Wednesday, December 02, 2009


Today’s reading - Acts 12:20-23 (NIV): Then Herod went from Judea to Caesarea and stayed there a while. 20He had been quarreling with the people of Tyre and Sidon; they now joined together and sought an audience with him. Having secured the support of Blastus, a trusted personal servant of the king, they asked for peace, because they depended on the king's country for their food supply.

21On the appointed day Herod, wearing his royal robes, sat on his throne and delivered a public address to the people. 22They shouted, "This is the voice of a god, not of a man.

23Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died.

Wanting can be crippling if a person allows it to creep into their lives. Here we see that the people wanted for peace, so they ‘used’ someone to try to get peace. Herod wanted to be powerful over everyone so he used his kingship to advance. Then there are those that wanted security and they shouted that Herod was a god.

They all received the opportunity, whether they believed or didn’t believe, to actually see God put an angel of the Lord into action. Wow, I’d like to see an angel. Actually I believe that we do see the angels that God chooses to send to us. With our minds and hearts open and willing to believe, God grants us opportunities to experience His angels. They surround is always, watching over us, protecting us, praising God on our behalf, singing hallelujah awaiting us to join the angel choir some day.

During this winter season, scan the dark night sky looking to the heavens and enjoy the stars; which them glimmer, recognize hope in them and realize the God of the universe is the God of heaven and nature, then sing your angel song, wanting for nothing because you have everything through Christ Jesus.

Dorothy Drago Brucks
Aldersgate UMC
Nixa, Mo.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

"Person of Infuence"

Today’s reading - Acts 12:16-19 (NIV): 16But Peter kept on knocking, and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished. 17Peter motioned with his hand for them to be quiet and described how the Lord had brought him out of prison. "Tell James and the brothers about this," he said, and then he left for another place.

18In the morning, there was no small commotion among the soldiers as to what had become of Peter. 19After Herod had a thorough search made for him and did not find him, he cross-examined the guards and ordered that they be executed.

By a simple motion of his hand, Peter had everyone present captivated and hushed ready to listen. Then there is Herod, by a critical examination, he had people on the hunt to execute the guards. Both men had people listen and follow the orders given – what a powerful influence these two men had, but so vastly different.

Sometimes people search for ways to be influential and powerful, just to feel empty and breathless. Others serve with humility, standing in the background, unnoticed feeling hopeful for the future. What we do in life, is not what is important; what is important is how we serve and live our lives. The power to influence belongs to God. His power and mercy and grace are freely given to everyone. How these gifts are received and used for His kingdom influences all of eternity.

Make it a point to be influenced by God’s power and share how He released you from the bondage of sin and death.

Dorothy Drago Brucks
Aldersgate UMC, Nixa, Mo.

Monday, November 30, 2009

"Am I?"

Today's reading - Acts 12:15 (NIV): 15 "You're out of your mind," they told her. When she kept insisting that it was so, they said, "It must be his angel."

I have strayed from writing the daily devotional from scriptures of the book of Acts. As with all of you, I have been extremely busy and that is my excuse. I haven’t forgotten that our friend Deb had been allowing me to continue this journey in her stead as she heals, I just simply had other responsibilities that took a great deal of my time. But today is the day to start afresh, right where we left off.

“Are you out of your mind?” is a question I have asked myself and others thousands of times in the past and I never knew I was quoting scripture! In that context, I think this verse is humorous, but let’s look at it in a different light.

There are many days that I keep insisting ‘yes you did, no I did not, did too, are you sure’ (because I usually don’t remember but feel the need to defend myself). Perhaps that is self protection, asserting my right to never admit I can’t remember something. I use to have such a vast memory bank, but not any more.

Just this morning about 1 ½ hours into work, I said out loud to my co-workers “I don’t remember what I did with my lunch.” I went back to my car and did not find them so at this point I couldn’t remember if I got it out of the refrigerator or not. Yes I did, I know I did, then Phil calls, guess what is on the kitchen table dear?

I too must be out of my mind just as this servant girl was being accused of being. I love how she exclaimed that ‘it must be his angel.” In our daily lives we too should call upon the angels of God, the ones singing praises to the King of the Jews, praising God always, eternally.

Let’s you and I live in the moment of angels always, and may we never forget to do just that. If we claim it out loud, maybe someone will say “You’re out of your mind,” and we can respond, yes, we are in the mind of the Holy one, always loved and cared for and for that we are praising His name, Emmanuel.

Dorothy Drago Brucks
Aldersgate UMC
Nixa, Mo.