What If We Were Not Afraid?

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Click here for Readings

Today, in Mercy, our readings talk about fear, love and faith – three spiritual dynamics that I think are related in this way:

seesaw

When our faith is strong, it drives down our natural fears and allows a supernatural love to grow in us.

fear

We may not think of ourselves as a fearful person. I didn’t. But then I spent time praying with this phrase from spiritual writer Paula D’Arcy:

Who would I be,
and what power would be released in my life,
if I were not dominated by fear?

In that prayer, I began to acknowledge some of the buried fears that can paralyze our souls.

Fear of:words

John says to give these cold fears into the warm love of God. 

Jesus says to look through these fears to fix our faith on Him, ever-present even in our storms.

May we be brave enough today to acknowledge our fears and place them into God’s loving hands.

 Music: Oceans ~ Hillsong United (Lyrics below.)

Oceans
Words and Music by Matt Crocker, Joel Houston & Salomon Ligthelm
© 2012 Hillsong Music Publishing (APRA). All rights reserved. International copyright secured.

VERSE 1:
You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep my faith will stand

CHORUS:
I will call upon Your Name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

 VERSE 2:

Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You’ve never failed and You won’t start now

BRIDGE:
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Saviour

 LAST CHORUS:
I will call upon Your Name
Keep my eyes above the waves
My soul will rest in Your embrace
I am Yours and You are mine

When Darkness Looms

Friday, June 1, 2018

Readings: http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/060118.cfm

temple Mark 11

Today, in Mercy, Mark’s Gospel paints a picture of Jesus in a whirlwind of emotions. He has come to Jerusalem well aware of the pharisaical negativity stalking him. Yet, recently – on Palm Sunday – the crowds had gathered around Him in what later would prove to be a fickle adulation.

After an overnight in Bethany, He returns to Jerusalem disgruntled, cursing a fig tree for its barrenness. He casts the money-changers from the Temple, tossing the tables over in an angry display. This side of Jesus must have made the disciples uneasy and afraid. They too begin to realize that the forces of evil and death are closing in on Jesus.

What lesson can we learn for our lives when dark times begin to overwhelm us? Jesus gives us the answer late in the reading:

~ Have faith in God. 

~ Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you will receive it.

~ Forgive, so that you may be forgiven.

It is a formula we will see Jesus practice in His own Passion and Death. Like all true leaders, He practices what He preaches. He is teaching his followers – us – how to live in our dark times.

Music: The Lord is Near ~ The Dameans

Breath and Heartbeat of God!

Saturday, April 14, 2018: Today, in Mercy, Jesus walks across the stormy water to meet his frightened disciples. They are afraid of the wind, the night and the wonder of Jesus. As human beings, we harbor many fears even if we pretend to be very brave. We may be afraid of failure, loneliness, responsibility, insignificance, aging, dying or a thousand other things. Essentially, what we most fear is that we might be unloved or unlovable. Jesus comes to us through the night of any fear to prove that we are irrevocably loved. Even in darkness, we are the precious breath and heartbeat of God!

“Who would I be, and what power would be expressed in my life,
if I were not dominated by fear.” ~Paula D’Arcy~

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