Wind Chimes: 29 Sep 2012

You never enjoy the world aright,
till the Sea itself floweth in your veins,
till you are clothed with the heavens,
and crowned with the stars:
and perceive yourself to be
the sole heir of the whole world.

Thomas Traherne
First Century, Sec. 29

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

Thomas Traherne; Priest, 1674 [1]

“Though not as well known as John Donne or George Herbert, Thomas Traherne was one of the seventeenth century’s most searching, inventive poets and theologians.”

We ask God in the Collect we pray as we gather to “help us to know you in your creation and in our neighbors, and to understand our obligations to both, that we may ever grow into the people you have created us to be….”  God will surely answer such a prayer:

Creator of wonder and majesty, you inspired your poet Thomas Traherne with mystical insight to see your glory in the natural world and in the faces of men and women around us: Help us to know you in your creation and in our neighbors, and to understand our obligations to both, that we may ever grow into the people you have created us to be; through our Savior Jesus Christ, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, in everlasting light. Amen.
Collect from Holy Women, Holy Men

St. Michael and All Angels

Today (September 29) the church remembers Saint Michael and All Angels.

… Despite the best efforts of greeting card companies to make angels into cute babies, the Bible has other ideas. In the Bible, angels are almost universally terrifying. There is a reason that angels usually begin their encounters with humans by saying, “Do not be afraid.” … Mentioned in Daniel and Revelation, Michael the Archangel protects people against evil and leads the righteous armies against Satan. The word angel comes from the Greek angelos, and it means, literally, “messenger.” Throughout the scriptures, angels are sent by God to deliver messages. In the created order, angels exist in the heavenly realm along with cherubim and seraphim. There is no hint in the Bible that people become angels, though popular culture sometimes holds this view. On this feast day, we remember God’s heavenly messengers. And we give thanks that we are able to join with them at each celebration of Holy Eucharist as we sing, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of power and might.” Angels remind us of our place in the created order, and they sometimes bear messages for us from God.
Daily Prayer: a resource of Forward Movement

Walking with Children [2]

Quote . . .Children in Kid’s Word brainstormed who Jesus is to them earlier today [9/16]. They raised some critical messages:

  • He’s someone you don’t need to see to believe in;
  • He loves me and everybody.
  • They named Jesus as protector, comforter, lover of their soul, hope for the future, sweet, soothing voice.
  • A child once told me she would be able to recognize Jesus because she could tell from the love in his eyes. || Posted 9/19/12

Wendy asks wonderful questions of children and adults on her blog, Walking with Children. I encourage you to read her posts.

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[1] The Episcopal Church has a Liturgical Calendar in which holy women and holy men are annually commemorated. Their faith and example is remembered by the Church as we gather and give thanks in prayer and worship. On September 27th we remember Thomas Traherne, a priest, often considered to be one of the Metaphysical Poets.

Holy Women, Holy Men is a “Trial Use” Calendar at the moment. Thomas Traherne is remembered in this Calendar.

[2] Walking with Children is a blog written by Wendy Sanders, a member of this Sunday Morning Forum at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church in Palm Desert, CA. This year she is leading Kids Word at 10am every Sunday Morning. In Kids Word ‘Miss Wendy’ assists the children and youth to go deeper into the story sharing their understanding with the her and the adults with her. Each generation teaching and learning from the others. I encourage you to follow her blog.

When Goliath looked David over, he sneered at David because he was just a boy

And it’s no wonder he sneered. Goliath stood almost 10 feet tall and had been a warrior a long time. Of course this just sets the stage for God’s actions (then and now).

This Sunday (6/24/12) one of the appointed readings is the story of David and Goliath (1 Samuel 17). Our Forum member, Wendy, in an informative post titled: Child Capacity: Human and Divine, leads us to these questions:

These biblical passages speak to a “both/and” view of child capacity. Children BOTH have far more capacity than modern theories have led us to perceive AND they have limitless power when they are acting in the Spirit of God. How does this understanding speak to us as children’s teachers and pastors? How does this understanding speak to us as adults learning to walk with God?

I encourage you to read the entire post. You will find (in good Episcopal fashion) a lot of questions inviting you (and me) to a deeper understanding of God and children and faith.

Come back and share what you think, your own questions, observations you’ve made over the years, anything at all to keep the conversation going.

Some questions to try out today

We’ll gather in our Sunday Morning Forum at 9am PDT this morning and take up the questions posed by our Forum Member, Wendy:

“Life and peace. Good life. We are invited to access it by freeing ourselves to be open to and led by the Spirit of God to become children of God (Romans 8:14 NRSV). Through our Western lens, to become spirit-focused seems to ignore the real world and to become a child almost seems to be a condescension, but are either of these fears accurate?

“Perhaps the greatest question to ponder is the destiny of a child? Is it to become an adult? Or, according to the Bible, here, is it to become in close relationship with God? Is the child an incomplete adult or is the child an image of one in closest relationship with God in Spirit? Here in Romans, we are invited to become as a child to enter into the Spirit of God. ” from Children of God by Wendy Sanders

  • What images (verbal or otherwise) come to mind when you hear that you are “a child”?
  • “Paul, you are such a child.” Can you imagine Paul’s reaction to that statement? What kind of response might he give?
  • Is it the destiny of a child to “become an adult”? Explain.
  • Is it the destiny of a child enter into “a close relationship with God”? Explain.
  • Have you ever used the word “Abba” in your prayers? If yes, please share what you experienced.