Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of July 8, 2012
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.
"Then the disciples came and asked Jesus, 'Why do you
speak to them in parables?' He answered, 'To you it
has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of
heaven, but to them it has not been given. For to
those who have, more will be given, and they will
have an abundance; but from those who have nothing,
even what they have will be taken away. The reason
I speak to them in parables is that "seeing they do
not perceive, and hearing they do not listen, nor do
they understand." With them indeed is fulfilled the
prophecy of Isaiah that says: "You will indeed listen,
but never understand, and you will indeed look, but
never perceive. For this people's heart has grown
dull, and their ears are hard of hearing, and they
have shut their eyes; so that they might not look
with their eyes, and listen with their ears, and
understand with their heart and turn, and I would
Spiritual dullness has always been among us. If we
would truly hear with our ears and look with our eyes,
and understand with our hearts and turn from the errors
of our ways, God would heal us beyond our wildest dreams.
Many of us struggle with honest introspection. We
often hear and see ourselves selectively. As a result,
our hearts dull to God's full truth and revelation.
Our ears become spiritually hard of hearing and, yes,
we become spiritually blind to God.
I would personally prefer to think of myself as
spiritually clever and astute. Yet in lingering
quiet moments of prayer and meditation, silence is
truly the greatest revelation. Silence can speak
louder than words and reveal the inner cracks and
blemishes of a soul grown dull and jaded. My
spiritual direction colleagues and friends all
realize we have great gifts of self-deception.
We need spiritual friends for accountability and
encouragement. We need those who care enough to
question if we are becoming dull of heart.
I have found in my own life that I need to
intentionally seek out those friends and colleagues,
individually and in community. Those who love me
may mention I seem to be working all the time. One
friend would call and encourage me to take an
afternoon off, or to take a walk. These are
refreshing moments. When deep fatigue or chronic
tiredness pervades, it is helpful for me to take a
nap, review my eating and exercise habits. A little
bit of self-care can work wonders, and healthy
perspective can return. All these simple things
affect my daily inner life. Spiritual alertness
and awareness can be improved dramatically.
Are there identifiable factors that dull you to the
power of God's healing words from taking root in the
soil of your hearts? If so, pray from your heart and
be encouraged. God wishes to bring us into alertness
and restore our spiritual joy.
God, help us be alert and open to you. Help us listen
and give us understanding. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
Please visit the Chi Rho Press Web site. You can order
using our convenient secure shopping cart and pay on line
using your credit card! http://www.ChiRhoPress.com
"Living as the Beloved" is available for $20.95 each,
plus shipping and handling. Six or more copies are
$15.75 each, plus shipping and handling. You can find
United States customers, please remember when ordering
on the Web site secure server to select "US Postal
Service Parcel Post" rather than the default setting
of "UPS Ground." It is much less expensive!