A time of quietness and preparation.
Day one week fourty year 2017.
Today is Sunday September 24, a day for nurturing meditation and spirituality.
Good Morning, my name is Carl and I am being coached by Grace. It is the Grace of God that stands behind us, is to the right of us, to the left of us and opens doors before us. (if you are comfortable repeat that statement using your own name.)
Please take time to prepare your mind to hear, to allow your spirit to be in tune with the SPIRIT of God.
The Scripture for this week is: Exodus 16:2-15 and Psalm 105:1-6, 37-45 • Jonah 3:10-4:11 and Psalm 145:1-8 • Philippians 1:21-30 • Matthew 20:1-16
Prayer: (as you read the scriptures allow the words to touch your thoughts, write down your prayers.)
Lord as I sit here I remember how easy it is to complain. I remember how easy it is to seek support as if my complaining would make all the difference. I listen to Israel and hear myself. It has seemed like a long 67 years. But now, it seems like a short time. The days disappear as if they are words written, etched in sand waiting for the waters to come and say here, a clean slate, write again.
Lord the Psalmist as ever abruptly invades my thoughts with the newer reality. Tears rush in where sadness once reigned supreme. There are no words to understand. Today is a day of victory. Yesterday I worked for 8 straight hours. How long has it been? Over ten years my body has known the attack of having to stop. But yesterday every box moved, stacked, tied down, every time the car started, every time I made a correct turn and did not lose my way. Every time I remembered what the next step was I knew I was winning. Thank you Lord for breakfast and for supper.
Lord I understand the justice Jonah sought as he ran away. What a strange paradox. How does anyone speak to a nation who’s values are built on shifting sand? How can the house stand when the foundation so easily rots away? How can anyone understand such a great mercy that you would call Jonah, in fact call us to share your caring. It is so easy to sit under the coolness of the tree. It is even easier to justify staying under the tree for you have sent deliverance.
Lord you have taken our lives and you want to declare, I am your presence in this broken world. You have said the laborer will be filled by doing the work, the task set before us. For this is your salvation. Thank you Lord.
Lord I am now flooded with thoughts, but, I am dying. Everyday this illness takes more away. But somehow every day I come to understand that less has become more.
MUSIC: Reflect from your past, allow the flow of the music or the words from the song to retell the story of the scripture.
In Thee is Gladness interpreted from German in 1598 by Catherine Winkworth, written by Johann Lindemann
1 In Thee is gladness amid all sadness,
Jesus, day-star of my heart!
By Thee are given the gifts of heaven,
thou the true Redeemer art!
Our souls thou wakest;
our bonds thou breakest.
Who trusts Thee surely
has built securely and stands forever: Allelujah!
Our hearts are longing to see thy dawning.
Living or dying, in thee abiding,
naught can us sever: Allelujah!
2 Jesus is ours!
We fear no powers,
not of earth or sin or death.
He sees and blesses in worst distresses;
he can change them with a breath.
Wherefore the story –
tell of His glory with hearts and voices;
all heaven rejoices in him forever: Allelujah!
We shout for gladness,
triumph o’er sadness,
love him and praise him,
and still shall raise him
glad hymns forever: Allelujah!
The Morning Trumpet – Shenandoah Christian Music Camp
I have intentionally added what could be considered as “old” Christian sound. Please go in search of music that speaks of thoughts that are important to you.
Bonse Aba – Shenandoah Christian Music Camp
Emotionally I have been all over the place this morning. The scripture reading nailed me. By following the words of Israel’s history and then the words of reflection I automatically get caught.
This is about life. Somehow today I too am touched by life.
At the same time readings, talks, prayers, music all become ways to present the opportunity for meditation.
Meditation is like a dart thrown by an unexperienced dart thrower. Some times the dart seems to have a mind of it’s own. You/I could be hit anywhere. Any nerve could be touched. The random dart has the propensity to hit a nerve. You have been there. Music comes on, first your toe moves, then your hand, then your head is bouncing to the tune.
A few months ago in a restaurant a guest musician showed up. He was a drummer. He played set after set. Then the break came. He immediately came to our table. He looked at my friend and said wow can you play a set for us. My friend beat the table as if he was on the bongo’s. The entertainer then said you were with me. It wasn’t long before I was able to move my sound so your sound was a part of the gig. You were hot. How long have you been playing. My friend said I have never played in my life. He laughed. The whole table got into the discussion. Meditation has the ability to “suck” you into the event. Meditation becomes that moment when you know you are a part of the gig!
Sometimes words get in the way. An old pastor once told the story of recreating the banners in the church. People were invited to create banners. Upfront the rule was no words! People came in with banners made of cloth with many colors, pictures made like the stories on a felt board. Images recreated from the sight of stain glass. It was a moment when the moment was given freedom to be the moment.
A street dancer dared to join a congregation in worship. A moment happened, he stood up and danced to the music. It wasn’t long before another person stood. Within a few minutes many from the congregation were standing and had become a part of the movement. Voices could be heard giving praise to God. While others quietly bowed, thank you Jesus became the mantra of the moment.
This time of meditation arises for you, for me to allow our faith to be talked about in a genuine way. It is given as a moment of spontaneity. A time to let what is in you have the freedom to respond.
How many stories are there, as many as we have people ready to respond.
Take care, enjoy the moment. Allow the story of time, the gentleness of God’s Spirit to give you the freedom to internalize and then externalize the moment.
Please share with us a moment when you experienced being a part of the “gig!”