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580Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of Jan. 4, 2009

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    Jan 3, 2009
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      Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of Jan. 4, 2009

      The 2008-2009 Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary
      is out and available on the Chi Rho Press Web site.
      Please read about it and order it at
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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."
      Luke 21:33

      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
      your soul.

      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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