While we were sinners

         Look at God’s love for us:
         while we still were sinners Christ died for us.
                  —Romans 5.8

Jesus didn’t go get himself killed
so he’d be punished for our sin instead of us.
Our sin is our inability to trust God.
In our distrust we try to make and keep life for ourselves,
and hurt others in the process.
In love God is willing to stand in the path of our violence
with forgiveness.
God’s love changes us, setting us free
from our distrust and violence.
Jesus embodies that love, even though we kill him,
offering it before we’re willing to accept it.

Let God love you.
Forget all notions of your deserving.
Just allow yourself to be God’s Beloved:
a sinner, yes, but beloved. Deeply loved.
That’s all you need.
Let yourself be loved,
and let the love take over.

 

―June 16, 2017

Apostle

         Then Jesus summoned his twelve disciples
         and gave them authority over unclean spirits,
         to cast them out, and to cure every disease and every sickness.

         … These twelve he sent out….
                  —Matthew 10.1

                  The word apostle means “sent.”

We are not given a mandate to judge
or an obligation to convert.
We are not required to argue religion.
We are given power to heal.

We need not muster up the strength.
We are given authority.
Christ is in us to heal.

May I be a healer today;
may I set free those who are bound
by spirits that diminish life.
May I cast out fear with love,
cast out greed with wisdom,
cast out anxiety with calm,
cast out anger and bitterness with deep listening,
cast out hate with forgiveness.

May I bear your spirit of peace,
the authority of blessing,
the power of love.
May I be a healer today.

 

―June 15, 2017

On turnng sixty-four

            Will you still need me, will you still feed me
            when I’m sixty-four?
                        —The Beatles   

God, thank you for another year of this life:
for the journey, the continual unfolding;
for your unfailing companionship in every step;
for the Spirit that leads me on,
and the flesh that bears me as it can;
for wisdom that grows;
for love that endures;
for the long adventure of letting go;
for who you have enabled me to be,
and for who I am becoming.
I pray for the coming year,
that I will be more deeply present,
more gratefully trusting,
more fully willing to be led.
Grant me another year of wonder.
As a birthday present for you,
born anew in me each day,
I give you myself,
to enjoy and use according to your delight.
  

                           —June 14, 2017

Harvest

            The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few;
            therefore ask the overseer of the harvest
            to send out laborers into the harvest.

                           —Matthew 9.37-38

Maybe the harvest is not bringing people to Christ
but gathering the fruits of the Spirit
God has sown in you
for the sake of the world.

Maybe it’s not an act of taking,
but receiving.

The harvest is plentiful
but few are the people who have gathered,
who have received the gifts, the grace,
the love growing in your heart,
and feasted on those fruits
to be strengthened to go out
and heal the wounded,
and be good news for the broken of the world.

The field stretches to the horizon.
There are more trees in this orchard
than stars in heaven.

What grace have you not yet harvested?
Go into that good harvest.
Here is a basket for your labors. Go.

                           —June 13, 2017

Offering

            
Beloved,
this moment I offer myself to you,
fully present for your sake,

and pledge to offer myself—
every encounter, every challenge,
every dull moment
an opportunity—

trusting
that every moment this day
you offer yourself to me.

Eyes, hands and hearts open,
we meet each other,
lovers coming together,
and we are glad.

        

                           —June 12, 2017

 

My whole story

For the whole story of my life I thank you, God:
for the Creation you’ve planted me in,
for the gifts and blessings and bright moments,
for those who have loved and led me, thank you.
For the whole winding path: each step
is part of the story, and you have been with me.
Thank you for the struggles and the times I was lost,
for those were times when I learned to be a pilgrim.
Thank you for the hurts and dark places,
for they’re part of how I’ve come to know your love,
and know my need for you.
Thank you for my gifts and all I have to offer,
even those I haven’t named or discovered yet.
Thank you for my wounds and weaknesses,
for in them I am more like Christ;
they evoke your grace and call out the gifts of others.
Thank you for my rough places, by which I discover
how my jagged piece fits in your jigsaw grace.
And for all that is to come,
that I will experience and that will unfold in me,
I give you thanks and ask your blessing.
Not that you must be implored but I must open myself,
I ask your help. For the challenges to come
(some are welcome and at least one I dread)
be my courage, my wisdom and my strength,
my patience, my healing and my compassion.
My whole story is the story of your love.
I thank you for your blessing;
I ask for your help;
I trust your grace;
I rejoice in your goodness.

                           —June 9, 2017

Three In One prayer

In awe of my Being
I sit.
I breathe.
I am You.
Eternal and infinite in this time,
this flesh, this place,
I am.

In awe of my Belonging
I receive.
I receive from You.
I receive Your forgiveness, healing and delight.
I receive myself.
I am myself in all Creation,
cell in your Body,
member of Your family,
sibling in holiness.
You come to me.
You speak to me.

In awe of my Becoming
I surrender.
I let your light unfold in me,
in the mystery of my becoming,
in my many gifts.
In compassion for all people, all living beings,
I give myself to the world.
My giving is my becoming.

In you I become.
In you I belong.
In you I AM.

                       ─ June 8, 2017

In plain sight

The Beloved can think of nothing more beautiful
         than her children running toward her
so she stands a bit away
         so we will come to her.
But she is not waiting in faraway places:
          no, it is in people whom we least suspect.
In the stranger, even the person we dislike ―
         Ah! There she is.

She gives us this gift
         for our own delight.
The Beloved has hidden us
         in one another,
waiting for us to see
         and come together, astonished.

                       ─ June 7, 2017

Holy Trinity

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and peace to you.

            The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ,
            the love of God,
            and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

                        2 Corinthians 13.13

God is not a guy.
God is the energy of fire, the movement of wind,
the flow of breathing, the unfolding of creating,
the the loving of Love, the being of Being.

Love is God: the Lover, the Beloved,
and the Love that flows between.
This is the Holy Trinity.

God is the Source of all energy, and the energy itself;
and that energy made matter among us,
Word made flesh;
and God is that love in us, burning, singing, loving.

God is One, yet not a single thing,
nor a loving couple—with no way in for us—
but community.
God is the many, the All.

When you love you join them;
you are part of the Eternal.
Look how tenderly they love each other.
Look how there is room for us.
You are the fourth person of the Holy Trinity.
Find yourself there.

            The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ,
            the love of God,
            and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

         

                           —June 6, 2017

 

Vulnerable

When terror strikes,
random, cruel hearted
in our own places,
it shakes us.
We feel unsafe. We crave security.
The Dreaded could happen any day.
And so we rejoin our family.
We rejoin the vulnerable,
who never had the illusion of security,
who labor in danger,
who live at risk every day,
who are targeted,
and have no protectors.
They hold their funerals
and they live their lives.
They are our lives.
We are one body, one spirit.
We can’t walk away.
No matter how safe we can be
we can’t walk away.
We have to be there for each other
in the unprotected places.
That’s why we’re here,
not to walk away safe
but to be here for each other.

                           —June 5, 2017