Act

Psalm 16:7-8

I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
    in the night also my heart instructs me.
I keep the Lord always before me;
    because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.

act

The Lord does give us counsel. However, we do have to listen and then act. His counsel is immaterial if we chose not to act on it. Have you ever woken in the night with someone on your mind? Someone random? I have and I finally got the idea to pray for that person. I had no idea why. As far as I knew there was no problem. Later on I would find that the person needed prayer. I am not always that good at listening but I know that I must pay attention and hear when God speaks. It is not always easy. “Be still and know that I am God.”

Intimate God, you know us well. We don’t always pay attention or follow through. Help us to be still and listen. AMEN

Promises

Psalm 12:6

The promises of the Lord are promises that are pure,
    silver refined in a furnace on the ground,
    purified seven times.

Embrace-Gods-Promises

We can count on the promises that God has made. We also have to understand that there are some things he did not promise. Life will not be perfect but God did promise to be by our side through it all. His strength will be our strength. His promises are never forgotten.

Faithful God, help us to feel your strength in times of trouble. Remind us that you are faithful. AMEN 

Scoff? a word that sounds awful

My daily meditation will be on the Psalms for a while. I hope you find this meaningful.

Psalm 1 verse 1 from the NRSV

Happy are those
    who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or take the path that sinners tread,
    or sit in the seat of scoffers;

I was struck by the word “scoffers.” How often do we put down the ideas of others without really considering them. Sometimes we are not rejecting the ideas but the people themselves. We do not even hear them out or consider what they would mean. Think about this attitude and hear others out.

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Gracious Lord, help us to listen with open mind and heart and not scoff but HEAR. AMEN

Who are you following?

be-careful-of-following

It is so easy to follow the crowd. Our society encourages us to conform. People who don’t follow the group are considered odd. Certainly if we follow Jesus and the things that he did we will be considered odd. After all helping the poor, feeding the hungry, housing the homeless are not high priorities for society as a whole. Yet we are called to do as Jesus did.

God, you want us to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. Help us to follow his path in spite of societies ideas. AMEN

Turn the other cheek

“An eye for an eye will only make the world blind” ~Mahatma Gandhi

This is an oft quoted piece from the Bible found in Exodus and in Matthew 5 after the beatitudes. The meaning is different that what we usually think. It is about retaliation but calls for only an eye to be taken for an eye. No more. In Matthew Jesus tells us what we really need to do.

eye

Matthew 5: 38-42

38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say to you, Do not resist an evildoer. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also; 40 and if anyone wants to sue you and take your coat, give your cloak as well; 41 and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile. 42 Give to everyone who begs from you, and do not refuse anyone who wants to borrow from you.

Loving Lord, you call us to let go of our anger and put revenge aside. Help us to do so. AMEN

God will hold you up!

This song has been around for a while and is one of my favorites. It is by Michael Joncas.

This video cites the singer but not the writer.

God is always there to hold us up. 

You who dwell in the shelter of the Lord
Who abide in His shadow for life
Say to the Lord, “My Refuge
My Rock in Whom I trust.”

Refrain
And He will raise you up on eagle’s wings
Bear you on the breath of dawn
Make you to shine like the sun
And hold you in the palm of His Hand

You need not fear the terror of the night
Nor the arrow that flies by day
Under his wings your refuge
His faithfulness your shield

For to His angels He’s given a command
To guard you in all of your ways
Upon their hands they will bear you up
Lest you dash your foot against a stone

Refrain
And He will raise you up on eagle’s wings
Bear you on the breath of dawn
Make you to shine like the sun
And hold you in the palm of His Hand

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.

Psalms119-105

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

Questions and answers

Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple. ———-Dr. Seuss

Sometimes we want to intellectualize our faith. We continue to ask question that have no logical answers. Questions that can’t be proved or disproved. We need to sit in silence and listen for God. God could answer all those questions but he knows we don’t need to know. We just need to trust in him.

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All knowing God, we always want to be able to prove things and have understandable answers. Help us to trust that you know best. AMEN

Walk humbly

Micah 6:8 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
    and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
    and to walk humbly with your God?

This is such a wonderful verse and sounds so simple. What could be easier? Actually the question should be what could be harder? Are we always kind? I doubt it. Do we walk humbly? For us this is counter-culture. We need to keep this verse in front of us and read it every morning.

walk humbly

O Lord, our God, you ask so little and yet to us it seems to be too much. Help us to write this verse on our hearts. AMEN