Grant me the compassion not to condemn, even when some might condemn me. Help me to forgive, even when my desire is to punish. Encourage me to give back in love, then in your divine providence, I pray that you might give unto me. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Lk 6:37–38). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

How Firm is Your Foundation?

How Firm is Your Foundation?

My beautiful picture
Ray and Michelle Manning, who introduced me to boiled shrimp and crab on newspaper,

 

 

While in divinity school, I interned during the summers at the church my father had pastored in New Orleans, Louisiana. One of the sermons I preached that summer was entitled, “How Firm is Your Foundation?” I worked on the sermon all week and that Friday evening I went over to the home of some friends who were not members of the church. My godparents, Daisy and Andrew Young Sr. were kind enough to allow me to stay at their home for the summer. During the week, I had spoken with them about the sermon I was preparing to preach. That Friday night I had a ball in a way I was not accustomed in Detroit. My friends, Michelle, and Macletus, their younger brother and sister, and Michelle’s boyfriend along with their mother did something I had never experienced before. They spread newspaper on the table and dumped boiled shrimp and crab in a feast unlike anything I had ever seen. After stuffing ourselves we played cards. Because they were not members of the church I was interning, I felt like I could let my hair down.

When I returned to the Young’s home I got a big surprise. The light was on next to my bed and there was a note pinned to my pillow that said something like this: “Nick, you are preaching a sermon Sunday entitled, “How Firm is Your Foundation?” Tonight, you have stayed out past midnight and I think you should ask yourself, “How firm is your foundation?” The next day I spoke with my god-mother and assured her that I spent the night indulging in shrimp and crab and had not done anything disrespectful to God, the ministry or the church.

The question I raised in that sermon is relevant today, “How firm is your foundation?” In the parable, Jesus tells a story about two people who built homes. One home was built upon a rock for a foundation. The other home was built on sand. When the wind and rain blew against the two homes, only the one that was built upon the rock could withstand the storm.

Our lives are like those two homes. When we build our lives upon the solid principals of Jesus Christ, we have an anchor and a foundation that will help us to withstand suffering, grief, illness, unemployment, divorce, assault and more. I encourage you to ask yourself this simple question, “How firm is my foundation? and reevaluate your faith.

This is the story Jesus told in Matthew chapter 7: 24 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. 25 The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell—and great was its fall!”

28 Now when Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were astounded at his teaching, 29 for he taught them as one having authority, and not as their scribes. [1]

 

Prayer: Lord, grant me a foundation of faith, that I might withstand the storms and pressures of life. Help me to believe what I cannot see. Teach me to love my neighbor as I love myself, and bless me with your goodness and mercy all the days of my life. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers, Photos Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry of Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mt 7:24–29). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Abundant Life Series – “Burgers and Bible”

Abundant Life Series – “Burgers and Bible”

“I come that you might have life, and life more abundantly” – John 10:10

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When: 3 Tuesday nights in July (July 11,18,25)

Where: Backyard of Judge and Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III (375 Lodge Dr. Detroit, Michigan 48214)

Extra Value: Burgers, Hotdogs, Watermelon and more!

Time: 7 PM

 

Note: Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III will lead this three -week series on “Abundant Life.” Each week, three of the nine “Fruits of the Spirit” will be discussed from the perspective of how they provide the believer with the “Abundant Life” that only Jesus Christ can provide.

Galatians 5: 22 By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control.[1]

 

More about the missions, photos, prayers from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com

www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ga 5:22–23). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Pray for Those Who Persecute You!

Pray for Those Who Persecute You!

 
One of the most difficult teachings of Jesus is found in the Sermon on the Mount where he commands his followers to “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…”

Matthew 5: 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,[1]

I believe that it is our nature to recoil in anger and self-preservation to fight those who have been mean to us and to retaliate in full force. So, what is the point in praying for those who persecute you? First, prayer makes a difference. Prayer is a gift from God that enables us to connect with God. While God already knows what is going on, prayer is our vehicle to let God know where are heart is. Second, praying for those who persecute you is a way to level yourself and your feelings. Prayer has prevented many a person from going off into the deep end. Third, prayer is a means of taping into the power of God. Prayer changes things.

I cannot say that I have ever experienced persecution. My crucifixions have been figurative and not literal. What I have experienced is mean-spiritedness. I have met cruel people who went out of their way to throw salt in the wound and to pontificate in their ignorance. Yet, through it all, the Lord has continued be my strength, guide, and inspiration. I have never missed a night of sleep, the sweet savor of a meal, or the tender embrace of love. I believe this is so because of my faith in Jesus Christ.

I encourage you to love your enemies and to pray for those who persecute you.

Matthew 5: Love for Enemies

(Lk 6:27–28, 32–36)

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your en,emies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. [2]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. When have you felt persecuted?
  2. What are your thoughts about societies around the world where persecution exists because of ethnic, racial and religious differences?
  3. How do you feel a Christian can love their enemies and pray for those who persecute yet challenge persecution in a loving manner?

 

Prayer: Lord, grant me the strength to love my enemies and teach me to pray for those who would persecute me. Fill me with courage to fight hatred and bigotry and the love to work for freedom and justice for all. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission and publications of Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mt 5:44). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mt 5:43–48). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Be Perfect, as Your Heavenly Father is Perfect!

Be Perfect, as Your Heavenly Father is Perfect!


Kay Dudley was in church last Sunday. Kay is the sister of Peggy Dudley. Peg  Looking at the photo of Kay makes me think about her sister, Peggy.  Peggy Dudley is a world-class bassoon player who  has spent much of her adult life playing in Frankfurt, Germany. In high school, she and I performed in the symphonic band at the Cass Technical High School. Our conductor was Harold Arnoldi. Mr. Arnoldi was a task-master who demanded the best from each of his musicians. The band practiced one hour each day, but during our concert season, we also would stay after school and practice for another hour or two. At 7AM, the various musical sections would practice for an hour separately in what was called, “Sectionals.” I was a trombone player and practiced with the trombone players. Peggy would rehearse with the bassoon players. I was always proud of Peggy because every now and then, without any warning, Mr. Arnoldi would point his baton at her, bend his head over his neck, squint his eyes at her and shout, “Play!” In the two or three years that Peggy and I played in the symphonic band, I never heard her miss a note! She was always prepared, always ready, always perfect in her performance. In high school, Peggy and I did not have a lot of interaction. She was seated with the other bassoon players, somewhere in the middle to the left side of the rehearsal room. I was stuck in the upper back row with the trombone players.

After my mother died, for two years before remarriage, my father and the mother of Kay and Peggy would accompany each other to hear the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Mrs. Dudley had experienced a stroke, but her love for music never diminished. I would drive Mrs. Dudley to church during the week where she would answer the phone and greet visitors. After I was called as pastor, she was one of the first senior citizens to volunteer at my church on a regular basis. She would also ride with me as I would take my sons to school. At one point, my youngest son asked me to play a Louis Armstrong CD. One of his favorite songs was, “What a Wonderful World.” When the song ended, Mrs. Dudley shared with us that she had been a friend a Louis Armstrong. When my sons got out of the car to enter the school, Mrs. Dudley smiled and began to tell me some of the interesting quirks about the personal life of the great trumpet player. Mrs. Dudley was a great musician and it became clear to me that Peggy Dudley was the second generation with the DNA of exceptional music
Kay came to church last Sunday to join other women who were members of a girl’s club in high school called, The Co-Ette Club. Mr. Arnoldi, the conductor of our band would forbid us from playing popular music, but unbeknown to him, I had organized a R&B band that played high school dance parties on the weekends. For at least two years, my band played the Co-Ette Club “Charity Ball” on the lower level atrium of the Ford Auditorium, that backed up to the Detroit, River. Kay and several other girls that I knew were members of the Co-Ette Club and on that night, they would dress up in long formal gowns and look spectacular. When I was in high school, I was just starting to notice how attractive my classmates were.  Monday through Friday they wore their school clothes, but during the “Charity Ball” the girls seemed to soar to another level of beauty and grace.

I am so sorry I was not in church Sunday, because I preached in Baltimore, Maryland, at one of our new church starts, New Covenant Community United Church of Christ. The Co-Ette Club had its reunion at my church in Detroit. The women raised enough money to donate two computers to our church Computer Mission, which provides new computers to inner city children.

Many of the former members of the Co-Ette Club have relocated from Detroit, Michigan to other places around the county. Dr. Fern Nelson came all the way from San Diego, California. Elizabeth Ross traveled from Connecticut to attend the reunion.

I am so sorry I missed seeing all the women.  Each of these women are women of class and dignity.  Many of the women I know personally and have kept in touch.  Seeing the photo of Kay Dudley reminds me of her sister, Peggy. Peggy was a role model for me in striving for excellence.

Jesus Christ commands us in the Sermon on the Mount to strive to be perfect, as our father in heaven is perfect.

Matthew 5: 43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. [1]

Perfection is difficult, if not impossible, but Jesus Christ has commanded that you and I strive for the best, hope for the best and be the best that we can be.

Matthew 5: 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. [2]

Questions for Reflection:

  1. Does the command of Jesus to, “Be perfect” seem overwhelming?
  2. Why do you think Jesus commands his followers to, “Be perfect”?
  3. What is the mindset that prevents us from attaining the perfection that Jesus commands?

 

Prayer: Lord, help me to strive for the perfection that you desire. Teach me to rise above the temptation to seek revenge and domination of those I disagree with. Create within my heart the willingness to reach higher, go farther, and dig deeper as I seek to love my neighbor, redeem my adversary, and forgive friend and foe. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Georgia Hill

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com

More about the ministry, mission, prayers and publications from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mt 5:43–48). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mt 5:48). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

I Will Give You Pastors After My Own Heart

I Will Give You Pastors After My Own Heart –

Rev. Brian Murray and me



I preached, played the harmonica and sang Sunday at the New Covenant Community United Church of Christ in Baltimore, Maryland. The pastor is the Rev. Brian Murray. His church is a “New church start.” Denise and I are in town for the church convention of the United Church of Christ. I was pleased that several persons who heard I was preaching at the church showed up to worship with us. These persons included: Ella Davis, who is the vice moderator of the Plymouth UCC; her husband, Deacon Wade Davis; Mamie Coakley, who is serving as a delegate for the UCC convention in Baltimore; my wife, Denise, who is the parliamentarian for the church convention; Dr. Gina Orton, who is a friend and classmate of my wife and me from college; Don Hill, who is a former staff person for the United Church of Christ and now a consultant; two women who are members of the Heritage UCC in Baltimore, who learned from a friend, Yvonne Carter Bridges,  via Facebook that I was preaching there and Denard McClary, the musical director for our Wednesday Noon Worship Service.

New Church Starts tend to begin small, and this church was right on target. The Spirit was high, the music was tremendous and the pastor was full of energy. It was clear to me that those in attendance love the church and really love the pastor. One older gentleman had just been released from the hospital and contacted the pastor that he was remembering the church in last will and testament.

As I think back to my experience at the church on Sunday, and my experience here in Baltimore at the church convention, I have been interacting with pastors from all kinds of churches all week long: black pastors that I have known for years, black pastors I am just beginning to meet, white pastors, ethnic pastors from around the world, young pastors, old pastors, female pastors, author-pastors, yes, I have two books for sale at the church convention, and pastors of all shapes and colors.

I met two pastors from South Africa and many others. This experience has reminded me of the tremendous responsibility God has put upon pastors. The prophet Jeremiah shares the Word of God that the Lord will provide pastors after his own heart to heal the land and bring Judah and Israel together as one nation. The pastor is charged by God to feed the flock with knowledge and understanding. Through the convention, I have found myself meeting with pastors, encouraging pastors, fellowshipping with pastors and thanking God that I am a pastor in my 41 year of ministry, all at the same church!

Jeremiah 3: 15 I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will feed you with knowledge and understanding.[1]

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What do these words from the prophet Jeremiah say to you?
  2. What are your thoughts regarding the role of the modern pastor?

 

Prayer: Lord, I thank you for the pastors you have placed over churches and ministries. Bless the pastors with compassion for the people, courage to speak truth to power, insight and faith to build up the church. Encourage the pastors with energy and outlook that can make your Word relevant and powerful for the people of today. Come quickly Holy Spirit and bless the church with an evangelical zeal to preach the Word, live the Word, and do the Word as we seek to tell the world of your goodness, mercy and grace. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Don Hill

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry of Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Je 3:15). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

The Boundary Lines have Fallen for Me in Pleasant Places

The Boundary Lines Have Fallen for Me in Pleasant Places –

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A sense of the boundaries helps to keep us on a level path. If you know how far you can go and what is appropriate and inappropriate, in theory, you should be ok. This is a line I share with engaged couples who want to talk about boundaries in love and marriage. Knowing the boundaries provides lovers with remarkable freedom and elasticity because unless one or the other has lied about their expectations, staying with the lines of the boundary becomes a starting point for what is acceptable, prudent and simply right. In Psalm 16, David writes about “Boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places…”

Psalm 16: 5  The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot. 6  The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; I have a goodly heritage. [1]

Depending on where we are in our relationships, boundaries may change. Things we once did, experienced and shared can become taboo, off-limits and alarming. I encourage you to reflect for a moment on the boundaries you have established, the relationships that mean the most to you, and memories that fill you with joy, remorse, and longing for a simpler time, sweet love and understanding that we are here on earth for a reason and the good Lord has prepared a table before us, that we might eat, drink and taste from the bounty of a meal that can only satisfy.

Psalm 16: 7  I bless the Lord who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me. 8 I keep the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. 9Therefore my heart is glad, and my soul rejoices; my body also rests secure. [2]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What are your thoughts regarding “Boundaries”?
  2. What does this scripture say to you regarding the expansion and contraction of boundaries?

 

Prayer: Help me to know my limitations, Lord. Guard my tongue, that I might not offend. Guard my thoughts, that I might use my brain for good and not evil. Guide my feet, that I might travel in peaceful ways. Speak to my heart, that I might feel your presence, know your presence and live your presence. In Jesus name. Amen

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the Ministry, Missions, Prayers and Publications from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministires.org

 

 

 

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 16:5–6). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 16:7–9). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Is Not Life More than Food and the Body More than Clothing?

Is Not Life More than food and the Body More than Clothing?

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Andrew Young and my dad, Nicholas Hood Sr.

 

Sometimes I see a line that wraps around and outside a gym shoe store on East Jefferson in Detroit and I begin to wonder about what really matters in life? To the young people in line to purchase the latest and greatest in sneakers, what they seek is important. To be fair, although the lines may not be as long at Saks Fifth Ave., Neiman Marcus, Nordstroms and Macy’s, but there are individuals who also make a “B” line to those stores to also purchase items they just cannot live without. To me, the question is, what do we find that provides us with the kind of abundant life that Jesus Christ promises? Is it the sneakers, dresses, suits and shoes that cost a fortune, or is it something greater?

For three Tuesdays in July, beginning on July 11, 2017 at 7PM, I will be giving talks on “Abundant life” in my backyard, with hamburgers, hot dogs and watermelon. If you are in Detroit for any of these gatherings I call, “Burgers and Bible”, please stop by.

When I think about what Jesus says regarding possessions in the Sermon on the Mount, there is a word for all of us in terms of the value we place on material things:

Matthew 6:25 Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing[1]

The larger passage of scripture puts it all in a fuller perspective:

Matthew 6: 25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? 28 And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ 32 For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

34 “So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today. [2]

 

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What are the most important things in life?
  2. What does Jesus inform you regarding priorities in life?

 

Prayer: Lord, help me to never lose sight of the things that matter most in life. In you I find strength. In you I have found relevance, in you I find meaning. In you I have learned to appreciate the simple things in life: joy in the smile of a stranger, peace in the midst of the storm and love in the face of hate. Keep me forever in your care. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray. Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

More about the ministry, mission, prayers and publications from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org

 

 

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mt 6:25). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Mt 6:25–34). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

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