The nature of relationship with God is deeply personal. This is not a relationship between a philosophical construct and humanity in general. The relationship exists between the Creator of the universe and individual humans. “Your eyes beheld my unformed substance. In your book were written all the days that were formed for me, when none of them as yet existed.”
God engages in our daily lives, and we can encounter God’s presence in our everyday experiences because we belong to God. The psalmist reminds us that God knows who we are and, more importantly, God knows whose we are. We cannot begin to imagine the many ways that reinforce such a strong and enduring connection. Nor can we realize how much God cares for each person. The phrase “joined at the hip” does not even begin to explain this intimate connection.
Because God created us with the freedom to accept or reject relationship, we may freely choose to live beyond a connection to God. But God remains connected to us even, and especially, when we feel far removed from divine grace and mercy. Our freedom does not include our ability to deny who we are and from whence we came: We are God’s.
Since we belong to God, we can affirm that all humankind belongs as well. How comforting it is to know the extent and power of God’s love for each of us and God’s commitment to be in relationship with all of us as we both know and are known by the Divine! As we experience the reality of God’s love, we can now affirm that we do not want to escape God’s love.

Dear God, give me the grace to know, even on those days when you seem far away, that you made me with intent and love. I now want to draw on your love with grateful abandon. Amen.

Pray the Scriptures Using Audio Lectio
Read John 1:43-51

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Lectionary Week
January 8–14, 2018
Scripture Overview

We read the stories of Samuel and the calling of Jesus’ disciples in John, and it is easy to feel jealous. God spoke so directly into their lives that they should have had, it seems to us, full and unwavering confidence in their calling. Didn’t they have an unfair spiritual advantage over us? However, the psalmist reminds us that God knows and sees us individually just as well as God knew Samuel and Jesus knew his disciples. God has plans for us, even if they are revealed in less obvious ways. The reading from Corinthians is quite different in its message. Perhaps we can at least recognize that even if we never hear God’s audible voice, through scripture God still provides guidance for our lives.

Questions and Suggestions for Reflection

• Read 1 Samuel 3:1-20. In what ways do you remain responsive to hearing God’s voice?
• Read Psalm 139:1-6, 13-18. What sense of God’s involvement in your everyday life do you have?
• Read 1 Corinthians 6:12-20. How do you remind yourself of the spirit–body connection?
• Read John 1:43-51. When have you allowed prejudice to affect your decision about a person’s competency?

Respond by posting a prayer.

I join many of those who will pray for you as you seek to discern what you are called to be at this moment. May God grant you the courage to fulfill that calling. May we all open our eyes and see the misery, open our ears and hear the cries of God’s people, and, like God through the Lord Jesus Christ, be incarnate amongst them.” 

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