Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Today’s reading

Philippians 4:8-9

“Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you” (Phil. 4:8-9).


Come, Lord Jesus. Peace escapes us. It lies in a land beyond our grasp. But perhaps that is our problem. We grasp and seek to hold for our own what can only be received with an open hand and a humble heart--and shared the same way, lest it be lost.

So young we learn life is about grasping what we want. Lines between “mine and not mine” quickly appear. Life is soon defined by enlarging what is mine, and competing with those who might take what I need to expand my importance, command and kingdom. It’s a movement of body and soul that stretches from the playpen to the world’s bloodiest streets.

And it kills us, Dear Friend. It separates our souls from the hearts of those we most need. It teaches us to fear. It erodes trust. It turns creation into a thing to be possessed, and human beings made in your image into mere objects of our manipulation.

Come Lord Jesus. Teach us the way of peace. Our hearts long for what you alone can give. You point us to all that is beautiful of Earth, all that is pure, all that is right and just, that pleases soul and mind, all that is worthy of praise and appreciation. You come and reveal the wonder of Eternity in your human face and hands, wide open in blessing.

And I know: All is gift, not to be possessed but received and savored as the outpouring of an eternal generosity that I cannot begin to comprehend, except with a heart of overwhelmed gratitude.

Peace begins in your boundless, divine generosity, O Loving Mystery. You take pleasure in giving the fullness of your life and beauty. May I see and savor all that is your joy to give that gratitude may teach me the way of peace. In the advent of your great self-giving, may your peace guard my heart and mind. Amen.

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