The Childish Voice of God with Us
Pentecost (year c)
psalm 104.24-35, john 14.8-17, 25-27, acts 2.1-21, & romans 8.14-17
"In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams. Even upon my slaves, both men and women, in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy." (Acts 2 .17-18)
Meditation: For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, "Abba! Father!" it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ--if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him. (Romans 8 .14-17)
Reflection: The Fullness of Divine Love - "At first, in the story of the Exodus, God is revealed as a God-for-us, guiding us out of our slavery with a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night (Exodus 13:21). Later, in the story of Jesus of Nazareth, God is revealed as a God-with-us (Matthew 1:24), accompanying us in solidarity and compassion. Finally, in the story of Pentecost, God is revealed as a God-within-us, who enables us to breathe the divine life ourselves." - Henri Nouwen
Consider: Imagine, we are God's children-innocent, childish and small. But with His very big message-that of the world's reconciliation and a recommitment to His true law! God lavishly pours out His perfection upon us in the form of the Spirit, reminding us that we speak for Him and the language is Love; when we are engaged in reconnecting of the nations. The Spirit reminds us what Jesus said and did, and empowers us to cooperate with His mission.
We are angels of that message, emulating Jesus; receiving the Spirit. Arm-in-arm, we receive Him, as He is poured out on all cultures, genders and age groups, evidenced by actuated LOVE. In the Spirit, we bear witness-fear is over, we become holy, we are guiltless, and are now children (childlike/innocent), and our voice is not heard again-God's voice is heard in that innocence. We are His vulnerable voices-Little Children of God with a Big Voice and Work.
Posted by Pastor Kork
at 12:01 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 30 May 2007 2:47 PM EDT
What Can Happen in One Hour
Easter 7 (year c)
psalm 97, john 17 .20-26, acts 16 .16-34, revelation 22 .12-14,16-17,20-21
While [the slave girl] followed Paul and us, she would cry out, "These men are slaves of the Most High God, who proclaim to you a way of salvation." She kept doing this for many days. But Paul, very much annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, "I order you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her." And it came out. . . (Acts 16 .17—18a)
Meditation: Paul shouted in a loud voice, "Do not harm yourself, for we are all here." The jailer called for lights, and rushing in, he fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them outside and said, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" (Acts 16 .28—30)
Reflection: In the midst of violence and death, the disciples choose to offer life to those who rejected and abused them. Ultimately, we are not called to avoid oppression, suffering, or even death but to answer it with life, mercy, and hope. Michaela Bruzzese
We are very comfortable in the United States; comfortable in our provision, with our entertainment choices, food selection and availability, etc. Our lives here have many choices. This consumerism is evident in our Churches as well; Our church buildings, our church style options, decorations, even how padded our pews are (or seats for our contemporary choices) so that our Christian buts are comfortable while we bring our "sacrifice" of praise each Sunday.
What is really surrendered in our style of following Jesus? You know, that prophet with the wild claims about being God... The one who said ridiculous things to his folks and acquaintances about placing others first, and more importantly, placing ourselves at the back of the line.
We want to relegate Jesus to a whole different level of humanity (as well we should), but often confuse his ability as unattainable. After all, "He is God and I am not!" "He knew people's thoughts and hearts," as if to say that that made his way easier than ours. Really?
I'm sure knowing everything has its advantages, but the things that Jesus asks of us (and in fact modeled to us--fully expecting the disciples to reciprocate) is to learn his response to every situation, finding the godly, moral way ,which always reflects God's grace, justice, and mercy, requiring our servitude--Our selflessness to the point of sacrifice for God and others. And at all costs, those who are oppressed, marginalized, and kept at arms distance.
As we think this week about how we silently demand God to bless, even our inappropriate grasping for comfort as entitlement in our comfortable churches, expecting nary a problem to befall us,...
Consider: Paul & Silas singing in a dungeon, after delivering one swept up in the popular religion (and its props), and as a result of this 'Jesus style' sacrifice, God is glorified in worship... "In that very Hour!" Hmmmm... Maybe we've missed something...
Posted by Pastor Kork
at 12:01 AM EDT