September 18, 2022

Dearly Beloved,

We move this week from the flooding of the world to the call of Abram, from judgment to grace. In God remembering God’s promises, the primary focus shifts our actions (or inactions) to God’s actions. God is always the starting point (as we read later in the 10 commandments). Our lives begin with the Creator and progress because of who God is – not because of who we are, but whose we are.

In our weekly Bible studies, we are looking at prayer from within the biblical narrative. We are learning different prayer practices and how they might draw us closer in our relationship with God. This week, we talked about meditation. Thomas Merton wrote: “…meditation and contemplative prayer, is not so much a way to find God as a way of resting in him whom we have found, who loves us, who is near to us, who comes to us to draw us to himself. By “prayer of the heart” we seek God himself present in the depths of our being and meet him there by invoking the name of Jesus in faith, wonder and love. (Thomas Merton, Contemplative Prayer)

We are invited to rest in God’s loving presence, to be filled with that surpasses all understanding that can be found in Christ alone. In Eastern religions, meditations is about emptying our thoughts; Christian meditation is when we empty our thoughts of ourselves and fill them with the love and grace of our Creator.

peace in Christ,
Pastor Jen