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Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of July 31, 2011

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of July 31, 2011 ********** As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 30, 2011
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      Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of July 31, 2011

      **********

      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.

      From our hearts

      Jesus taught, "Do you not see that whatever goes
      into the mouth enters the stomach, and goes out
      into the sewer? But what comes out of the mouth
      proceeds from the heart, and this is what defiles.
      For out of the heart come evil intentions, murder,
      adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander.
      These are what defile a person, but to eat with
      unwashed hands does not defile."
      Matthew 15:17-20

      Jesus is concerned with our inner thoughts and desires.
      Buddha has said, "The mind is everything; what you
      think, you become." And so it is. Our innermost
      heart reflects who we really are.

      Jesus was referring to the religious customs of his
      time. They had ceremonial washings that had been
      handed down from their elders ever since Moses.
      Jesus allowed his disciples to eat without washing
      their hands. Religious authorities were shocked
      and dismayed at the perceived religious uncleanness
      of the disciples. The concern of the elders was
      skin deep. To them, perception was everything.

      Jesus brings us to the real heart of the matter.
      What is in our heart? This is what counts before
      God. What are we thinking? What are we saying about
      others? Have we even thought about adultery, sexual
      immorality, theft, lying, or slander? Then we need
      to confess these thoughts, desires, and actions to
      God as they occur. I find in my own life, it is
      better to flee temptation than to tempt fate.
      Truly the spirit is willing but often the flesh is
      weak.

      Let Jesus clean your hearts, and let Jesus help you
      change your behavior. When tempted to do things which
      make us unclean, consider reading, memorizing, or
      meditating on the words of Jesus in the gospels of
      Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Be accountable in
      your life to another person or small group. Sometimes
      we need to find new friends to affirm our choices in
      life.

      For practical health reasons, it is good to wash hands
      before eating. But hand washing does not clean our
      hearts before God. Confession of personal sin is one
      way to begin to clean our hearts. Confession is good
      for our souls. Confession helps us become right with
      God. Confession has its own challenges, but sometimes
      getting started is the hardest part. We need moments
      where we confess personal sin in prayer, so we can make
      confessions of great faith in life.

      I am sorry, God. Forgive me for those specific thoughts
      that are negative, destructive, denigrating, ridiculing,
      and displeasing to you. With the help of Jesus, give me
      a new heart. Help me live a better life that is pleasing
      to you in word, thought, and deed. Amen.

      Grace and peace,

      Chi Rho Press

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