Wind Chimes: 28 Sep 2012

Two of the favorites to be named the next Archbishop of Canterbury
(LT-RT) The Bishop of Sheffield, Steven Croft and The Bishop of Durham, Justin Welby. Photo credit: Chapter and Verse / PA

Here is today’s sampling of the music made by the Spirit in the Wind Chimes.

What do you hear?

Former oil executive still bookies’ favourite as final decision due on Archbishop of Canterbury (posted 9/26/2012)

Quote . . .The Bishop of Durham, Justin Welby, was confirmed as the bookmakers’ favourite to succeed Rowan Williams, as the Crown Nominations Commission began a two-day meeting to make its final decision.   [1]

Hat tip (ht) to John H. for sending the link to this article. Somewhere in the world, you can find someone else to take your bet on anything you can imagine. More seriously, pray for those making this selection (a request made near the end of the Telegraph article), and pray for the one who will step up to this ministry.

It is never too late to pray

The Crown Nominations Committee has done its work (9/26-9/27/2012) and names are being sent to the Queen for a final decision. An announcement will be made in the week of September 30, 2012. I believe it is never too late to pray. Here is the prayer to be offered for the Committee (and for the Queen) as the decision is made:

Almighty God, you have given your Holy Spirit to the Church to lead us into all truth: bless with the Spirit’s grace and presence the members of the Crown Nominations Committee. Keep them steadfast in faith and united in love, that they may seek your will, manifest your glory and prepare the way of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord. Amen. Prayer for the Crown Nominations Committee

Please join me (and so many others) in prayer.

Obama at the U.N.: A new religion doctrine

President Obama on Tuesday (Sept. 25) gave a forceful speech at the United Nations, in which he challenged much of the world’s assumptions about free speech and religion.

The article, by Lauren Markoe, goes on to extract five points which she says “add up to as close to an Obama Doctrine on Religion as we’ve seen.”

Read the article on Religion News Service

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[1] You may read the full article by John Bingham, Religious Affairs Editor for the Telegraph, here: http://bit.ly/QXiwTt. At this point (9/28/12) two names will be forwarded to the Queen who will choose the next Archbishop of Canterbury. Her choice will be announced next week.

Wind Chimes: 27 Sep 2012

Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.

James 4:8a NRSV

Here is today’s sampling of the music made by the Spirit in the Wind Chimes.
What do you hear?

Being present: A Spiritual Practice

Quote . . .Being present in the spiritual life always has a double meaning. There’s present, as in here, in attendance. And there’s present, as in now, a moment of time. What is the spiritual practice of being present? Being here now.  [1]

Drawing near to God by “reading” God in Nature

We have to begin with the first bible, which is creation itself—that God has revealed who God is through what is. If we don’t learn to honor, respect, and learn from creation—the natural world—I think it’s very unlikely that we are going to know how to read the second bible—the written Bible—with respect, reverence, and in an open way. So I believe (and of course this is very Franciscan for me) that we have to start with the first bible, which is the created world itself, or nature. [2]

Obama at the U.N.: A new religion doctrine

President Obama on Tuesday (Sept. 25) gave a forceful speech at the United Nations, in which he challenged much of the world’s assumptions about free speech and religion.

The article, by Lauren Markoe, goes on to extract five points which she says “add up to as close to an Obama Doctrine on Religion as we’ve seen.”

Read the article on Religion News Service

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[1] One of my favorite websites is Spirituality & Practice. A section of their site is devoted to Spiritual Practices. Among the practices (and a dimension of “draw close to God and he will draw close to you”) is “Being Present.”

Wind Chimes: 26 Sep 2012

God is our refuge and strength,
a help always near in times of great trouble.
That’s why we won’t be afraid
when the world falls apart,
when the mountains crumble
into the center of the sea,
when its waters roar and rage,
when the mountains shake
because of its surging waves.

Psalm 46:1-3 CEB

Here is today’s sampling of the music made by the Spirit in the Wind Chimes. What do you hear?

Fragments of Your Ancient Name

When things do not go as we wish,
When love falls out of our heart,
When death snatches our joy,
When goodbye outweighs hello,
When confusion alters our vision,
When what we knew no longer exists,
You stand by us as our strong support.

Today: I can count on my Supporter. [1]

“Did Jesus have a wife?”

By now you may have seen this headline in some form at least once. Here is a video announcement from Harvard Divinity School and a short interview with the scholar, Karen L. King, who made the announcement of finding the sentence fragment, “Jesus said to them, my wife” on a 4th century fragment of papyrus.

Related articles (and a promise of more links to come)

Like a wildflower

Like a wild flower in God’s care I put my worries away trusting the One who holds me. — Macrina Wiederkehr in The Song of the Seed and quoted by Spirituality & Practice

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[1] Joyce Rupp. Fragments of Your Ancient Name: 365 Glimpses of the Divine for Daily Meditation. (September 24). Kindle Edition.

Wind Chimes: 25 Sep 2012

[Jesus said], “The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

John 3:8 NRSV [1]

Introducing Wind Chimes.

A wind chime and sun catcher in North Carolina
Photo by jscalia (click the photo to see more)

When a wind chime catches the wind (even the whisper of a wind) it makes music, it interprets the wind in ways that are always the same and always changing. In regular posts I will share links to news (religion news), reflections and meditations (related to our Sunday readings as often as possible), prayers or prayer starters, resources to help you keep learning and growing (spiritually), and whatever else I come across.

More importantly: I want to incorporate links to items you find interesting as you read, listen, or consider doing the work God has given you to do. You may use the Comments section to leave the link or you may email the link to me for inclusion in Wind Chimes.

Here is the first sampling of the music made by the Spirit. What do you hear?

Room Enough, A Place for Everyone — a sermon based on Mark 9:30-37

“Who is the greatest?” Behind this question is a deeper issue. It is a question of space and place. Is there a place for me in this family? In this church? In this business? Is there a place for my religion, my politics, my race, my lifestyle in this society and culture? Is there a place for my people, tradition, and history in this land? Is their room for me? [Read Room Enough]

3 Quotes. Jesus. Children. Fleas.

Then ]Jesus] took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.” Mark 9:30-37 NRSV

The test of the morality of a society is what it does for its children. —Dietrich Bonhoeffer [2] 1906-1945

You just need to be a flea against injustice. Enough committed fleas biting strategically can make even the biggest dog uncomfortable and transform even the biggest nation. —Marian Wright Edelman [3] b. 1939

A Commentary on James 3:13-4:3, 7-8a by Professor Sandra Hack Polaski

After several chapters of warnings and vivid illustrations of the consequences of living contrary to the plan of God, James moves in this passage to describe the good life and give some positive guidance for pursuing it. [Read Professor Polaski’s Commentary on WorkingPreacher.org for 9/23/12]

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[1] Here is how the Common English Bible (CEB) translates John 3:8 — [Jesus said], “God’s Spirit blows wherever it wishes. You hear its sound, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it is going. It’s the same with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” The footnote in both the NRSV and the CEB indicates that the Greek word at the beginning of the verse can be translated as either wind or spirit.

[2] Widely quoted on the internet and attributed to Bonhoeffer, but I have been unable to find the original source. If you know the original source of this quote would you let me/us know using the comments section? Thank you.

[3] Widely quoted on the internet and attributed to Marian Wright Edelman, but I have been unable to find the original source. If you know the original source of this quote would you let me/us know using the comments section? Thank you.