Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Are you thirsty?

I'm trying something new, I have added the ELCA's Daily Bible reading to the sidebar of the blog. Then, I'll work on responding to the reading each day.

Today, Feb. 27th, the reading is: John 7:14-31, 37-39

Jesus is once again trying to define himself as the Messiah to those people who should be prepared to recieve him.

But they are not ready. Not for this Messiah.

Are you ready for the Christ?

Are you looking for someone who will answer all your prayers "yes", and support the course that you have set for your life?
Are you looking for a guardian angel who follows behind you and makes sure you don't stumble?
Are you looking for a bottle of water that never runs dry?

Christ will come and remind you that he follows God's plan, not ours. Jesus will walk with you and lead you, in right pathways, not necessarily the ones you choose.

Jesus calls us to drink deeply of the water of life, and care for the waters of creation.

no matter who you are looking for in Christ, Christ is looking for you, just the way you are.

Monday, February 18, 2008

A new perspective

The world from three feet above the floor..

I spend my life looking at things from a perspective at about 5 feet above the floor. That's where my eyes are. Every once in a while I wonder what the world looks like from 6 feet up. This winter I got a view of the world from three feet up. Jonah took a bunch of pictures from his perspective. One suddenly sees a great deal more cabinetry, and not as much counter top, lots of legs and not as many faces, dogs and cats are bigger, and probably scarier.

God asks us to look at things from a new place: Love.

Love sees hearts, not homes.
Love sees ability, not disability.
Love sees possibilites, not dead ends.

Love sees loss, but also sees hope.
Love sees pain, and does not leave.
Love sees tears, and wipes them away.

Thank God for looking at the Love.

Blogged with Flock

Monday, February 11, 2008

Fig Leaves and Fine Clothing

6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. (Genesis 3)

What kind of Fig Leaves are you hiding behind? This Sunday, the texts of the day centered around Temptation; Adam and Eve's and Jesus'. The Tempter finds our weakness and pokes and prods, and casts doubt upon God's Love for us.

Too often we give in to the temptation, and when we realize that we have sinned, we hide behind our own fig leaves. Like a child who is caught with a hand in the cookie jar, we make excuses, create alabis, and generally try to hide our weakness, our nakedness, behind some kind of fig leaf.

The trouble with fig leaves, is that they don't last very long. They don't make very good clothing. Somebody always sees through our deception, and the stories don't hold together as well as the truth. Everyone in church recieved a fig leaf of sorts.

Lent is a time to accept our fig leaves, and hand them over to God. Lent is time to look at what we are hiding, and what we are hiding behind, and confess our weakness to our Creator.

21 The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. (Genesis 3)

God will take those fragile fig leaves, and turn them into Fine Garments. Jesus' death on the cross and His Ressurection transforms our confessions into forgiveness. That's the good news!

Jesus didn't give in to the Tempters power, and in His strength, we too can find the strength to "just say no!" to all sorts of temptation. We can also be assured that when we do hide, we can come to God, confess our failings, and recieve forgiveness.

Thanks Be to God!

Friday, February 08, 2008

Dusty Prayers

Lectionary for Feb. 8, 2008: Psalm 51, Jonah 4:1-11, Romans 1:8-17.

Romans 1: 9 God knows how often I pray for you.

Take some time today to pray through Psalm 51, follow the link above or find it in your own bible. It is the Psalm appointed for Ash Wednesday, so if you went to worship that day, it might sound familiar. It is a confession of our weakness, and our desire to be strong.

Today's lessons remind us to confess, to pray, and to accept God's salvation.

Ash Wednesday I have the precious privilage of marking the sign of the cross on the forheads of people I love and praying for them in their humanity.

"Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall

Each time I make the cross, I pray for that person. That they shall not return to the dust too soon, that the dust of the world will not over come them, but that they will be strengthened for the jourey of Lent, and the journey of Life. It is a precious privilage, to reach out and touch so many in prayer.

Lent is time to remember that we are created from dust, the same dust that every person is created from, every animal, every plant. We are created from the same dust that the earth, the moon, the sun and the stars are created of, for it is God who created all of it, and all of us.

So remember that you are Stardust!

You are precious in the Sight of the Creator of the Stars. You are welcomed into God's Grace eac and every time you pray, "I'm Sorry". You are forgiven in the blood of the One who Died for you.

Jonah got very angry with God's forgiveness of the people of Nineva. People who "didn't know their right hand from their left." Even though Jonah was the one who preached repentance, he didn't expect it of the people, and his human desire for revenge overwhelmed him. He was more willing to give up his life for a plant than to see the people of Nineva given life.
Can we accept that God love not only us, but everyone? Remembering that we are dust ties us to everyone who is and was and will be.

Rejoice that God loves you, and your neighbor, and your enemy. For it is God's love that turns enemies into neighbors and war into peace, and this world needs peace.

In Faith,

Monday, February 04, 2008

Whine, Whine, Whine

Today's daily Lectionary: Psalm 78:17-20, 52-55, Exodus 33:7-23, Acts 7:30-34

God's people, like little children, Whine! In Egypt they whine that they are slaves, once they are rescued, they whine that they are thirsty. As soon as God provides water, they whine that they need bread and meat. As soon as God gives them bread and meat, they whine some more.

I'll admit, I get really tired of my children whining, really fast. It doesn't take more than two requests for something that I've said no to to test my patience.

Thank God, God has more patience than I do.
God had listened to the People of Israel, and to Moses, whining about everything.
God's responce never changes:
14 The Lord replied, “I will personally go with you, Moses, and I will give you rest—everything will be fine for you.”

God will personally go with you,
God will give you rest
Everything will be fine.

Now stop whining.
Never stop praying.

Lord, you are our shepherd and our God, lead us down your paths of righeousness, and give us rest. Forgive us for fretting and whining, and forgetting to trust. Help us to take of our shoes on your holy ground and accept your presence in our lives. AMEN