Changed.

I spend a good bit of time planning and organizing in my daily work and wondering where I’m headed or asking what’s next. Now lets stop and recognize the fact that I’m not a very organized person, nonetheless it seems like I’m always trying to figure what the next activity or task is before I’m done with the present.   Why am I bringing this up?

On one hand I’m mentioning my cluttered brain because I need to slow down and on the other, because I feel awful as to how my cluttered thinking has spilled out into other parts of my life. See this got a little crazy when a few weeks ago when a friend and I decided we would start a group that will read Common Prayer: A Liturgy For Ordinary Radicals -which I’ve gone through in the past – as I’ve skimmed the pages and become reacquainted with the book I’ve realized how often I just speed through my morning prayer time, because I want to do it, but I’m running late and I have so much to do. Those are all good excuses but they are just that excuses. Tomorrow morning I will begin using the liturgy, meaning I will wake up earlier, read slowly, breathe deeply, pray slowly, and allow the spirit to take over my time with God, and as an added bonus, I’ll get to drink more coffee.

I hope you will spend more time with the one who created you. Soren Kierkegaard said, “The function of prayer is not to influence God, but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.” I want to be changed, how about you?

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Too Much Hatred For Me!

I’ll say there has been a lot going on in the news here lately!

Its safe to say I’m an old man stuck in a young mans body. I wake up every morning turn on my coffee pot, listen to NPR and prepare for the day. For the past week, I’ve been hesitant to turn on NPR because the news has been flooded with hatred.

I’ve been trying to understand and discern what my place is as a Christian in response to all that is going on in the world, especially the mass amounts of hatred I’ve seen over the past few days. A few months ago, I had the opportunity to preach in Cuba using Micah 6:8. I defined what it means to do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God.

Justice comes from within and arises when groups of people who have been alienated from what within reason belongs to them, these groups envision change and seek dynamic alternatives to their change unjust conditions. When we see injustices we are called like Micah to do something. We must realize that justice is not for just us it is for everybody, it asks for us to deny our own self -interests and work together, truthfully critiquing the present unjust system and to evoke change. Doing justice is intertwined with loving-kindness as we seek to value all of human kind.

To love kindness does not come easily. Perhaps it is hard because loving kindness means that we must be vulnerable. It means we should love one another out of genuine concern and care and be willing to carry the burdens of other as our own. Weeping with and for those hurting around us, holding the hands of others so they will know they are not alone.

Walking humbly, means that we take our noses out of the air, not walk around with our shoulders slouched, stand upright and walk with great affirmation knowing that we have been called and equipped to do the work of Christ! It is realizing we can’t do anything on our own, paying attention to those around us, listening for Gods call through the cries of his people.

Some months ago in Cuba I defined Micah 6:8 as stated above, thinking that I had come to genuinely understand what it means to do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with God, well come to find out I was preparing myself to be able to make sense of all the hatred I was hear and see on my Facebook newsfeed.

Those of you who have decided to stick with hate rather than love, can I suggest you take all of the energy you use to hate others and do something that will help others. Do something that focuses on adequate housing, equal pay for all, food insecurity, quality childcare…you know something that will better a person!

Do justice, Love Kindness and Walk Humbly!