Thursday, March 30, 2017

Get outside!

"The great brightness, the Son of God, appeared for the health and salvation of humanity, taking on the poverty of a human body, but shining like a burning star amid shadowy clouds."
Hildegard of Bingen, as quoted in "Give Us This Day"

As March blows out of here tomorrow and Lent begins to wind down, it is so wonderful to read the descriptive prose of one of our church's finest, Hildegard of Bingen. She was a mystic who studied the word of God in nature as well as scripture. This time of year is full of nature! The weather changes in east Idaho by the hour, it seems. But in that changing, that bursting forth from the recently frozen earth, new life is coming for all of us.  This weekend, let's all take some time to read what Fr. Richard Rohr refers to as the First Bible...let's get outside! No matter if it's raining, windy, sunny or still, God is recreating the world...and us along with it.  Love, heidi

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Nudge me out of the way...

"I know where I theory. I'm FOR Jesus. But I can get around that by leaving Jesus out of some real-life issues...
Am I for Jesus or against Jesus?"
The Little Black Book

Oh that question is as easy as "Do you want to get well?" from yesterday! Isn't it?  I sat and thought about which real-life issues I may be excluding Jesus from in my life.  What about my unattractive tendency to judge others harshly? Where is Jesus in there? Those hardest to love in my little kingdom ARE actually Jesus and how do I treat them? Looking at it that way I look to be quite against Jesus and that is the last thing I'd ever want to be.  The solution for that is for me to yield to God who resides in my heart and let God love through me.  God is very happy to love all those I find difficult to love. I may need to just step out of the way so God can do just that.  Gracious and Forgiving God, my judgments, prejudices, and just general ickiness about others prevents me from truly loving Jesus well.  Give me a nudge out of the way so you can love others with your heart. Hopefully, my heart will learn from yours to love better!  Amen. Love, heidi

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Jump onboard the healing train!

"When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been ill for a long time, he said to him, 'Do you want to be well?'"
John 5:6

I remember my dad had a friend who (as Dad described it) "enjoyed" ill health.  When I was finally old enough to realize the inconsistency of that I asked my dad what he meant by that paradoxical phrase. "Oh, he enjoys ill health because it gives him something to talk about." Ah, yes, I get it.  Some of us, frankly, resist getting well, as Jesus knows already in today's Gospel.  We may be so uncomfortable with change that we stay in our own little sicknesses because the absence of them would take away our unique us-ness. Where would we be without our internal stuff? Who would we be? What would we talk about? Jesus doesn't inflict healing on someone who doesn't really want to be healed. That's why he sometimes asks the obvious question. He asks us today, too.  Do you want to stay crabby with your coworkers? Do you want to perpetuate the gossip in the teacher's lounge? Do you want to walk by the guy with the sign without as much as a prayer for his needs? We need to be onboard with Jesus' healing within us. Do we want to be well?  Love, heidi

Monday, March 27, 2017

Healing--this way or that?

"Jesus said to him, You may go, your son will live.'"
John 4:50

So Jesus didn't see or touch the child he healed in today's Gospel. Contrast to yesterday's when Jesus was so intimately involved with the blind man's healing he made mud out of his own saliva to put on the man's eyes! (see John 9:1-41) We had a wonderful homily about how different Jesus' healings were throughout the Gospels. Jesus could heal from afar and Jesus healed with a touch. Jesus healed by someone merely touching the hem of his cloak. Jesus healed with the words, "Go and show yourselves to the priest." Sometimes the people being healed actively sought Jesus and asked for his healing, other times, the individual's friends brought the person closer to Jesus. Many times, Jesus told the "healee" that it was their faith that healed them. So in the homily it was shared that the answer for so many different styles of healing is in the first reading from Sunday, 1 Samuel (16:7). "Not as man sees does God see, because man sees the appearance, but the Lord looks into the heart." God looks into the heart of each person and knows exactly what healing they need.  Some can be healed without their own asking, as the official's child in today's Gospel. Others may need a more hands-on approach, like the man born blind yesterday. God does the same exact thing for us, too. God can look deep into our hearts because God resides there. God just has to look around in our hearts and know exactly what we need in the way of healing.  God is so eager to heal that! Are we onboard with the healing God knows we need?  Love, heidi