Reflection - July 2, 2017

"Whoever receives you receives me, 
and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.
Whoever receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet's reward,
and whoever receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man
will receive a righteous man's reward.
And whoever gives only a cup of cold water to one of these little ones to drink
because the little one is a disciple—amen, I say to you, he will surely not lose his reward."

On television, it’s easy to hear preachers sharing the message of the “prosperity gospel.” This is the idea that personal economic security and gain are part of God’s saving action among believers. God intends to bless us with health and wealth if we first believe, confess our belief, visualize our success, and give our money to the church. If we do these “righteous actions” God will reward us financially. It's a matter of faith. 

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Reflection - June 25, 2017

”Nothing is concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known.”

In college, we lived by an honor code, with an entire system of education and accountability to ingrain the principles of that code into our lives. As a freshman, I took the oath: “We will not lie, steal, or cheat, nor tolerate among us anyone who does. Furthermore, I resolve to do my duty and to live honorably, so help me God.” It was a pretty radical commitment on a college campus, even in my day, but it laid a foundation of expectations and a building block of integrity. 

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Reflection - May 15, 2017

"Whoever has seen me has seen the Father." 

In January 1984, Huey Lewis and the News released a single called "I Want a New Drug." I was 12 years old at the time and somewhat naive, but I loved the song. For five years, every time i heard the song, I sang along with it, "I want a new truck." At eighteen, I was shocked when a friend corrected my singing and told me the actual lyrics because, in all truth, I really wanted a new truck!

In communication theory, there is a sender, message, medium, and receiver. A breakthrough in this theory came with the understanding that no matter what the intention of the sender, how accurate the message, or how clear the medium was, communication only really happened if the receiver understood the message. 

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Reflection - April 2, 2017

"Untie him and let him go."

So many of us are fixers. We see a problem and we want to fix it. Of course, this is done out of compassion for those who are in need. When we see someone suffering from an illness, struggling with a difficult relationship, facing a great challenge in life, the victim of an injustice, or being battered by life circumstances, we want to fix the situation. We want to help in someway that is practical and changes the reality that they are going through.

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Reflection - June 4, 2017

"...when the doors were locked, where the disciples were, for fear..."

Fear is a powerful thing. It can also be a complex thing with phobias, fear, terror, anxiety, and worry. We may have an extreme irrational aversion to something like heights or spiders. We may have psychologically maladaptive behaviors related to a specific situation, like interpersonal conflict, or deep seated personality traits related to psychological disorders. It may be possible to learn from these types of fear and with natural human resources like counseling or medication to overcome these fears or disorders. If you suffer from anxiety, I do encourage you to seek help. Fr. Adam, Carrie Williamson, or myself can assist you with a referral and support you along the journey. 

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Reflection - May 7, 2017

"Whoever has seen me has seen the Father."

In January 1984, Huey Lewis and the News released a single called "I Want a New Drug." I was 12 years old at the time and somewhat naive, but I loved the song. For five years, every time i heard the song, I sang along with it, "I want a new truck." At eighteen, I was shocked when a friend corrected my singing and told me the actual lyrics because, in all truth, I really wanted a new truck!

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Reflection - March 12, 2017

"Lord, it is good that we are here."

If you listen carefully at the beginning of Mass with Fr. Adam, you'll hear him say similar words. "It is good for us to be here." At this point in the Gospel story, Peter, James and John have seen Jesus revealed as who he is: his face shining like the sun and his clothes as white as light. Even Moses and Elijah stand talking with him. It is not until later, when the voice of the Father speaks from the cloud, that they become afraid. For now, they are content, buoyed by hope, at peace. They know this is something special and that they belong. It is good that we are here.

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Reflection - May 21, 2017

Sliders

"Then they laid hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit."

It is pretty easy to forget about the Holy Spirit, if we ever even get him in the first place. As I have been planning the direction of this article, I think maybe I have come up with a title for these: Sliders. These articles are like little bite sized sandwiches, tasty little reflections to chew on, but without a whole lot of substance. This title really comes from today's topic, the Holy Spirit, because there's not nearly enough space on this page to even begin to do it justice. And I've already wasted a whole paragraph, and probably won't even keep this title. Maybe Bites would work better?

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