Sunday, June 25, 2006

July 2, 2006 - Year B - Pentecost +4

2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27 or Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15; 2:23-24
Psalm 130 or Psalm 30 or Lamentations 3:23-33
2 Corinthians 8:7-15
Mark 5:21-43


Generosity of spirit -- to offer time to someone when working, to offer a kind word when gloating would be in order, to offer to complete what is yet incompletely done by others, to offer to not let death have the last word about one's worth, to offer a new day and a new way to follow weariness, to offer forgiveness when retribution is on one's mind, to offer to dance healing into emptiness.

Generosity of spirit is both a gift received and a skill to be developed. As we go through the week, may we find the gift of generosity rekindled in our lives and the energy to practice it.

5 comments:

  1. Mark 5:21-43

    = = = = = = =

    Jairus' servants show up, and try to wave Jesus off. NEVER MIND. IT'S TOO LATE.

    But Jesus kept on walking, with this brave woman fresh in His mind, and when He got to this little dead girl, He reached out and took her hand, and He called her by a very unusual name.

    He didn't call this little girl "DAUGHTER."

    He called her "Talitha."

    It was Aramaic, and it was used to signify "Little girl," but the literal translation is fascinating.

    IT IS A HEBREW WORD, WITH A FEMININE ENDING.

    Take the word "Talitha," and remove the feminine ending... the "a" at the end.

    What do you have?     TALITH

    MANY JEWISH SCHOLARS THINK JESUS WAS SAYING,
    "Little girl under my prayer shawl...
    Placed under my covering...
    Entrusted into my prayer care...
    get up!"

    And NOW YOU UNDERSTAND, why from that time on, (Mark 6:56)
    "...wherever he went-- into villages, towns or countryside-- they placed the sick in the marketplaces.  They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed."

    They discovered a new thing about Jesus that day.  He was willing to reach out in prayer for ANYONE!

    When we have loved ones so far past helping that they cannot reach out to Him, He comes at the prayers of another... comes when WE pray, and gently takes their hands, and says, "You are under my prayer covering, and so you cannot stay dead. It is time to get up."

    = = = = = =

    The above is from firstmc.org/sunday_am/sermons/020825_Jesus_is_Praying_For_You.htm

    What difference does it make to you if Jesus doesn't call you by name, but identifies you simply as one who is under his prayer shawl, along with so many others you might be surprised about also being there?

    When have you needed to be placed under a prayer shawl, as life was beyond you? Who have you placed under your prayer shawl and are there any you have left out? Is your prayer for them an invitation or a narrower directed vision of how life should be for them? [There are some I would prefer to not pray for me for their prayer would hold me down, not raise me up.]

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  2. 2 Corinthians 8:7-15

    Generosity is a gift to be paid forward. We have received it. We are to offer it. Any questions?

    Even if you only sense a bit of generosity coming your way, at least that much can be passed on. Like mercy, we can appreciate that which has been received and humbly ask for more, we can put forth the energy to pass on more than we have received in anticipation of that more already being on the way.

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  3. 2 Corinthians 8:7-15

    Just as we cannot have personal holiness without social holiness, so we cannot have personal generosity without social generosity.

    This will speak to many issues:
    - death penalty
    - environmental integrity
    - living wage
    - universal health care
    - etc.
    - etc.
    - etc.

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  4. Psalm 130 or Psalm 30 or Lamentations 3:23-33

    We, created in the image of G*D, have the power to forgive, to redeem. Will we be generous with this power?

    We have the experience of renewed health after illness and, by extension, of resurrection after death. Will we extrapolate from our experience in our interactions with others or limit it to ourselves?

    We have a new day in which to move beyond our prior responses to life, not trying to clone our experience but build on it. Will we stretch to a next layer of life that is both higher and deeper than where we have been and include others in that?

    Knowing we have an option beyond yesterday and today opens to us a basic understanding of life -- life-long learning. We can take the generosity of our ancestors who took things as far as they could and now push things as far as we can that those who follow will be grateful for our generosity that has so blessed them. We can. Will we?

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  5. 2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27 or Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15; 2:23-24

    G*D created us for incorruption. When corruption goes on it is important to not give it undo weight. For instance, David's words about Saul are a generous recognition of G*D's intention for Saul and all.

    It is probably true that we all do the best we can with what we think we have. Folks, even miserable folks, are doing the best they can within the options they see. A part of the progressive perspective is to urge one another to glimpse beyond our current state to see how much more we can be, that we not be limited by thought patterns or circumstance.

    What is the best you can say about someone else? [No, this is not intended to be empty praise, ritual language, political cover.] To say the best about someone else also allows the best within ourselves to come out.

    [ PS you are welcome to fill in the rest of the week's comments as my dearly beloved's father died yesterday and we will be attending to all that means about celebrating a life and attending to legal details. We will have opportunity to practice saying good things about a good man, sometimes more difficult than it would seem. ]

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