Year A – Trinity Sunday – Genesis 1:1-2:4a

Genesis 1:1-2:4a: In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. And God said, ‘Let there be a dome in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.’ So God made the dome and separated the waters that were under the dome from the waters that were above the dome. And it was so. God called the dome Sky. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day. And God said, ‘Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.’ And it was so. God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, ‘Let the earth put forth vegetation: plants yielding seed, and fruit trees of every kind on earth that bear fruit with the seed in it.’ And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation: plants yielding seed of every kind, and trees of every kind bearing fruit with the seed in it. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the third day. And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to separate the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years, and let them be lights in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth.’ And it was so. God made the two great lights-the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night-and the stars. God set them in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day. And God said, ‘Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the dome of the sky.’ So God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, of every kind, with which the waters swarm, and every winged bird of every kind. And God saw that it was good. God blessed them, saying, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.’ And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day. And God said, ‘Let the earth bring forth living creatures of every kind: cattle and creeping things and wild animals of the earth of every kind.’ And it was so. God made the wild animals of the earth of every kind, and the cattle of every kind, and everything that creeps upon the ground of every kind. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, ‘Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.’ So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.’ God said, ‘See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.’ And it was so. God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all their multitude. And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because on it God rested from all the work that he had done in creation. These are the generations of the heavens and the earth when they were created. In the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens,

Summary – Genesis is the book of beginnings and the very first chapter explains the creation of the cosmos by the voice of God. On day one, God made light; day two, sea and sky; day three land, plants, seeds; day four, sun, moon, stars; day five, fish and birds; day six, animals humans; day seven: God rested.

Insight – There is so much to mine from this famous passage, but the main thrust of the author is in the order of the creation process.  Notice that if you take the first three days and line them up above the last three days, they perfectly correspond to each other, day by day.  God was working in the first half of the week to prepare and then in the second half of the week to fulfill and complete His creation.  If you were there on the first part of the first day, it would have been unclear that God was up to anything “good.” Even by the third day, it “did not yet appear what the earth should be.”  But by the end, God brought it all together in beauty and completion.  He loves order.  He loves preparation.  He works things out to fulfillment according to His plan.  Remember where we are in the lectionary readings [and Church History].  This is the Sunday after Pentecost, Trinity Sunday.  We remember the way that God had been working throughout all of human history to prepare, then “in the fullness of time” when it was just right, He sent Christ.  Then, following this, He sent His Spirit.  At the end of this process, we can join Him as we look back on His work in the world and declare it all to be “very good”.

Child’s Catechism – What did God make on each day?

Discussion – What specifically is the relationship of the first half of the week to the last?  If the earth was created as a very “good” thing for us to enjoy and tend to, how should we then live – how should our attitudes and dispositions reflect this?

Prayer – Holy Father, You are good. The universe which You have created is too small a place to contain Your goodness. We praise You for Your eternal goodness, and thank You for this good earth, over which You graciously reign according to Your good plan. Give us eyes to see the light of Your Word overcoming the darkness in the world today. And give us hearts to rest and rejoice in it, for You are at work, doing all things well. Finally, make us to be faithful stewards in all things over which You’ve placed us, by the power of Your Spirit Who moved upon the waters, and in the name of Your Son, our Lord, Whose world this is. Amen.

Contributed by Pastor Ben Rossell

Year C – Pentecost – Psalm 104

Psalm 104:24-32 (NRSV)

24 O Lord, how manifold are your works!
In wisdom you have made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures.
25 Yonder is the sea, great and wide,
creeping things innumerable are there,
living things both small and great.
26 There go the ships,
and Leviathan that you formed to sport in it.

27 These all look to you
to give them their food in due season;
28 when you give to them, they gather it up;
when you open your hand, they are filled with good things.
29 When you hide your face, they are dismayed;
when you take away their breath, they die
and return to their dust.
30 When you send forth your spirit, they are created;
and you renew the face of the ground.

31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
may the Lord rejoice in his works—
32 who looks on the earth and it trembles,
who touches the mountains and they smoke.
33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
34 May my meditation be pleasing to him,
for I rejoice in the Lord.
35 Let sinners be consumed from the earth,
and let the wicked be no more.
Bless the Lord, O my soul.
Praise the Lord!

 Summary – Charles Spurgeon calls Psalm 104, “a poet’s version of Genesis.” The Psalm taken as a whole is a praise to God which loosely takes the shape of the seven days of creation. Verses 1-6 describe the work of the days one and two of creation; praising God for the light and the separation of the waters in the firmament from the waters below the firmament (Gen. 1:1-8). Verses 7-18 easily moves to the separation of the waters and the land on the third day, along with the creation of plant life and vegetation (Gen.1:9-14). The Psalmist sings of the fourth day of creation (Gen. 1:14-19), praising God for the sun and the moon in verses 19-23. The fifth and sixth day are included in verses 24-30, in which the sea creatures are created (even the sea monster Leviathan is mentioned!), and the land beasts. Man is thought to be absent from the list, because we most likely are to see him included in the fact that man is the author of the Psalm. But, I think verses 29- 30 speaks of man, when says,

29 When you hide your face, they are dismayed;
when you take away their breath, they die
and return to their dust.
30 When you send forth your spirit, they are created;
and you renew the face of the ground.

Man is said to go back to the dust when he dies, and man is given the spirit of God for breath, and man is the agent of renewal for the earth (Gen. 2:6-8).Finally, the Psalm closes with a seventh day Sabbath hymn of praise, foreshadowing the final day of judgment in verse 32 when the whole history of God’s creation comes to an end and man will be judged.

Insight – It is interesting that this Psalm is used for Pentecost. We are reminded of God’s old creation, when the Spirit of God brought the pattern of Heaven down to Earth. On Pentecost, the Holy Spirit comes again, this time bringing the life and love of Heaven to Earth. This is the New Creation. According to verse 30, the Spirit of God was given to man for the purpose of “renewing the ground.” Man was placed in the garden to cultivate it and guard it. Today, the Spirit of God sends us on a mission to cultivate and guard all of life, and to restore paradise again on earth. This is part of what it means for Jesus Christ to be the Savior of the World. And with His ascension to Heaven, he was given all authority to disciple the nations. On Pentecost, the Spirit empowers us to do so. So let us go forth in the power of the Spirit of God, and renew the face of the ground, wherever the curse is found. Amen.

Catechism – Who renews the face of the ground? Man, by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Discussion – Discuss the Sea Monster Leviathan (See Job 41:1; Ps. 74:14; Isa. 27:1)! Was supposed to stay in the garden if he were faithful? Or extend his dominion throughout the whole Earth? How can we extend dominion throughout the world today?

Prayer – O God, touch the hearts and mind of thy faithful people, by sending upon us the fire of thy Holy Spirit, that we might be like the ministers of flaming fire, spreading the message of Jesus Christ like the four winds to the ends of the earth. Grant us wisdom and the bond of love that we might live the life heaven here on earth, as it is in heaven. Amen.

Submitted by Michael Shover

Year C – Fifth Sunday in Easter – Psalm 148

Psalm 148 (NRSV)

Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights!
Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his host!

Praise him, sun and moon;
praise him, all you shining stars!
Praise him, you highest heavens,
and you waters above the heavens!

Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for he commanded and they were created.
He established them forever and ever;
he fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed.

Praise the Lord from the earth,
you sea monsters and all deeps,
fire and hail, snow and frost,
stormy wind fulfilling his command!

Mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars!
10 Wild animals and all cattle,
creeping things and flying birds!

11 Kings of the earth and all peoples,
princes and all rulers of the earth!
12 Young men and women alike,
old and young together!

13 Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for his name alone is exalted;
his glory is above earth and heaven.
14 He has raised up a horn for his people,
praise for all his faithful,
for the people of Israel who are close to him.
Praise the Lord!

Summary – This Psalm calls upon the whole of creation, in both of its divisions, the Heavens (v. 1-6) and the Earth (v. 7-14), to give praise to God. Verses 1-4 call for the Heavens and those associated with it to give praise to God, while verses 5-6 tell why it is that the Heavens should give praise to God. Similarly, the second half of the psalm, verses 7-12, calls upon those creatures associated with the earth to give praise to God, with verses 13-14 giving the reason why.

The Heavens are to praise God because God “commanded and they were created” (v. 5). He has also established them forever and ever (v. 6); and he rules the heavens with a decree, that is, he has ordered the universe to work in the way that it does, and it will not pass away. Praise God! The Earth is also to Praise God because God’s name alone is exalted; His glory is above earth and heaven. And he has lifted up a horn for his people, Praise for all his faithful saints, praise for the people of Israel who are close to Him” (13-14). Praise the Lord!

Insight – When we read about “the Heavens and the Earth” we tend to put up a dividing wall between the two. The Heavens are way up there, and the earth is down here, with us. We are on the Earth, and God is in Heaven, and one day we will go to Heaven. But when we think like this, we miss the whole point that the Bible is trying to tell us when it puts the Heaven and the Earth together like this. Verse 14 gives us a reason why the earth it praise God, whose glory is above both Heaven and Earth – and that is because God is near to His people Israel. If God is in Heaven, and we are on the Earth, how can God’s saints be near Him (verse 14)? How can a people who are on Earth be near to a God who is in Heaven? This is because in Jesus Christ, who is “the horn” mentioned here in verse 14, came to bring together all things in himself, things in Heaven, and things on Earth. In Jesus, Heaven and Earth come together. He is the bridge between the two worlds. And since we are united to Him in His death through baptism and faith, we are near to God who is in Heaven, and God is near to us. And this is why he came – to bring Heaven to earth together.

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him.17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. 18 He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. 19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, 20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.   – Colossians 1:15-20 NASB

Catechism – Who is commanded to Praise God? The Heavens and the Earth.

Discussion – Discuss the sea monsters in verse 7! Discuss how heaven and earth are not separated worlds, but are inter-connected. What does that mean for how we think of ourselves, the earth, God, and Jesus? What does it mean to be near to God? Is it good or bad to be near to God? Encourage your children to see everything in nature as an expression of praise to God. The snow, the wind, clouds, fire, hail, trees, mountains, beasts, and kings – and yes, especially the sea monsters! It is important for us to be amazed with the creation and to see it as giving praise to God.

Prayer – Almighty God of Heaven and Earth, the whole creation gives you praise. Though your glory is exalted above the heavens, you delight to draw us near to you. Let us be reminded that in Christ we ascend to the heavenly Jerusalem, and in Christ you come down to eat with us at your Son’s table. Grant us the grace to see all things being recreated and made new in Jesus. Amen.

 Submitted by Michael Shover

Year C – The Fourth Week of Lent – 2 Cor 5:16-21

Text–From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:16-21 ESV)

Summary–Paul served as pastor to the Corinthian church for about 18 month before moving to Ephesus around 52 AD.  As he was leaving, Paul trained Godly men to minister in his absense.  Among them, Titus stayed to shepard this particular flock of God’s people.  Paul stayed closely tied to the leaders, praying for them, and helping them better understand and love their Lord and savior through written correnspodence.  Despite his best efforts; however, Paul was plagued with opponents who fought against his teachings in Corinth.  Much of Paul’s second letter to the Corinthian church centers on defending himself against the assaults of his adversaries and their false claims of Christ.  The section of Paul’s letter that we read today deals with how Christians are reconciled with their creator God.  During the season of Lent, 2 Corinthians is particularly important in better understanding the extent of Christ’s suffering for His people.  Today we read that he who knew no sin, became a sin offering for us, so that we could become God’s righteousness.    

 Insight–How hard was it to create the universe from nothing at all?  Our world and everything in it didn’t exist before God called it to existence.   That is how powerful God is.  With a word, God made all things from nothing.  Now ask yourself, how hard is it to make something good when nothing good is there.  With much latitude when talking about an all powerful God, let us say that in one sense it was more difficult to create a Christian than to create a world. When God first made the world, it didn’t fight back.  Light didn’t oppose God.  But in our hearts, while there was nothing that could help God, there was much that could and did oppose Him.  We looked at him with emnity.  Our stubborn wills, our deep prejudices, our ingrained love for ourselves all opposed God and fought against His designs.  But with the Word, Jesus Christ, He made us a new creation.  The text says, “God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself” (vv.19).   He formed each of us into new creatures while we fought against him, while we hated Him.  Our first parents, Adam and Eve, hid from Him in the garden because they could not bear to be next to a Holy God in their nakedness.  Being holy and just, God could have left them to their sin and judged them fairly.  But he didn’t.  Christ removed the curse of sin, by becoming sin for us.  Through Jesus Christ, God has declared us righteous and has sanctified us, “so that we might become God’s righteousness in him” (vv.21).  This is the message that Paul’s opponents fought so hard against.  This is the message that opponents to Jesus Christ fight today.  We are saved by a simple faith in Jesus, but these people argue against this on the ground that there must be a great moral change in man before he can be reconciled to God.  Don’t belive this for one second.  You don’t have the power to make something from nothing.  You also don’t have the power to re-make something from nothing.  We are made new by God alone through Christ alone.

Catechism–(Q) In Christ, what are we? (A) We are new creations, the old is gone, the new has come.

Discussion–What ways do those around us try and reconcile themselves with God?  Which of these alternate paths make us right with God?

Prayer–Father, we thank you for adopting us as your sons and daughters, for making us new creatures through your Son, Jesus Christ.   Lord we ask that you give us confidence to live as your ambassador to the world, declaring your good news in making us clean through your son.  We ask this in the name of our redeemer, Jesus Christ, Amen.

Contributed by Michael Fenimore

Year B – Day of Pentecost – Psalm 104:24-34, 35b

Psalm 104:  Lord, how manifold are your works!  In wisdom you have made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. 25 Yonder is the sea, great and wide, creeping things innumerable are there, living things both small and great. 26 There go the ships, and Leviathan that you formed to sport in it. 27 These all look to you to give them their food in due season; 28 when you give to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are filled with good things. 29 When you hide your face, they are dismayed; when you take away their breath, they die and return to their dust. 30 When you send forth your spirit, they are created; and you renew the face of the ground. 31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works—32 who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke. 33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being. 34 May my meditation be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord.        35b  Bless the Lord, O my soul. Praise the Lord!  (NRSV)

Summary:  The created universe is deeply personal; it is not a reality made up of impersonal objects (as so many want to believe).  Everything in creation is dependent upon, and always in the presence of the Creator.  This entire psalm reflects upon those initial days of creation, praising and rejoicing in God’s handiwork.  These final verses particularly relates to his role as the provider of life for all creatures.

Insight:  Even as Christians, we can think of God as being far away and the creation as impersonal.  This is simply not so.  We have all seen God’s signature.  We have seen his life giving Spirit at work in our own lives and in this amazing world.  We have seen his creativity and wisdom in many ways.  And as the psalmist reminds us, even the rest of God’s creatures rely on his Spirit for life.  Now that same Spirit, the one who created and now sustains the world, has begun to recreate our broken existence.  He has brought Christ back from the dead.  And as we celebrate the Day of Pentecost, he has been poured out upon the church.

Child Catechism: Who has created the world?  The Triune God: Our Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Discussion:  What is the most interesting creature you can think of?  How might the dry bones of Ezekiel 37:1-14 relate to what Paul says in Romans 8:22-27?

Father God, Your Spirit creates life, recreate our hearts and minds, empower us by your presence, that we may truly live and serve you.  In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Contributed by M. West

Year B – Lent 1 – Genesis 9:8-17

“Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, 9“As for me, I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you, 10and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the domestic animals, and every animal of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark. 11 I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” 12God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: 13I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, 15I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” 17God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.””

Summary – In Verse 8 & 9 God, speaking to Noah and his son’s states, “I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you.” God’s promise would extend beyond this generation. God also says He will never destroy man or animals again by a flood nor shall the earth cease to exist as a result of the flood. The “sign,” the rainbow, when seen on the face of the clouds is brought about by God and God says when He sees the sign He “will remember My [His] covenant that is between you and Me [God].” God says “I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between” [Himself] “and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.”

Insight – In God’s economy all legal agreements require a sign or a seal as a reminder of the terms of the covenant. The sign of the rainbow is comparable to the witness in later covenants. When God says in verse 13 “I have set my bow in the clouds,” this can mean to “give.” This common phenomenon of the rainbow became a pledge of peace. Its appearance when showers began to fall would be joyfully welcomed. The “bow” is the same word as the weapon that shoots arrows. Often rain and lightning are referred to in Hebrew as God’s arrows (Deut. 31:28; Psa. 18:14; Hab. 3:11). God’s bow now turned the other way (inverted as in the shape of a rainbow), perhaps shows His willingness to receive repentant sinners in the absence of His wrath and to also demonstrate His sovereign will, power and love to His elect. He does this ultimately through the the blood of the new covenant in the crucifixion & resurrection of His only begotten Son Jesus Christ which we receive through faith.

Child Catechism – What does a rainbow in the clouds remind us of? The rainbow in the clouds reminds that God will keep always His Covenant Promises.

Discussion – How does God keep His Covenant with us today for our eternal salvation? What is our part if any in order to keep God’s Covenant?

Prayer – Lord God and Heavenly Father, thank you God for Your promises that You have kept and will always keep as we trust You alone through Jesus alone through faith alone this day and every day. We praise You joyfully and ask that You give us the perseverance to press on even though the times in which we live may be difficult. We both thank You and praise You in Jesus name alone, Amen.

Contributed by Tom Miller, MA

Year B – Epiphany 5 – Isaiah 40:21-31

21 Have you not known? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning?
   Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? 22 It is he who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to live in; 23 who brings princes to naught, and makes the rulers of the earth as nothing. 24 Scarcely are they planted, scarcely sown, scarcely has their stem taken root in the earth, when he blows upon them, and they wither, and the tempest carries them off like stubble. 25 To whom then will you compare me, or who is my equal? says the Holy One. 
26 Lift up your eyes on high and see: Who created these? He who brings out their host and numbers them, calling them all by name; because he is great in strength, mighty in power, not one is missing. 27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and speak, O Israel,‘My way is hidden from the Lord, and my right is disregarded by my God’? 28 Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth, He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. 29 He gives power to the faint, and strengthens the powerless. 30 Even youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted; 
31 but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.

Summary – In the previous chapter in the book of Isaiah, the prophet prophesied that Babylon would take the people of Judah captive. This chapter is to serve as a reminder and a comfort to those people that no matter what happens, God is the Lord, and the ruler of the earth. This passage begins by stating that God sits above the circle of the earth, meaning He rules and governs the whole earth. Earthly princes, who seem so powerful to us are withered up if God blows His breath on them. Isaiah calls us to look at the heavens and remember that the stars came into existence because God spoke. After reminding us of this Isaiah asks why do men believe that God has forsaken us, or has not given us justice. Isaiah tells us that the God who created the earth never grows tired or stops watching over His people. If His people look to Him and trust in Him, then He will give them strength throughout all of their days.

Insight – This passage should be a comforting passage to all of God’s people. It teaches us that God has created the earth and continues to govern is as an all wise all powerful King. This is what we mean when we speak of the sovereignty of God. God governs the earth that not a sparrow falls from the sky to the ground apart from God (Matt 10:29). There may be times when life seems hard, and we think God does not see the trouble we are going through. But this passage teaches us that although we do not always understand God’s ways, we can be assured that He does not grow tired of watching over us and caring for us. We should look to Him by faith, and the Lord will renew us and give us strength.

Child’s Catechism – What will God do to those who wait for Him? He will renew their strength.

Discussion – Have you ever felt abandoned by God? If yes, What was your reaction? If no, what can you do if you ever feel this way?

Prayer – Our Sovereign God and Father. We know that in your eyes men are like grasshoppers. But yet, you love us and you watch over us. We ask that you give us the faith to patiently wait for you, so that our strength will be renewed, and we run and not be weary, and walk and not faint. Amen.

contributed by Jared McNabb