For the “meeting” in 2025: will Protestants be invited? A good question. Read the perspective on The Daily Beast.
As I listen to the chimes I hear a constantly changing melody. It is a delight and a wonder which leads to contemplation. And contemplation leads to remembering. What do you hear?
Do you believe this?
The original context of the question is a meeting between Jesus and Martha on a road near Bethany with both Jesus and Martha grieving the death of Lazarus. Jesus declares some pretty amazing things about who he is and what he has to offer and concludes by asking Martha, “Do you believe this?” (See John 11 especially verses 17-27)
His question is the one my heart hears over and over again, “Do you believe this?” On Sunday we heard these pieces of scripture:
When the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, by imposing hard labor on us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors; the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. The Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders; (Deuteronomy 26:6-8 NRSV)
[God says] Whenever you cry out to me, I’ll answer. I’ll be with you in troubling times. I’ll save you and glorify you. I’ll fill you full with old age. I’ll show you my salvation.” (Psalm 91:15-16 CEB)
And this puts me in mind of this confession of faith (which sets a pattern, don’t you think):
Then the Lord said, “I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt; I have heard their cry on account of their taskmasters. Indeed, I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them from the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey…. (Exodus 3:7-8 NRSV)
And the question I heard Jesus ask on Sunday and the question I hear today is “Do you believe this?” Today I continue to work out my answer, how about you?
On Sunday (2/17/13) we heard about the Temptation of Jesus. Periodically that same tune plays through the chimes we hear. What does such a tune stir up in you?
In our Sunday handout I included this meditation. For those of you not able to be around the table in real life (= irl), I share the beginning of Steve’s meditation here:
Dear Gentle God,
I am not tempted to turn flint into rye, to be able to fly—or even drift nicely—or to bow down to some guy in a red suit and a tail so the kingdoms of the world worship me. Jesus knew he couldn’t do magic, defy gravity or make people like him. But I do want to have power and to be in control of my life, to avoid suffering or struggle, and to manage what other people think of me. I am tempted to make of things something that they aren’t. I’m tempted to take the comfortable route. I’m tempted to expect that you should protect me from difficulty. And I really want to make people like me.
In this sere land of desire, God, rip these idols from my hands.
Image: Leo za1 on Wikimedia Commons
“The Church is part of God’s mission and work
but by no means the entirety.”
This is the “Word” given today by Brother Kevin Hackett, SSJE. It stopped me (first) and then awakened me to affirm that God has no boundaries, no constraints, in proclaiming everywhere, at all times, through agents of all kinds, the magnificence and wonder of Divine Love at work in all of the created order. Read Brother Hackett’s Word for Today: Brother, Give Us A Word | Subscribe to a Daily Meditation from the SSJE Brothers.
Here is an Index of the “Words” spoken: Brother Give Us A Word Index
Where do you see God at work accomplishing the mission of transforming the created order with Divine Love? Your comments are invited and welcome.