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Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 13, 2013

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 13, 2013 ********** Happy New Year! May 2013 be filled with every good thing for you all! ********** Have you
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 13, 2013
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      Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 13, 2013

      **********

      Happy New Year! May 2013 be filled with every good
      thing for you all!

      **********

      Have you gotten your new MCC Liturgical Calendar
      for Year C, November 2012 through November
      2013? It is available on the Chi Rho Press Web
      site at
      http://www.chirhopress.com/products/product_details/BookRevLiturgicalCal_12_13.html.

      Please order your copies now.

      Please feel free to forward this to your pastors,
      other clergy, music directors, worship teams, and
      anyone else you think would benefit from it.

      **********

      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.
      Beloved community

      "We declare to you what was from the beginning,
      what we have heard, what we have seen with our
      eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our
      hands, concerning the word of life."
      1 John 1:1

      A mile walked with a friend contains only a hundred
      steps.
      ~ Russian Proverb (Davis, Kathy. Proverbs from
      Around the World: A Mile Walked with a Friend
      Contains Only a Hundred Steps. Volume 2.)

      I have a dear friend who loves to walk and
      talk. Whenever possible, we try to either have a
      cup of coffee or walk every week. This is not
      easy to do with her schedule. She is a single
      mom and full-time graduate student with a
      rigorous commuting schedule. She is a great
      walker and a good talker too. My friend also
      knows how to listen. We can walk miles, and it
      feels like only a hundred steps.

      One afternoon she was excitedly describing
      classes, books, and new classmates. She paused a
      moment and asked if I had ever heard the
      expression "beloved community?" She had read
      about this idea in a recent homework assignment
      and was intrigued by its meaning. "Oh yes," was
      my instant reply, "the Bible has many writings on
      beloved community." My friend was amazed. Where
      were they?

      My favorite biblical description of beloved
      community is found in the love letter known as 1
      John. These five brief chapters help define
      beloved community and community living. I find
      most North Americans are amazed when they learn
      this radical and biblical concept of beloved
      community exists. We so often live as a nation
      that respects and elevates rugged individualism,
      but the Bible contains a collection of books on
      beloved community living. When one looks at the
      original Greek language used in John's writings,
      it is always in the plural form.

      In the USA we often think and live for "me,
      myself, and I." But we are called to live as a
      beloved community. We are called to live as "we,
      us, and you (plural form)." It is significant to
      realize that social justice involves living in
      community and not isolation.

      John writes, "That which was from the beginning,
      which we have heard, which we have seen with our
      eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have
      touched – this we proclaim concerning the Word of
      life" (1 John 1:1, NIV). He speaks and writes
      from the perspective of beloved community and
      describes how to balance justice, mercy, and
      spirituality as explained in Micah 6:8.

      Without beloved community, it is hard to
      live. We need beloved community to experience
      the fullness of life. It is essential for
      spiritual empowerment, and it is good for our
      souls. Unfortunately, many people lack beloved
      community. Some people have been rejected by
      families of origin, or harassed by neighbors or
      even their governments. Perhaps religious
      institutions have treated you as the non-beloved
      and exiled you from a community.

      The Internet is often a helpful place to find Web
      sites of spiritual safety and hospitality that
      can sometimes lead to local beloved
      communities. Seek affirming community with all
      your heart and you will be deeply blessed.
      Remember that God loves you. God wants
      to bring you into beloved community. Take a
      chance with God and step out in faith. A Chinese
      proverb might provide helpful wisdom to begin a
      journey toward spiritual empowerment within a
      beloved community, "The journey of a thousand
      miles starts with a single step" (ibid., Davis,
      p. 48).

      God, please bring me into beloved community. 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
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