Author Archives: karbly

Daily Bread November 30

“One Night in Bethlehem”
Gene Allen Groner of Independence, MO, USA


Shun youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. -2 Timothy 2:22

After reading an article from Apostle Ron Harmon about the Buddhists’ “compassionate way,” I felt inspired to write this short poem about the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. I have been to Bethlehem and felt the compassionate love of Jesus while visiting the traditional religious site of Jesus’ birth.

“One Night in Bethlehem.”

One night in Bethlehem
A long time ago
A child was born

A child was born
To Mary and Joseph
Their firstborn son

And on that night
A star shined bright
For all the world to see

Hope was born
That night in Bethlehem
And they named him Jesus

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

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Daily Bread November 29

First Sunday of Advent
Karin Peter, president of seventy


O that you would tear open the heavens and come down,
  so that the mountains would quake at your presence-
 as when fire kindles brushwood
  and the fire causes water to boil-
to make your name known to your adversaries,
  so that the nations might tremble at your presence!  -Isaiah 64:1-2

The prophet Isaiah prays for God to reveal God’s divine presence to all the people. It is this presence we await during Advent. In Christian community we wait in symbolic darkness for the light of the world to arrive. Jesus, Emmanuel, God with us. And as we wait, we prepare to welcome the gift of Jesus into our lives. Not just on Sunday but every day and every place. “God with us” means we welcome Jesus into our relationships and families. Our marketplaces and congregations. Our choices, our giving, and our actions. God with us at work, God with us on Facebook and Twitter. God with us in our kindnesses and our cruelty. God is always present with us, walking with us right into the muck and mire of being human. Through Jesus, the compassionate nature of God as creator and companion is revealed.

During the blur of shopping and wrapping and baking that consumes us in the weeks before Christmas it is easy to become distracted from Advent, the waiting for that which is to come. We forget that we are not just preparing for the celebrations of Christmas Day. As a people of faith, we are waiting for the divine presence to be made real in our midst. This Advent season, may we remember to spend some time resting in the darkness. May we live in deep anticipation of the light. Jesus, Emmanuel. God with us.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 28

God Speaks
Diane Goold of Saint Joseph, MO, USA


For the mountains may depart
 and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,
 and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,
 says the Lord, who has compassion on you. -Isaiah 54:10

Sometimes we hear God speaking directly to our heart and mind. Sometimes we ask for him to speak but feel he doesn’t answer. Sometimes he answers and we aren’t listening. I’m reminded of the story of Elijah as he stood on the side of the mountain, listening for God’s voice.

“He said, ‘Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.’ Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence” (1 Kings 19:11-12).

Whispers come in the form of a tree swaying in a gentle breeze, in the cooing of a baby, in the laughter of a child, in the eyes of a loved one, in hugs and kisses, in phone calls or messages from friends, and in that quiet place inside your heart that only God can touch.

If things become hectic and noisy today, pause and listen to God’s whisper and relax knowing God is nearby, even in our most chaotic and stressful moments.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 27

The Pink Dress
Vera Wetteroff of Barnhart, MO, USA


These are portentous times. The lives of many are being sacrificed unnecessarily to the egos of war, greed and avarice. The land is being desecrated by the thoughtless waste of vital resources. You must obey my commandments and be in the forefront of those who would mediate this needless destruction while there is yet day. -Doctrine and Covenants 150:7

Sometimes it’s difficult to see that God is watching and taking care of us. During this pandemic, many have suffered loss and sorrow. Sometimes we feel we have failed those we love. However, God is still there.

Dave and I have been on a journey with our Aunt Ruth, who was born in 1927. She had broken her hip and needed extra care to continue to live on her own. I took her shopping, helped her get to appointments, visited, sorted mail, and pampered her with lotion. She shared family stories and we became good friends. She told me that when she could no longer live alone, she wanted me to choose a place for her to stay.

Her dementia worsened; it became too dangerous to leave her alone. We chose an assisted living home for patients with memory problems. She was happy there for about eighteen months.

In February, she fell and broke her other hip. We found a place with skilled nursing and rehab, just prior to the pandemic which caused all nursing homes to close to visitors.

It broke my heart that I could no longer be there to share her smiles, rub lotion into her dry, swollen legs and arms, and make the staff aware of her needs. The feared day came when we received the call that she had tested positive for COVID-19. Two weeks later, she died.

Aunt Ruth made advance funeral arrangements and asked to be buried in a pink or blue dress. I had looked for a suitable pink dress for the past year but came up emptyhanded. I had failed her in this one thing.

We arrived at the funeral home to finalize arrangements. In the corner on a rack hung a pink dress. I mentioned that she wanted to be buried in a pink dress like the one in the corner. I supposed it was there for someone else. I was told, “That’s a dress we provide for a fee which includes undergarments.” To me, this was a sign from God that Aunt Ruth was still in God’s care…even in the small details…like a pink dress.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 26

Testimony of a Homeless Woman
Gene Allen Groner of Independence, MO, USA


Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth.
 Worship the Lord with gladness;
 come into his presence with singing.
Know that the Lord is God.
 It is he that made us, and we are his;
 we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
 and his courts with praise.
 Give thanks to him, bless his name.
For the Lord is good;
 his steadfast love endures forever,
 and his faithfulness to all generations. -Psalm 100

“Loneliness and the feeling of being unwanted is the most terrible poverty” (Mother Teresa).

This quote from Mother Teresa really came home to me and entered my heart one day at the Salvation Army Crossroads Homeless Shelter board meeting, where I was serving as vice-president. We had invited a homeless woman, a young lady with no family and no place to live, to come to our board meeting and to share her story with the board. We felt it would be helpful to us in our ministry of outreach to the homeless to develop a better understanding of the issues contributing to their situation. Also, we wanted to know how she felt, what it felt like to be homeless.

It was a very moving experience. She told us how hard it was to not have an identity. She felt she was no one because she didn’t have a home or family. Therefore, she did not exist. Well, that broke my heart. I shall never forget the experience, her or how my heart ached for her.

I paused after the meeting and offered a prayer for that young woman. I prayed that she would understand and feel how much we cared for her, that she was somebody important to us. She was someone we wanted to love, affirm, and provide for through our organization. I learned a lesson of empathy and compassion that day, and I will remember her prayerfully each time I see a homeless person.

Now I kneel and pray every night for the homeless and the refugees of the world, all 60 million of them. May God bless and care for each one and give us insight and wisdom in our relationships with them. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 25

If You Really Loved Me
Jan Hill of New Brighton, MN, USA


You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot.

You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.

Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets; I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one letter, not one stroke of a letter, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, will be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. -Matthew 5:13-20

I have a granddaughter who is very active, outgoing, and fun-loving. Sometimes when she makes plans to do something, she will ask me to do it with her. But her idea of fun is not always mine. If I decline, she turns her big, soulful eyes towards me, and says, “But Grandma, if you really loved me…”

Fortunately, she only does this when she has asked me to do some ridiculous thing, like going to Valley Fair and riding the roller coaster with her. She knows perfectly well, even before she asks me, that the answer will be a definite “No.” (Not even when that mythical hot place freezes over will I do it.) So, we laugh, and I don’t feel too guilty.

I know that God does not ask frivolous things of us just to test our love. But I sometimes wonder…
If Jesus asked me to do something, and he turned his deep brown eyes toward me, and said, “If you loved me…” would I just blow it off as an unreasonable request? Or would I do his will?

For those who love Jesus, doing God’s will is the way of being the people God wants us to be.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 24

Thoughts on Love
Sid Faulkner of Troy, IL, USA


Peace I leave with you; my peace i give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. -John 14:27

In the Old Testament we read that Jehovah is just. And there are passages which clearly speak of God’s love, mercy, and forgiveness. And yet, the message didn’t seem to stay in the hearts of the hearers. It was important for God to become love, dwelling in our hearts-imminent, intimate, intrinsic, in us.

Jesus says and portrays a God of love. Jesus modeled giving ourselves and not holding back, not seeking or asking for anything in return. We might find that giving all we have is a great deal.

If we are made in the image and likeness of a God of love, where are the limits of what we can give and be? I believe the more we give, the more we have to give. I don’t understand it, but it’s one of God’s laws.

The God of Jesus does not love some of us because we are good and dislike others of us because we are bad. God loves us all. God is always inviting, pulling, and tugging at our hearts.

What do you believe? Do you really believe that God is love? Do you believe that you are a child of love and that the world is the work of love? Do you live as you say you believe? Do I? “Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these…” (John 14:12). We find it hard to accept this; it’s too big a challenge-but for those who are willing to try, life can be exciting, challenging, and fulfilling.

Jesus came to bring us the message that God is Love!

God was in Jesus, and Jesus was in God. God is in us, and we are in God. We are all one. Love is not merely a word; love is The Word. Spread The Word.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 23

Cast Your Anchors into the Deep
Gordon Parrott of House Springs, MO, USA


Rise up, O Lord, in your anger;
 lift yourself up against the fury of my enemies;
 awake, O my God; you have appointed a judgment.
Let the assembly of the peoples be gathered around you,
 and over it take your seat on high. O let the evil of the wicked come to an end,
 but establish the righteous,
you who test the minds and hearts,
 O righteous God.
God is my shield,
 who saves the upright in heart. -Psalm 7:6-7, 9-10

Greetings, followers of Jesus Christ. One of the most interesting books I’ve ever read was a biography of the Apostle Paul. Most of you are familiar with Paul’s story and his contribution to the scriptures we all love. Remember the conversion from Saul of Tarsus to Paul on the road to Damascus. Remember his mission to the world and his desire to spread the good news to every world leader. Remember his sea voyage to Rome to bring the testimony of the Christ to Caesar, and the hurricane that threatened the ship and its passengers. Paul’s warning to the captain came after a visit from an angel of God, who led them to a small island where they would find safety for the nearly 300 passengers and crew. Paul seems to have taken charge of the ship and ordered the four stern anchors to be dropped into the sea. Those on board were saved, but the ship and its cargo were lost. Henceforth, Paul referred to the gospel as the “anchor” of our souls, and it remains so today.

The sea around us is beginning to show the swells of a coming storm which threatens us and Christianity. Where are our young families? Where are the elderly and middle-aged? Have they been distracted by the world and its many offerings, by the fruits of prosperity? I say distracted because I know that many are aware of the good news of God’s kingdom. They know of Jesus Christ, but the lure of other things is strong and appealing.

The time has come to remember the call of the gospel and the promises of God’s kingdom to come and to “cast our anchors into the deep” before the storm hits. If that sounds like a prayer, well, consider it so. It is my prayer for all of you brothers and sisters in Christ, in whose name I pray. Amen.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 22

See Christ among Us
Jane Gardner, presiding evangelist


Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?” And the king will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.” -Matthew 25:37-40

We hadn’t seen him at the Temple for many months. Usually when he comes through the doors, we are watchful and shadow his movements. He’s been known to cause damage. We understand that he has challenges related to mental illness.

Just recently he showed up again for Prayer for Peace in the Temple Sanctuary. He often moves from seat to seat during the service. Near the end of this service he comes to sit next to me. I smile and nod while trying to model reverent attention to the service. Silently, I wonder, “Why does he come to the Temple? What draws him here?” Of course, in the winter, the warmth of the building is a big attraction for those without shelter or heat. But is there something more? Why does he choose to attend the Prayer for Peace?

In a moment of pure blessing and insight, he becomes the Christ to me. With all of his problems and difficulties, with all of his unbalanced behavior-he is “one of the least of these who are members of my family…” (Matthew 25:40).

As the service draws to a close, he leans toward me and says, “Tomorrow I have to go to court. I’m here to find peace.”

May it be so.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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Daily Bread November 21

Carry Your Own Sunshine with You
Rodger Howell of Columbia, MO, USA


Depart from evil, and do good;
 so you shall abide forever.
For the Lord loves justice;
 he will not forsake his faithful ones.
The righteous shall be kept safe forever,
 but the children of the wicked shall be cut off. -Psalm 37:27-28

I spent my working career in sales and discovered a philosophy that has carried me through the years and through the ups and downs of life. Here are a few thoughts:

At a farm convention in Minneapolis, televangelist Robert Schuller stepped up on stage and wondered what he would say to 3,000 farmers who were hurting because of the farm crisis in the early 80s. Then it came to him what to say: “Tough times never last, but tough people do. We are in a tough time, but it shall pass.”

You may be thinking, “But how?” Start with a positive mental attitude. “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7 NKJV). A positive mental attitude depends on what you think the outcome will be. If you are visiting a friend and you are looking forward to it, then you will have a good outcome.

How do I prepare? The scriptures help us. In Matthew 7:7 Jesus instructs, “Ask…seek…knock…” Be expectant and full of hope as you go through each step. Hope is a desire of your heart.

Don’t let anyone steal your dream. Dream big because sometimes dreams come true. It took me 30 years to acquire the office chair that I had dreamed about in 1963 while in the military in Samsun, Turkey. I recognized it from a dream that I had. I purchased it on the spot. It was a blessing!

I read a story about a family who was preparing to go on a picnic, but just as they were about to leave, it started to rain. The kids were disappointed. The mother cleared the living room floor, put the picnic blanket on the floor, and had the picnic inside. She carried her sunshine with her.

How about you? Do others see you carry a ray of hope, love, joy, and peace and the light of Christ in your daily walk? Seek to walk with confidence onto the stage of life each day and expect answers to your prayers. May God bless you is my prayer.

Prayer Phrase

God, help me seek peace for me, peace for us, peace for everyone, and peace for our planet. Amen.

Spiritual Practice

The International Community

Find (or imagine) a globe or map of the world. Look at all the nations and find a country other than your own. Notice the geographic distance between your homeland and this one. Picture a person living there. Pray for this person. Sense God’s love connecting you just as the oceans connect the continents. Thank God for the spiritual connection you have with all of God’s people around the globe. Ask a blessing on the church as a community sharing Christ’s peace, drawing all into the family of God.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

Click here to comment or read online.

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