Daily Devotional reflections

As we journey through these uncertain times, each day Sean will seek to post a thought or reflection, a Bible verse or a prayer.

Friday 17th July 2020


‘Before and after’

One of the interesting aspects of the story of Saul/Paul is that we get to the know him both before and after his conversion. The man who was breathing ‘murdering threats’ was to become arguably one of the greatest Christian figures in history. An incredible change of character and vocation. In our reflection this morning, we explore the before and after of Saul/Paul in a dialogue, written by the Rev Roddie Hamilton.


Acts 9: 1-9

Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem. As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”
“Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked.
“I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone. Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus. For three days he was blind, and did not eat or drink anything.


Dialogue between Saul and Paul
(inspired by the events in Acts 9)

I am Saul
I am Paul
I am passionate about my faith
I am passionate about my faith
I will work tirelessly for what I believe in
and I recognize that may hurt others
in order to keep the faith
I will work tirelessly for my beliefs too
and I also recognize that doing so can hurt others
but living the faith is never going to be easy
I have made a choice to put myself on the line for my faith
and if those who are out to destroy the faith get in the way,
then I will move them out the way
I have made a choice to put myself on the line for my faith
and will continue to do so
even in the face of those who want to move me out the way
I am Saul
I am Paul
Faith is everything to me.
It must be kept true at all costs.
It is too vital to my culture,
my traditions and how I understand life
Faith is everything to me.
It must stand true at all costs.
It is too vital for the Good News
for traditions and culture to stand in the way
of this new understanding of life
I will seek out those who destroy the faith
I will seek out those who limit the faith
I will keep our borders pure
and our traditions clean from contamination
I will cross every border
and welcome in Jew and Gentile, slave and free
I am Saul
I am Paul
I will work for the authorities
I will work for Jesus Christ
I will hold tight to the church
I will break open the church
I will keep the faith pure
I will keep the faith growing
I will be the death of Christianity
And I will be its life
I am Saul
I am Paul
~ written by Rev. Roddy Hamilton
Minister of New Kilpatrick Church
God, giver of all good gifts,
you have given me life.
You have bestowed upon me your love
and that love includes your plans for me.
What am I to do?
All life is a call and a response.
I pray for grace to hear God’s voice
and a heart to respond.
I am ready to listen.
Help me to listen to the rhythm of each day, day by day,
so that I am not overwhelmed with thoughts of the future.
Yet guide me into that future so that I know who and whose I am.
I shall listen.
I shall listen to the voices of those witnesses who have lived before me.
I shall listen to those who are here to give me guidance and encouragement,
for it is clear that whatever plans you have for me,
I will never journey alone.
I will listen to my feelings as I grow and change,
processes that I know will be lifelong.
I shall listen to you.
And even though I want easy answers,
I know that what you want is a relationship.
So when I answer you,
may my response be to my potential
and to your love of all creatures on your good earth.
Let me serve with the gifts you give me.
O God, I know that vocation is truly a gift of your love.
What am I to do?
I am ready to listen.

Teach us the courage, O God,
to turn from what seems so natural, so safe:
the way of grasping power,
and befriending the powerful,
in the hope of protection and security.
Teach us the humility, O God,
to turn from what is so enticing, so persuasive:
the way of accumulating things,
and trusting in wealth,
in the hope of comfort and life
Lead us, O God, in another way,
the way of true security, true wealth,
the way of Christ, the servant,
the way of weakness and simplicity.
Lead us, O God, in another way,
the way of caring for the neglected,
feeding the hungry,
housing the homeless,
protecting the threatened,
and challenging the powerful,
the foolish way of the Gospel,
that brings salvation to all. Amen.

In our prayers today, let us remember…
The people in our communities who are most in need of personal awareness and knowledge of God
The people we love, especially those going through difficult times.
The people we do not know, whose suffering is silent and unknown.
The people and nations being ravaged by Covid 19
Ourselves – for a closer walk with Jesus

Lord’s Prayer

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
you will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power
and the glory are yours
now and forever.


I bless you with joy
May you find moments of laughter and bliss
In the midst of suffering and distress
May you cherish those times and may they sustain you
I bless you with the fruits of humility
May your humble and sacrificial actions
Be instrumental in preserving your community
And loving your neighbours
I bless you with peace
In the face of financial hardship and uncertainty
May you know the faithful presence of the God who provides
Go in peace.
Wash your hands.
Love your neighbours.
You are not alone.