Looking for spiritual refreshment? God Pause email devotions are short, meaningful reflections on the following Sunday's lessons and gospel delivered directly to your email box. By Sunday, you'll be ready for an extra meaningful worship experience. 

Our devotion writers are Luther Seminary alumni. Their reflections are a gift to you and to the church.


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Thursday, October 04, 2012

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When asked about issues of divorce and remarriage, Jesus opts to draw on scripture, highlighting Genesis 2: "They are no longer two but one flesh." Jesus stresses the spiritual pain associated with the brokenness of our relationships when those who are joined into one flesh are torn apart.

The desire to serve the self and one's own lusts and ambitions, as opposed to living for the sake of the other, leads us down paths that cause distrust, pain and harm to the one we have been joined with as intimately as two people can be.

Separation between the two is thus very much like ripping a part of yourself out and casting it aside. Anger and bitterness associated with such pain means healing can be difficult, and in some cases impossible, depending on how deeply the pain cuts.

Holy Lord, you bring two people together to become one flesh. Due to our sinful, selfish nature, we destroy that flesh and that oneness. Renew us, O Lord, in our relationships with one another, that there may be forgiveness, reconciliation, and life-giving care for each other. Amen.

Rebecca Craig
First Lutheran Church, Kearney, Neb.
Master of Divinity , 2008

Mark 10:2-16 (NRSV)

2 Some Pharisees came, and to test him they asked, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?"

3 He answered them, "What did Moses command you?"

4 They said, "Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her."

5 But Jesus said to them, "Because of your hardness of heart he wrote this commandment for you.

6 "But from the beginning of creation, 'God made them male and female.'

7 "'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife,

8 "and the two shall become one flesh.' So they are no longer two, but one flesh.

9 "Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate."

10 Then in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter.

11 He said to them, "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her;

12 "and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery."

13 People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them; and the disciples spoke sternly to them.

14 But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, "Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.

15 "Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it."

16 And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them.

This week's devotions are offered by a Luther Seminary alumnus from the graduating class of 2008.