Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of Jan. 4, 2009
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As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a
Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed.
Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
Words of strength and power
Jesus said, "Heaven and earth will pass away, but
my words will not pass away."
I wrote this reflection some time ago in honor of
my beloved grandmother's birthday. She was wise
and full of love for her family and God though
she never had the opportunity to attend school
when she came to America. As she and Grandpa
had children, they learned English when the
children began attending school. She literally
taught herself to read and write a new language
in a new country. I admire her persistence.
As she wrote letters in her elder years, sometimes
she would forget the English words and begin
inserting Norwegian words from her childhood.
She still managed to convey her meaning and I
treasure those faded, dear letters, painstakingly
written with her arthritic hands.
She would often read her English Bible to improve
her language skills. Grandma never went to bed
until she had done some kind of spiritual
reading. One of her favorite devotionals was
by the Reverend Billy Graham. When she died,
I inherited her Bible and that well-worn
devotional. I treasure those books!
Grandma clearly understood heaven and earth
would someday pass away. She revered "the
Good Book" and she treasured the "words in
red" found in the Gospel accounts of Matthew,
Mark, Luke, and John. (Many Gospel editions
print Jesus' words in red. Often called "Red
Letter Editions" these highlight the words
historically recorded by the Gospel writers
as having been spoken by Jesus.) So she would
frequently memorize scripture and would carry
those words in her heart throughout the day.
It has been years since I have memorized
scripture. It is almost a lost art these days.
Yet, memorizing a word, a phrase, a sentence
is spiritually empowering. When Grandma's
eyes dimmed with age and cataracts, as she
cared for a sick and dying husband of seventy-
two years she could remember sacred words that
nourished her soul.
Will you consider memorizing empowering sacred
words this year? The quiet task is a form of
soul food that brings rich moments of soul
care. Try it, it is simple. "Heaven and
earth will pass away, but my words will not
pass away," Luke reports Jesus as saying.
Repeat those words again and again in meaningful
repetition. Let them linger deep in your heart.
World history may come to an end, but the words
of Christ endure throughout eternity. Let the
"words in red" dwell in your spirit and nourish
Thank you, God, for these "words in red."
Bless these words as they linger deep in our
hearts. Bring them to our awareness in times
of need. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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