The “Daily Devos” are authored by my colleague and friend, Phil Brandt, and may contain edits and adaptations by yours truly.
Monday after the Festival of the Resurrection – Prayer for the Week
O God, for our redemption You gave Your only-begotten Son to death on the cross and by His glorious resurrection delivered us from the power of the enemy. Grant that all our sin may be drowned through daily repentance and that day by day we may arise to live before You in righteousness and purity forever; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
There are two prayers for Easter morning. This is the second one. At St. Peter we used the first one yesterday, but today on this Easter Monday. The following is Phil Brandt’s unedited devotion for you. I hope it speaks to you as it has to me. After you read this Debo, I invite you to meditate upon a offering that Amy Smessaert shared with her prayer group today. It is in the “Daily Devotions” category and is titled “Daily Devo Supplement for 4/13 – An Open Letter to Pandemic.” I hope that together, my sermon from Easter Sunday, this devotion from Phil, and the “Open Letter to Pandemic” from Amy would help you sort through our daily challenges and our faith. Alleluia! Christ Is Risen! He Is Risen Indeed! Alleluia! – Peace, Pastor B.
I (Phil Brandt) wanted to reflect on the clause in the second line of this prayer “you…delivered us from the power of the enemy.” Earlier this week, my brother reminded me of a bit of familial lore. Our grandfather served in France in World War I. We have a picture of him and his 11 siblings which was taken just before he left. They wanted a picture in case he did not come back. It was not an unreasonable precaution. His troop transport, crammed full of men, became a cruise into terror when the Spanish Flu broke out. As they zig-zagged across the Atlantic to avoid German submarines, they were burying up to 90 men per day. My grandfather slept on the deck to avoid the cramped and disease-ridden conditions below, often huddling under a lifeboat to avoid weather and detection. He drove a truck in that conflict. Narrowly escaped death on several occasions and returned home to his family in South Dakota.
We acknowledge that God delivers us from the power of the enemy today. The enemies seem to have grown in number and visibility in these past few weeks. They are never greater than God’s deliverance. My grandfather went on to marry, have children, and farm. He lost that farm in the great depression and eventually they settled in Wisconsin where he farmed and raised his sons through another great war. His was a life filled with many enemies who wanted to do him harm but through faith God delivered him. As his middle son, my father, was on vicarage in the early 1950’s, however, the world took one more swing at him and landed a punch. He died of cancer before my father’s vicarage year was over. I never met that grandfather who had stories of deliverance to tell.
Jesus has risen from the dead. Baptized into his death and resurrection my grandfather and I will one day be delivered from that last and greatest enemy of all, death. Then perhaps we will get to hear the stories straight from him. More likely we will have better things to talk about. My father said that when he was a child the Lutheran parish which they attended always had another service on Easter Monday. We can sing again today, with angels, archangels, and with all the company of heaven, including my grandfather, because Jesus has delivered us from the power of all our enemies. Sing an Easter hymn today.