The following is the Agape’ Meditation Newsletter in preparation for Sunday, March 23rd, 2014, the Third Sunday of Lent. If you find this resource meaningful and want to receive a printable copy via email, please subscribe using the “Constant Contact” subscription button in the right sidebar menu.
Agape’ Meditation Practices Newsletter
Supplement to the Authentic Freedom Virtual Church Service
In those days, in their thirst for water, the people grumbled against Moses, saying, “Why did you ever make us leave Egypt? Was it just to have us die here of thirst with our children and our livestock?” So Moses cried out to the LORD, “What shall I do with this people? a little more and they will stone me!” The LORD answered Moses, “Go over there in front of the people, along with some of the elders of Israel, holding in your hand, as you go, the staff with which you struck the river. I will be standing there in front of you on the rock in Horeb. Strike the rock, and the water will flow from it for the people to drink.” This Moses did, in the presence of the elders of Israel. The place was called Massah and Meribah, because the Israelites quarreled there and tested the LORD, saying, “Is the LORD in our midst or not?”
Exodus 17: 3-7
Ps 95: 1-2, 6-9
Rom 5: 1-2, 5-819, 20, 22
Jn 4: 5-42
Hindsight is 20/20
As Paul said in his letter to the Hebrews:
“Faith is the realization of things hoped for and evidence of things unseen.” (Heb 11:1)
Sometimes in order to have belief, or to strengthen a weakened belief, it is helpful to look back over our life experiences for evidence of the Presence and Action of God. Taking the time to recall all the places in our life where we can see the loving action of God helps to strengthen us in times of struggle and gives us appreciation for all the ways in which God has been present to us throughout our lives.
On a blank sheet of paper, draw a horizontal line. At one end of the line, put the number zero. At the other end of the line, write your current age. Between zero and your current age, mark along the line, significant events of your life. Choose one of those events and place yourself back into the experience, using your imagination to recollect the details of the event. Allow yourself to once again experience the emotions and feelings associated with the event. Allow the story to unfold in your mind until it comes to its natural conclusion. Then reflect on the following questions:
1) How are you now aware of the Presence and Action of God in the course of that event? Some examples might be – significant people who accompanied you in the experience, or showed up as examples of love and support. Other examples might be related to solutions to problems, guidance and support that seemed to come in a miraculous or startling way.
2) How has that event continued to influence your life? How has God continued to be present to you as you life unfolded from that event?
In this week’s reading, the Hebrews were confronted with the very real fear that they would die of thirst in the desert. From the perspective of Authentic Freedom, the fear that arose in them was the fear that there is not enough. This fear caused them to doubt the decision they had made to leave behind the life of slavery they had known in Egypt and follow Moses to the “promised land.” Their grumbling and the remedy to their grumbling is a reminder for us as well – when we are afraid that there is not enough, to turn toward God.
How are you aware of the fear “there is not enough” as operating in your life?
Where are you tempted to doubt that God will provide for all of your needs?
How are you being invited to turn toward God when you are afraid?