Thursday, May 12, 2016

Loving like Jesus...

"Being a Christian isn't just following the commandments, but means being in Christ, thinking like him, acting like him, loving like him; it means letting him take possession of our lives and change them, transform them, free them from the darkness of evil and sin."
~Pope Francis, as quoted in "Living With Christ"

I think the main lesson for me in this second half of life is that of transformation--from the inside out. Everything I read and study is about transformation--losing the false, small self and allowing God to transform me into my True Self (Fr. Richard Rohr). Pope Francis gives the entire lesson in one sentence, one that we could spend a week just praying with and pondering.  Becoming a full Christian isn't following rules, believing in dogmas, going to church on Sundays.  Becoming a full, vibrant Christian is allowing Jesus to transform our lives to live as he lived...with love and compassion for others.  It isn't just God and us or Others and us.  It is a trinity of God, others and us.  We can't be Christians in a vacuum, but we need each other to become fully alive in Christ.  Jesus showed that so clearly in his relationships. Today, as we begin a May Thursday, let's think about how our interactions with others can reflect our life in Jesus.  Are we loving like Jesus?  Love, heidi

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Prayer is a place...

"For Jesus, prayer seems to be a matter of waiting in love, returning to love, trusting that love is the unceasing stream of Reality. Prayer isn't primarily words; it's a place, an attitude, a stance."
Fr. Richard Rohr, Daily Meditation, 5/11/16

So often I think that I can harbor ill-will towards someone as long as I don't share that thought with others. I can rant and rave about them in my head, but just not share my ravings. Fr. Richard Rohr points out that, as Jesus shared in Matthew 5:22, I can't even do that.  Rats! What if they are really driving me crazy? That is precisely when I need to turn to the quiet of my heart, just go there and touch base with God. God doesn't want to hear all my ill-will about those God loves as much as me.  The very person I'm upset with is God's beloved child, just as I am.  This changes everything, Friends. It's not enough not to "kill" others in body. I cannot disparage others in my own mind and heart. Prayer is a place...a place I go deep inside to find God and listen to God tell me, "love others." It is a change of attitude based on living from my heart--where God resides.  Love, heidi

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Seeing for the first time...

"Hey Boo..."
Scout Finch to Boo Radley, "To Kill a Mockingbird"

This is my second favorite line from the classic novel, but last night it really impressed me. I'd reread the book (again) then re-watched the movie (again) and I must have needed to see it because it hit me like a ton of bricks.  When Scout sees Boo Radley there, behind the door, for the first time, she SEES him.  All of the myth and mystery of him was gone, along with her fear of him. To kids a mythical figure can be so much more mythical.  They can build up the mystery to gigantic proportions and their fear with it.  Scout, Jem and Dill had been trying to see Boo for two summers and scared the pants off themselves (literally!) to do so. But when she actually sees that Boo is a real, shy, gentle human being, she sees the real him.  And, so tenderly and lovingly says, "Hey Boo..." Today, we all may encounter people we do not really see. We may be afraid, irritated, impatient or frustrated with them.  We must not be really seeing them as God sees them.  Let's pray for eyes like God today, to see those around us as they really are, so we can react to them tenderly and lovingly.  Love, heidi