Lectionary Scriptures and Comments

Playing with God 011513

Playground

Playground (Photo credit: phalinn)

Playing with God 011513

This blog comes to you from the people at Peace Mennonite Church of Columbia, MO

www.peacemennonitechurch.net

Today’s Scriptures Click the following links to read today’s scriptures or scroll to the very bottom of this blog post for those scriptures also. Lectionary Scriptures for the day selected by http://www.commontexts.org/

Psalm 106:1-12 http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm%20106:1-12&version=MSG

Judges 5:12-21 http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Judges%205:12-21&version=MSG

1 John 5:13-21 http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20John%205:13-21&version=MSG

Playing with God 011513

The idea of exactly what should be our relationship with God sometimes confuses me. Does God walk with us; does Jesus leave footprints along with ours on the beach? Or is God so clearly infinite and powerful that blind obedience and humility in God’s presence is the only relationship possible (although absolute subservience seems fascist).

Today I happened upon this quote from Mechthild of Magdeburg:

I, God, am your playmate! I will lead the child in you in wonderful ways for I have chosen you.”

What if Mechthild had it right, and her visions of playing with God are really the most accurate? Certainly life in the 13th century was no playground, and the poverty, violence and despair we see now is only a small portion of life in the 13th century. If Mechthild could still see life with God as joyous, and playful, why can’t we?

Is feeling somber about God, serious and deeply focused necessary to our love of God?

Pray for peace,

Bill

Prayer List: Peace Mennonite Church keeps a prayer list for those in need. If you need prayer, or want to e-mail our pastor, e-mail billd @ peacemennonitechurch.net (Take out the extra spaces to use this e-mail—the spaces confuse spam generators).

Pray with us!

We are praying as a church, and attempting to follow the centuries’ old tradition of praying with other Christians three times a day. We are following the prayer liturgy at www.commonprayer.net

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Psalm/106:1-12

Judges 5:12-21

1 John 5:13-21

Psalm 106:1-12

The Message (MSG)

106 1-3 Hallelujah!
Thank God! And why?
Because he’s good, because his love lasts.
But who on earth can do it—
declaim God’s mighty acts, broadcast all his praises?
You’re one happy man when you do what’s right,
one happy woman when you form the habit of justice.

4-5 Remember me, God, when you enjoy your people;
include me when you save them;
I want to see your chosen succeed,
celebrate with your celebrating nation,
join the Hallelujahs of your pride and joy!

6-12 We’ve sinned a lot, both we and our parents;
We’ve fallen short, hurt a lot of people.
After our parents left Egypt,
they took your wonders for granted,
forgot your great and wonderful love.
They were barely beyond the Red Sea
when they defied the High God
—the very place he saved them!
—the place he revealed his amazing power!
He rebuked the Red Sea so that it dried up on the spot
—he paraded them right through!
—no one so much as got wet feet!
He saved them from a life of oppression,
pried them loose from the grip of the enemy.
Then the waters flowed back on their oppressors;
there wasn’t a single survivor.
Then they believed his words were true
and broke out in songs of praise.

Judges 5:12-23

The Message (MSG)

12 Wake up, wake up, Deborah!
Wake up, wake up, sing a song!
On your feet, Barak!
Take your prisoners, son of Abinoam!

13-18 Then the remnant went down to greet the brave ones.
The people of God joined the mighty ones.
The captains from Ephraim came to the valley,
behind you, Benjamin, with your troops.
Captains marched down from Makir,
from Zebulun high-ranking leaders came down.
Issachar’s princes rallied to Deborah,
Issachar stood fast with Barak,
backing him up on the field of battle.
But in Reuben’s divisions there was much second-guessing.
Why all those campfire discussions?
Diverted and distracted,
Reuben’s divisions couldn’t make up their minds.
Gilead played it safe across the Jordan,
and Dan, why did he go off sailing?
Asher kept his distance on the seacoast,
safe and secure in his harbors.
But Zebulun risked life and limb, defied death,
as did Naphtali on the battle heights.

19-23 The kings came, they fought,
the kings of Canaan fought.
At Taanach they fought, at Megiddo’s brook,
but they took no silver, no plunder.
The stars in the sky joined the fight,
from their courses they fought against Sisera.
The torrent Kishon swept them away,
the torrent attacked them, the torrent Kishon.
Oh, you’ll stomp on the necks of the strong!
Then the hoofs of the horses pounded,
charging, stampeding stallions.
“Curse Meroz,” says God’s angel.
“Curse, double curse, its people,
Because they didn’t come when God needed them,
didn’t rally to God’s side with valiant fighters.”

1 John 5:13-21

The Message (MSG)

The Reality, Not the Illusion

13-15 My purpose in writing is simply this: that you who believe in God’s Son will know beyond the shadow of a doubt that you have eternal life, the reality and not the illusion. And how bold and free we then become in his presence, freely asking according to his will, sure that he’s listening. And if we’re confident that he’s listening, we know that what we’ve asked for is as good as ours.

16-17 For instance, if we see a Christian believer sinning (clearly I’m not talking about those who make a practice of sin in a way that is “fatal,” leading to eternal death), we ask for God’s help and he gladly gives it, gives life to the sinner whose sin is not fatal. There is such a thing as a fatal sin, and I’m not urging you to pray about that. Everything we do wrong is sin, but not all sin is fatal.

18-21 We know that none of the God-begotten makes a practice of sin—fatal sin. The God-begotten are also the God-protected. The Evil One can’t lay a hand on them. We know that we are held firm by God; it’s only the people of the world who continue in the grip of the Evil One. And we know that the Son of God came so we could recognize and understand the truth of God—what a gift!—and we are living in the Truth itself, in God’s Son, Jesus Christ. This Jesus is both True God and Real Life. Dear children, be on guard against all clever facsimiles.

 

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