Please find the Agape Meditation Supplement to the Virtual Church for Sunday, June 15, 2014. The theme is John 3:16 – was Jesus about separation or love?
Agape’ Meditation Practices Newsletter
Supplement to the Authentic Freedom Virtual Church Service
God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
John 3: 16 – 18
Ex 34: 4B – 6, 6-8
Dn 3: 52-56
2 Cor 13: 11-13
John 3: 16
I must admit, that I can’t help but cringe when I read John 3: 16 – not because of its words, but because of the way in which these words have been used to create separation instead of LOVE. Certainly, separation is something we can infer from this reading – a certain kind of privilege afforded to those who believe in Jesus as the only son of God and as the sole means of heavenly salvation. However, I cannot believe that separation or privilege were Jesus’ intentions. Instead, I believe, that the salvation about which the author of John is referring is the salvation we find in our earthly experience when we turn to Jesus as our teacher and guide and follow his example for attaining peace in this life and for coming to know our original nature as One with God and with each other in LOVE. When we take Jesus’ teachings and example seriously and apply them in life, all we have is love and in perfect love, there can be no separation.
Where have you found the unifying power of Love in Jesus’ teachings?
How are you called to be and live LOVE more freely through Jesus’ teachings and example?
Spiritual Practices – Separate or One?
Set aside 20-30 minutes to enter into this meditation practice. You will need your computer or personal music device to access the music that will be used in this practice.
- Sit in silence.
- Slowly and meditatively read the scripture above.
- Listen to the following song: ONE by Creed. (Youtube Link HERE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLSU4KRXZ9o)
- Re-read the scripture above, open to how you might interpret it from the perspective of Unity/Oneness instead of separation.
- Re-write the passage in a way that more clearly articulates Jesus’ intention of LOVE and Oneness.
In Authentic Freedom, we recognize that the remedy to human suffering is remembering our Oneness with God, within ourselves, with each other and with all of creation. Remembering this Oneness does not eliminate the challenges of the human condition, but it does give us the support we need to move through these challenges while being open to God’s grace in the midst of them. We learn of this Oneness through the stories of Jesus’ teachings and the example he set for his disciples of a prayerful life. Contemplation is the process through which we remember this Oneness.
How are you following Jesus’ example of prayerful contemplation?
How have you found contemplation to be helpful in cultivating inner peace and giving you the resources to weather life’s challenges?