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Students sitting outside Bockman
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Saturday, August 31, 2019

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1 Blest be the tie that binds
our hearts in Christian love;
the unity of heart and mind
is like to that above.

2 Before our Father's throne
we pour our ardent prayers;
our fears, our hopes, our aims are one,
our comforts and our cares.

3 We share our mutual woes,
our mutual burdens bear,
and often for each other flows
the sympathizing tear.

4 From sorrow, toil, and pain,
and sin we shall be free;
and perfect love and friendship reign
through all eternity.

Text: John Fawcett, 1740-1817, alt.

In our partnership between the Iglesia Luterana Agustina de Guatemala, the Saint Paul Area Synod, and the Southeastern Synod of the ELCA, an image was created that depicts North, Central, and South Americans as horizontally rather than vertically related. The image serves as a reminder for everyone in our partnership that we are all subjects in this relationship. It is easy to move into mission work, or relationships, and treat one side as objects rather than subjects with equal importance and dignity. Healthy, sustainable, loving mission relationships are mutual -- mutual in prayer, learning, compassion -- even though we are not the same. We are bound together by God, and each of us can "pour out our ardent prayers," "share our mutual woes," and in Christ be freed even as we are bound to him.

Gracious God, bind us to one another and to you. Unite us as one body of Christ, and help us see the value in all whom we meet. In Christ's name. Amen.

Amanda Olson de Castillo, '04
Senior Pastor, Luther Memorial Church
South St. Paul, Minn.

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.