Thursday, 23 February 2012

The Day After Ash Wednesday Retreat

Ash Wednesday Lenten Noon Hour Worship yesterday at St. Matthew's  Cathedral here in Brandon was fantastic.   It is wonderful to be able to sit down together with all denominations and all share the same enthusiasim for sharing the Good News.   

Dean Robin Walker preached on Jacob wrestling with God and how we too wrestle with God.  Over the next six weeks,  each week's theme concerns a Biblical Character who wrestled with God.  What I found hilarious was when Father Robin stopped preaching and said, "I have to apologize ladies,  there are no female Bible people during the next six weeks,  only men."   And wasn't I good that I didn't pip up, "That is because the Biblical Women got God's message the first time around and God didn't literally have to wrestle to make the Biblical Women hear God's Words!"    Heh heh heh.

Aaaah,  what a great time of retreat in the midst of a full day.   A time to reflect upon God's  word.  A time to learn another worshipping community's  Hymns of Praise.  A time to gather together over a meal to learn more about each other.    

Prayer:   Return to the Lord.   For God is all tenderness and compassion.  From our stumblings,  God will deliver us.   From our shortcomings,  God will protect us.   From our weaknesses,  God will provide us with strength.  This we ask in Jesus’ name.  Amen.

Read:  St. Matthew 6: 31 – 34

Are you wondering if this day’s  scripture lesson is a typo?  After all,
we read  from St. Matthew 6: 25 – 33 yesterday.  Are you asking why we would re-read
some of the same verses today?     When the New Testament was being formed,  it was up to the hand-scribe to put Chapters and verses onto each Book. The Hand-scribes also put  verses together to make one idea or one lesson.   Verses that look like a new paragraph are new ideas.    In many Bibles,  verse 34 is often found all by itself.   Yet this important verse is so linked with the previous three verses that we’ve put them together for today’s  meditation.

What are we to do when we worry?  Give the worry to God.   Jesus instructs the Disciples (and us too) to seek first the kingdom of God and all our needs will be shared with God.  If we get so preoccupied by getting,  we forget to respond to God’s giving.

Therefore,  “give  your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow.  God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”  (The
Message    St.
Matthew 6: 34)

Prayer:   This day,  O LORD,  we give You all our worries.  We give You all our concerns.  We give You all our inner turmoil.  For we know that You are our God and we are Your people.   Conform us to the truth of Your word in faith.  Keep us obedient to the teachings of the Gospel of our Saviour,  Jesus Christ.   And in all things we say,  Amen.

Many blessings!

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