No fear

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

 

do not be afraid 2I really wish that I were never afraid. Fear can take over when something goes wrong. We have so many things to fear: poverty, homelessness, crime, disease.

We could spend each day cowering in our homes afraid to go out. Some people do. But God doesn’t want us to live like that. He has given us his peace. All we have to do is take it. Sounds easy but it never is.

 

Prayer: Father and Mother of us all, remind us that we are your children and you wish only good for us. Help us to grasp onto your promises and your peace and never let go. Amen

 

 

Faith of convenience

A faith of convenience is a hollow faith.  ~M*A*S*H, Father Mulcahy, “A Holy Mess,” 1982

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Christianity did not begin as a belief of convenience. In fact, it was very inconvenient as the early Christians were persecuted and killed. Now that it is an “accepted religion” we take it for granted. It is convenient to go to church on Sundays. It is also convenient that we can choose to not go. It is interesting to know that Christianity is growing the most in places where Christians are persecuted. Maybe we are too comfortable.

Prayer: Patient God, move us out of our comfort zone and help us to not take you for granted. Amen

 

Works are not the whole story

As the apple is not the cause of the apple tree, but a fruit of it: even so good works are not the cause of our salvation, but a sign and a fruit of the same.     Daniel Cawdray

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We are saved by grace through faith. We can’t work our way into God’s good graces. However, we can’t truly be following Jesus if our belief in him doesn’t produce good works. The more we follow in Christ’s footsteps the more fruit we will produce.

Prayer: Father, let our faith produce the good fruit that you expect of us. Amen

 

 

Religion is like holding on to a rock in the middle of a raging river; faith is learning how to swim.”       Source Unknown

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Religion can be a wonderful thing but it is not the thing we strive for. Faith is the thing we seek. Faith is not just miraculously there one day. We have to work at. When we first start to swim we spend a lot of time sinking to the bottom. Even once we know how we can falter in a huge wave or use up all our energy staying afloat and sink. Faith is not a noun but a verb. It is not something we can hold in our grasp but something we must use. Faith is not knowing you can step out over the precipice but not being sure about it and still stepping out.

Prayer: Increase our faith day by day and give us the courage to use it. Amen

 

See into heaven

Tears are often the telescope by which men see far into heaven.
Henry Ward Beecher

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 When our tears come they usually flow from grief or pain. They flow for ourselves and sometimes for someone else. Tears pull us from our routine day-today existence. Whatever caused them has stopped us in our tracks. We step back from the ordinary and frequently reach out to God for help. So they do cause us to see into heaven and know that God is there. Don’t be afraid or ashamed to let your tears flow.

Prayer: Thank you, God for being our help and strength. Remind us that Jesus wept. Amen

 

Hope

Hope is some extraordinary spiritual grace that God gives us to control our fears, not to oust them.           Vincent McNabb

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I am one of the worst for worrying about things. I cross every bridge before I get to it. When something is really wrong fear can rule my world. We shouldn’t expect all our fears to disappear. This is the real world. But  by leaning on God’s grace can I begin to hold fear in check and rely on hope.

 

Prayer: God, our father and mother, we turn to you as to a loving parent. Help us to remember that you love us and want only the best for us.  Help us to bind up fear and put it away. Amen

 

 

Loving arms

I have always loved the 23rd Psalm. Especially the part about going down into the valley. God promises to be with us. It says his rod and staff will be there. God is with us in our darkest days. He is the light at the end of the tunnel. No matter how bad things are feel the loving arms of God holding you close and know that you are not alone.

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