Today, we are right between Valentine’s Day (a secular holiday) and Transfiguration Sunday (a slightly strange Christian holiday celebrating the time Jesus was transfigured (glowing!) on a mountaintop and joined by Moses and Elijah in front of a few disciples). The disciples loved Jesus so much. And on that mountaintop, when they saw him in this new glorious way, they wanted to stay on that mountain and never leave. They wanted to feel that love, that glory, forever.
The expectation of Valentine’s Day is that we do things to celebrate our loved ones, often in extravagant ways – candy, jewelry, gifts, flowers, fancy meals, etc. It is a heightened day of showing love. But, no one thinks we could keep up Valentine’s Day kind of love every day. No one could consume that much candy, want that many flowers, go out for that many rich meals – day in and day out. On Feb. 15, most of us go back to loving our loved ones in just the regular daily ways that look more like: making sure the laundry gets done and dinner is ready, a quick hug, a shared look, making time to check in during the day, a text you’re thinking of them.
This is what Jesus tells the disciples – they can’t stay on that mountain in all that glory and love forever. They’ve got to take the glory and love into their everyday. They need to go and share it with others. Even if they think they never want to leave the mountain now, the time would come when they would miss the others; when they’d miss their work and purpose. They have to go down off the mountain.
So, with Valentine’s Day over and Transfiguration Sunday ahead, today would be a good day to ask how you show that everyday love to people? What will you do today to make someone feel loved?
something Worth playing
Usually this is “Something Worth Reading,” but I wanted to share a fun new puzzle game I’ve found. Some of you heard me preach about how I enjoy puzzles, like Wordle, and a number of you told me you enjoyed it too. So, how about trying a bible verse puzzle? Versle is a daily puzzle where you are given a bible verse and you have six chances to determine the book, chapter and verse. Some days I get it right away; some days I don’t get it at all, but it is an opportunity to think about the different styles of writing in the Bible and to be reminded of different verses and to grow your knowledge of the Bible.
Try it by clicking here.
something worth hearing
BRYAN STEVENSON on KATE BOWLER’S podcast
In this Valentine’s week, we often hear a lot about romantic love, but as a central tenant and commandment of our faith, we are called to love all of God’s children and creation. Many of you read the book Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson for our church book study a few years ago. Stevenson’s work as a lawyer and the founder of the Equal Justice Initiative has been to show love to all people, even those who have been condemned to death row. This podcast with author and professor, Kate Bowler, explores what love in action looks like.
You can watch above on YouTube or listen here (or wherever you listen to podcasts): Everything Happens
something worth watching
What Does the Lord Require of You?
Recently, in worship, we read one of my favorite scripture verses, Micah 6:8 “What does the Lord require of you? To do justice, and love kindness, and walk humbly with your God.” It’s simple, but incapsulates so much of what it means to live as a person of faith. When we were homeschooling our daughter we would start our day with song and this was often one of the songs we sang. Here, a youth choir sings this lovely round.
something worth praying
The sap is rising and there are some who say this is the time of active dreams. This winter time when the light is returning more and we have some days when we glimpse the spring to come is a good time to imagine and dream of what’s to come. Here is a prayer for your dreams.
Guerrillas of Grace: Prayers for the Battle
By Ted Loder
Bring More of What I Dream
who out of nothing
brought everything that is,
out of what I am
bring more of what I dream
but haven’t dared;
direct my power and passion
to creating life
where there is death,
to putting flesh of action
on bare-boned intentions,
to lighting fires
against the midnight of indifference,
to throwing bridges of care
across canyons of loneliness;
so I can look on creation,
together with you,
call it very good;
through Jesus Christ my Lord.