Reflect & Respond: Week 3
Below, you will find a variety of ways to reflect on Psalm 110 this week. Since God speaks to each of us in different ways, you, your family, or even your small group, may wish to mix and match a number of the spiritual disciplines listed. No matter what “Advent-ure” you select, we hope that you will find an opportunity to connect more deeply with Jesus, the eternal priest.
DAILY BIBLE READINGS
Read one of these passages each day this week, and reflect on these questions: What do these verses tell us the uniqueness of Jesus’ priesthood? What does the fact that Jesus’ serves eternally in this way mean for you and your hope?
- Monday, December 16: Psalm 110
- Tuesday, December 17: Romans 8:31-39
- Wednesday, December 18: Hebrews 5:1-10
- Thursday, December 19: Hebrews 6:13-20
- Friday, December 20: Hebrews 9:24-28
Do a comparison of Psalm 110 and Hebrews 7. Both describe a King/Priest. What aspects do each emphasize and how do they fit together to give us a powerful picture of Jesus as our Warrior Priest?
GROUP RESPONSE: ADVOCACY
In Isaiah 61, we hear the proclamation of our coming Eternal Priest, who will be an advocate of those the religious authorities cast aside, “The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.”
As a community in Jesus, we join His example as advocates for those on the margins. With your community this week, choose a way that you can speak out as an advocate for those whose voices are not often heard (examples: the unborn, refugees, etc.)
PRAYER OF EXAMEN
The Prayer of Examen is a daily practice of discernment, intended to create deeper awareness of the
God-given desires in one‘s life, as well as the voice and activity of God within the flow of the day. This prayer practice provides us a way of noticing where God shows up in our day, and can be helpful in seasons of busyness (like this third week of Advent!) where we may otherwise miss God’s work in our lives.
This prayer practice is often written down, so as to more clearly see and note the movements of God over time. At the end of each day this week, take some time to write down your answers to these questions:
- What was the most life-giving part of my day?
- What was the most life-thwarting part of my day?
- When today did I have the deepest sense of connection with God, others and myself?
- When today did I have the least sense of connection?
- Where was I aware that I was living out of the fruit of the Spirit?
- Where was there an absence of the fruit of the Spirit?
Take note of your answers to these questions over time, using + or -, or a series of columns. Ask God to show you His desires for you through your daily reflection. Consider sharing your reflection with your family, friends, or trusted advisor as you discern what God is doing in your life, where He is at work, and what He may be calling you into.
The hymn “O come, O Come, Emmanuel” calls us to look forward to the Priest who will set captives free. We have an advocate who is truly Emmanuel ‘God with us,’ interceding for us as a Savior who intimately knows the pains and struggles of life. Sing this hymn today in worship to our Emmanuel! You will find it on page 20.
Write Christmas cards to fellow Eastbrookers who are hospitalized or homebound. Contact the church office (414.228.5220 or firstname.lastname@example.org) to get names and addresses for individuals who could use some encouragement this holiday season.
This week, use personal time to serve someone in your neighborhood, or donate your time to a local organization (Food Pantry, Soup Kitchen, Rescue Mission, etc.). Consider a way you might connect with our church’s local outreach ministries as well. For more information on Eastbrook‘s local ministries, contact Catie Boon at email@example.com.
- Monday, December 16: Move Mary and Joseph and the donkey a little closer to the stable. Mary and Joseph were filled with JOY as the time for Jesus’ birth came closer.
- Thursday, December 19: Place animal figures in the stable. This barn was a humble, but safe place for Jesus to be born!
CREATE A COLLAGE
Psalm 110 is rich and deeply theological. It teaches of Jesus’ role as intercessor on our behalf. This week, take some time to make a collage on paper or canvas. Use words and photos cut from magazines or newspapers to represent the areas in your life in which you most need Jesus to intercede for you, or draw and write your own words and images. Approach this week’s creative activity with a prayerful heart and as an opportunity to surrender all areas of your life and heart to Jesus’ transformational work. Pray your way through this art project. When you are done, you may want to share your collage with a family member, friend, loved one, or with your small group. Pray together and give thanks to Jesus, your priest, who intercedes for you at the right hand of the Father (Romans 8:34).