“I Want It Now!”

Have you ever been so hungry that you just can’t get your mind off of food?  Millions and millions of children around the world are hungry right now, desperate for nourishment that continues their lives.  Today’s story is about the birth of twins to Rebecca, Isaac’s wife.  One day in the course of their lives, Esau, the older twin was so very hungry, that he begged food from his brother Jacob.  Imagine: Jacob wouldn’t share his food with his won brother!  Esau made a deal: to sell his birthright to Jacob for a meal.  Birthright refers to the special blessings and privileges that come to the child born first.

While starving demands food right away, there are other things we want that we think we must have instantly.  Sometimes, “We want what we want when we want it!”   

Any thoughts about your own life that come to you from today’s story? 

Genesis  25:19-34

The Saturday passages follow the reading list that Jewish people use in their synagogue worship throughout the world. They are taken from
“The Torah,” the first five books of the Bible from Genesis to Deuteronomy that are read each year beginning with autumn.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

The Next Move of God

Something interesting about the Gospel of St. Luke: it begins in the temple, and ends in the temple. This is an important theme from yesterday’s reading from Revelation.  The temple at the beginning and the end of St. Luke’s Gospel are like bookends that hold the Gospel together.

Join the disciples and catch their joy as they wait for the Holy Spirit to come upon them.  They know that their Lord Jesus is risen.  They can wait with hope for the next move of God.

Let’s you and I wait with joy and hope for the next move 

Luke 24:36-53

Fridays are dedicated to the Gospels. This being Year C,
the third year in the cycle, we generally read from the Gospel of Luke.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

The Timple

Did I make a typo in the title of today’s Firestarter?  No; I’m playing with the words “temple,” a physical building occupying space, and a temple inside us that occupies time, rather than space.  It’s a timple!

I got this idea when St. John talks about the various fruits that come from the Tree of Life throughout the twelve months of the year.  Since there is no more a physical temple, but rather the Lamb of God, Christ risen is the temple, this means that the Christ-Temple is always with us wherever we go, all during the twelve months of the year, for God lives inside us. 

Taking the idea of yesterday when I invited us to let our every breath praise God, we can be praising God every second of our lives.  This will go on and on until the temple of God which is our body gives up its work, passing us on to eternal life and the heaven-temple that will last forever.

 Revelation 22

Thursdays are dedicated to the letters of Paul, other letters,
the Book of Acts, and the Book of Revelation.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

Every Breath a Prayer

If a person lives to be eighty years old, he or she will take about 672,768,000 breaths!  In and out, whether we are awake or asleep, our chests rise and fall with air entering and going out, bringing life to our blood which then carries this life in a wondrous flow throughout out bodies.

Psalm 150 is a brief list of ways that we can praise the Lord, finishing off with the final verse, the last one in the whole book of Psalms: “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.”   It makes me think of something similar: “Let every breath praise the Lord.”   When you get up in the morning, and come to be aware that you are still alive and breathing, offer every breath you will take in the course of the day to be a silent, ongoing prayer of praise to God.

Psalm 150

Wednesdays are devoted to the reading of the Psalms,
one a week across the three-year cycle.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

The Most Important Thing

For those in the northern hemisphere, it’s autumn.  Night comes in the late afternoon.   Find some quiet time in the evening…light a candle….have a cup of hot cider or hot chocolate and slowly read the passages for today with your family.

The Book of Ecclesiastes doesn’t have much emotion in it; rather it offers wise sayings and thoughts about wisdom to be pondered slowly.  Throughout the book, this phrase often appears: “Everything is pointless.”  While this isn’t a very optimistic outlook on life, the writer does invite to do only what is important and not do what is only a waste of time.   

The most important thing in life is to love….everything else is pointless!

Ecclesiastes 9:13-18; 11:1-10

Tuesdays are dedicated to the the History and Writings
of the Hebrew Scriptures.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

The Circle and the Cycle

Ever think of this?  Where does a circle begin and end?  There is no beginning or end.  That’s the way it is with God’s love.  We don’t now when God’s love began and we know it will never end. 

Today’s passage is the last one in the Old Testament for the circle or cycle of this year of God’s love in our Bible reading plan.   Malachi mentions a messenger that is coming.   We think of John the Baptist, a key figure in the Advent season that begins next week.  He will be the one to prepare the people for the coming of Jesus.  The story of God’s love begins all over again as we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus.

Here’s a verse to pray very slowly: “The sun of righteousness will rise on those revering my name;healing will be in its wings so that you will go forth and jump about like calves in the stall.”

The “Sun of righteousness” is the “Son of God”!

 Malachi 3:1-4; 4:1-3

Mondays are dedicated to the reading of the Hebrew Prophets.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

The Thief Taken Up

Mingle with the crowd at the cross of Jesus.  What do you hear?  Shouting and mocking.  Two thieves were bound to their crosses next to Jesus. One of them added his voice to the shouting; the other kept silent, watching Jesus and listening to the silence that flowed from his breaths. The Spirit moved into the heart of this thief. Listen to the sweet conversation between Jesus and him.  No longer did this man even notice the crowd, or hear all the noise; he even forget his own pain for a moment as he gave himself to Jesus.

A famous spiritual leader, Fulton Sheen said: “The thief on the left wanted to be taken down; the thief on the right wanted to be taken up!”  

 Luke 23:33-43

On Sundays we follow the Gospels from the Revised Common Lectionary.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.