Saturday, July 4, 2015
We hold these truths to be self-evident,
that all men are created equal,
that they are endowed by their Creator
with certain unalienable Rights,
that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness,
that to secure these rights
Governments are instituted among Men,
deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed....
Today is the day to ask ourselves if we really believe this
and act on it. Do we vote? Do we use our freedom for the
Friday, July 3, 2015
"The truth will set you free....If the Son frees you, you will indeed be free," says Jesus (John 8:31,36.) Too many think freedom means every man for himself. The freedom that our founders declared in 1776 was freedom to govern ourselves. They envisioned us using our freedom to work together for the good of all.
Thursday, July 2, 2015
"When Christ freed us," says St. Paul in his letter to the Galatians, "he meant us to remain free. (5:1)"
He tells us not to use our freedom for self indulgence, but for the common good. Freedom enables us to make ourselves slaves, not to the Law, but to one another in love.
(I liked the picture too much not to use it. Click on the picture to enlarge it. You can see the flag better.)
Thursday, June 25, 2015
At the beginning of his letter to the Galatians St. Paul swears that he received the Good News directly in a vision of the Risen Christ and began immediately to preach it. Purely by God's grace he was changed from a persecutor of Christians to a powerful preacher of the Gospel (1:11-20.)
I think of how much more gradually and through many intermediaries God called me to preach the Gospel. I too had done nothing to earn the calling.
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
The evening after the longest day.
Jesus asked Peter three times, "Do you love me?"
Each time Peter replied, "Lord, you know I love you?"
Jesus three times, "Then shepherd my sheep."
Leadership among the followers of Jesus grows out of love.
He asks us also, "Do you love me?"
Monday, June 22, 2015
I sat on the deck for several hours last evening reading and watching the sun move toward the horizon on the longest day of the year. As I lost myself in the Beauty and warmth of the sun, it became easy to understand how ancient peoples worshiped it and built places like Stonehenge and Newgrange to follow the sun. I felt God's presence. One of my nephews called, intensifying the awareness of God's presence and Love. We talked until the sun sank out of sight.
The color didn't begin until the sun had disappeared. I grabbed my camera and took lots of pictures. I think this was the best.
Friday, June 19, 2015
"Do you not yet have faith?" Jesus asks us, as he asked the disciples, when we are feeling hopeless in the face of disasters of nature and of human devising, or in the face of personal troubles.
We doubt even when we hear Jesus give a command to the sea as someone might give a command to a dog. Literally translated the Greek has Jesus saying, "Quiet! Be muzzled!"
Hearing that even the wind and the sea obey him inspires us to put ourselves entirely in the hands of Jesus, confident that he is always with us and can save us from whatever evil threatens to destroy us.