Here are questions for us to prayerfully consider as we prepare for worship this Sunday (the lessons are from the Track 2 option). We hope you will find them a useful resource as you prepare to receive them in church. Click on the red headings below to go to the reading.
This is a story of faith—the faith of the prophet Elisha, but also the faith of Naaman and the servant girl from Israel and the faith of those around Naaman who encouraged him to do what the prophet told him. Stories of faith often have several people involved, some in supporting roles (i.e., not the main characters). Yet all the parts of the story are important. With whom do you identify? What part do you play (or have you played) in the faith story of others?
A common phrase in the Bible is to do something with a “whole heart.” What do you think that means? How is your heart? Most of us have a divided heart in terms of our passion, loyalty, preoccupation, etc. What are the things that divide your heart from love of God alone and love for those God calls us to love? What can we do to bring our whole heart to God and to how we live our lives in faith? Resources from our faith tradition are helpful for this work—reflection (including spiritual counsel with clergy or some other spiritual advisor), self-awareness, repentance, and amendment of life.
The author of this epistle wrote from the perspective of being chained in prison and professed, “the word of God is not chained.” What do you think he meant then? What does that mean for our lives of faith today? How does God’s Word work in our lives—not only the Scripture, but the living Word of God from the Spirit in our prayer, reflection, and obedience?
If you were healed from a chronic, debilitating illness that kept you on the margins of society, how would you respond? If I was healed by a man by doing what he told me, “Go and show yourselves to the priests,” I would be inclined to complete the task he had given me to do. So, I can sympathize with the other nine. How about you?