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Monday, September 3, 2012

grasping, day 1

Come to Stillness:
Take a few minutes to allow your mind and heart to be still before God.

Opening Prayer:
Lord Jesus, forgive me when my bleeding and wounded heart causes me to grasp for life and relief from any and every source available.  Instead, help me to reach only for you—that I might touch the fringe of your robe and find healing and wholeness for the brokenness of my heart and soul.  In Your Name I pray.  Amen.  (JLB)

Psalm for the Week: Psalm 16

Scripture for the Day: Mark 5:24-34

Reading for Reflection:

     grasping by Jim Branch

something is terribly wrong within her
a long slow bleeding of her heart and soul
has been her constant companion
for as long as she can remember
so many things
she has tried
to make the bleeding stop
or to make her feel better
for at least a moment
but the long line of solutions
have failed her
so here she stands
even worse off than she was before
desperately grasping
for wholeness
or healing
or even a glimmer of hope

maybe Jesus…
maybe He will…
be able
to stop the bleeding
of her weary heart
“if only I can get near enough
to reach and touch”

and when she finally
grasps for him
the bleeding stops
the wound is healed
the broken is made whole
relief streaks down
her tearstained cheeks

he turns and looks
his eyes meet hers
she falls to her knees
in fear and confusion

He  tenderly whispers
to the depths of her heart and soul
indescribable intimacy
in the middle of a crowded street

“go in peace”
with a gentle smile upon his lips
this is what she most deeply longs for
“be freed from your suffering”
and indeed she is
no more bleeding
no more grasping
only love

and in the midst of
her bleeding
and grasping
and healing
i am reminded
of my need
for the same
of the open wound
of my insecurity
of my grasping
for value and affection
when only One
offers the touch
that will bring wholeness
and freedom

so there is an invitation
for me
to a new life
of indescribable intimacy
and freedom
with the One
who calls me his “son”
with the One
that whispered me into being
and longs for
and freedom
for me
if I will let go
of all of the ways
of my grasping heart
and just reach out
for the edge of his robe

pray that I have the courage
 to reach out
like the woman

We mostly spend our lives conjugating three verbs: to Want, to Have, and to Do.  Craving, clutching, and fussing, on the material, political, social, emotional, intellectual—even on the spiritual—plane, we are kept in perpetual unrest: forgetting that none of these verbs have any ultimate significance, except so far as they are transcended by and included in, the fundamental verb, to Be: and that Being, not wanting, having and doing, is the essence of a spiritual life. (The Spiritual Life by Evelyn Underhill)

Reflection and Listening: silent and written

Prayer: for the church, for others, for myself

Song for the Week: Tender Mercy

Hear my cry for mercy
As I call to You
As I lift my hands in Spirit
And in Truth
We cry mercy
(in the name of the Father most Holy)
We cry mercy
(in the name of the Son Who was slain)
Lord have mercy
(in the name of the Spirit indwelling)
Tender mercy Lord
You are mercy
(in the name of the Father most Holy)
You are mercy
(in the name of the Son Who was slain)
Lord have mercy
(in the name of the Spirit indwelling)
Tender mercy Lord
           In Your tender mercy
          Brought by grace through faith
          I will lift my heart
          Toward Your most Holy place

Closing Prayer:
Lord Jesus, give me the grace and the strength and the courage to take off that which I use to cover myself; and to clothe myself only and always in you alone. Amen. (JLB)

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