St. Luke "Community" U.M.C. - Dallas

Welcome to St. Luke "Community" United Methodist Church' official page in Dallas, TX, where we are "Reaching Up to God & Out into the Community."

We are a church committed to continuing our mission of reaching up to God and out into the community. We do this though our mission, vision, and core values. We Celebrate: • Our African Heritage and Culture Dynamic Transformational, Spirit- filled Praise and Worship. We Embrace: • Diversity and Inclusiveness. • The Caring and Nurturing of "The Village”. We Educate Through: • Reflective Study of the Scriptures. • Supporting Academic Excellence & Higher Education. We Dedicate Ourselves To: • Community Involvement. • The Struggle for Liberation & Social Justice. • A Lifestyle of Stewardship, Prayer, and Spiritual Discipline. • The Making of Disciples for Jesus Christ. • A Ministry of Excellence.

Mission: St. Luke is called to proclaim the gospel, transform lives and make disciples for Jesus Christ.

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Upper Room Disciplines for January 9th, 2020

Today's Devotion: Psalm 72:1-7, 10-14

The Upper Room Disciplines

Jesus' Baptism and Ours

The words of this prayer for a newly installed king apply just as readily to leaders of countries with a different form of government. They surely embody hopes and aspirations that I would wish for the United States of America. Yet many Americans influenced deeply by the "gospel" of Ayn Rand, might find the focus on the poor and needy hard to accept and apply. The Israelite people, to be sure, pray for other concerns connected with their concept of righteousness (tzedek), or fair judgment. But the author of this psalm equates righteousness specifically with defending the poor and delivering the needy. Likewise, in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus defines giving of alms for the needy as "righteousness" (dikaiosune). (See Matthew 6:1-2.) Prayer for the poor and needy is not a casual element in Jewish piety; it is central.

The question is this: Where does such concern come from? The psalmist asserts that human concern for the poor and needy stems from God's concern. God instills righteous and compassionate character. So the prayer opens with the plea, "Give to the king your justice, O God, and your righteousness to a king's son." Righteousness belongs to God's very nature, and if we claim to know God, we should reflect it instinctively. Jesus once again echoes such thinking in the parable of the last judgment. (See Matthew 25:31-46.)
Those invited into the kingdom of heaven will be those who feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, and welcome strangers into their homes without even thinking about it. Indeed, these actions are so natural for those who will enter the kingdom of heaven that when the Master says they have been invited because they do these things for him, they have to ask, "When?"

TODAY'S PRAYER
O God, grant our leaders your righteousness, so that they will defend the cause of the poor and deliver the needy who have no helper. Amen.

By E. Glenn Hinson

* * *

THIS WEEK'S QUESTIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR REFLECTION

* Read Isaiah 42:1-9. What does it mean for Jesus to be a Servant Messiah? In what ways does God suffer with or for you?
* Read Psalm 72:1-7, 10-14. As children of God, we are called to reflect God's righteousness. How do you defend the poor and deliver the needy?
* Read Acts 10:34-43. Consider the author's proposal that those who fear God and do what is right may include people of other faiths. What would this mean for your faith and your relationships with those of other faiths?
* Read Matthew 3:13-17. Remember your baptism. Did you make the decision to be baptized or did someone else make the decision for you? How does remembering your baptism guide you to do what God wants?

upperroom.org The words of this prayer for a newly installed king apply just as readily to leaders of countries with a different form of government. They surely embody hopes and aspirations that I would wish for the United States of America. Yet many Americans, influenced deeply by the “gospel” of Ayn Rand, ....

upperroom.org

Upper Room Disciplines for January 8th, 2020

Today's Devotion: Acts 10:34-43

The Upper Room Disciplines

Jesus' Baptism and Ours

Acts of the Apostles 10:34-43

Devout Jewish Christians find it hard to believe that God accepts people into the Christian fold without the Jewish requirements for admission-baptism for all and circumcision for males. One of Jesus' most dedicated followers, Simon Peter, is among the skeptical. It takes a dramatic dream to change his mind.

When an angel tells the Roman centurion Cornelius in a vision to go to Simon Peter (see Acts 10:1-8), Peter undoubtedly still has reservations about the wideness of God's mercy. But his dream of a sheet let down from heaven filled with all sorts of ritually forbidden foods he is told to eat (10:9-16) settles the matter. When Peter finally meets with Cornelius, Peter makes the speech of his life: He boldly asserts that God, the God he has come to know in and through Jesus Christ, "shows no partiality." Quite the contrary, as Isaiah declares long before, God reaches out to embrace all people and all nations. What does God require? Not observance of certain food laws or customs such as circumcision of males but that "in every nation, anyone who fears [God] and does what is right is acceptable to [God]."

The kind of fear Peter talks about is not groveling in terror, but showing reverence. We display such reverence not when we recite a creed of some kind but when we do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God. (See Micah 6:8.) Like Peter, we need to ask in our day whether those who fear and do what is right include people of other faiths-Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Taoists, Confucians-and perhaps even people who may list themselves as "nones." How wide is God's mercy? Is it like the wideness of the sea?

TODAY'S PRAYER
O God, liberate us from conceptions and ideas that make you smaller than you are, and open our minds to praise you for mercy wide enough to include all people as your children. Amen.

By E. Glenn Hinson

* * *

THIS WEEK'S QUESTIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR REFLECTION

* Read Isaiah 42:1-9. What does it mean for Jesus to be a Servant Messiah? In what ways does God suffer with or for you?
* Read Psalm 72:1-7, 10-14. As children of God, we are called to reflect God's righteousness. How do you defend the poor and deliver the needy?
* Read Acts 10:34-43. Consider the author's proposal that those who fear God and do what is right may include people of other faiths. What would this mean for your faith and your relationships with those of other faiths?
* Read Matthew 3:13-17. Remember your baptism. Did you make the decision to be baptized or did someone else make the decision for you? How does remembering your baptism guide you to do what God wants?

upperroom.org Devout Jewish Christians find it hard to believe that God accepts people into the Christian fold without the Jewish requirements for admission—baptism for all and circumcision for males. One of Jesus’ most dedicated followers, Simon Peter, is among the skeptical. It takes a dramatic dream to ch....

upperroom.org

Upper Room Disciplines for January 7th, 2020

Today's Devotion: Isaiah 42:1-9

The Upper Room Disciplines

Jesus' Baptism and Ours

Readers of the Gospels will recognize readily the impact the Servant Poems of Isaiah (42:1-4; 49:1-6; 50:4-11; 52:13-53:12) exert on Jesus' understanding of himself and God's expectations of him. Scholars hold differing views on the identity of the Servant. Some think the Servant is the nation; others, an individual. Yet it is clear that Jesus applies this identity to himself. God does not intend for him to be a Messiah-like David who restores the kingdom of Israel but a Servant Messiah, one suffering with and for the people.

At Jesus' baptism, the voice from heaven certifies him with the opening words of the poem: "My chosen, in whom my soul delights" becomes "my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased" (Matt. 3:17). God puts the Spirit upon the Servant with the promise that "he will bring forth justice to the nations"; in Jesus' words, he will "fulfill all righteousness" (Matt. 3:15).

As the temptations in the desert will convince Jesus, his way will not be the way of power perfected by might but the way of power perfected through weakness and vulnerability. This idea in this poem and also in Jesus' life is one we humans find difficult to grasp. The Servant will not break a bruised reed or quench a burning wick and yet "he will faithfully bring forth justice." He will not give up, no matter how great the suffering, until he achieves God's purpose-"justice in the earth."

We do well to note that the Servant works for justice everywhere, not only among God's chosen people. Through him we gain this remarkable insight about God: God is our Fellow Sufferer. God may not cure every ill, put an end to death, or turn all our nights into day; but God can and does suffer with us and for us.

TODAY'S PRAYER
Pour your Spirit into our hearts, O loving God, that we may accept your vulnerability along with our own. Amen.

By E. Glenn Hinson

* * *

THIS WEEK'S QUESTIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR REFLECTION

* Read Isaiah 42:1-9. What does it mean for Jesus to be a Servant Messiah? In what ways does God suffer with or for you?
* Read Psalm 72:1-7, 10-14. As children of God, we are called to reflect God's righteousness. How do you defend the poor and deliver the needy?
* Read Acts 10:34-43. Consider the author's proposal that those who fear God and do what is right may include people of other faiths. What would this mean for your faith and your relationships with those of other faiths?
* Read Matthew 3:13-17. Remember your baptism. Did you make the decision to be baptized or did someone else make the decision for you? How does remembering your baptism guide you to do what God wants?

upperroom.org Readers of the Gospels will recognize readily the impact the Servant Poems of Isaiah (42:1-4; 49:1-6; 50:4-11; 52:13–53:12) exert on Jesus’ understanding of himself and God’s expectations of him. Scholars hold differing views on the identity of the Servant. Some think the Servant is the nation...

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Upper Room Disciplines for January 6th, 2020

Today's Devotion: Matthew 2:1-12

The Upper Room Disciplines

Jesus' Baptism and Ours

Early Christians added the visit of the magi to Bethlehem to the baptism of Jesus as a second interpretation of Epiphany. (The first interpretation of Epiphany was the day of Jesus' baptism, which we now celebrate the first Sunday after Epiphany.) The star-guided trek of the magi from the East to Bethlehem to see the child born in a manger adds to our understanding of God: God not only is the God of the Hebrew people and nation but also the God of people everywhere, in every nation. When we consider the star that guides the magi, we recognize that God is also the God of the universe.

The wise men come from ancient Persia (modern Iran) where Zoroastrianism, which accounts for the strong apocalyptic currents in Judaism and early Christianity, prevails. The story of Herod's murderous plot to eliminate a competitor has garnered most of the attention paid to their visit, but something else deserves serious attention. True to their Zoroastrian training, the wise men look to the heavens for guidance. After a conference with Herod, they set out, "and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was." Joy overwhelms them. They kneel down and honor the child with gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

In an age informed by science, we treat star-guidance with considerable skepticism. In Matthew's age, however, reliance on astrology made perfect sense. God, the God of the whole universe, uses nature to direct humans. In our own time we are learning anew that all the world is alive with God. It behooves us to pay attention to what God says to us through nature as well as through history and our own lives. Our survival will depend on it.

TODAY'S PRAYER
Sensitize us, O God, to your presence in our whole world lest we miss your word in the natural world. Amen.

By E. Glenn Hinson

* * *

THIS WEEK'S QUESTIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR REFLECTION

* Read Isaiah 42:1-9. What does it mean for Jesus to be a Servant Messiah? In what ways does God suffer with or for you?
* Read Psalm 72:1-7, 10-14. As children of God, we are called to reflect God's righteousness. How do you defend the poor and deliver the needy?
* Read Acts 10:34-43. Consider the author's proposal that those who fear God and do what is right may include people of other faiths. What would this mean for your faith and your relationships with those of other faiths?
* Read Matthew 3:13-17. Remember your baptism. Did you make the decision to be baptized or did someone else make the decision for you? How does remembering your baptism guide you to do what God wants?

upperroom.org Early Christians added the visit of the magi to Bethlehem to the baptism of Jesus as a second interpretation of Epiphany. (The first interpretation of Epiphany was the day of Jesus’ baptism, which we now celebrate the first Sunday after Epiphany.) The star-guided trek of the magi from the East ...

2 Kings 20:1-6 “Get Your House in Order”
Rev. Dr. Michael L. Bowie, Jr. - 11:00am

2 Kings 20:1-6 “Get Your House in Order”
Rev. Dr. Michael L. Bowie, Jr. - 8:00am

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Upper Room Disciplines for January 3rd, 2020

Today's Devotion: John 1:1-9

The Upper Room Disciplines

As It Was in the Beginning...

Today's reading introduces a discussion about the relationship between God and Jesus and describes how God and Jesus are united as the Word from the beginning. The Word is with God and is God. The Word speaks, and all things-light and life-come into being. (See Genesis 1.) John testifies that Jesus is the Word made flesh once again as the true light. Jesus is cocreator with God in the beginning of the world and is the true light who enters the world as Emmanuel.

The first few verses of this Gospel drive us to a deeper understanding of God's willingness to relinquish sovereignty, to empty God's self to take on the struggles of human existence, and to testify as the true light to God's all-encompassing love for humanity and all of creation. (See Philippians 2:1-11.) God as Jesus enters the world as a human baby and dies as a criminal. In between, he grows up, attends worship and weddings, struggles with his call on earth, teaches lessons, suffers hunger and homelessness, heals people, breaks laws, and invites himself to dinner with despised people.

Jesus' taking human form means that God, as Jesus, knows us in our greatest weakness, pain, and sin. Nothing about us has been or ever will be hidden from God. And Jesus, as the true light that enlightens everyone-even you and me, provides the means for us to discover the grace of God.

TODAY'S PRAYER
O God, I give up trying to hide myself from you. Help me draw closer to you through Jesus, so that I may know your grace and love forevermore. Amen.

By Anne Burkholder

***

SCRIPTURE OVERVIEW
Jeremiah delivers happy news, a promise from the Lord of a brighter future day. God will bring back the scattered peoples to their homeland, and their mourning will turn into joy. The psalmist encourages those in Jerusalem to praise God for all that God has done. God gives protection, peace, and the law to the children of Israel. The author of Ephesians encourages readers with confidence in God's eternal plan. God's will is to send Christ and adopt us into God's family. We have been sealed with the Holy Spirit. The opening to John helps us understand the eternal scope of God's plan. From the beginning, the Word has been with God but then becomes flesh and lives among us to reveal divine glory.

upperroom.org Today’s reading introduces a discussion about the relationship between God and Jesus and describes how God and Jesus are united as the Word from the beginning. The Word is with God and is God. The Word speaks, and all things—light and life—come into being. (See Genesis 1.) John testifies that ...

St. Luke "Community" U.M.C. - Dallas's cover photo

Sojourners

Soon, if not already, the Magi in nativity scenes will be packed and stored away until next year’s Epiphany, which is a shame, writes Joe Kay. These late arrivers are some of the most provocative, prophetic, and polarizing figures in the Christmas story.

New Year's Eve Service-Grace Made A Way

New Year's Eve worship

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Upper Room Disciplines for December 31st, 2019

Today's Devotion: Jeremiah 31:7-14

The Upper Room Disciplines

As It Was in the Beginning...

My military family moved fifteen times before I left for college. I have used Google Earth and driven by former homes to see what they look like. I find myself asking, "Was that house really that small? Did we really play in those swampy woods?" Home, for me, was the community of my immediate family, not the domicile where we resided. My parents' love and support sustained me and helped me grow wherever we lived.

Jeremiah offers words of promise to an exiled remnant in Babylon. The remnant dreams of going home. But these dreams have been built on the memories of many who will not return. The people have been in exile for seventy years; two generations have already died. Those who came to Babylon are not the people who will "return." They are sustained in their journey by God's everlasting love. God assures them that their vulnerable members will not be left behind. They will be consoled, led to water, and provided with straight and level paths. Indeed, the blind, lame, children, and pregnant women will travel with ease.

As disciples of Jesus Christ, we are sustained by the love and grace of God that has come to us through Jesus Christ and the support of the Holy Spirit. Our home is the heart of God. In Jeremiah's words to the exiled Israelites we find the promise of a way home out of whatever exile-self-inflicted or inflicted by others-we experience.

No matter what exile has left you vulnerable, defeated, and separated from what you love, God will embrace and sustain you with everlasting love, console you, and lead you home.

TODAY'S PRAYER
Lord, lead me in your love and righteousness. Make your way plain and bring me safely home. Amen.

By Anne Burkholder

***

SCRIPTURE OVERVIEW
Jeremiah delivers happy news, a promise from the Lord of a brighter future day. God will bring back the scattered peoples to their homeland, and their mourning will turn into joy. The psalmist encourages those in Jerusalem to praise God for all that God has done. God gives protection, peace, and the law to the children of Israel. The author of Ephesians encourages readers with confidence in God's eternal plan. God's will is to send Christ and adopt us into God's family. We have been sealed with the Holy Spirit. The opening to John helps us understand the eternal scope of God's plan. From the beginning, the Word has been with God but then becomes flesh and lives among us to reveal divine glory.

upperroom.org My military family moved fifteen times before I left for college. I have used Google Earth and driven by former homes to see what they look like. I find myself asking, “Was that house really that small? Did we really play in those swampy woods?” Home, for me, was the......

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5710 E R L Thornton Fwy
Dallas, TX
75223

General information

"St. Luke" is a church with active and exciting ministries serving the community. Sunday Worship Celebrations: 8:00 am & 11:00 am Church School: 9:45 am Wednesday Night Live 6:00 pm 5710 East R.L. Thornton (I-30 & Winslow) * Our Mission * St. Luke is called to proclaim the gospel, transform lives and make disciples for Jesus Christ. * Our Vision * Through the Holy Spirit, God is calling us to ministries of excellence which embrace and nurture children, youth, adults, and families to reach their God-given potential; to be advocates and prophetic voices in the "community" for all oppressed peoples. **************************************************** PLEASE VISIT OUR "EVENTS" and other tabs for more information about what's going on at "The Luke!
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