Morning Prayer: October 31st

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Psalm: 56, 57
Old Testament: Nehemiah 6:1-14
New Testament: Revelation 10:1-11

Every now and again, I find myself taken aback and intrigued by the Biblical images and mottos that remain part of our popular culture. So imagine my geeky pleasure when finding this one:

in God I trust; I am not afraid;
what can flesh do to me? (Psalm 56:4)

Seems like a pretty general quote, non? But what if I showed you this picture instead???

That’s right, a partial psalm verse is paraphrased on American currency…..Incidentally, it’s also the piece of evidence used to prove that Santa Claus could exist after all 🙂

Also I can’t help but reflect on the irony of this happenstance, given the financial crash of ’08 and the ongoing Occupy movements. It seems that for too long, America (and Canada too btw) as a nation has started to place it’s trust in the wrong thing.

The emphasis is on trusting our stuff…..our status…..the goods that we can produce and purchase in the wider market.

Today’s reading reminds us that sometimes we have to re-evaluate where our trust is. Is it on a rock that is apt to crumble beneath our feet? Or on the cornerstone which gives us stability and quenches our thirst with living water????

Evening Prayer: May 11th (Combo Post)

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Psalm: 38, 119:25-48
Old Testament: Daniel 5:1-12
New Testament: 1 John 5:1-12
Gospel: Luke 4:38-44
Patristic Reading: An excerpt from the Apologia of St. Justin Martyr

Immediately the fingers of a human hand appeared and began writing on the plaster of the wall of the royal palace, next to the lampstand. The king was watching the hand as it wrote. Then the king’s face turned pale, and his thoughts terrified him. His limbs gave way, and his knees knocked together. (Dan 5:5-6)

It wasn’t until last year I realized that the saying “the writing is on the wall” actually comes from this passage in Daniel. Just like his father Nebuchadnezzer, Belshazar is found to be guilty of pride and sin.

His major offence consists in using YHWH’s sacred vessels to worship foreign gods and empty idols. Of using the sacred to worship the profane.

In response to this sin, the hand of God let’s Belshazar that his time of prosperity and peace is going to end…and his lowly servant Daniel is elevated to a high office.

So here’s my question for tonight: Are we using the things of God to worship idols? What would the writing on the wall be for Churchland today??? Leave a comment below and let me know what you think :D.

Morning Prayer: Jan. 13th

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Psalm: 18:1-20
Old Testament: Isaiah 41:17-29
Ephesians 2:11-22

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us (Ephesians 2:13-14)

I am about 3 years too young to remember the fall of the Berlin Wall (pictured above). I was only 7 at the time and can’t really remember any of the media coverage from that moment in time.

It was an incredible event. It symbolized the fall of more than just political hostility, but the joining of the German nation into one people.

The struggle for unity has also emerged in the midst of the Tuscon shooting. In his address to the nation last night, president Barack Obama offered the following words:

I believe we can be better. Those who died here, those who saved lives here – they help me believe. We may not be able to stop all evil in the world, but I know that how we treat one another is entirely up to us. I believe that for all our imperfections, we are full of decency and goodness, and that the forces that divide us are not as strong as those that unite us..

His sentiments very much echo St. Paul’s hope for the emerging Christian church. There were some pretty horrific persecutions going on…..and much blood had been spilled….but Paul saw something better.

He saw a world that was made one. A world filled not with spiteful people committed to violence….but a hopeful people committed to reconciliation.

At its heart, the Christian message is simple: We are all made one in Christ. No one’s sins or shortcomings are better or worse than another, because they have all been left at the foot of the Cross…

The point is not what humanity is…..but what humanity has become in light of the Resurrection. We can be better because God has given us the power to be his sons and daughters. I hope and pray we will remain faithful to that calling+ ❤

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