God Is Close (11 June 2019)

Morning Encounter:

Read:

You should pray like this:

Our Father in heaven,
help us to honour
    your name.
 Come and set up
    your kingdom,
so that everyone on earth
    will obey you,
as you are obeyed
    in heaven.
 Give us our food for today.
Forgive us for doing wrong,
    as we forgive others.
Keep us from being tempted
    and protect us from evil.

(Matthew 6.9-13)

Reflect:

One popular view of God is that he is distant, uninterested and irrelevant to our daily lives. Here, in this famous prayer, Jesus counteracts this view and reminds us that God is near. In Jewish cosmology, heaven is not a distant planet, but refers to the surrounding atmosphere, the very air you breathed. God is intimate, close and always with us wherever we are. When we live in the kingdom of God, we live in the realm of his constant power and presence.

Respond:

Reflect on this version of the Lord’s Prayer throughout this day:

Dear Father always near us,
may your name be treasured and loved,
may your rule be completed in us-
may your will be done here on earth in
just the way it is done in heaven.
Give us today the things we need today,
and forgive us our sins and impositions on you
as we are forgiving all who in any way offend us.
Please don’t put us through trials,
but deliver us from everything bad.
Because you are the one in charge,
and you have all the power, and the glory too is all yours-forever-
which is just the way we want it!

(Dallas Willard)

Midday Meditation:

‘My starting point is that we’re already there. We cannot attain the presence of God because we’re already totally in the presence of God. What’s absent is awareness. Little do we realize that God is maintaining us in existence with every breath we take.  As we take another it means that God is choosing us now and now and now.’

(Richard Rohr, Everything Belongs)

Evening Reflection:

When darkness seems to hide His face
I rest on His unchanging grace
In every high and stormy gale
My anchor holds within the veil
My anchor holds within the veil

Christ alone; cornerstone
Weak made strong; in the Saviour's love
Through the storm, He is Lord
Lord of all
He is Lord
Lord of all

(Cornerstone, Hillsong)

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