Stop and help

Save us, Jesus, from hurrying away,

because we do not wish to help,

because we know not how to help,

because we dare not.

Inspire us to use our lives serving one another.      From the New Zealand Prayer Book

help others

It is so easy to pass by…to keep on our path… to not stop. We convince ourselves there is not time, or money, or willingness to help. Deviating from our normal day is not easy but sometimes it is important. Sometimes there is a friend who just needs to be listened to, or bought a cola, or offered a ride. Sometimes the littlest things can make a big difference.

Don’t hurry away, stop and help.

A heart of flesh

 

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God has plans for us. these plans include us having a better understanding of how we should live. Telling us has not worked so God decides to SHOW us. He leaves heaven to become a man…a man who lives the life that we need to live. He did this for us. Now we need to follow that man in everything that we do.

Jesus…a rebel

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Someone once said to my husband that Jesus was a conservative. My husband’s response was “he was so conservative that he got himself killed.” If we pay attention to the ministry of Christ he was radical. He went against the mores of his day in so many ways. He ate with tax collectors, acknowledged women, healed lepers and preached love for all humankind. If we could live as he did it would be a revolution. Prepare by pondering on this.

Praise God

Psalm 34:1

I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall ever be in my mouth.

How often do we stop to praise and thank God. If we go to church we do praise Him there but do we really think about it or is it just habit. Have you ever lifted up your hands in praise to God. Just the lifting of our hands is focusing our hearts and our bodies on God. Some churches are comfortable with this…some not but we can do it at home. Praise God every day!

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Prayer: Gracious Lord, you are worthy to be praise with glad voices. We bless and praise your name. We are grateful for you love and compassion. Be with us each day of our lives. AMEN

Discard hurts and grudges

We cannot embrace God’s forgiveness if we are so busy clinging to past wounds and nursing old grudges.

T. D. Jakes

let grudges go

It is so easy to hold onto grudges and past hurts. We can actually enjoy chewing over the hurt and savoring our pain. We can think back and relive the emotions and it gives us a kind of satisfaction.

This kind of thinking is toxic. The only person being harmed by it is us. God has promised us forgiveness of our own mistakes. How can we approach him with these thoughts foremost in our minds. To heal ourselves we must let go of hurtful memories and discard grudges. That healing will bring us to God ready for forgiveness.

Being totally present

I have been doing intercessory prayer for many years. Some times I really feel the anguish of those on my list. At other time I feel as if I am just reciting names. I am sure that God hears every name and I am forgiven for my lack of attention but I can sense the difference when I am present in their pain. I love this statement from Br. Geoffrey

mindful

Intercession True intercession, the sort that Jesus shares with the Father, is not just a detached impassioned shopping list of the needs of the world, nor is it informing God of something God knows already. Rather, it is a profound, loving, and costly holding up of others who are on our hearts before God. True intercession is being with God, with the people on our hearts.

-Br. Geoffrey Tristram
Society of Saint John the Evangelist

Open our eyes

Yesterday I experienced a “God moment.” I was at a physicians office and he indicated I needed to schedule some surgery. The surgery is a simple one but you never know what will be found. A woman came and led me to her desk to set everything up. I was moved by the fact that in her cubicle there were wonderful quotes from the Bible and other words of encouragement. I mentioned that I was happy to see those words in a somewhat stressful moment. She and I began to talk about our faith and her compassion and caring were present in every word. Before I left she and I hugged.

We wonder if we can see Jesus in our everyday lives but he is visible in people we meet. He was there with us as we talked and shared. Open your eyes. Jesus is there.

God waits

Always waiting
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God
I say that I seek you
But is that true?

I look for you
In the noise
Of mindless music

The television’s endless voice
Drowns out
Your voice

I hunt for you
By being in charge
By filling each moment
By running away

When things are good
I don’t remember you
Or call for you

When I am lonely
Or sad
Or afraid
I cry to you

Knowing that
No matter how
I ignore you

You will listen
And answer
My cry

Show caring

how much you care

When we become part of a group we often want to show people how important we are. We want to be important in everyone’s eyes. We want to be special and accepted.  So we set out to do things that make us stand out. The part we forget is it is not those things that make other people see us. It is our caring and our sharing of ourselves and our possessions and our love that set us apart. We gain the respect and admiration of others by how we show our caring.

We have been called to love our neighbor as ourselves and it is in this way that we are granted affection and love in return.

caring

 

1 Thessalonians 2:8

So deeply do we care for you that we are determined to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you have become very dear to us.

Let me sow love

Psalm 85:8 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Let me hear what God the Lord will speak,
    for he will speak peace to his people,
    to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts.[a]

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With war always looming on the horizon, I wish that the whole world would hear words of peace. We must make God very sad with all the hatred and violence that goes on in the world some of the worst of it in the name of God. Even his faithful people don’t hear his voice. None of us are exempt.

The Hebrew word shalom means fullness having everything you need to be happy and fulfilled. It’s easy to be peaceful when you have everything you need. That’s where the world’s problems are. Not everyone has what they need much less what they want.

Christ tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves. If I want my neighbor to be happy and fulfilled as much as I want that for myself then things will be good.

Frederick Buechner says “for Jesus peace seems to have meant not the absence of struggle but the presence of love.”

Prayer: Lord God of peace, let us grow in love toward you and our neighbor until wars cease and shalom rains. Support us with your Holy Spirit and surround us with your love, now and forever. Amen