Love Your Enemy. - Wednesday Silent Prayer & Meditation
Wednesday mornings we're inviting people to meet with us at Taborspace in SE Portland at 7am, but we're also welcoming individuals to take part remotely. Tuesday evenings the plans for Wednesday mornings will be posted here. We believe that life is better together, however we can make that happen. Please consider making this a regular part of your weekly practice.
We know that it is tough to find communities centered on Contemplative Christianity and hope this serves as a support for individuals who don't feel like they fit inside or outside of the church, but still haven't given up their seeking and knocking.
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
S A C R E D R E A D I N G
R E A D - Without bias, assumption, or expectation; fully and simply listen, with your mind and heart; read through the passage at least twice
R E F L E C T - Is there a phrase, word, or impression that stands out to you? (Refrain from overanalyzing; keep it simple)
R E S P O N D - Allow God’s inspiration to emerge as a brief prayer, even just one word (Again, keeping it simple, remaining centered on Christ rather than on your communication to Him)
R E S T - Simply be with God. Spend a few minutes practicing being as present to God as God is to you. Silently. Humbly. Lovingly.
You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and send rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
– Jesus, Matthew 5.43-48
H O M I L Y
How often do we allow our subconscious to turn our acts of kindness into acts of contracts? Where we expect kindness for kindness? It could be in the car, when we wait for another person and they don’t wave. It could be in our homes, when we do chores and don’t receive the reception we had expected. It could be in our faith, when we give what we believe is asked of us and don’t receive the fulfillment we imagined. Jesus points out that we’re missing the point: Love. Love is the point; not reward or punishment, not even balance, but Love. Where these “acts of contracts” feel broken, we can find ourselves out of Love, and out of union with Christ. May we learn to love our friends, neighbors, enemies, and everyone in-between today as we also seek to love God with our whole hearts, souls, minds, bodies, and strengths.
S I L E N T P R A Y E R
Make space for your mind to slow and be still. If thoughts grab for your attention, use a passage, prayer, phrase, or word to bring a focus and allow those distractions to pass without passing judgement on them or yourself. This time of “effortlessness,” which can feel like requires a lot of effort, is an act of trust in God that is engaging our whole heart, soul, mind, body, and strength. Simply aim to be as present to God as God is present to you and trust that that is more than enough.
When you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. … And when you pray, do not keep on babbling …
– Jesus, Matthew 6:6-8
Pray without ceasing.
– 1 Thessalonians 5:17
T W E N T Y M I N U T E S
O F S I L E N T P R A Y E R
C L O S I N G P R A Y E R
Oh my God,
I want to love You;
Not that I might gain eternal heaven,
Nor escape eternal hell, but Lord,
To love You just because
You are my God.
Grant me to give to You
And not to count the cost;
To fight for You
And not to mind the wounds;
To labor and expect nothing in return,
Except for the knowledge that I serve my God.
– St Ignatius of Loyola