Jesus Embraces Our History

Epiphany Sunday
Matthew 2:[1-12]13-20

Nick reads the one-minute introduction.


Jewish people soon be reading from the book of Exodus on Saturdays in synagogues throughout the world. Today’s section of the Epiphany story links the ancient account of the Exodus with the history of Jesus. Just as the Chosen People’s liberation began in Egypt, so does Jesus embrace the history of his people and go to Egypt. Herod is as the wicked Pharaoh who sought the life of Jesus. For Matthew, Jesus is a New Moses who is going to free his people. The weeping mothers of Bethlehem link with the weeping mothers during that other period in our history of suffering, the Exile in Babylon.

Nothing can stop what God wants to do. God is going to liberate God’s people. This will happen for you, when you listen and respond to the Lord’s call upon your life. God will protect you from the Evil One so that the full measure of God’s anointing can flow into your soul.


Sundays are dedicated to the Gospels from The Revised Common Lectionary.


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Your Three Gifts

Friday of Christmas Week
Matthew 2

Nick reads the one-minute introduction.


The three gifts of the King—let them be yours. Gold, symbol of the ultimate possession: you are the ultimate gift for the Christ Child. All of who you are is pure Gold to God.

Frankincense is a hard resin from Arabian trees. It looks like stone, until it falls on hot coals, becoming a sweet smelling smoke. Fall upon the fire of the Spirit and the same will become of you. Myrrh, from the Arabic word for bitter, is an ointment offered to Jesus on the cross to soothe his pain. He refused it.

Take your cue from Jesus. Do not anesthetize pain by habits that blunt the spirit. Give the bitterness of suffering to Jesus. Through prayer, pain is transformed and redeemed.


Fridays are dedicated to the Gospels. This year, we read the Gospel of St. Luke,except during Lent and with a few other exceptions.


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The Great Commission

Friday of the Last Week in Kingdomtide
Matthew 28:16-20

Nick reads the one-minute introduction.

Recall the mountains in this Gospel—the setting for the Beatitudes in “The Sermon on the Mount,” Mount Tabor where the Transfiguration of Jesus took place, Mount Calvary, and finally this mountain where your King bids farewell and gives “The Great Commission.”

On this last week of another year of grace, place yourself among those first disciples who heard the commission. Feel yourself a part of the Church, bonded together in such a way that Christ lives in you and works through you because of the connections you have with the members of Christ’s body.

Take the Great Commission personally. How are you living it? What changes in your life need to take place? Advent begins in two days: a new year of grace is about to rush in for you!


Fridays are dedicated to the Gospels—this year, St. Matthew.


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The Open Book of Life

The Last Sunday in Kingdomtide – Christ the King
Matthew 25:31-46

Nick reads the one-minute introduction.

There comes a time of judgment for you and me—the moment at our deaths when we will stand before King Jesus with the Book of Life open. While salvation depends upon accepting Jesus as Lord and not upon our works, there is a connection to accepting Jesus that must be seen in action. There are consequences in our surrender to the Lord that need to be evidenced in our sensitivity to the needs of others and to meeting those needs. No one ever presuming to give his or her life to the Lord ought to be blind to the needs summary that Jesus offers in this chapter.

Jesus said, “The decisive issue is whether they obey my Father in heaven” (Matt. 7:21). Are you doing the will of the Lord now as was outlined in the criteria for eternity in the reading for today? Spend time in the quiet, until any defensiveness within yields to surrender in action to the Lord.


Sundays are dedicated to the Gospels from The Revised Common Lectionary.


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The Empty Places

Friday of the Twelfth Week in Kingdomtide
Matthew 28:1-15

Nick reads the one-minute introduction.

Catch the shift of emotions as Mary Magdalene and “the other Mary” move from grief, to surprise, wonder, and absolute joy as they meet Jesus on the road. Contemplate the scene as Jesus alive takes action again, now that the passion is over.

Look at the two empty places that bear witness to Jesus alive—the cross and the tomb, both without Jesus filling them.

In the emptiness, allow the faith in the resurrection to well up deep within your spirit. Jesus is alive for you just as he was alive to the women on the road and the disciples in Galilee. As this sacred season comes to a close with the end of Matthew’s Gospel, what do you notice about your commitment to the Lord who lives inside you?


Fridays are dedicated to the Gospels—this year, St. Matthew.


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What Talent!

The Twelfth of Thirteen Sundays in Kingdomtide
Matthew 25:14-30

Nick reads the one-minute introduction.

Reflect carefully upon “The Parable of the Talents.” Was the man with five talents five times more valuable than the man with one? Could it be that he had a high sense of his worth, more open to taking risks, since his self-worth was greater than the man with one talent? Here is the problem. We have transferred not only the name “talent” from money to innate gifts, but we have a society that compares and judges one another by the amount of talent that one has.

How are you when it comes to taking spiritual risks about who you are and how you see yourself? Do you bury your talents with judgments about yourself and comparisons with others that crush the hidden dreams the Lord offers you? The resurrection of Jesus pulls you out from being buried alive! What a talent you have and are, when the Spirit lives within!


Sundays are dedicated to the Gospels from The Revised Common Lectionary.


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Die with Jesus.

Friday of the Eleventh Week in Kingdomtide
Matthew 27:32-66

Nick reads the one-minute introduction.

Ask Simon of Cyrene to let you carry the cross with Jesus for a while. Allow your senses to come alive in the scene, letting the Lord use your imagination to take you beyond the imaginable—God’s Son dying for you. Live the darkness of the sixth to the ninth hour (Noon to three PM). Hear Jesus’ cries against the harsh background of blasphemy. Die with Jesus as he dies for you. The presence of God becomes accessible as the curtain between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies is torn in two. Dead saints break loose from the grave. At the very moment of death, signs of Jesus coming to life are present!

May your contemplation of the death of Jesus have you ready to die with him. Let go of all that needs to die in you, so that you can rise with Jesus.


Fridays are dedicated to the Gospels—this year, St. Matthew.


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