Monday, November 12, 2018

Monday, November 12, 2018

Luke 23:42-43

Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’ He replied, ‘Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise.’

With me

The most sublime desire of our human hearts finds satisfaction here: You will be with me.

This is what we most need, to be with the Love who seeks always to be with us—and is, right there on the cross.

The Loving Mystery seeks us where we feel most lost and alone, most forgotten and cast off, when our hearts have no hope and surrender to sadness and anger.

Even there, especially there, God is present, sharing our pain and full of promise. Today, you will be with me in paradise.

Isn’t this what paradise is? It is to be with this great love, to know great love embracing all that you are, pain and joy, sorrow and hope. It is to be aware of this great love deep within, bubbling with hope that you are not and never will be lost.

And you won’t. For everything that is and everything you are is encompassed in this great love from whom we are never separate and with whom we will always be.

God’s nature is most clearly known in the cross where great love hears our cries, shares our sorrows and bears us into the paradise of the divine, loving presence. Today and forever.

Pr. David L. Miller

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Colossians 1:15-17

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible … all things have been created through him and for him. He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

You know

You have seen the beginning … and know the end.

You know the One from whom you come and the One to whom you go at the close of your earthly journey. You know the energy of life and love who holds all creation together, seeking ever to draw all things into loving unity.

Everything is destined to become one, united with the Loving Mystery who reveals the divine will in our brother and Lord, Jesus the Christ.

Look at him. Imagine his face blessing children and healing the broken. Imagine, too, how he rebukes all who would burden our souls with injustice, guilt or harsh demands. Look and know: He is the beginning and end of all things … and of each of us.

Jesus is the face of the eternal Christ, the cosmic Christ who works in all things since before the beginning of time. He reveals what is and was and will evermore be, a Love who creates and draws all creation into unity with Immeasurable Love.

The fullness of the fullness of God lives and speaks, blesses and heals through him. So we know: The beginning is life and love … and the end, too.

Look at him and know. Look at him and live.

Pr. David L. Miller

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Psalm 24:7

Lift up your heads, O gates!
   and be lifted up, O ancient doors!
   that the King of glory may come in.

You are the reason

You were not created to live in fear but with joy, to welcome the victor over every fear each new day.

God is like a victorious warrior returning from battle to Jerusalem. The city gates are thrown wide open in ecstatic joy to welcome the victor to the holy place, the temple, to shower the blessings of divine life and love, replacing anxiety with elation, sorrow with tears of joy.

The gates cannot open quickly enough to receive the victor in whose presence our souls brim, safe in the embrace of divine favor.

With each new day, we can pray, ‘Lift up your heads, O gates!”

Open the gates of deepest soul and welcome the Love who is victorious over all that furrows your brow and fevers your heart. This Love, this Holy One, comes to you anew every day, filled with the blessings of love and life.

Receive and know the victory God has won for you in the resurrection of Jesus the Christ. No death can hold him … or you. No sorrow is so deep that he cannot find you and break its hold.

You are the one for whom he has won the victory. For you, alone. Even if there were no others in the world. So lift up your gates. You are the reason.

Pr. David L. Miller

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Jeremiah 23:4
I myself will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the lands where I have driven them, and I will bring them back to their fold

With an everlasting love

The desire of God is for you.

The Loving Mystery seeks always to bring the broken home, to find the lost who are scattered, to draw the beloved into the divine heart that we may live beyond every fear, knowing the everlasting love that refuses to let us go.

This is the will of God for which we pray each time we gather and innumerable times on our own: “your will be done on earth as in heaven.”

The Holy One creates us that we may live in a community of blessing, gathered with all God’s people and guided by caring shepherds who reflect the divine heart.

In Jeremiah’s time, the shepherds—kings and leaders—failed to protect and nurture the people of God. They did not seek God’s will for the land. The nation was scarred by faithlessness, invaded and the population carried into foreign exile. Bad leaders divide and cause ruin.

But God’s passionate love does not wane or cool. With an everlasting love, God promises to begin again, in every generation, to gather the beloved into the divine heart where every fear and terror can be stilled in the community of blessing.

This is God’s promise, fulfilled in the saving one, Jesus the Christ, the faithful shepherd who seeks always to bring us home.

Pr. David L. Miller

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Isaiah 25:7-8

And he will destroy on this mountain
   the shroud that is cast over all peoples,
   the sheet that is spread over all nations; 
   he will swallow up death for ever.

Then the Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces,
   and the disgrace of his people he will take away from all the earth,
   for the Lord has spoken. 

Say, yes

There is a future beyond every future, a time beyond the present when the dreams of God and hungry souls will come true.

The dull shroud of death will be lifted by Love, who will wipe away every ounce of sadness that has ever creased our brows.

This is the promise, an eternal promise that has never changed through the centuries. It is written in the heart of God and echoes in our own hearts.

We hear it in every human cry for deliverance from the evil that haunts our lives, striking when we least expect even in the places where we most seek peace, our sanctuaries, our homes,  our circle of friends and even in the inner workings of our minds and bodies.

The shroud of evil, the powers that hate and destroy life, shadows our existence, something we manage to forget only on the sunniest of days, and for our nation … this is not one of those.

But even now the divine dream comes true. It is real. The hope of hungry hearts touches us in every act of decency, every ounce of compassion and care and in every heart that refuses to hate.

Refuse every thought and word of hatred that clouds your soul and darkens the shroud that weighs so heavily on our society and world.

Say, “Yes,” to the Love who promises a future beyond every future. 

Say, “Yes” to love, for every love is the appearance of that future even now in this time.

Say, “Yes,” for love is the presence of the Love who shakes off the shroud, dries our tears and breathes joy into our lungs.

Say, “Yes.” The holy future happens every time you choose to love and bless.

Pr. David L. Miller

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Jeremiah 31:8-9

See, I am going to bring them from the land of the north, and gather them from the farthest parts of the earth, among them the blind and the lame, those with child and those in labor, together; a great company, they shall return here. With weeping they shall come, and with consolations I will lead them back, I will let them walk by brooks of water, in a straight path in which they shall not stumble; for I have become a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn.

Ever-searching Love

The sweetest tears are those of coming home to who you are and where you belong.

We are treasured children of a Great Love who never stops searching for us in all the places we lose ourselves and forget who we are.

We spend days, years, even decades lost in a world of busy demands that crowd our minds, pushing and pulling us to be something or someone other than our truest selves.

Meeting the demands of the day, we forget and fail to pause and drink from the depths of that stream of living water that makes our hearts new, a stream that never runs dry.

But we are never fully lost, for the Great Love God is never stops searching for us in all the places we lose ourselves.

God is the ever-searching love who never stops, never gives up, never turns away, finding us along our wayward paths, gathering the beloved into a community of souls where one love is known and shared, where one love fills every heart, overcoming every division and imbuing every relationship.

There is no difference or division from Old Testament to the New. Our loving God has always been about one thing, creating a community of Great Love where we know who we are and where we belong.

Pr. David L. Miller

Monday, October 15, 2018

Monday, October 15, 2018

Job 38:1, 4-7

Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind: “Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone when the morning stars sang together and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy?

Join the song

Autumnal glory explodes across the western sky as an October sun sinks low, brilliant and burnt orange painting the horizon and reaching high to touch eternity in a final hallelujah for the light of the day that was … and the promise of the new one yet to be.

And I am alive to see and praise the Maker of the light beyond and within me, who graces my soul with the capacity for wonder and love. For it is love I know within and beyond the beauty of this Friday moment, a largeness and smallness, too.

For my heart is enlarged to embrace the wonder and grace of being alive and able to feel beauty and love that lifts me beyond words. And I am small, wonderfully small, struck dumb by the wonder of existence. Why should I be? Why should anything be … let alone …this?

Science tells me it took nearly 15 billion years to produce the glory of this speechless moment when the heavens declare the glory of the Loving Mystery whose breath gives me life. Fifteen billion.

But every moment was worth it. Every moment held within the promise of what my eye beholds and my hearts knows.

And it is love … no, Love, I know as my heart joins the song of the stars, the joy of those who know.

Pr. David L. Miller