Focus Moment – Jan. 9, 2017

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Silence and Centering

“But the LORD is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him.” (Habakkuk 2:20)

Confession:

God of all mercy, you have marked us as your own; you have given us a new identity and made us part of the body of Christ. In doing so, you have called us to rise to new life and to live together in community. However, we have not been faithful to your call. We have forged our own identity and held to destructive habits. We confess we have failed to welcome others, broken bonds we have had with brothers and sisters, and served ourselves more than you. Forgive us, we pray, for the sake of Christ our Savior. Amen.

PAUSE FOR 2 MINUTES OF SILENCE

“By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27). Shortly after the Last Supper, Jesus tried to prepare His disciples for His death. He reminded them of what He had said numerous times, that He would be given over the authorities and be killed. But He was also reminding them to not be afraid because He was not leaving them alone or destitute. Jesus promised peace through “…the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name…” (John 14:26). Again the Holy Spirit is tied to one of the elements in the fruit of the spirit. Peace can be worldly – the absence of conflict. But this is not the peace that the Holy Spirit gives us. The Spirit gives us a heavenly peace which comes only from God. It is “…the peace of God which transcends all understanding…” (Phil 4:7). Like so many gifts from God we cannot comprehend the richness of the gift, we can only wallow in the luxuriousness of the gift. As Kim Gaines Eckert a psychologist and author wrote for the on-line Christianity Today magazine her.menutics, “…I am learning that peace isn’t something we feel; it’s where we are meant to live, in union with Christ.” So if you feel anxious, stressed, on-edge, not able to meet all of your own expectations remember to focus on the love and peace Christ offers you through the Holy Spirit. Then breathe.

Prayer 
In a world beset with violence, envy, bigotry, help me Lord, to live in Peace with You in my life and witness. Amen

Three key questions to ask as we prayerfully read the scriptures: 

  1. How am I to daily live?
  2. How am I daily living?
  3. What changes or growth do I need to make?

 2 Minutes of SILENT PRAYER & REFLECTION.

 

 

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