Saturday, April 22, 2017

Living in Community with ALL Our Unique Brothers & Sisters

Second Sunday of Easter (or Divine Mercy Sunday)

Musings by Wayne Miller

They devoted themselves to the teaching of the apostles and to the communal life, to the breaking of bread and to the prayers. Awe came upon everyone, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.  Acts 2: 42-43

Now a week later his disciples were again inside and Thomas was with them. Jesus came, although the doors were locked, and stood in their midst and said, "Peace be with you." Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here and see my hands, and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving, but believe." Thomas answered and said to him, "My Lord and my God!" John 20: 26-28

A C T S (Adoration, Contrition, Thanksgiving, Supplication) - Lord, you are my Rock, my sure, calm voice in the midst of chaos, my only refuge in fear & stress & doubt.

And yet I so often wander off on my own in wonder & fascination, following the siren call of the next shiny experience.  I know that this gift of joy/excitement/pleasure-in-Your-Creation is also from You and an intrinsic element of the unique, precious son You created me to be.  But I so often surrender connection with You when I search for a relationship with the created instead of the Creator.

Thank You for Your everlasting forgiveness & acceptance & welcome in all my wanderings and all my homecomings.

Please help me to recognize when I am not on a path with or toward You, and to be teachable in every moment of this journey.  Please, give me Your Eyes & Ears & Heart & Gentle Tongue, and use me to express Your Love to Your children.  And please help me hear Your voice in all my brothers & sisters – especially when I don’t feel or understand it.

A C T S (Adoration, Community, Theology, Service) – Being a part of a joyful, praising community is no less essential today than it was 2,000 years ago.  While personal conversation & reflection & listening with God are essential, far more epiphanies have come to me through the voices & lives of my brothers & sisters.

I am called to grow & learn about my relationship with the Lord because it is His Way & how He uses me to reach out in love to ALL His children.  When we share the fire & excitement & inspiration we have received from Him with our brothers and sisters, THAT is the Fire of the Holy Spirit, spreading as surely among us as it did on Pentecost in that Upper Room.

Today the Gospel tells of Jesus’ first appearance to His disciples and how poor old, stubborn Thomas missed the party.  When Jesus visited again to clarify Thomas’ vision, we can even feel the embarrassment at Jesus’ chastisement because Thomas had to touch to believe.  But I see a Brother-Lord-God who loves us so much and is so infinitely patient with us, that He will go to any lengths to establish a relationship with each of His precious, unique children.  And some of us are just wired such that we need to touch to believe.  And, yes, blessed are those who have not seen and do believe.  But I’m betting even those first touched Jesus through a parent, a friend, a pastor who had the courage to open their life & will so that Jesus could flow through their unique, personal gifts to LOVE His brothers & sisters.

A C T S (Another Chance To Sing!) – Lord, just for today, help me to Love everyone I meet with Your Infinite Patience and Appreciation and Forgiveness and Acceptance.  May I celebrate every stranger, friend, associate, family member I meet in perfect peace & harmony with You.  May our piety, study, & action lead each of us to a deeper appreciation of You as we experience a deeper appreciation of our brothers and sisters.

De Colores!

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