Morning Prayer: Friday in Easter Week

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Psalm: 136
Old Testament: Daniel 12:1-4;13
New Testament: Acts 4:1-12

This Jesus is
β€œthe stone that was rejected by you, the builders;
it has become the cornerstone.”
There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved (Acts 4:11-12)

Well after a brief stint of computer problems, compounded by my own laziness, I am back on track with the blog :). I hope all of you have had a wonderful Easter season thus far filled with chocolate, friends, family, and liturgy that has moved you. πŸ™‚

In today’s reading from Acts, Peter gives this response to the question: from where do you get your authority?

The answer he gives harkens back to Psalm 118, which is a song which looks forward to the Messiah.

In using this as a proof-text, Peter is spreading the gospel, the new and radical message that a crucified and risen criminal was indeed the one Israel had been waiting for so long.

More than that, he insists that the miracles he and the other apostles are performing have nothing to do with them, and everything to do with the power of God.

I wonder how often we take credit for our own ministries and talents without giving credit to the source?!?

I don’t mean to say that it is wrong to have a sense of self-worth or accomplishment in what we do every day and the positive ways in which we touch the life of the world and those inside it……but at what point does the line get crossed between self-reliance and salvation, and being redeemed through God’s Grace alone?

It is a slippery line to be sure….and I hope that I continue to walk in the knowledge that I am nothing, but for God’s love that has been shown to me in Christ. +

Morning Prayer: Feb. 1st

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Psalms: 61, 62
Old Testament: Isaiah 52:1-12
New Testament: Galatians 4:12-20

St. Bridget

My little children, for whom I am again in the pain of childbirth until Christ is formed in you…. (Galatians 4:19)

I’m going to take a moment to jump to the defence of clergy this morning. Often clergy, teachers, and people in other positions of authority get a bad rap for trying to impose their will on others. Sometimes this can be true and there can be abuses of power…but mostly clergy are insistent because they want to see a positive change in the lives of all they serve.

This reflection is brought on in part by a series I read over at the Episcopal Cafe in which the author argued against open table communion.

For those of you who don’t know…open table Eucharist refers not to inter-denominational communicats…but giving the Body and Blood of Christ to those who are not baptized.

Many in the Church today are for this practice….believing that it spreads a message of Grace and inclusivity. While that is true to some extent……where does that leave the Sacrament of Baptism???

The point being made in this article is not so much that the Church wishes to exclude people……but to get people to take the message of Christ seriously. We are called not only to follow him but to die with him….which is a scary prospect and one hell of a commitment to be making! :S

Sometimes when clergy and teachers stick to their guns, it’s not in an effort to be authoritarian, but a genuine desire to see Christ grow within the congregation…..with a solid theological background.

Ministers and those in authority care for their church like they do their own families. Sometimes they are called to make hard decisions….and to insist on some very ancient practices…..but it is all in the hope that the Good News is planted….and a new and free person is born in the Light of Christ. +

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