February – 2016
The Wisdom of Desmond Tutu
“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.”
The Wisdom of Albert Schweitzer
“At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”
Luke 9.32-34 (The Message)
Peter and those with him were slumped over in sleep. When they came to, rubbing their eyes, they saw Jesus in his glory and two people [Moses & Elijah] standing with him. When Moses and Elijah had left, Peter said to Jesus, “Teacher, this is a great moment! Let’s build three memorials: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He blurted this out without thinking.
While he was babbling on like this, a light-radiant cloud enveloped them. As they found themselves buried in the cloud, they became deeply aware of God.”
Matthew 6.1-3, 5-6, 14, 16-21 (Durrell Watkins’ paraphrase)
Beware of practicing your piety before others in order to be seen by them…
2“So whenever you give monetary offerings, do not sound a trumpet before you to get recognition for it…3But when you give, do so discretely. God knows your heart and will bless you for being truly generous.
5“And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in public places so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward.6But whenever you pray, do so privately…Only God needs to know you are praying, and God does, and God will bless you.
14”Forgive others for their mistakes and poor judgments. You’ve needed second chances, so be willing to offer them as well.
16“And whenever you fast, do not look dismal, like those who disfigure their faces so as to show others that they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 17But when you fast, freshen up, 18so that your fasting will be for true devotion and not for recognition from others. God will bless you for your private devotion.
19“Do not be overly materialistic. Things can be stolen or destroyed; 20but store up for yourselves spiritual treasures that cannot lose their value nor be taken or destroyed. 21For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
The Wisdom of Tia Walker
“Affirmations are our mental vitamins, providing the supplementary positive thoughts we need to balance the barrage of negative events and thoughts we experience daily.”
Luke 4.4, 8, 13 (Durrell Watkins’ paraphrase)
Jesus was fasting, and was tempted to end his fast early. But then, reflecting on the Torah, Jesus said, ‘It takes more than bread to really live.’
Jesus felt called to challenge oppression and serve the hurting, but he considered that other kinds of work would be much more profitable. Then, again reflecting on the Torah, he reminded himself, ‘I am meant to be faithful to my purpose. I will serve God as wholeheartedly as I can.”
Finally, distracting temptations left him, at least for a while.
The Wisdom of Eleanor Roosevelt
“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’”
The Wisdom of Cicero
“Not for ourselves alone are we born.”
Luke 13.31-32 (Durrell Watkins’ paraphrase)
Pharisees came to Jesus to warn him, “You need to go far, far away from here! Herod wants to kill you.” Jesus answered them, “Go and tell that old fox that I don’t have time to worry about him. Today and tomorrow and the day after that I’m busy ministering to people who suffer in mind and body.”
Isaiah 55.1, 10-13
All you people who are thirsty, come! Here is water for you to drink.
Don’t worry if you have no money. Come, eat and drink until you are full!
You don’t need money. The milk and wine are free.
Rain and snow fall from the sky and don’t return until they have watered the ground. Then the ground causes the plants to sprout and grow, and they produce seeds for the farmer and food for people to eat.
In the same way, my words leave my mouth, and they don’t come back without results. My words make the things happen that I want to happen. They succeed in doing what I send them to do.
So you will go out with joy. You will be led out in peace. When you come to the mountains and hills, they will begin singing. All the trees in the fields will clap their hands.
Luke 13.6-9 (Easy to Read Version)
Jesus told this story: “A homeowner had a fig tree in the garden. The homeowner came looking for some fruit on it, but found none. 7 The homeowner said to the gardener, ‘I have been looking for fruit on this tree for three years, but I never find any. Cut it down! It’s useless. 8 But the gardener answered, ‘Let the tree have one more year to produce fruit. Let me dig up the dirt around it and fertilize it.9 Maybe the tree will have fruit on it next year. If it still does not produce, then you can cut it down.’”