Loving One Another

Archive for the ‘God’ Category

Let Me Wash Your Feet!


Foot Washing

“You wanna do WHAT?”

“I’m going to wash your feet!”

“No way! You’re my Boss. I can’t have you washing my feet. I should be washing YOURS!”

“No, you need to let me wash your feet. If you don’t, then you’re fired! You will no longer belong in my company!”

“OK, Lordy me!! If that’s the case, don’t just wash my feet; wash all of me – my head to my toes, and polish my toes, too!”

toes-polished.jpg

“Well, since you have taken a bath, you are clean – except for your feet. You and your friends (except for one) are all clean. I just need to wash your feet!”

“Well, my Lord, if that’s the case, alright then, go ahead.”

After he had washed my feet, He said, “You don’t understand what I have just done, do you? You call me your Boss, your Teacher, and your Lord. It is right that you do so, because that is what I am. But, what I have just done for you, I mandate that you do for others.”

“You want me to wash my friends’ feet?!”

“That’s right. I have set an example for you, so that you will do just what I have done for you… Now that you know this truth, how happy you will be if you put it into practice.”

“I’d be happy to do just that, my Lord! With love, I want to find some feet to wash.

Does it matter what age they are?”

Maundy Thursday

Today is Maundy Thursday. Have you heard that term? Do you know the origin of the word Maundy? I didn’t, so I looked it up on the dictionary app on my iPhone. Here’s what I discovered:

maundy =

  1. the cermony of washing the feet of the poor, especially commemorating Jesus’ wahing of the disciples’ feet.
  2. also called maundy money (I read that and wondered if it was the origin of the term “money laundering” – but I read on) money distributed as alms in conjunction with the ceremony of maundy (foot washing) – as in Maundy Thursday
  3. origin: 1250 – 1300; Middle English maude <Old French mande>, Latin mandatum – command – Jesus’ words to the disciples after He washed their feet  (John 13:14-17)
  4. mandate

Happy Maundy Thursday, my friends.

It’s the day Jesus washed the disciples’ feet.
It’s the evening of the Last Supper.
It’s the night Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss.
It’s the night Jesus was arrested.

What’s happy about it?

You wanna do WHAT?

Let me wash your feet!

I’m gonna wash that kiss right offa them!

Hah!

baby foot with red kiss mark

Meaning

What does Jesus mean when He mandates us to wash one another’s feet?
Is it symbolic of some other kind of cleansing?
Or does He really mean for us to wash feet?

The kiss is the symbolism for Judas’ betrayal …

lovingHEARTSflying

. . . Why do you think Judas
(who was one of Christ’s followers – an Apostle, for cryin’ out loud)
betrayed Jesus with a kiss?

Morning Prayer


Morning Prayer

(adapted from The Open Church Foundation’s
prayer by Wallace Fridy)

bright dark clouds dawn dramatic

“This is the day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24

God, I am truly grateful for:

  • another day,
  • another morning
  • another hour,
  • another minute,
  • another chance
    to live and to serve You.

Please, God, today, free me from all:

  • fear of the future,
  • anxiety about tomorrow,
  • bitterness toward anyone,
  • cowardice in the face of danger,
  • laziness from work,
  • failure before opportunity, and
  • weakness when Your Power is at hand.

But, O God, please fill me with:

  • Love that knows no barriers,
  • Sympathy that reaches all,
  • Courage that can’t be shaken,
  • Faith strong enough for darkness,
  • Strength sufficient for my tasks,
  • Loyalty to Your Kingdom’s goal,
  • Wisdom to meet life’s complexities, and
  • Power to lift me to You.

 

Please, O God,
be with me for another day,
and use me in Your Will.

In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray.
     Amen

Celebrate Palm Sunday


img_6723

 

Celebrate Palm Sunday with branches

Like the ones His disciples laid

Across His path in Jerusalem –

A path on which our sinful debts were paid.

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Let each branch represent

A deed you’d like to see undone.

Give all regrets to Jesus, and

Lay those sins upon God’s Son.

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He knew as He was riding in

Upon a humble donkey’s back

That He was headed to fulfill

His earthly purpose – that’s a fact.

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With that triumphant entrance,

He willingly trudged Golgotha’s Hill.

Today Holy Week is beginning.

Receive its message. Heed and listen.
… Heart, be still.

I listened to the sermon in church this morning,
and as usual, I took notes in poetry.
Here is what I “took away”
from Rev. Jean Johnson’s message:

 

cross-sunset-sunrise-hill-70847.jpeg

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

“Commitment”
– reflections on Luke 22-23

Pageantry and wildly waving palm branches
Are not the acts that really matter.
Palm Sunday is about the difference
Between Christ’s commitment and our chatter.

People were involved as Christ entered
The city of Jerusalem to die;
But their focus soon returned home.
They forgot Jesus, abandoned Him without a cry.

Commitment is a hard road to tred.
It requires we stay when we’re through.
Stay beyond the time we think we’re done.
Tenacity’s hard for me and you.

Sometimes when we feel abandoned,
The emptiness of our heart makes room
For the One who never left us.
He is there through our joy and in our gloom.

Christ gave His all on Golgotha Hill.
He died for us, for our salvation.
We need to walk that path with Him;
Live the pain, know the cost, delay elation.

Our faith voyage leads through Jerusalem.
We must walk the way of the cross.
Walk in commitment to Calgary,
Suffer the insults, and know the loss.

Amen?

A New Name


A New Name

photo of rocks piled on top of each other

Photo by rasik on Pexels.com

God gave Peter a new name:

“And on this Rock I will build

My Church, ” Jesus declared.

Peter must have been thrilled.

low angle photo of gray concrete building with statues

Photo by Sarah Acconcia Norris on Pexels.com

My husband calls me Rocki.

It’s not cuz I’m a rock!

It’s cuz like a rocket

I used to disappear before he could talk!

scenic view of fire at night

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Affectionately, he changed it

When I slowed down and waited

Until he got his thoughts out

And acknowledged what he’d stated.

slow signage

Photo by Song kaiyue on Pexels.com

So now when he calls me Rocki,

I know our house is built

Upon the Rock of Christ’s command:

“Know I am God, be stilled!”

alcohol blur bright burnt

Photo by PhotoMIX Ltd. on Pexels.com

 

………. I know I am the:

R ichly blessed

O bedient

C hild of the

K ing who

I nhabits & Inspires me!

 

Do you have a new name
born out of your
changed identity
and behavior?

Are You Leader or Follower?


Leader or Follower?

Some days I’m the leader;
Other days I like to follow.
But sometimes following
Is more than I can swallow.

animal beast big carnivore

Sometimes the folks who lead
Don’t seem to care the least
About the folks they’re leading;
They’re like this ugly beast.

The beast who tells us lies,
Who says “Do as I say,
But not as I do,” you know?
He tries to force his way.

We are not stupid sheep;
We know which way is right.
So stand your ground, my friends.
Don’t let him push his might.

The one who makes the rules,
Usually wins the game, they say.
But, some rules should be constant –
Don’t let him lead you astray.

My Inspiration

This poem was inspired by a Time Magazine article titled, “Whose standards will Democrats embrace?” by the eloquent former editor of Time Magazine, Nancy Gibbs.
This topic of leaders and followers is heavy on my heart. It’s not the simple kind of following that I wrote about years ago when I was looking at healthy parent-child relationships:

Follow Me

Days Gone By

When I was a youngster, one of the popular TV programs was “Father Knows Best.” I related to that … and so did a lot of my peers. Mom and Dad talked things over. They  presented a righteous front of solidarity. Sometimes Mom (in fact usually Mom) laid down the laws. Together, they enforced them. We were the “Leave it to Beaver” generation whose nuclear family lived by the universal rules spelled out in the Ten Commandments. “Do not lie” was paramount among them. “Love One Another,” was another. “Be kind to your neighbor,” right?

Appreciate one another’s differences. Know that we all are part of one body – and the head needs the hand; the leg needs the foot. We need to live in harmony.

What has happened to our Rules to Live By??

Garnering Gratitude


Have you tried your hand at 
Haiku/Senryu Poetry?

This post on Facebook inspired me
to try my hand at Senryu
using the human emotion of gratitude.

Thank God

Great God Gives Gladness
Gracious Goodness-Giving God
Garners Gratitude

Haiku/Senryu Poetry 

Every word in the Haiku must begin with the same letter.

When written in English, it generally follows the syllabic pattern 5-7-5

Haiku/Senryu Poem (also called Human Haiku) is an unrhymed Japanese verse usually written in the present tense and only references to some aspect of human nature or emotions. Senyrus possess no references to the natural world and thus stand out from nature/seasonal Haiku.

(Published with gratitude for the magic of 11:11 am on the 11th of this marvelous month)

 

Try it, my friends.
Share yours with me!

The Forgiving Father


Happy Sunday, my friends. Did you attend church today?

We did – and I took my usual sermon notes in poetry.
And we sang a great version of the scripture lesson.
I share it with you below.

classic close up draw expensive

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

The scripture the sermon was based on was Luke 15:1-32.

It is a familiar passage for most Christians.
It includes the parables of three things LOST: a Sheep, a Coin, and a Son.

The song we sang  after the sermon was a beautiful poetic summary of the scripture.
The words, written in 1999 by Carolyn Winfrey Gillette are so “right on!”
I HAVE to share them with you.
.
As you read these lyrics, try singing them to the tune of “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.” It’s magical! It’s gorgeous!!

.
God’s Great Love is So Amazing

 

Verse 1

God’s great love is so amazing!
See a shepherd with his flocks!
Ninety-nine are safely grazing;
One is lost among the rocks.

That good shepherd goes and searches
Till he finds the one astray.
So God says to fill our churches
With the ones who’ve lost their way.

Verse 2

God in love is always seeking!
See a woman with her broom!
For a single coin she’s sweeping
Every corner of the room.

When it’s found she calls each neighbor,
Telling friends from all around.
So God says to search and labor
Till God’s precious ones are found.

Verse 3

God keeps waiting, searching, yearning!
See a father’s heartfelt joy!
Thankful for the son’s returning.
He runs out to greet his boy.

To the angry older brother,
Hear the father’s patient call.
So God says to love each other,
For in Christ, God loves us all.

man holding boy

 

My sermon notes are not as professional as the poem above.
They lack the a-b-a-b rhyme scheme.
Mine is based on an a-b-c-b scheme.
You probably can’t sing them to a chosen tune.
But they capture the message I heard being preached.
See if you can relate to how our pastor took this scripture
and spun it into a lesson for us all.

The Forgiving Father

Sermon notes 3/31/19
Jan Beekman’s “take-away” on
Rev. Jean Johnson’s message
Madison Valley Presbyterian Church
Ennis, Montana

 

Leave ninety-nine vulnerable
For the sake of finding one?
The Lost Sheep story tells us
That’s exactly what Jesus woulda done.

 

Leave a pocketful of change
For the one coin lost?
Yes, that’s what Jesus said.
Look carefully at the cost!

 

The cost of losing valued
Possessions can be very high.
We leave behind the flock
And fly off to pie in the sky!

 

Open your eyes to the One
Who is right in your midst.
The Shepherd among us
Seeks the lost. He insists.

 

The least among us are
Lost until they’re found.
We’re to be the seekers
Who search, listening for the sound.

 

Listen for the lost sheep’s plea,
And know, in fact, we are they.
We all need to be rescued
From the flighty life we live today.

 

Jesus really spoke not of
Coins and sheep, but us.
We are the ones who need
To be found. We must!

 

We must seek and be found
By Christ who loved us first.
Let’s join His rescued sheep
And rejoice as He quenches our thirst.

 

Christ shows us God’s real joy
With the parable of father and son.
The wayward boy returned home.
He was lost, now found. Victory won!

Welcome Home!
Come join the party.

Amen?

Tell me about the message at your church or temple or synagogue today.
What was your take-away?

 

 

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