Thursday, January 27, 2011

Matthew 5:8

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

I play golf for those shots that are so pure, the ball goes in the direction I envisioned it going, the distance I was planning on, and the feeling that yes, this one shot is perfect. Sometimes I have that experience in worship, when the words come so easily, the point of the scripture becomes crystal clear, and their is a synergy between the congregation and me, it is a holy moment a pure worship moment. I think of this passage in that light, when I am pure in heart, it is a moment of deep connection to God, and to the world, it is a holy blessing. In that moment, all seems right with my life, and with the world. I live for those kind of experiences, and each time I come away with a sense of gratitude.
I am also reminded there are many other kinds of moments, times when I can't hit the golf ball anywhere close to the green, or fairway, times when worship seems to be going all wrong and the words weight I speak seem so disconnected and foolish. There are times in life when I feel all out of sorts, no matter how hard I try.
So I see this condition of being pure as a gift, a pure gift, if you will from God, these holy moments are a gift, given freely by a blessing God. Even in the times when I feel impure, God's gift purifies me, and makes me whole once again, restores my soul, inspires me all over again.
No matter where I find myself in life, this experience of seeing God is always possible, because God is forever blessing us, and making us pure, making life a pure blessing.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Matthew Cont.

Wednesday for me is photo class time, I am learning about website design for photographers and lighting techniques. My mind is often overwhelmed by all the new information I get in one class. I struggle with learning the language of the computer and how to figure out how to do the things I want it to do. I often become frustrated and confused. However, the teachers here at the photo center are very patient, and because we have such a diversity of knowledge in the class, I know I fit right in.
I am blessed by new learning.
Sometimes the blessings I receive are not easy or smooth, often I have to work through my emotions to find the blessing. I am glad for my classes and the lessons I learn.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Matthew 5:1-12, Blessed

When I am poor in spirit, I do not feel blessed, I feel alone, depressed,and stressed. And if the passage stopped there I could feel a sense of abandonment. Where is God in the midst of my suffering, ah, read on...Blessed are those who mourn, they will be comforted. Not maybe, but will be. I cannot always know what the future will hold, in fact I was just saying to one of our preschool staff:"Those who care about the world are sensitive to the suffering of the world all of our lives". Sometimes it is others we care about that suffer, that mourn. How are they comforted? By our caring for them, as the Spirit leads us. This is a great honor and sometimes a great burden, a part of the work of blessing the world as we have been blessed.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Choices and Micah 6:1-8

I get real tired when I go shopping, it doesn't matter whether it is grocery shopping, mall shopping, shopping on ebay, it all makes me tired. I have come to realize it is because of all the choices, and making choices tires me out. I am not saying I don't appreciate the choices, or that there are simply too many and someone ought to do something about it, I just mean for me choices take work. I want to make the right choice, I want to have the satisfaction of making good choices that lead to long term benefits, I want to reduce the harm I might do on others if I make the wrong choice, and I want to maximize my resources to make the best choice. So I consider the choices, I work past my first instincts cause sometime advertisers can fool my brain into making the wrong choice. I think about the choice, do I really need any one of these choices or maybe I can live without the item I consider. Maybe there is a better price, a better option I have not considered. So, when bombarded by many choices, I tend to shut down my brain for repairs! I sometimes never make a decision because I get stuck in that considering mode. Sometimes this is okay, but most of the time pressure builds until I cannot bear it and I make a choice, sometimes good, sometimes so so, but I chose.
When it comes to faith, many choices come to me in how I spend my time in prayer, study, and service. It is often hard to chose and so I spend time considering but don't seem to be able to make a decision, and feel I miss opportunities as a result of spinning my wheels.
This year, I am tired of spinning, I want to be able to make more decisions and so I have given up on trying to make more decisions than my brain can handle all at once.
I am tracking my time finding out what exactly I do, and then see if these practices are bringing me closer or further away to God and living as a disciple. It is not fun being conscious of my choices, I see how I spend more time standing in the same place trying to decide, than actually acting. Or I see myself acting without focus and accomplishing nothing but expending energy. How about you? As I think about the the simple reflection of Micah: "O Mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" I want all my choices to reflect that I am following this call.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Jesus' baptism

The weather has turned from dark and gloomy, to bright and cheerful. The mountains are filled with snow and my heart is filled with joy! Or is that the coffee talking?
No, it really is joy, joy over being able to view the beauty of God's creation from my office window, joy as I hear the preschool children playing outside in the cool crisp air, and joy over being able to sit and study God's Word in a comfy office. I am thinking about the baptism of Jesus and in Matthew's version of the story, Jesus goes to John to be baptized and John thinks Jesus should baptize him instead. John wants to yield to the power he sees in Jesus. But Jesus wants to blaze a trail that others can follow, to provide a way for others to find a way to participate in being blessed by the Spirit, and working for transformation. Jesus is blazing a trail in the wilderness of life for others to find their way. The signs are there, as we walk the trail of our lives, Jesus has left signs so we can find our way, lighting the path when it is dark and gloomy, so our hearts might once again be filled with joy.

Monday, January 3, 2011


Good Morning, well except for the rain, and the cold it is a good morning, oh, and except for the problems voiced yesterday during prayer concerns, it is a good morning, oh, and those tasks that await me now that the holidays are done, a huge pile of stuff to go through, with the exception of those, and oh yeah, those things I should of done last month and now drag into this month, I think it is still a good morning. Oh, the golf game I was planing on playing was canceled cause of the rain, and I have not figured out why I am not feeling 100% yet, is it still a good morning?
Well, the church is dry today! No more leaking, the preschool is back in session and the rain has made a dent in our drought situation and the mountains will look great once the clouds lift, and I received good news from my friends on facebook, and I had time to read a bit today and my daughter's birthday went went yesterday, and the tea tastes really good and I am getting to plan for the month and now anticipate all that will unfold this month. Yes, it is a good morning, even given all those challenges which can cause me to forget all the gifts of this day. Thank you Lord, for the gift of this new day and all the blessings there in.