Posts Tagged ‘surrender to God’

Sunday, June 28, 2020

prison2[1]Casting Away Chains

Psalm 2:1-3

Why do the nations rage and the peoples devise futile plots? The kings of the earth rise up, and the princes conspire together against the Lord and against his Anointed One: “Let us finally break their shackles and cast away their chains from us”.

Jesus came into the world to set us free from all the fears and anxieties that enslave us.  He lives and breathes with us that we might believe that we do not need to pay homage to any of the little gods the nations, the peoples and the princes have established.  Jesus is the Anointed One who comes to tells us that there is only one law to follow . . . The Law of Love.

God says: As I have said so many times, it is confusing to sort through all the little gods you have chained yourselves to: the god of time, the god of space, the god of power, the god of control, the god of fear, the god of fame, the god of glamour, the god of wealth, the god of status and so many more.  There is only one God and I Am that God.  There is only one law, The Law of Love.  There is only one dominion, the Kingdom I invite you to build with me.  I have broken your chains just as I broke the chains of Paul and Silas.  Trust in me and put aside your little plans.  Allow me to cast away the chains that are too heavy for you to lift.

We need no plots, no schemes, and no tricks to be one with God.  We need only surrender, obedience and love.  Let us trust the one who forgives endlessly.  Let us rely on the one who judges mercifully.  And let us follow the one who unlocks all chained and secret places.

Type the word plots or schemes in the blog search bar and examine how we separate ourselves from God . . . and how we might allow God to release us from our personal prison.

To read the story of Paul and Silas’ miraculous release, see Acts 16.

A re-post from June 28, 2013. 

Image from: http://glad-u-see.com/salvation.html 

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Exodus 36-38The Altar of Our Lives

Friday, December 28, 2018

At this harvest time of year when we gather to give thanks for all that we are and all that we have, let us consider our thoughts, words,and deeds in light of the Hebrews’ desert experience and in gratitude for the fulfillment of God’s best hope in us.

Written on November 16, 2008 and posted today as Favorite . . .

The Israelites were faithful to Yahweh in constructing a residence for their one true God, and this one God Yahweh – who tolerated no other gods before him – was faithful in accompanying his people to guide and protect them.  Today’s reading describes the detail the Israelites followed in order to provide the appropriate altars, veil, table, ark and lampstand.  The chapters preceding these describe the collection of materials and artisans.  The chapters following these describe the vestments, and dwelling . . . and how Yahweh settles into his home on earth among the human race.

El Greco: Christ Cleansing the Temple

In the New Testament story, Jesus comes to earth to be the new high priest . . . and to construct a new temple in place of the former one.  He also calls his artisans and gathers his materials . . . his original apostles and disciples . . . and all those apostles and disciples who have heard his story . . . and who have acted in faith to join this story.  He also settles into his home on earth . . . in the hearts, bodies and minds of all those who follow him today and all days.

In Acts we read about the coming of the Holy Spirit settling upon the original apostles in flames of fire.  The Spirit still settles upon and in those who join with Christ in his mystical body to become living stones in the new living temple of Yahweh.

The Hermitage of San Girolamo, Italy

We are creatures seeking the God who created us, the God who walks with us, the God who abides with us.  We are formed for worship and for joy.  Each day at our rising, each noon at our pausing, each night at our entering into the world of dreams and sleep we have a new opportunity to refurbish our temple . . . to keep it always a pleasing place of adoration . . . a place where our souls sing in communion with others who wish to walk and live in this liminal space of love and peace, mystery and serenity.

What does our God require of us?  This is no mystery.  He does not require holocausts or sacrifice.  He does not require incense morning, noon and night.  But this is what he requires: that we do what is right, love goodness, and walk humbly with our God.  (Micah 6:8

Let us offer our sacrifices of fear, anxiety, pain and anger on the altar of our lives.  Let us do what is right; let us love goodness; and let us walk humbly as we work at the building of God’s temple with the surrender of our lives.

John Pettie (1884):Fixing the Site of an Early Christian Altar

A re-post from November 25, 2011.

Images from: http://www.oceansbridge.com/oil-paintings/product/73395/fixingthesiteofanearlychristianaltar1884 and http://taniarubimenglish.blogspot.com/2011/02/bible-trivia-furniture-of-tabernacle.html and http://www.journeywithjesus.net/Essays/20060313JJ.shtml and https://thenoontimes.files.wordpress.com/2011/11/cucco711.jpg

A good website for information concerning the Hebrew temple furnishings.  http://taniarubimenglish.blogspot.com/2011/02/bible-trivia-furniture-of-tabernacle.html

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Mark 12:13-17: Taxes and Tithes

Rubens: Render Unto Caesar

Rubens: Render Unto Caesar

Sunday. July 24, 2016

News outlets continue to remind us that political and social turmoil continues to rock peoples and cultures around the world. Demographic shifts, political corruption and greed, social unrest and fear might govern our emotions and actions and yet amid the cacophony of anxiety and alarm there is always a place to find rest. In the storm of human life there is always a refuge of peace.

We render our taxes to those would lead us. We tithe our time, talent and funds to those who guide the spirit. Despite all of this worldly giving, it is more important than ever to tend to our relationship with God. Nurturing that most important bond with time dedicated to communal and individual prayer, we acknowledge the belief that God is ultimately in charge. Walking in the mystery and love of The Way, we recognize that Jesus shows us the only way to peace. Living in the Spirit in the face of anger and fear, we accept the comfort and consolation of the Spirit within. Let us share this wisdom with those around us. And let us remember that when we render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s . . . it is all the important to under unto God that which is God’s.

This week we will examine our public and private worlds to see how we might render our taxes and tithes. 

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Proverbs 24: 1-22Morning, Noon and NightPsalm55_17

Friday, August 14, 2015

We are much more than the finite beings we imagine ourselves to be. We are infinite.  When we allow ourselves to rely on God, when we imitate Christ as best we can and when we enter in the Spirit with other like-minded people . . . we open ourselves to the possibility that we might attain our divinity through Christ.  In today’s Noontime we hear words that echo through Jesus’ words and Paul’s letters: The Gospel story is about inversion.  We become our best selves not by struggling to become so, but by struggling to empty ourselves in order that Christ might take us over.  This surrender is at the core of our happiness.  It is the root of serenity.

We see the message again of the plaint against those who plot evil and yet seem to succeed.  We are to witness to all that is unjust, unholy, unhopeful and unloving, let God know of our grief, and wait in the Lord for God alone can handle the intricate plots of darkness.  Psalm 55 is the perfect prayer to intone when we wait for the darkness to lift and our Spirit to rise.

I will call upon God, and the Lord will save me.  At dusk, dawn, and noon I will grieve and complain, and my prayer will be heard.  God will give me freedom and peace from those who war against me, though there are many who oppose me.  

Of course we become inpatient with God when we do not hear the answer we want to hear at the time we were hoping to hear it.  When things are dark around us, it is so difficult to see God moving in our lives; yet if we are able to work in God’s way, we will see that there is a plan and that all things will turn to the good when we turn to God.  And so we might look at later verses in this psalm.

Cast your care upon the Lord, who will give you support.  God will never allow the righteous to stumble. 

In truth, we have nothing to fear when we are close to God.  Physical pain, mental anguish, spiritual sufferings are all supplanted by peace when we witness and wait in the Lord.  And God is always abiding even when we believe we do not feel God’s presence.  In the morning . . . at the noontime . . . and even in the night of our lives.

Adapted from a reflection written on September 2, 2009.  

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