Monthly Archives: December 2019

Leaving home

Flight into Egypt
France, 17th century
polychromed oakwood
collection of the Musée L, Ottignies-Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium

Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed for Egypt. Matthew 2:14

Imagine how frightened Joseph and Mary were — and how courageous — to leave their homeland in the face of danger and persecution, and to make a new life in a strange country.

My ancestors came to America from Ireland, most of them so poor they traveled in steerage. One side of the family was illiterate. On the other side, my great-great grandmother died soon after arriving in New York and so did the baby twins to whom she had just given birth. Men on both sides of the family took work as laborers and mill workers. They saved what they could from their tiny salaries, bought houses, turned their yards into vegetable gardens, and made sure their children got a good education. Today I live very comfortably, thanks to the courage of my ancestors.

May I always extend a welcome to newcomers. May I be grateful for their example of courage and their reminder of my own family story. May I remember Jesus, too, was a refugee.

 

 

 

Blessed by the Light

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone.
Isaiah 9:1

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and
the Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 1:7b

Grace and peace unending, eternal light of love, compassion, forgiveness, comfort.

Today I will make use of God’s gifts to me to dispel a little bit of the gloom that pervades our society and world.

Patience

“…the blind regain their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have the good news proclaimed to them.”
Matthew 11:5

See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. You too must be patient. James 5:7b-8a

In patience I find
gentleness
forgiveness
endurance
forbearance
compassion
hope

Today, Lord, bless me with patience.

Harmony, not uniformity

Second Sunday of Advent

May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to think in harmony with one another. Romans 15:5a

Each of our unique human voices blends one with the next to make a holy harmony that resounds with forgiveness, reconciliation, peace, nonviolence, and joy in praise and thanksgiving to the One who created us in and for love.

Stay awake

First Sunday of Advent

First Sunday of Advent

They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks; one nation shall not raise the sword against another, nor shall they train for war again. Isaiah 2:4

Today I pray that I may turn my swords and spears of impatience, indifference, envy, rudeness, self-seeking, acrimony, and resentment into life-giving love: patience, kindness, acceptance, courtesy, generosity, peace-making, and forgiveness.