On a Mission of Mercy
Everything has a beginning. Every idea, every journey starts somewhere. Whether it’s one small step in a new direction or a major event, from that point forward nothing is ever the same. It’s not always comfortable. It’s not always easy. But it’s a start. Mercy is giving something to someone that they don’t deserve. God is merciful to even the worst offenders, sinners, and law-breakers. This means that even though He knows of our guilt, we are always forgiven. We too are called to be on mission to show mercy.
Spiritual Acts of Mercy
Works of mercy can be directed not only toward the needs of the body, but the needs of the soul as well. Sometimes the most serious form of poverty can be the poverty of the spirit, not only because it drains life of all energy, joy, and sense of purpose, but also because it is the one kind of poverty that can last forever. The human spirit longs for the nourishment of truth, goodness, and beauty so that it can be healthy and strong to grow to be prepared for the life God intended.
In these brief four weeks of Ordinary Time between the Christmas Season and Lent, we get a powerful glimpse of God’s amazing mercy. In the Old Testament readings and in the Gospel over the next four weeks, we can see our stories of exile in the stories of the prophets and discover the liberation that comes through Jesus. If this sounds a little too churchy, don’t fret – we also get a juicy story from St. Paul that any parent with a house full of squabbling siblings will likely be able to relate to. When our story gets entwined with God’s amazing mercy, we become willing servants extending mercy as one body, one body in Christ.
Merry ? Christmas
For many, the Christmas season brings feelings of loneliness, heartache, bitterness, and hardship of mounting bills from overspending trying to capture the “merry”. To wish someone a “Merry” Christmas implies imparting happiness, joy, and goodwill because we recognize the gift of Jesus in our lives. Many of us took the Advent-ure in Mercy this year, practicing simple acts of kindness. Let us take time during this Christmas season to see beyond the surface of a simple “Merry Christmas” wish to see how our continued acts of kindness bring mercy to a hurting world.
Advent–ures in Mercy
Here comes the holiday season! Christmas is coming! Are you ready for the Advent-ure? Do you look forward to Christmas or dread it? Anticipation and anxiety often go hand in hand, especially if we are trying to live up to the expectations of children, family, friends, neighbors and co-workers to create the perfect holiday. But what if you took a different approach in preparation for the celebration? Come on an Advent-ure… It might be unknown territory, but this risky and bold undertaking to encounter the God of Mercy is sure to bring an exciting and meaning-filled Christmas to light.
Teacher, Teach Me
One of the many names used to address Jesus is “Teacher”. Matter of fact, he is called Teacher about ninety times in the gospels. Jesus used various teaching styles, for example he told stories or parables to illustrate certain points. Although Jesus occasionally used formal sermons to teach, like for instance his outline of “blessedness” principles for holy living in the Sermon on the Mount, he more frequently taught as he walked and talked with people. He is considered the best teacher of all time. What lessons lie ahead for us? Let’s pull up a seat and listen together…
On The Go
Slow Down – going too fast. Time for an intentional inventory of upcoming activities. How does your faith fit into it all? Is faith a way of life or is church just one more thing to do?
You Are What You Eat
Jesus invited the people to pull up a seat, recline, to relax, and be fed. He doesn’t serve us “fast food” but invites us to a fine dining experience. Jesus offers himself to us as the living bread. Like the food that we eat provides nutrition for our bodies, Jesus provides nutrition for our souls.
Every Life Area is Important. Your body, mind, and spirit are intertwined and neglecting one area can disable other areas in your life. If you are not paying attention to certain areas in your life, you will feel out of control. To achieve balance, it is time to RECALCULATE! Balance starts with our relationships; with ourselves, with others and with God. Regardless of what you believe, regardless of how you behave, Jesus invites you into a relationship with him… He invites everyone to Follow…