Today's Lectionary Text
Happy are those who find wisdom,
How do we pray? How do we use scripture? Having grown up in a family who went to church as faithfully as we went to school and work , I have never felt the need to be saved or born again. It has just been part of my nature. God is always with me. “Jesus loves me” is my song for a lifetime.
When my husband developed a series of physical problems that required he begin a round of 3 surgeries within weeks of his retirement at age 81, I experienced a shocking change in my life. I immediately became a caregiver for an aging husband rather than a child and family specialist used to exciting travels and new jobs focused on young children. Lee and I were travelers, singer songwriters, and adventurers. We were optimists and believers in eternal life that meant here and now. Now I woke up feeling as though a gray curtain hung over my day. My informal way of praying became a request for guidance as to how to cope. And just like I had known from my earliest experiences, Jesus was with me, walking the same path.
How do you experience God’s presence? For me, it became letting go of conscious planning and taking the tools that I had used for many years to accompany me and the Holy Spirit as soon as I was dressed and out of bed. Since we live on a mini farm on a small hill outside of town, we have marvelous views of nature in every season. Sunrises, sunsets. The parade of seasons. Peace pierced only by gentle bird song. Creatures that somehow survive storms and delight in the beautiful moments that are always there if you look outside yourself. I would only have to capture those moments with my iPhone. Like magic they appeared without me having to hunt. So every day I pour myself a cup of coffee and look at the pictures, reflecting on the morning message which always comes to me as though on the wings of a dove. Then I post pictures and reflections on Facebook. The feedback and support from earth angels was so great that the editor of Guideposts read them and asked me to write an article for the May 2018 issue of Guideposts.
I don’t study the Bible every day, but specific stories, spiritual discussions with others, music sung in Sunday School, church, or from songs my husband and I have written mysteriously appear. Today Proverbs: 13 – 18 is just right. I feel truly blessed with wisdom and understanding, rich with these early morning gifts, and ready to pass on the tree of life for all who are willing to grab hold. As for prayers, I need no dedicated prayer time- just ongoing conversation with God.
I see our Christian lives as being as unique as each of us. We are one in the spirit of God, no matter how we interpret and live the messages we receive. How do you find your wisdom and understanding? How do you pass that on? How do you care for all who are walking the same path? I like to see us all walking with Jesus, who must continuously figure out how to listen and respond lovingly even when we disagree.
Topeka First UMC
Prayer for Reflection
Help us to find you and your words in our daily lives. Prayer may look different for each of us but help us to find that time to speak and listen to you.
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