Second Sunday after the Epiphany
Start your devotion time by praying the following prayer: Almighty God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ is the light of the world: Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and Sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ's glory, that he may be known, worshiped, and obeyed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen. (Collects: Contemporary, Book of Common Prayer, p. 215)
Adult and Small Child
Jeremiah Sierra is currently the communications manager for Cities of Service, a nonprofit that works to change the way local government and residents work together. He has worked for a variety of other nonprofit organizations and Episcopal churches, most recently Trinity Church Wall Street, where he was the managing editor of the quarterly magazine. He has written for Forward Day by Day and other publications about faith. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and three-year-old daughter.
Read: John 1:35-42
Reflect: The disciples in this story had never met Jesus, but when he said “Come and see,” they went with him. They knew right away that Jesus was special. He was different than everyone else.
Jesus asked the disciples, “What are you looking for?” The disciples had been looking for a teacher, and when they found Jesus, they knew that they had finally found him. Jesus was the Messiah, which is a special person sent by God to help everyone in the world. The way the disciples learned was by following him, listening to him, and watching how he treated others. That is why instead of answering his question, he said “Come and see.” That’s how we learn from Jesus, too. We read about the things he did and the things he said.
Jesus wanted to teach the disciples how to follow God and love other people. Jesus also wants to teach us and help us love each other better. We just have to listen to Jesus and follow his example.
Respond: Think about the stories you know about Jesus and the things he did or said. You can also ask an adult to tell or read you some stories about Jesus from the Bible. Jesus said to love your neighbor as yourself, for example, and he healed people. He also was kind to people, like tax collectors, that other people did not like. Now think about how you can follow Jesus’ example. Write down or draw pictures of some ways you can love others in your life and help other people.
- Jeremiah Sierra
Adult and Elementary Erin Wolf is a Youth Minister hailing from Little Chute, WI where she lives with her four kids. She serves both All Saints Episcopal in Appleton and the Episcopal Diocese of Fond du Lac. Her focuses include children & youth, camp & retreats, music, service work, interactive prayer for all ages, and more. You can connect with her via email at [email protected]
Erin Wolf is a Youth Minister hailing from Little Chute, WI where she lives with her four kids. She serves both All Saints Episcopal in Appleton and the Episcopal Diocese of Fond du Lac.
Her focuses include children & youth, camp & retreats, music, service work, interactive prayer for all ages, and more. You can connect with her via email at [email protected]
Read: 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Reflect: This reading comes from Paul’s first letter to the church in Corinth. A big part of Paul’s ministry as a follower of Jesus was to write to several different churches throughout the region. He wrote about many things: the teachings of Jesus, how to live in community, how to work through disagreements, how to worship, and lots more. In this part of the letter, Paul is reminding them of the great gifts they have been given through Jesus. At this time, Jesus has already been through the Crucifixion and Resurrection, and it is through those actions that Paul is empowering others to recognize the light that Christ has put within them. We are all called to be in community with Jesus and with our fellow Christians, and we all have something to offer those around us. Our gifts may look different, and that’s okay. God has blessed all of us with the power to bring the light of Jesus into the world as we are.
Respond: Each day this week, spend some time being with and giving thanks for the people in your life. Your week could look like this: Sunday- read a book with a friend, Monday- share a meal with your family, Tuesday- listen to your favorite song with someone you enjoy, Wednesday- say hi to someone you don’t know at school, Thursday- pray for someone who is sick, Friday- tell your teacher “thank you” for another week of learning, Saturday- go for a walk or visit a park with your grown-up and a sibling or friend.
At the end of the week, see how your presence and thanks has blessed those around you, and notice how you have been blessed, too! Let your light and love shine in all the world!
- Erin Wolf
How will you follow Jesus' example and shine your light for others this week?
Adult and Youth
Katherine is the Coordinator for Youth and Young Adult Ministries and the the rector of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Kentucky. She live in Louisville with her husband and whichever of her four young adult children happen to be home at the time. Katherine's greatest joy is being a mama: first to her own four and then to all the children, youth, and young adults who call her Mama Doyle. She often finds God in the ordinary messiness of everyday life and writes about it on her blog http://thesixdoyles.blogspot.com/.
Read: John 1:29-42
Reflect: The story of Jesus’ baptism is different in the Gospel of John. We don’t read about the actual event. Instead, we read that John points to Jesus and proclaims he is the Lamb of God, and then we read the story of Jesus’s baptism. The next day, John and two of John’s disciples are standing together. John again sees Jesus coming and again points to him and announces he is the Lamb of God. Jesus asks the disciples a question that is more than a question of what they see, but more about what they are looking for in their lives and in the world. They have no response, but instead ask where he is staying. Jesus invites them to come and see.
Sometimes it’s hard to “see” God at work in the world. At times we need others to point to places and ways they see God to us and we are also called to shine the light on where we see God. It is an intentionality.
Respond: Find a jar or box and place it in a central place in your home. Each day, look for places you see God in the world. Write those on slips of paper, put them in your container, and then when the family is together (perhaps over a meal) read the slips together. Perhaps you want to put them on a bulletin board or the fridge so others who come to your home also see them.
- Katherine Doyle
Adult and Adults CJ is a writer and speaker from Brooklyn, NY. He spends most of his time hanging with his family, playing with his daughter, playing basketball, and reading. He's passionate about seeing the gospel spread in his city, in Brooklyn as it is in heaven. You can catch up with him on Twitter @CJ_Quartlbaum or at CJQuartlbaum.com
CJ is a writer and speaker from Brooklyn, NY. He spends most of his time hanging with his family, playing with his daughter, playing basketball, and reading. He's passionate about seeing the gospel spread in his city, in Brooklyn as it is in heaven. You can catch up with him on Twitter @CJ_Quartlbaum or at CJQuartlbaum.com
Read: 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Reflect: As Christians, we believe we have been saved by a mighty God. We also believe that this very God has called us to share the good news of salvation through Jesus with others. This means we should view all of life as a mission field. Everywhere we go presents new opportunities to tell of the goodness of God through Jesus. On the surface, this can be a daunting task. We may feel ill-equipped or afraid, but we need not fear. Paul tells us that God has enriched us in every year, especially speech and knowledge. When the time comes, God will equip us with the words we need to share the gospel message. Even better, the pressure is not on you to save because that is God’s job. God simply tells us to share the message. We trust the Holy Spirit to do the heart transforming work in people’s lives. Don’t fret when you fumble and stumble through a gospel presentation because God can always draw straight with a crooked line.
Respond: Think of 5 people you know who are not Christians. Pray for them to come to know the saving knowledge of Jesus and pray for opportunities to share that truth with them.
- CJ Quartlbaum
Download a printable copy of this week's devotions HERE.