monday october 19 2020

Deuteronomy 34:1-12
34:1 Then Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho, and the LORD showed him the whole land: Gilead as far as Dan,

34:2 all Naphtali, the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, all the land of Judah as far as the Western Sea,

34:3 the Negeb, and the Plain — that is, the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees — as far as Zoar.

34:4 The LORD said to him, “This is the land of which I swore to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants’; I have let you see it with your eyes, but you shall not cross over there.”

34:5 Then Moses, the servant of the LORD, died there in the land of Moab, at the Lord’s command.

34:6 He was buried in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth-peor, but no one knows his burial place to this day.

34:7 Moses was one hundred twenty years old when he died; his sight was unimpaired and his vigor had not abated.

34:8 The Israelites wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days; then the period of mourning for Moses was ended.

34:9 Joshua son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, because Moses had laid his hands on him; and the Israelites obeyed him, doing as the LORD had commanded Moses.

34:10 Never since has there arisen a prophet in Israel like Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face.

34:11 He was unequaled for all the signs and wonders that the LORD sent him to perform in the land of Egypt, against Pharaoh and all his servants and his entire land,

34:12 and for all the mighty deeds and all the terrifying displays of power that Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.

sunday october 18 2020

This fair, lovely word, Mother, is so sweet and kind in itself that it may not be truly said of any or to any but of and to him who is the true Mother of life and everything. The properties of motherhood are nature, love, wisdom, and knowledge, and it is God. A kind, loving mother who knows the needs of her child protects it most tenderly, according to the nature and condition of motherhood. … Our Lord does this and all that is fair and good in those by whom it is done. So he is our Mother in nature through the working of grace.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; my soul is like the weaned child that is with me.—Psalm 131:2

saturday october 17 2020

And for the tender love that our good Lord has for all who will be saved, he comforts quickly and sweetly, explaining in this way: “It is true that sin is the cause of all this pain, but all will be well, and every kind of thing will be well.” What can make me love my fellow Christians more than to see that God loves all who will be saved as if they were all one soul? For in every soul that will be saved there is a godly will that never agrees to sin and never will. … And so we are those whom God loves, and endlessly we do what delights God. Our good Lord showed this in the fullness of love that we stand in, in God’s sight. Yes, God loves us as well now, while we are here, as God will when we are there before God’s blessed face.Those of steadfast mind you keep in peace— in peace because they trust in you. Trust in the LORD forever, for in the LORD GOD you have an everlasting rock.—Isaiah 26:3-4

friday october 16 2020

Always a glad giver pays little attention to the thing he gives, but all his desire and intent is to please and comfort the one to whom he gives. And if the receiver takes the gift gladly and thankfully, then the courteous giver counts all his cost and effort as nothing, because of the joy and delight he has and because he has pleased and comforted the one he loves.
Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. —2 Corinthians 9:7

wednesday oct 14 2020

God wants us to know that God holds us with the same certainty whether we are in sorrow or well-being. … For it is God’s will that we cling to God’s comfort with all our might. For bliss is lasting, without end, and pain is passing and shall be brought to nothing for those who will be saved. Therefore it is not God’s will that we follow the feeling of pain with sorrow and mourning, but we will suddenly pass over and remain in the endless delight that is God.My soul melts away for sorrow;strengthen me according to your word.
—Psalm 119:28

tuesday october 13 2020

For he thinks everything is little compared to his love. Even though the sweet humanity of Christ could suffer only once, his goodness can never stop offering. Every day he is ready to do the same, if it could be. For if he said he would, for love of me, make new heavens and new earths, that was little in his sight. He could do this each day, if he wanted, without any effort. But to die for love of me so often that the number passes a creature’s reason, this is the highest offer our Lord God might make to a human soul, as I see it.I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And the life that I now live in my body, I live by faith, indeed, by the faithfulness of God’s Son, who loved me and gave himself for me. —Galatians 2:20

Sunday October 11 2020

Depending upon the tradition and method, baptism has variations in significance and meaning. In its simplest form, baptism as “rebirth” into something new connotes turning away from something old. This is not in the binary sense of new/old, good/bad but rather, how is order created out of disorder? How does God assert God’s power and presence to tame formlessness?In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. —Mark 1:9-10

saturday october 10 2020

Baptism is always an excellent place to dive in. It is the cornerstone of Christian theology. Therefore Mark’s opening passage is pivotal to our faith, demonstrating the power and majesty not just of God but a Triune God—Creator, Christ, and Holy Spirit in one scene. This Gospel sheds light on a common theme we have encountered this week: the bold, mystical intrusion of God’s presence. This is not intrusion in the negative sense of the word. Rather, it is a presence that is pronounced, the glory of which is impossible to ignore.[John the Baptizer] proclaimed, “The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals. I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” —Mark 1:7-8

friday october 9 2020

Over and over this week, we have encountered God’s presence in water: Creation, storms, and now baptism. But how is God present in baptismal waters—and ultimately—in us? Baptism is a sacrament mysteria—a mystical experience that accounts for God’s action (presence) in our lives. How does this manifest in your tradition and teaching? How might we all lean into Paul’s urging, seeking to understand the ways in which the Triune God indwells us through this mysteria?Paul said, “John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, in Jesus.” On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. —Acts 19:4-5

Thursday October 8 2020

These seemingly chaotic acts of nature are not intended to incite a fear-based worship of God but rather to remind us of God’s ability. In our human experience, we ought to look to that which we can see: hurricanes, fires, wind, floods, in order to understand a fraction of the strength of that which we cannot see: God. The psalmist invites us to glorify God in order to remember that God’s strength is ours too.The voice of the LORD causes the oaks to whirl, and strips the forest bare; and in his temple all say, “Glory!”—Psalm 29:9