Thursday, 16 January 2014 22:24

Salvation: Now or Later?

"The salvation of the Lord" is a concept that echoes down through the Scriptures. I used to think of the promise of God's salvation as a promise for us in the far-off future. Like maybe after this life. But those early writers and characters were often in tough situations, and they were in need of immediate help, not of some far-off future help.  A quick look at various Bible translations shows that the Hebrew word that is translated as 'salvation' is also translated as 'real help', 'victory', and 'deliverance' at times in other translations. This points to the nowness of God's help for us in our time of need.
One of the most well-known demands of Jesus is to 'turn the other cheek'. He says that when somebody hits us on our right cheek, that we should turn the other cheek. For a long time I have struggled at what Jesus was trying to get at here. I've read with interest what others have written about it but not been entirely satisfied. Certainly its not consistent with Jesus' sayings or actions to think that he was saying that we should just allow ourselves to be mistreated by others. So, what was he saying?  What came to me early this morning is that maybe Jesus was saying that no matter what punch is thrown at us, we need to stay on course--we need to continue to proceed with our daily, God-directed thoughts and activities. This punch, which might seem to come from a person, is really just evil. So it is evil, not the person, that needs to be handled.   So how do we handle and destroy evil?
Saturday, 20 July 2013 16:40

Like Riding a Bike

My first bike was on an old sting ray that didn't have a seat, so we put a pillow on the seat stem. I grew up out in the country with steep, bumpy roads that were not friendly to little kids on bikes. However, we did have a concrete strip by the house which showed some forgiveness to me, the beginner. At times healing can be a little like riding a bike.  Riding on that concrete pad in front of our house, I learned how to balance, pedal, and steer. But I wasn't aware of all the mechanics and physics that were keeping me up. Similarly, as we pray specifically for some healing, we come to better understand the goodness, power, and everywhereness of God. And that brings a cure to whatever is ailing us. But we don't have to know all there is about God to bring about healing. Healing requires only a little change in thought, one fresh insight into the nature of God and of Her awesome creation.
Saturday, 05 January 2013 04:51

Praying Without Any Destination

Do you ever pray without any destination in mind? I mean, often when I’m praying, I am praying with a destination in mind. I'm praying for something; not for an object, but to find healing. Maybe for myself, or maybe for someone else, or maybe for some particular community or world issue. This kind of specific prayer—acknowledging that the power, love and presence of God is all that is really right where the specific problem seems to be—brings healing.