Tuesday, October 26, 2010

following Jesus along the Narrow Road . . .

I sometimes (often?) wonder why so many Christians are satisfied with “consumer christianity” and avoid following Jesus . . . being a disciple, an apprentice to the One who redeemed us?
Psalm 119:141-143
141 Though I am lowly and despised,
I do not forget your precepts.
142 Your righteousness is everlasting
and your law is true.
143 Trouble and distress have come upon me,
but your commands are my delight.
Jeremiah 9:23-24
23 This is what the LORD says:
"Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom
or the strong man boast of his strength
or the rich man boast of his riches,
24 but let him who boasts boast about this:
that he understands and knows me,
that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness,
justice and righteousness on earth,
for in these I delight,"
declares the LORD.
Matthew 11:25-26
25At that time Jesus said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 26Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.

I am small and despised.''Yes, but have I not said, "Do not despise the day of small things!"?' Amy Carmichael

I'd rather be a little thing climbing up than a big thing tumbling down Old Sunday-school song

The man to whom little is not enough will not benefit from more. Columbanus

Many a man has grown upright because his tendrils have clung to a cross. Hugh Redwood

By Your cross and resurrection You have redeemed the world. Say but the word, give me understanding, and I shall live. I shall not die, but I shall live and proclaim what You have done, Lord. Just say the word, Lord. Speak it to me. There is a power within the word You speak which is greater than the word itself. Give me understanding. Only You can impart revelation. People may explain to me, but only You can reveal it to me, even then, in a way that makes me realize it. Realize that word within my heart. Realize Your word in my life. Make it real, Lord, in me. Let Jesus the Living Word become flesh again, and live among us, spoken through our lives to a world that is dying for want of the knowledge of Him. Send forth Your word and heal them. Let Your glory be over all the earth.
Arthur Burt and Andy Raine

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Patrick Perching Eagle

I have used that name in my storytelling times, but it has great significance in my own life and that of my family. My parents named me after St. Patrick (patron saint of Ireland), and the parallels of his life and that of my family are seen in many ways. Recently, a pastor of mine suggested I read "Stories of the Celtic Soul Friends - Their Meaning for Today" by Edward Sellner. The chapter on Patrick of Armagh was a true revelation to me. That book coupled with another by Michael Steltenkamp (SOJ) titled Nicholas Black Elk - Medicine Man, Missionary, Mystic, completes for me a "who I am" in God's Kingdom and how that has been formed through my family's history. Lakota and Celtic - a beautiful mix of God's making.

Now, while I find these books to have great personal interest, I can also recommend them to those who love stories of the Celtic saints, and those who love native American history and culture, especially in the 1800's to early 1900's. For me, these books, and God's Word and Spirit have given me another "guidepost(s)" along the Narrow Road.

Mitakuye Oyasin Bennacht De Ort, Patrick Perching Eagle

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

a "healing ministry" . . . ???

PnP On The Road – a “healing ministry”???

It is your business and others' to go forth, being available to
them face to face, for that is the only way of bringing them to Me. For when you are face to face with them, you love them, and once you love them, then I can speak through you.
From Molchanie by Catherine de Hueck Doherty

His love that burns inside me impels me on the road to seek for Christ in the stranger's face or feel the absence of His touch, then to be His hands and feet.

Make friends of God's children; help those who are weak; forgetting in nothing, His blessing to seek.
William D. Longstaff

Oh the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person; having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but to pour them all out, just as they are, chaff and grain together, knowing that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and then, with the breath of kindness, blow the rest away.
George Eliot

If your heart is right with my heart, give me your hand, the right hand of fellowship, the right hand of brotherhood. If your heart is right with my heart, give me your hand. Anon from Celtic Daily Prayer

2 Corinthians 1:3-5 (New International Version)
The God of All Comfort
3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. 5For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.

PnP On The Road . . . it is, in a sense, a healing ministry in that we simply allow ourselves to be used by the Lord wherever and to whomever He sends us. To be vulnerable and available is the rule we live by.

Christ as a light, Christ as a shield, may the Peace of the Lord Christ go with you.

[Inspired by Celtic Daily Prayer, Aidan readings for October 13 and the daily morning prayers.]

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

is it the dweeb, or our Father disciplining us???

"When things seem really bad we might need to hesitate before assuming it's against us and out to get us. As Gamaliel pointed out, we need to be careful just in case it's God we'd be fighting in rejecting it." [from Celtic Daily Prayer, Aidan readings, October 11]

It's not necessarily always the dweeb . . . we too often give him too much credit for trouble in our lives. We need to stop, look and listen to see if God is trying to get our attention.

"Great questions stand unanswered before us, and defy our best wisdom. Though our ignorance is great, at least we know we do not know. When we don't know what to say (or do), best to keep quiet and seek Him." Peter Marshall

He disciplines those He loves . . . Proverbs 3:12 & Hebrews 12:6 . . . among others.

The ancient fathers and mothers (a Kempis, Teresa de Avila, and more) have learned this lesson and passed it along for those who would "hear" it.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

A Two Month Old Changes Everything

A Two Month Old Changes Everything . . . Then Again, Maybe Not?!
A two month old grandson changes everything . . . well, it seems like it anyway?! Quiet time that used to be first and foremost for an hour or more each morning has become baby feeding, changing and entertaining time . . . déjà vu!
Riley, the dog, takes his usual place at my feet and attempts to entertain little Anthony when I finally get to “quiet time”, but sometimes the little guy just wants to be held. And, because I’m an “old guy” these days . . . well, it suits me fine . . . all things in God’s time.
The Lord has truly placed eternity in my heart and is allowing me to live His Kingdom life here and now. Each day, each moment is a blessing and a gift (ah, such sweet “knowledge”, thanks be to God my heart has finally grasp it.)
I have been acquainted with “earthly” death, my own, and that of others close to me. I fear it not, and in that, find great freedom and Peace. The prayer attributed to St. Francis has become my own:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon:
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope
where there is darkness, light
where there is sadness, joy
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.
More encouragement from Celtic Daily Prayer (my daily devotional):
In the night Your song will be with me, will be with me, in the night. A song keeps singing in my heart for I am Yours and You, Lord, are mine, and all my times are in Your hand.
Lord of my heart,
give me vision to inspire me, that working or resting,
I may always think of You. Lord of my heart,
give me light to guide me, that, at home or abroad,
I may always walk in Your way.
From Robert van de Weyer's anthology, Celtic Fire
With Your inspiration the pilgrim is fired, is filled with courage to tackle the way.
He treks through Tear Valley and makes it a spring, a blessing, like early rain bringing new life. He takes the path inward to stand before God.

Believer, hold Him high that all may see the light of Jesus in a son of man.
Poor Joseph fell foul of his brothers' jealousy. In the bottom of his pit it took a lot of imagination to believe any good could ever come of it.
From The Othona Psalms

The earth is full of Your steadfast love, but now teach me Your commands. It is me that is out of step, out of tune, discordant and jarring.
The brightest colour upon His palette is of no use to the Artist if it refuses to blend with the others.
Hugh Redwood
We need to find our place in God's purpose, receptive and open to His direction and inspiration; and all creation waits as it were on tiptoe in excited anticipation of what can happen if we assume the destiny for which we were created, and stand as 'sons of God'. We become 'Christ-carriers'.
Anyone who strives to climb out of a pit will not pray that its sides shall be smooth.
Hugh Redwood
Withdraw not Thy hand, O my God, from me here, O Chief of the chiefs, O withdraw not Thy hand.
From Poems of the Western Highlanders
When things seem really bad we might need to hesitate before assuming it's against us and out to get us. As Gamaliel pointed out, we need to be careful just in case it's God we'd be fighting in rejecting it.
Great questions stand unanswered before us, and defy our best wisdom. Though our ignorance is great, at least we know we do not know. When we don't know what to say, keep us quiet.
Peter Marshall
O God, forgive the poverty and pettiness of our prayers. Listen not to our words, but to the yearning of our hearts. Hear beneath our petitions the crying of our need.
Peter Marshall
God, You hear within us the groanings so deep they cannot even be uttered. Let Your tender mercies come unto us that we may live again.
'Can I not do with you as the Potter?' says the Lord God. Lord, help me to realize that I am Your project.
Have Your own way, Lord, have Your own way You are the Potter - I am the clay Mould me and make me after Your will while I am waiting, yielding and still.
Adelaide A. Pollard
'Can I not do with you as the Potter?' 'Yes.'