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Showing posts from September, 2017

ears and swords

I am a disciple of Jesus and recently, I find myself identifying with that early disciple who brings a sword to a prayer meeting. Right after celebrating the Passover meal with his closest followers, Jesus goes to a secluded place to pray, and his disciples follow him. In the account in Matthew 26, it tells us that the followers of Jesus have a hard time finding enthusiasm for the task at hand - prayer - but when an armed crowd shows up to arrest Jesus, everyone is suddenly wide awake. Jesus addresses the armed men calmly, not resisting arrest, but one of the disciples perceives a great threat. He pulls out a sword and goes on the attack, chopping off the ear of the high priest's slave. Surprisingly, Jesus has no harsh words for the disciple turned betrayer, Judas. Instead, he rebukes the devoted, loyal defender: the disciple with the sword. Why? Because Jesus doesn't need defending or protecting. He doesn't need an army. Jesus wants his followers to be true followers, to…

Peace is...

This past week, I was sitting in a hospital waiting room while my mom had cataract surgery, a minor outpatient procedure. I watched people come and go and, after a few hours, it began to dawn on me that people who arrived after I did had already left the hospital. The nurse had informed me that it would take about an hour, but as the minutes ticked by, I knew something was amiss. That moment when you realize that something is not quite right, that things are not going as expected, you have a choice: you can start to panic, imagining every possible horrific scenario, or you can choose peace. I knew that my mom was surrounded by capable health care professionals, so I said a prayer of trust and surrender and continued to read my novel. Shortly after that, a nurse came into the waiting room and sat down beside me. She said, "You mom had an episode during surgery..." Once again, I was faced with a choice: did I let anxiety or peace rule the day? I chose peace and smiled at the …