Friday, February 25 2022
“Life on the surface keeps us judging the circumstances. We look at the circumstances as a picture. If it is pretty, pleasing, and shows us what we want to see then God is good and life is as it should be. When we don’t see what we want then we often look for a new picture. The restless searching, the longing for more, the desire for meaning are not, however, usually answered by changed circumstances. The answer is found in depth, intimacy, and the vulnerability of the interior journey. We do not need to see new things. We need to see the same old things with new eyes. We do not need to hear a different voice. We need to hear the same old voice with different ears. We do not need to escape the circumstances of our life. We need to be more fully present to those circumstances. When this happens life is no longer lived at the surface. These are the transfigured moments, moments when the picture of our life has becomes a window into a new world and we come face to face with the glory of God.” (Michael K. Marsh)
Our presiding bishop asks us to meditate on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. He asks us to join the Jesus Movement. If we are to listen to Jesus, what is the message that he wants us to hear? The Jesus Movement begins with an internal movement of repentance, proceeds with a change of heart, results in a peace that passes all understanding, and moves externally by our finding our place in the world. As we approach Lent, I ask you to change your habits just enough to hear that still, small voice of God. In today’s collect we pray, “O God who before the passion of your Son revealed his glory on the Holy Mount, that we may we be strengthened to bear his cross.” As the world has moved closer to a World War, we need to remember the great toll the previous wars had on humanity. We need to see these wars with new eyes and ears so that they are never repeated. Please pray with me every day for the people of Ukraine and for world peace. Please pray daily as we approach another Lenten season.
Christian discipleship consists of the discipline of self-denial and taking up the cross daily. It is refraining from the narcissistic self-indulgence and from feeding the superficial false ego to self-destruction. It is rather embracing my true self, the true image of God reflected in the depth of my soul. It’s a daily journey of self-discovery as a child of God and a daily walk toward a spiritual union with God (Bishop Allen Shin).
When Jesus came down off the mountain, he loved those who were most in need of love, healed those who were most in need of healing, gave water to those who were the most thirsty and food to the hungry. He taught us about what the Greeks called agape love and what the Jewish people call hessed. Jesus came to teach us a way of loving one another. May we gather together on Ash Wednesday at 7pm at St. John’s or on Zoom. May we attend service regularly during Lent. Please join our bible study, Morning Prayer, Lenten retreat and Tuesday night programs during Lent. May we refrain from letting our anger turn to vengeance in the world and allow the lovingkindness of our Lord to fill our hearts.
In Christ’s love,