Abba’s Child

“How I treat my brothers and sisters from day to day, whether they be Caucasian, African, Asian, or Hispanic; how I react to the sin-scarred wino on the street; how I respond to interruptions from people I dislike; how I deal with ordinary people in their ordinary unbelief on an ordinary day will speak the truth of who I am more poignantly than the pro-life sticker on the bumper of my car.”~~Brennan Manning

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Good morning. It is . . . um . . . TUESDAY! Yes, that’s it! Tuesday, October 14, 2014.

Today is Face Your Fears Day? What is your greatest fear? Mine is being first in line when the train derails. At least I realize that this is somewhat irrational.

Back to work today! It seems like it’s been a very long time since I’ve been to work. I hope I remember what to do. Then there’s this “cloud” hanging over me, knowing that I have to work this Saturday.

Christi seems to be a little better this morning. Yesterday, she was so dizzy she could barely function. Not sure what is going on with this. She has had Vertigo, on and off, for a while, but Sunday night and yesterday, it was almost constant.

Tonight is our usual Huddle night, but Christi will be taking her mother to the dentist. Yes, you read that right. It’s a long story.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

(From The Divine Hours)

Oh come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!

Psalm 95:1-2
I rise before dawn and cry for help; I hope in your words.
Psalm 119:147
But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
Psalm 13:5
The heavens are yours; the earth also is yours; the world and all that is in it, you have founded them.
Psalm 89:11
Wait for the LORD and keep his way, and he will exalt you to inherit the land; you will look on when the wicked are cut off.
I have seen a wicked, ruthless man, spreading himself like a green laurel tree.
But he passed away, and behold, he was no more; though I sought him, he could not be found.
Mark the blameless and behold the upright, for there is a future for the man of peace.
But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed; the future of the wicked shall be cut off.
The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their stronghold in the time of trouble.
The LORD helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him.

Psalm 37:34-40
The Gloria
Glory be to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, so it is now and so it shall ever be, world without end. Alleluia. Amen.
The Concluding Prayer of the Church
Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought me in safety to this new day: Preserve me with your mighty power, that I may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by adversity; and in all I do direct me to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen.

Today’s Gospel Reading

And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction. The names of the twelve apostles are these: first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
Matthew 10:1-4

The choosing of the twelve disciples is recorded here. In Matthew’s abbreviated custom, he does not tell us, as we will see in another Gospel, that Jesus spent the night in prayer before making this “official.” There are a few names that we won’t hear much more about; the second James, Thaddaeus, and Simon the Zealot.

Today’s reading in Reflections for Ragamuffins is “The Core of My Existence.”

“My identity as Abba’s child is not an abstraction or a tap dance into religiosity. It is the core truth of my existence.” If we live under the “accepted tenderness” of the Father, it has a profound effect on our perception of reality, as well as on the way we respond to others and their situations. “How I treat my brothers and sisters from day to day, whether they be Caucasian, African, Asian, or Hispanic; how I react to the sin-scarred wino on the street; how I respond to interruptions from people I dislike; how I deal with ordinary people in their ordinary unbelief on an ordinary day will speak the truth of who I am more poignantly than the pro-life sticker on the bumper of my car.”

You see, being “pro-life” is more than just being against death. “We are sons and daughters of the Most High and are maturing in tenderness to the extent that we are for others–all others–to the extent that no human flesh is strange to us, to the extent that we can touch the hand of another in love, to the extent that for us there are no ‘others.'”

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.
Ephesians 5:15-16

Abba, Father! I am your child. That is something that you have driven home to me over the years. I will not doubt that. However, there are many times when I do not exhibit the characteristics of one who is your child, and that ought not be so. I pray that you draw out of me that which you have already put in me; compassion and tenderness for other people, to the extent that it is obvious that your Spirit is within me. When that person I don’t care for interrupts me, may I respond with grace and mercy. Help me to treat my brothers and sisters with the same tenderness which you have treated me! May the Spirit of Jesus be strong in me today, “to the extent that no human flesh is strange . . . to the extent that [I] can touch the hand of another in love . . .” May your love be active in my life and, therefore, also be active flowing out of my life.

I pray for this day, that our travel to and from work will be safe. I pray for a good work day today for both of us. I pray for Stephanie, that you would give her wisdom and understanding, and that she would be wise enough to keep herself out of situations that might result in the kind of bullying that she experienced a couple weeks ago. Thank you for bringing restoration to her friendship. I pray also that she would never find herself in a situation where she is perpetrating any bullying, herself.

May you keep me focused as I pray during my drive to work this morning.

Your grace is sufficient.

May we find our identity as Abba’s children to be the core of our existence today, and may that color the way we treat all people in our lives.

Grace and peace, friends.

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