Friday, January 6, 2017

A Little Cheating on Retreat

I am on retreat this weekend and am supposed to be "fasting" from technology.  I'm not doing terribly well with that.  I am addicted to posting my daily photos, and I really don't want to lose my blogging momentum.  I don't have the time to write a full post today, so I am sharing a daily devotion that I wrote that was published today.


Today's devotional is written by Kris Baker, Order of St Francis & St Clare, at #cohdallas, a United Church of Christ congregation, based on the following scripture:
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem village, Judah territory— this was during Herod’s kingship—a band of scholars arrived in Jerusalem from the East. They asked around, “Where can we find and pay homage to the newborn King of the Jews? We observed a star in the eastern sky that signaled his birth. We’re on pilgrimage to worship him.” Matthew 2:1-2
A Word of Hope
Today is the feast of The Epiphany, the day when the three kings from the east, who had traveled afar over field and fountain, moor and mountain following yonder star, made their way to Bethlehem bringing their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to the newborn king. The word epiphany comes from the Greek word epiphainen, meaning to shine upon, to reveal, to manifest, or to make known. On this day we celebrate the manifestation and revelation of God in Christ. We celebrate the Christ child who is the light of the world.
Are we not like those three wise men on a pilgrimage to find Christ? Have we not asked, perhaps many times, where we can find him and pay homage to him? As modern day Christians, our call is to keep our eyes and heart on that guiding star, on Jesus, the light of the world, and to let that star be our guide. That is not easy. Stars are sometimes hidden by clouds; clouds of fear, despair, insecurity, and hopelessness obscure the light. And even when we can see the stars, they often appear far beyond our reach. We need to remember that Jesus is never beyond our reach. He is with us in every step of every day. Jesus is the light that shines in our darkness. He is the star that, like the one that lead the wise men to Bethlehem, guides us through our daily lives. The three kings came bearing gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh for Jesus. In the words of Christina Rosetti, "What can I give Him, poor as I am?...[I can] give my heart." That is enough. The only thing that Jesus desires of us is our hearts. In giving Christ our hearts and following Him, the light of the world, all things are made possible.
What do you see when you look at the stars? Do you see stars of hope, peace, love? Stars of compassion, justice, mercy? Stars of contemplation, prayer, action? In the words of Paul to the Thessalonians, "You’re sons of Light, daughters of Day. We live under wide open skies and know where we stand. So let’s not sleepwalk through life like those others. Let’s keep our eyes open and be smart." (MSG)
Creator of the stars of night, help me to always trust in You and be guided by Your light. I pray that I will be a beacon of that light for others. Amen


In other news, we had snow in Texas today!  There was only a light dusting where I am, but at home, apparently there was quite a bit more, enough to wreak havoc on the roads at rush hour.  I did manage to sneak outside long enough to snap today's picture of the day, "Where I Stand."

Brooke is at home dog sitting.  Today's snow was Piper's first time ever to see the white stuff.  Her "big sister" kindly sent me a video.

 I was sad not to be there. I hate to admit that  I felt like a parent who was missing a significant first in her child's life.

Obviously it it cold here in here in Texas!  Despite that, Weber was excited last night to get to drive the golf cart back to our cabin.  Apparently, I am not a woman who chooses a guy based on the "car" he drives. :-)

I am going to stop here and go repent for my rule breaking sins.  I wish you all a blessed Feast of the Epiphany.

This was a light on the foot path and the pattern that it cast.  Perfect for today!