Poetry Tag

  I was particularly caught by a phrase this week in the old testament Lectionary text.  Isaiah speaks:  "Stop your meaningless offerings". I thought about meaningful offerings, life and worship.  The Incarnation of Jesus Christ - God in bodily form, God made flesh, is the most meaningful I could think of.  It makes sense of all others. In response I began to write down a prayer.  I started with the Jesus Prayer: Jesus Christ - Son of God - have mercy on...

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  In the gospel Lectionary this week, we see Jesus returning from prayer and answering the request, "teach us to pray". I wonder what we would receive if we risked the same request of Christ today? Read the whole story in Luke 11:1-13. I have especially enjoyed the The Message translation. Below is my meditative poem.   Jesus, God-in-work-boots When do you ever stop teaching? When do you ever cease listening for our good? Give us faith in asking, persistence in...

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  This week the gospel Lectionary text comes from the end of Luke chapter 10. It is a rather clipped story of Jesus accepting hospitality at the home of Martha and her sister Mary. Often I am left wanting more information of what is actually going on in this scene. What is the significance of Luke's inclusion of this account? Why is there silence from the disciples, who are usually so quick to jump into such...

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  The story of the Good Samaritan is one of Jesus' best known parables. It has become part of the fabric of western culture. It is held up to celebrate high ideals of humanity, brotherhood, sisterhood and community.  Somehow though, we've stopped listening.  We've heard that one before.  We get it.  Thanks. I wonder then, might Jesus want to use such a story to show us something new of himself today.  With this in mind I revisit Luke 10....

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  I have continued reading Henri Nouwen's book, 'The Return of the Prodigal Son - a story of homecoming' a reflection on the Rembrandt painting on the same subject. The latest chapters consider the younger son in the story.  What I found most interesting to learn was that other sketches and paintings from earlier Rembrandt's life on the subject of the prodigal son had a whole lot more movement in them.  They were dynamic - the Father...

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  The reading from the psalms this week includes beautiful imagery of the touch of God. Psalm 104:31&32: May the glory of the LORD endure forever; may the LORD rejoice in his works - he who looks at the earth, and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke. This week is the end of the series I have entitled 'Season of Light'. As I reflect on the meditations of this season that spans from Resurrection Sunday to Pentecost, I...

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  Sometimes the right word will carry a whole lot of weight. It will cut right to the heart of the matter. For me, one such word is surely.  It is a word for light in dark times; a word that forms a hinge in prayer, turning the pray-er toward God. Two of the Lectionary texts this week involve dark and uncertain places for real people. Jesus prays for his disciples around the table before he is...

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  In Acts 16:9-15 we read that the Apostle Paul and friends go on a journey to Macedonia. After a few days they go outside the city gates to the river where they "expected to find a place of prayer." Unexpectedly, they end up being invited to eat in the house of a Gentile woman, Lydia. I wonder if her home became that place of prayer. I can imagine the aroma of freshly baked bread and...

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  The Lectionary text this week takes us to Acts 11:1-18. Here we are invited to listen in on how Jewish Christians in the early church dealt with the very vexing question of Non-Jewish believers. We are invited to consider how much wider the mission of God was than they could imagine or even contain. See here the interplay between Peter, the other believers and the Spirit of God. See how God met the man Cornelius...

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  Last week I had the privilege of visiting Iolani Palace in Hawaii.  As guests we were invited to view the lower level of the Palace, which included a magnificent staircase and throne room (and the little throne room).  What captured me most, however, was the royal dining table.  As one of the last guests to make my way through I was able to linger a little longer.  I can honestly say I was moved.  I...

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