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I was born with a genetic disadvantage; I lack what is called “sense of direction.” It’s not that I cannot find my way around a map; I can’t seem to map my mind to remember the four directions. To cope in the years before GPS, I asked for directions frequently....
Holy One, help me find my way to your highway. Amen.
These readings convey that God’s coming, or the coming of the Messiah, will be profoundly transforma- tive. The promises of messianic possibility work against our exhaustion, our despair, and our sense of being subject to fate. The psalm provides a comprehensive summary of the miracles wrought by God in the past to make new life possible. Jesus’ life and ministry embodied these large expectations of Israel. The prophetic oracle, psalm, and Gospel reading all move toward the practicality of the epistle reading, which demands that we allow this claim of new human possibility to permeate all of life. Our life is directed to the reality of God, the very God whom we dis- cern in our present and to whom we entrust our future.
• Read Isaiah 35:1-10. Where in your life do you feel that you have gone astray? After you realize you are lost, how do you return to the way that is God?
• Read Luke 1:47-55. When have you spoken fearlessly about a situation in your life?
• Read James 5:7-10. For what do you thirst?
• Read Matthew 11:2-11. What characteristics draw you to a
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"Often we pray expecting God to take away our problems. Prayer usually doesn't change our circumstances, but it can change our reaction to them. If we can relinquish control and give everything to God, we may find greater clarity. Whatever we are going through, God is with us. And God is bigger than any problem we might face."
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