Receive the answers

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We pray to God for many things. We pray for others, for health, about out daily lives. The list is too long to list. Sometimes our prayers are answered but it is not the answer we wanted. The answer can make us question how our beliefs. That can be scary. Don’t worry. Those answers will cause us to grow in the knowledge of God and his ways.

Our viewing point

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It is not our responsibility to protect God. God can take care of Himself/Herself. Too often someone will want to defend their view of God. They want everyone else to understand what God wants. The trouble is it is what God wants according to them. Let us not fall into the trap of defending God. I truly believe God is fine. Just trust that, if blessed, you will hear God tell you the plans for you. He/She will not be interested in updating you about others. We each have our own perspective….our viewing point is not God’s.

Scripture Lives!

Richard Rohr wrote in a recent post about Midrash. This is a term I have used often when there is discussion about scripture. Midrash is a Jewish term and has to do with the way they look at scripture. Rohr says: “Jesus practiced a form that the Jewish people called midrash, consistently using questions to keep spiritual meanings open, often reflecting on a text or returning people’s questions with more questions.”

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The point of Midrash is to keep digging and thinking about scripture. See what meaning lies underneath the simple. Question what it means to you today and then look at it again tomorrow or much later. We are different each day and may have different ideas and see different meanings.

Don’t be afraid to discuss scripture and hear the ideas of others. There is nothing wrong with seeing another viewpoint. Scripture is not dead words on a page. It is a living, breathing thing.

Time for patience

Advent is here and the theme of the thoughts for this season.

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We are not good a waiting. Really, that is an understatement. We have a society of instant gratification. We want it and we want it now! When I worked for a group of pediatricians one of them said people expected a drive-by window where he would reach out and putting hands on the child say “heal.”

Advent is a time of waiting….waiting for the greatest gift mankind has ever had. Waiting for a baby. Expecting.

We must appreciate this time and use it. It is a time to ready ourselves for the gift!

Loving God, we wait. Help us to curb our impatience and use this time to think about the gift to come. AMEN

The road less traveled

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The road that Christ followed is not an easy one. The disciples thought they could when asking him to sit at his right and left hand. They later found it was not easy. To choose this path is scary and difficult but it is the right one.

All knowing God, you sent your son to show us what to do. Help us to tread that difficult path. AMEN

No shortcuts

There are no shortcuts to any place worth going. ——-Helen Keller

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We always want life to be easy. Sometimes it is….sometimes not. The struggles that we encounter help us to grow. We learn from them. We would be less than we are without them. Some of the most famous poets, writers and artists drew inspiration from their struggles. Helen Keller is a good example.

Just remember… no matter what God is with us.

Ever present God, we thank you for your promise to be with us through our trials. AMEN

Praying

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This is one of my recent prayers for others.

Prayer can be difficult for us at times. We have heard so many comments about how to pray that we can find ourselves feeling inadequate. There are so many ways to pray and any prayer is heard no matter what.

Recently I have used the book Praying in Color and am enjoying a new prayer style to add to my list. I am no artist but using our hands, eyes and mind seems to help us focus.

Gracious Lord, help us to pray in every way possible…with our voice, with our minds, with our hands and any other way. AMEN

If you would like to try this the book is available on Amazon.

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Learn from pain

Out of pain and problems have come the sweetest songs, and the most gripping stories.

Billy Graham

When you read the Bible you discover that the stories are about problems. If there is no trial there is no story. We all suffer pain of some kind. Life is not free of pain but if we are careful we can learn from the pain and use it to help someone else. Each person’s story in the Bible is there for a reason…so that we can learn from it. We can also learn from our own stories and those around us.

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Loving God, you can us many stories in the Bible to learn from. Help us learn from our own and the ones we hear each day. AMEN

Whose path?

I profess to aim at perfection but in practice I like the way of perfection to be mapped out by me and not by God.-——————Pope John XXIII

This is so very true. I want to make my own plans and set my own path. It will be my idea of perfection. God has other plans. He sees the way clearly that we need to go. If only we would follow his path instead of ours.

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Infinite God, I am sure you get tired of us wanting to be in charge of everything. Help us to listen for your voice and follow your path. AMEN

Doubt

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Faith is not the opposite of doubt. The opposite of doubt is disbelief. Doubts make us ask questions. They make us struggle, study more and learn. Doubts stretch us and make us grow. Don’t be afraid of having doubts. We can’t know everything. Only God has all the answers.

Amazing God, forgive us for thinking that we can know all the answers. Help us to continue to learn and grow in our knowledge of you. AMEN