Lent 4 – Monday – putting a line in the sand.

IMG_1439download-1

Knitting idea;

4 Rows of seed stitch.  Continue in your seed stitch pattern and here are directions for seed stitch if you forgot!

  1. Row 1: * K1, p1; rep from * to end of row.
  2. Row 2: * P1, k1; rep from * to end of row.
  3. Rep Rows 1 and 2 for pattern.
 Reflection:
Sometimes in life it is just important to stop and regroup.  Step off the treadmill, take a deep breath and just stop.  I’m not talking about stopping to think.  I’m literally talking about stopping and doing nothing but breathe.  Take some time to just be present to yourself.  We give this gift to others.  We are there for them, we listen, we help, we take action, we sacrifice, and we keep on keeping on with the myriad things of life that need our attention.  It’s important to stop.  It doesn’t have to be for long but it is important for all of us to find time to stop.
Now, take stock.  Ask yourself:  How are you doing?  Self:  Wait what?  You want to know how I’m doing?????  Wow!
Answer:
Question:  Self, what’s really important?
Answer:
The seed stitch is my mark in the sand for this lenten project.  It’s  a demarcation of having crossed beyond the halfway point where I feel the need to stop and look around and ask where am I with this?
Yesterday in the Episcopal Church the Gospel passage was this:

John 3:14-21

14And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. 16“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.17“Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18Those who believe in him are not condemned; but those who do not believe are condemned already, because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. 20For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. 21But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.”

I preached about how God so loved the world.  The passage is in the context of God’s great love for the world.

I read a commentary that talked about how the word we translate as “believe” is more of an action rather than an intellectual activity.  So I reread the gospel to the congregation using the word respond instead of believe.

14And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15that whoever responds to him may have eternal life. 16“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who responds to him may not perish but may have eternal life.17“Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18Those who respond to him are not condemned; but those who do not respond are condemned already, because they have not responded in the name of the only Son of God. 19And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. 20For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. 21But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.”

How do we respond to the awesome love of God?  Where do we see it?  Do we feel it?  It’s always there but sometimes we just have to stop and be present to it.  We are loved, so loved, and all we have to do is accept the love that is available.  Accepting is a response!  It’s hard to believe that we are loved so much.  It took years of a priest telling me that God loves me for me to really “believe” it!  We are loved by God and we need to keep reminding ourselves.  This is the love I keep talking about that we connect to in our prayer.  Stop and feel the love!

My son and his wife just adopted a dog.  The dog had been found on the road and had bounced around in different foster homes.  All of us wondered what this animal would be like.  Four weeks later, after being showered with love, petted, brushed, fed, walked, she has responded in kind with lots of love of her own.  You can see the love and gratitude in her deep brown eyes.

Love begets Love.  Step off and let it wash over you.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s