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Showing posts from September, 2015

BEING IN A TOUGH SPOT

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There are times we find ourselves stuck in places we do not want to be and cannot get away from. You may have to stay, but you do not have to waste time there. Paul used his prison time to pray, worship, preach and write.

How do you use the places where you feel stuck? Study your place carefully with an understanding that tough places are opportunities for God to do a deeper work in you.
Iain McGilchrist is a psychiatrist who has appeared on a Ted Talk entitled ‘The Divided Brain’[1]. He wrote about our need to live fully with a horizontal and vertical connection.
"Clearly we have to inhabit the world of immediate bodily experience, the actual terrain in which we live, and where our engagement with the world takes place alongside our fellow human beings, and we need to inhabit it fully. Yet at the same time we need to rise above the landscape in which we move, so that we can see what one might call the territory. To understand the landscape we need both to go out into the felt live…

COMMUNITY RESEARCHERS ON ASSIGNMENT

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Jesus preached about the Kingdom of God. In his many lessons the Teacher taught the students how to study everything for signs of the emerging Kingdom. We read about how he used his followers to do community research that would reveal where the Kingdom was most welcome.



Luke 10:After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. 2 He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. 3 Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. 4 Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road.5 “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ 6 If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. 7 Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house.8 “When…

RENAMING YOUR PLACE

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In the conflicted life of the patriarch Jacob we find significant exchanges with God in various places. One night he was camped out on a journey and had a dream where he saw a ladder between earth and Heaven. Angels travelled up and down. He had an insightful dream that showed that God was active in connecting His realm to ours.
From his campsite on the outskirts of the Canaanite town of Luz, Jacob was deeply changed in his relationship with the Almighty.

Genesis 28:16 When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.” 17 He was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God; this is the gate of heaven.”18 Early the next morning Jacob took the stone he had placed under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on top of it. 19 He called that place Bethel, though the city used to be called Luz.

God was in this place and I was not aware of it. Jacob was discovering that God is present b…

STUDYING YOUR PLACE

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Each step of our journey is both a departure from and an arrival at. We’re always leaving some place to get somewhere else. While it may seem that life can go in circles, there are important things for us to see and hear in the places we find ourselves. Jesus talks much about developing eyes and ears that perceive God at work.
Studying where you are is an important spiritual practice. As we examine the place we find ourselves in, we discover the true nature of Omnipresence. God is here, too.
Hebrew Bible scholar Jon Levenson said,“Geography is simply a visible form of theology.”[1]
Walter Brueggeman said it another way. “Land is a central, if not THE central theme of biblical faith. Biblical faith is a pursuit of historical belonging that includes a sense of destiny derived from such belonging…”[2]
And there’s this quote I found on Facebook. ‘The shortest theology of place is this: "may your kingdom come, may your will be done on earth."’[3]