To test Jesus they asked him to show them a sign from heaven

THURSDAY, November 12 (Charles Simeon) Listen Now:   Powered by Podbean.com Matthew 16:1-12. The Pharisees and Sadducees came, and to test Jesus they asked him to show them a sign from heaven. It’s November and I am preoccupied with my parish’s Every...

You are gods, and all of you children of the Most High

 WEDNESDAY, November 11 (Martin of Tours) Veterans’ Day (U.S.) Remembrance Day (Canada)   Listen Now:   Powered by Podbean.com Psalm 82. You are gods, and all of you children of the Most High; nevertheless, you shall die like mortals, and fall like any prince....

To test Jesus they asked him to show them a sign from heaven

Tuesday, November 10 (Leo the Great) Matthew 15:21-28. Lord, help me. Listen Now: Powered by Podbean.com Another friend writes he has lost his job, “downsized” as we say in the new doublespeak for being dismissed. The economy is bleak. Nearly everyone...

A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins

SUNDAY, November 8 23 Pentecost Mark 12:38-44. A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny. Read the Bible cover to cover and you will come away with the unmistakable fact God always takes the side of the poor. That is a hard truth for...

Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him

SATURDAY, November 7 (Willibrord of Utrecht) Matthew 14:22-36. Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him. It was well past dark and bitterly cold on the runway that night in early 1978. Ice was everywhere. We were allowed to stay in our heated cars and...

This is a deserted place

FRIDAY, November 6 (William Temple) Matthew 14:13-21. This is a deserted place. You all know a Mrs. Smith–the person who is always around when you complain and has more troubles than you. When I whined it was 115 degrees in the desert she said,...

You will restore my life

Psalm 71. You have showed me great troubles and adversities, but you will restore my life and bring me up again from the deep places of the earth. The story of the execution of John the Baptist sticks in the throat. You know exactly how the story will end, but every...

Jesus came to his hometown

WEDNESDAY, November 4 Matthew 13:53-58. Jesus came to his hometown and began to teach the people in their synagogue, so that they were astounded and said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power?” Jesus’ homecoming in Nazareth is...

“Have you understood all this?”

TUESDAY, November 3 (Richard Hooker) Matthew 13:44-52. “Have you understood all this?” [Jesus asked the disciples.] They answered, “Yes.” You have to hand it to the disciples. While they rarely understood anything Jesus said or did, they were...

You have rescued my soul from death

MONDAY, November 2 (All Faithful Departed) Psalm 56. You have rescued my soul from death. Word has reached me that John B. Tillson Jr. has died. His death did not make the front page of newspapers or stir wide interest. But for me it was shattering. By his passing I...

See, the home of God is among mortals

SUNDAY, November 1 All Saints’ Day Revelation 21:1-6a. See, the home of God is among mortals. He will dwell with them as their God; they will be his peoples, and God himself will be with them; he will wipe every tear from their eyes. This glorious feast is as...

Fear and trembling have come over me, and horror overwhelms me

SATURDAY, October 31 All Hallows’ Eve Psalm 55. Fear and trembling have come over me, and horror overwhelms me. And I said, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove! I would fly away and be at rest. I would flee to a far-off place and make my lodging in the...

Happy are they who trust in the LORD!

FRIDAY, October 30 Psalm 40. Happy are they who trust in the LORD! they do not resort to evil spirits or turn to false gods.  Sometimes it feels as if the real me has become lost in my daybook, my resumé, or my checkbook. I feel proud when they are full to...

For he is our peace

WEDNESDAY, October 28 Saint Simon and Saint Jude Ephesians 2:13-22. For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us. He has abolished the law with its commandments and...

Day and night without ceasing they sing, “Holy, holy, holy

TUESDAY, October 27 Revelation 4:1-11. Day and night without ceasing they sing, “Holy, holy, holy, the Lord God the Almighty, who was and is and is to come.” The London subway system displays many signs warning travelers to be careful when stepping from...

I was dead, and see, I am alive forever and ever!

MONDAY, October 26 (Alfred the Great) Revelation 1:4-20. I fell at his feet as though dead. But he placed his right hand on me, saying: “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, and the living one. I was dead, and see, I am alive forever and ever!”...

You, LORD, with your favor, made me as strong as the mountains

SATURDAY, October 24 Psalm 30. “You, LORD, with your favor, made me as strong as the mountains.” Then you hid your face, and I was filled with fear. When I get on an elevator alone, I repeatedly push the “Door Close” button. I doubt that it...

Is not this the carpenter’s son?

FRIDAY, October 23 Saint James of Jerusalem Matthew 13:54-58. “Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power? Is not this the carpenter’s son?” Our modern culture struggles to move from reliance on printed information to reliance on the...

Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him

THURSDAY, October 22 Psalm 37:1-18. Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him. Do not fret yourself over the one who prospers, the one who succeeds in evil schemes…The lowly shall possess the land; they will delight in abundance of peace. Ads for sleep...

He said to them, “Have you not read what David did?

WEDNESDAY, October 21 Matthew 12:1-14. He said to them, “Have you not read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him or his companions to eat, but only...

Vindicate me, O LORD, for I have led a blameless life

TUESDAY, October 20 Psalm 26. Vindicate me, O LORD, for I have led a blameless life. (NIV)  The service manager at the car dealership gave me a certificate for a “free” oil change, but only after verifying that I had given the dealership a good rating on...

The LORD…heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds

MONDAY, October 19 Saint Luke (tr.) Psalm 147. The LORD…heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. He counts the number of the stars and calls them all by their names. I am a terrible cook, even with devices that give spoken step-by-step instructions....

There are varieties of gifts

1 Corinthians 12:1-11. There are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord. As the search for alternative energy sources ramped up, one ad for wind energy exhorted, “Believe in the wind.” Those simple...

All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal

Psalm 119:145-176. All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal. (NIV) In 2008, a museum discovered a previously unknown piece of music, apparently written by Mozart, as it is undeniably in the composer’s own hand. A researcher said of the music,...

Do not seek your own advantage, but that of the other

1 Corinthians 10:14-11:1. “All things are lawful,” but not all things are beneficial. Do not seek your own advantage, but that of the other. The tipping point, according to the book by that title, is a culmination, a time in which a series of small changes...

And you have said

2 Kings 19:21-36. And you have said, “With my many chariots I have gone up the heights of the mountains, to the far recesses of Lebanon; I felled its tallest cedars, its choicest cypresses.” Rising costs for wheat flour make it difficult for the poor to...

“Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.”

Matthew 8:1-17. “Lord, if you choose, you can make me clean.” An expert interviewed during the hurricane clean-up indicated that the equipment being brought in included “IBBs,” or “itty-bitty boats.” Those small craft, though...

How awesome is this place!

TUESDAY, September 29 Saint Michael and All Angels Genesis 28:10-17. How awesome is this place! When we contemplate being in the presence of God, it is indeed awesome. Once I visited a church and found in the pulpit a plaque that read “This is an awful...

The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective

SUNDAY, September 27 17 PentecostJames 5:13-20. The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective. When I was in seminary, my tutor gave me some advice that has served me well. He said whenever you agree to pray for someone, it is a serious commitment so make sure...

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also

SATURDAY, September 26 (Lancelot Andrewes) Matthew 6:19-24. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Years ago I went to a stewardship conference where the speaker led us through an exercise no doubt familiar to many readers. He asked each of us to...

Do not heap up empty phrases

Friday September 25 (Sergius of Moscow) Matthew 6:7-15. Do not heap up empty phrases. In this passage, Jesus teaches us the Lord’s Prayer. It is the model for all prayer. It has no empty phrases; every word is loaded. This prayer is learned early in childhood....

…your Father who sees in secret

THURSDAY September 24 Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18. …your Father who sees in secret. One of my earliest memories is of hearing this passage read in church and being terrified. I did not comprehend the context of the passage nor connect it with almsgiving, but simply saw...

Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you

WEDNESDAY, September 23 Matthew 5:38-48. Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. One day the intercessor was reciting the prayers of the people and wanted to pray for some Americans who had been ambushed and killed overseas. Cautiously he said,...

Clean out the old yeast so that you may be a new batch

1 Corinthians 5:1-8. Clean out the old yeast so that you may be a new batch…not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. In this passage, Paul is chastising the Corinthians for purported loose living...

Whoever welcomes one such child…welcomes me.

SUNDAY, September 20 16 Pentecost Mark 9:30-37. Whoever welcomes one such child…welcomes me. Several months ago I saw a wonderful picture of Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, clad in a brightly colored chasuble and sitting on the floor in church,...

Let your light shine before others

 FRIDAY, September 18 (Edward Bouverie Pusey) Ember Friday Matthew 5:11-16. Let your light shine before others. Once again we reflect on the subject of light. Most of us have known people who want to claim center stage. In school it was the class clown. In adult life...

Blessed are…

THURSDAY, September 17 (Hildegard of Bingen) Matthew 5:1-10. Blessed are… In the gospel reading for today we hear the Beatitudes. Last Saturday we reflected on what it means to be pleasing to God. This lesson follows that one naturally. Part of the fruits of...

Follow me

WEDNESDAY, September 16 (Ninian of Galloway) Ember Wednesday Matthew 4:18-25. Follow me. Several years ago I visited the Holy Land. It is not easy to travel around Jerusalem, Galilee, and Judea. The terrain is uneven and paths are steep and rocky. When I crossed the...

The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light

TUESDAY, September 15 Matthew 4:12-17. The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light. Yesterday, Holy Cross Day, we reflected on John’s “children of light.” Today we read Matthew, and the theme of light continues. The light is, of course,...

…so that you may become children of light

MONDAY, September 14 Holy Cross Day John 12:31-36a. …so that you may become children of light. Today is Holy Cross Day. Some reflect on the Christus Rex with Christ the King depicted on a cross of glory. Some reflect on a crucifix with a Christ of agony who died...

The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of a teacher

SUNDAY, September 13 15 Pentecost Isaiah 50:4-9a. The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of a teacher. The Church of Nigeria is the fastest growing province in the Anglican Communion. A few years ago, when relations were more cordial than they are now, Archbishop Peter...

…with whom I am well pleased

SATURDAY, September 12 (John Henry Hobart) Matthew 3:13-17. …with whom I am well pleased. These words were spoken by God about Jesus at his baptism. It is something every child wants to hear from his parents, teacher, and pastor. It is something we seek as...

Prepare the way of the Lord

FRIDAY, September 11 Matthew 3:1-12. Prepare the way of the Lord. Camel hair clothing, locusts, wild honey…what a strange character we meet today. And yet the people came to him to be baptized. Sometimes God uses very unlikely people as messengers. I once was...

Forward Day by Day Devotional on Itunes

The Eureka! Network is excited to announce that the Forward Day by Day Devotional audio podcast is live on Itunes. You will find the Forward Day by Day Daily Devotional below in the Daily Eureka! section. Forward Movement is an official, non-profit agency of The...

They saw the child…and paid him homage…they offered him gifts

WEDNESDAY, September 9 (Constance and her Companions) Matthew 2:1-12. They saw the child…and paid him homage…they offered him gifts. Those who have been reading the lectionary each day have seen a great shift. Readings from the Gospel of Mark ended with...

Terror and amazement had seized them

TUESDAY, September 8 Mark 16:1-8(9-20). Terror and amazement had seized them. Mark describes the women at the tomb as filled with terror and amazement. These seem like contradictory emotions. But a few months ago, I came to see them more clearly. My grandson had...

Sticks and Stones…

Receiving His Riches – Proper 15 year C “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me.” It’s a lie. I know that most of us were taught this little phrase by our mothers to help us manage the small cruelties of our...

Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last

SATURDAY, September 5 Mark 15:33-39. Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last. Whenever I leave the Good Friday service, I am wrung out. The dramatic reading of the Passion and the emotional preaching drive home the tragedy of Jesus’ last moments on the...

The chief priests, along with the scribes, were also mocking him

FRIDAY, September 4 (Paul Jones) Mark 15:22-32. The chief priests, along with the scribes, were also mocking him. Jesus was not having a good day. Betrayed, arrested, beaten, and hanging on a cross, with only hours to live–couldn’t they give him a break?...

They compelled a passer-by…

THURSDAY, September 3 Mark 15:12-21. They compelled a passer-by… Years ago I took forty young people on a mission trip to an Indian reservation. In Nebraska we discovered that our bus company planned to drop us off and return in three weeks. However, our...

You say so

WEDNESDAY, September 2 (The Martyrs of New Guinea) Mark 15:1-11. You say so. Some people seem stuck on themselves. Whether in a social setting or interaction with coworkers, we sometimes feel trapped by people who appear to be working too hard to convince us how...

I do not know this man

TUESDAY, September 1 (David Pendleton Oakerhater) Mark 14:66-72. I do not know this man. It is easy to stand with or emulate those we admire when the world is heaping praise upon them. But to continue to stand with them when the crowd turns is a different matter. When...

Feeding on Him

1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14 Psalm 111 or Proverbs 9:1-6 Psalm 34:9-14 Ephesians 5:15-20 John 6:51-58 Dear Friends, First, my apologies for the tardiness of this post.  I’m off on vacation and I just couldn’t get my head around writing for a couple weeks there....

The Fruit of the Spirit = Being a Better Man

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Galatians 5:22–23 Want to be a better man? Love Jesus. And, if you love Him, you will obey Him. In Galatians 5, Paul tells us that the fruits of...

Love God and Do What You Want

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.Deuteronomy 6:5 “Love God and do what you want,” said St. Augustine, perhaps the greatest theologian that has ever walked the face of the earth. Augustine understood Jesus....

Doing What You Know

I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. Romans 7:15 Why is it so hard to do the things you want to do or to be the man you want to be? Nearly every man wants to be a better man, a better husband or a better father. Yet...

Joseph or Moses?

Receiving His Riches – Joseph or Moses? Proper 13 Year B RCL 2 Samuel 11:26-12:13a Psalm 51:1-13 or Exodus 16:2-4, 9-15 Psalm 78:23-29 Ephesians 4:1-16 John 6:24-35 In the last year or so, I have read many a message from one Christian preacher or another...

“What if?”

Receiving His Riches – Proper 12, Year B 2 Samuel 11:1-15 Psalm 14 or 2 Kings 4:42-44 Psalm 145: 10-19 Ephesians 3:14-21 John 6:1-21 When Sara and I lived in Manhattan we worshiped for about two and a half years at the Church of the Holy Apostles.  Sara also did...

What I Learned From the NFL Off-Season

What I learned from the NFL offseason Why the NFL works (and why it doesn’t) Now that the NFL draft is over we have the long haul before the opening of training camp and the preseason.  If only it were voluntary, this absence of football from my life!  Then I...

Onward Christian Soldiers

Receiving His Riches – Proper 11, Year B 2 Samuel 7:1-14a Psalm 89:20-37 or Jeremiah 23:1-6 Psalm 23 Ephesians 2:11-22 Mark 6:30-34, 53-56 “Onward, Christian soldiers!” One of my earliest church memories is of my first grade Sunday school class...

Consuming Fire

In keeping with this week’s theme of God’s break-out, I thought I’d repost an old RHR that deals with the same idea, the fire of God. Receiving His Riches 9 – II Advent, Year A Isaiah 11:1-10 Psalm 72:1-7, 18-19 Romans 15:4-13 Matthew 3:1-12...

By Self-Enlightenment is Perfect Freedom Found

THERE is no bondage in the Heavenly Life. There is Perfect Freedom. This is its great glory. This Supreme Freedom is gained only by obedience. He who obeys the Highest co-operates with the Highest, and so masters every force within himself and every condition without....

God Wants Out of Our Boxes!

Receiving His Riches 2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19 Psalm 24 or Amos 7:7-15 Psalm 85:8-13 Ephesians 1:3-14 Mark 6:14-29 Reading this week’s text from 2 Samuel I was taken back to the 80’s, to the first of the “Indiana Jones” movies, “Raiders of...

The Universe is Preserved Because Love is at the Heart of It

  THE Children of Light who abide in the Kingdom of Heaven see the universe, and all that it contains, as the manifestation of one Law—the Law of Love. They see Love as the moulding, sustaining, protecting, and perfecting Power immanent in all things animate and...

How Can he Fear Any Who Wrongs None

THE righteous man is invincible. No enemy can possibly overcome or con-found him ; and he needs no other protection than that of his own integrity and holiness. As it is impossible for evil to overcome Good, so the righteous man can never be brought low by the...

Nothing is Hidden From Him who Overcomes Himself

INTO the cause of causes shalt thou penetrate, and lifting, one after another, every veil of illusion, shalt reach at last the inmost Heart of Being. Thus becoming one with Life, thou shalt know all life, and, seeing into causes, and knowing realities, thou shalt be...

The Prayer of Jabez

    “Oh, that You would bless me indeed, “   and enlarge my territory,   that Your hand would be with me,   and that You would keep me from evil,   that I may not cause pain!      1 Chronicles 4:10...

The Might of Meekness

THE man who conquers another by force is strong ; the man who conquers himself by Meekness is mighty. He who conquers another by force will himself likewise be conquered ; he who conquers himself by Meekness will never be overthrown, for the human cannot overcome the...

Proverbs 23

18 There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off. 19 Listen, my son, and be wise, and keep your heart on the right path. 20 Do not join those who drink too much wine or gorge themselves on meat, 21 for drunkards and gluttons become poor, and...

Wisdom is the aim of Every Philosophy

IN whatever condition a man finds himself, he can always find the True ; and he can find it only by so utilising his present condition as to become strong and wise. The effeminate hankering after rewards, and the craven fear of punishment, let them be put away for...

“Go Lower!”

One of the great dangers of the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector in Luke 18 is the likelihood that some will read it and think, “Aha!  I know who those Pharisees are!  I know those self-righteous folk!  I’m so glad I’m  not like them!  I...

Seers of the Cosmos do not Mourn Over the Scheme of Things

SEERS of the Cosmos see the universe as a perfect whole, and not as an imperfect jumble of parts. The Great Teachers are men of abiding joy and heavenly peace. The blind captive of unholy desire may cry: ” Ah ! Love, could you and I with Him conspire To grasp...

Control Your Thoughts

  Each day you have the opportunity to make changes to your life. Why is it if you do 100 good things, it seems that everyone in your life will only see that one bad thing? Your family, teachers, bosses, coworkers, and friends do it to you everyday. Do you need to...

The Law Which Punishes Us is the Law Which Preserves Us

WHEN in their ignorance men would destroy themselves, its everlasting arms are thrown about them in loving, albeit sometimes painful, protection. Every pain we suffer brings us nearer to the knowledge of the Divine Wisdom. Every blessedness we enjoy speaks to us of...

What You Think

What you think about creates your life. The thoughts in your mind create your reality. This is your vision. How you see yourself, and your life. You must realize that this is the key to your entire life. This is your truth. You are conditioned from birth by your...

Northland – A Megachurch That Gets It

Up to now, the subjects of my “New Wanderers” series in my blog has focused on small Vineyard churches, very locally focused. But now, we move from the West Coast to the Eastern US – Florida, to be exact. This is the story of a megachurch of 12,000...

Your Weakness may be your Gift

2 Samuel 5:1-5, 9-10 Psalm 48 or Ezekiel 2:1-5 Psalm 123 2 Corinthians 12:2-10 Mark 6:1-13 I vaguely remember a book from many years ago called “The Missing Piece.”  It’s by Shel Silverstein.  In it, a little character shaped like a circle goes...

A Listless Mind Could Not Achieve Any Kind of Success

SUCCESS is rooted in a subtle mental brooding along a given line. It subsists in an individual characteristic, or combination of characteristics, and not in a particular circumstance, or set of circumstances. The circumstances appear, it is true, and form part of the...

Stimulate the Mind to Watchfulness and Reflection

IT will be seen that the first step in the discipline of the mind is the over-coming of indolence. This is the easiest step, and until it is perfectly accomplished the other steps cannot be taken. The clinging to indolence constitutes a complete barrier to the Path of...

Worship Through the Lord’s Prayer

Psalm 131 1 A Song of Ascents. Of David. Lord, my heart is not haughty, Nor my eyes lofty. Neither do I concern myself with great matters, Nor with things too profound for me. 2 Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, Like a weaned child with his mother; Like a...

Flat On Your Face

Appointed readings in the Revised CommonLectionary for this week are: 2 Samuel 1:1, 17-27 Psalm 130 or Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15; 2:23-24 Lamentations 3:21-33 or Psalm 30 2 Corinthians 8:7-15 Mark 5:21-43 Often, the best place to find His Riches is flat on your face....

Lord have mercy, what a place to start!

Lord have mercy, what a place to start! I have always built these weekly reflections on a schedule of Sunday readings called the “Revised Common Lectionary.”  not because I am much enamored of the schedule, but because so many churches use it.  And because...

Eureka!

Eureka! After years of wondering what my life is about, I have discovered the answer has always been right in front of me. I have searched the ends of the Earth. I have experienced so much. All of those problems, all of those worries, what was I thinking? I have been...

Contemplation

Today is a day of contemplation. Relax and enjoy your surroundings. Take in all the good in your life. No matter how bad life seems, look around to find one special area in your life. Maybe it is your wife, your children, the place you live, or even the blue sky....

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but...