Friday, November 03, 2006

Friday, November 3, 2006

Today’s reading

Philippians 2:25-30

“Still, I think it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus--my brother and coworker and fellow soldier, your messenger and minister to my need; for he has been longing for all of you, and has been distressed because you heard that he was ill. He was indeed so ill that he nearly died. But God had mercy on him, and not only on him but on me also, so that I would not have one sorrow after another. I am more eager to send him, therefore, in order that you may rejoice at seeing him again and that I may be less anxious. Welcome him in the Lord with all joy, and honor such people, because he came close to death for the work of Christ, risking his life to make up for those services that you could not give me.” (Phil. 2:25-30).


One word, Dearest Friend, you require but a single word to move me into the joyful mystery of your life. The word today: ‘brother.’ I get on a plane and travel to a place unknown to me, to meet familiar faces I have never met. I travel 800 miles to learn new names only to discover I have known them for years.

I come to a new place and find that I never left home. For you have been there long before me, waiting for my plane. The place and souls I meet are homes of your abiding; hence they are my home. The faces are those of my brothers and sisters, my mothers and fathers.

Walking among them, I hear familiar laughter and I know: You are here. And here I belong. I come all this way to discover ... again ... that I can never leave home, for I dwell in the geography of your grace. There is nowhere I have ever traveled where you left me without brothers and sisters. For in each place, I encounter those who bear the wonder of the Love you are. There is nowhere I cannot meet you and know again the home for which my heart has longed since I was small.

Thank you. May these tears of gratitude offer more perfect praise than my words can for this communal sacrament of the love in which you hold us. The tears are your work; the words but tortured attempts to speak a wonder and joy that far transcends mind and understanding.

You join me, you join us, in the harmonious unity of the love that dances at your divine heart. Today, grant me the good pleasure of holy gratitude for the home I find in you, among your beloved people. Amen.

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