Thursday, January 15, 2015

Reach out and touch

"Moved with pity, (Jesus) stretched out his hand, touched the leper, and said to him, 'I do will it. Be made clean.'"
Mark 1:41
When we had the Luke version of this Gospel last week (Luke 5:12-16) I prayed with it, Ignatian-style and imagined myself in the story. I was a bystander (I'm always a bystander!) I remember feeling really nervous for Jesus as he reached out and touched the leper.  He shouldn't do that! He may get leprosy!  Can't you just heal him without touching him, Jesus? I realized that my fear for Jesus could be the root of my problem of not reaching out.  I wanted to keep Jesus safe and insolated, like I try to keep myself safe and insolated in my own little bubble.  It's much safer to care from a distance, don't you know? But that isn't the way Jesus cared and it isn't the way Jesus wants us to care either.  Thank you, Jesus for the eye-opening today! I will try to follow your example--reaching out to others.  Love, heidi

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

An excellent prescription!

"Rising very early before dawn, Jesus left and went off to a deserted place, where he prayed."
Mark 1:35
This was one of the best fruits of the Cursillo for me.  There were many, certainly, but the idea of getting up early in the morning, cracking open the Word of God and praying with it was positively unheard of for me prior to 1998.  Why would anyone do that? I had three kids and a discombobulated mother...I needed my sleep!  But in all those years since, I'm truly awed by how God has nourished me during those early-before-dawn moments. The time spent with God in prayer and scripture fuels me for the day ahead like nothing else could--not even an extra forty winks. I also find that what I read in the morning is carried through the day and I draw on the positive messages I receive. Jesus knew he received all he needed from his Abba during those times he went off alone to pray. His mission was tiring and difficult and he knew exactly where to turn for help.  He teaches us where to turn too.  Let's try to carve out some extra time today to spend with God. It's just what the doctor orders! Love, heidi

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Through our bumbling...

"It is out of our human lives that God reaches us. We expect that these lives would be less wounded, less bumbling, less muddled. We hope that our lives would have a 'pureness' to them, but God reaches us in the way that God has always reached human beings--through our ordinary, flawed lives."
Sr. Joyce Rupp, "The Cup of Our Lives"
This was so fascinating to me because I realized that, even after we turn our lives toward God and begin to really live our lives in God and with God, we still are so flawed! Seriously? Shouldn't we be better then?  But, alas, the flaws are still there.  We are probably even more aware of them.  I was talking to a friend yesterday about the woundedness of us little humans and we realized that, even after he rose from the dead, Jesus still had the wounds he'd suffered through his passion.  What does that teach us? How does God work through our wounds? Even with God at the center of our lives, we muddle along, as Sr. Joyce points out. In our ordinary, flawed lives, we bumble around.  And God loves us.  Such an amazing truth for us to chew on today. Love, heidi

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Kingdom of God today!

"Can the Kingdom break into my ordinary life?"
Abbot Jerome Kodell, "Give Us This Day"
Today's Gospel is Mark 1:14-20...Jesus is calling the fishermen.  Simon and Andrew, James and John all leave their nets and immediately follow Jesus.  The Kingdom of God has broken into their ordinary lives, and thus the question from Abbot Kodell above.  My additional question would be: How has the Kingdom broken into our ordinary lives? Assuming that it, indeed, already has.  When did it? When was it we realized that we can have a life with God right here, right now--even as we spin around on this planet? At what point did we realize that God wants to be part of all of our comings and goings and the steady beat of our work-a-day lives?  The fishermen Jesus called from their nets had a very obvious and remarkable turn around, but ours may be more subtle.  They left hearth and home to follow Jesus but Jesus may be calling us to just do what we do more prayerfully.  Let's think, this January Monday, how God's Kingdom has already broken into our lives.  Let's be aware of opening our eyes today and seeing God working in our midst. And finally, let's do whatever we do today mindful that Jesus does it with us. Love, heidi