Teacher Where Are You? – Good News for January 30

30 01 2011

Matthew 5:1-12

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain, and after he had sat down, his disciples came to him. He began to teach them, saying, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land.

Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.

Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.

Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.

Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.”

The Daily Path: When I see the crowds on television I want Jesus to climb the mountain and teach us again.





Travel Log – Good News for January 3

3 01 2011

Matthew 4:12-17, 23-25

When Jesus heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew to Galilee. He left Nazareth and went to live in Capernaum by the sea, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali, that what had been said through Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled:

Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles, the people who sit in darkness have seen a great light, on those dwelling in a land overshadowed by death light has arisen.

From that time on, Jesus began to preach and say, “Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

He went around all of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom, and curing every disease and illness among the people. His fame spread to all of Syria, and they brought to him all who were sick with various diseases and racked with pain, those who were possessed, lunatics, and paralytics, and he cured them. And great crowds from Galilee, the Decapolis, Jerusalem, and Judea, and from beyond the Jordan followed him.

The Daily Path: This morning I’m packing my bags for a little trip. Actually, a big trip… around the Internet in search of the places mentioned in this morning’s gospel. I’ve never been to the Decapolis, have you? It would be nice to put some of the places where Jesus traveled in context. This might be a good year to become The Jesus Trekker! Bon Voyage





Advent Day 12 – Good News for December 9

9 12 2010

Matthew 11:11-15

Jesus said to the crowds, “Amen, I say to you, among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the Kingdom of heaven is greater than he. From the days of John the Baptist until now, the Kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent are taking it by force. All the prophets and the law prophesied up to the time of John. And if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah, the one who is to come. Whoever has ears ought to hear.”

The Daily Path: So many are without work this Christmas. Men and women, who up until recent years have never had to worry about paying the bills or feeding their kids, now find themselves feeling incredible anxiety. On top of it all Christmas is coming, adding worry related to the commercial side of the season. Then there are those who haven’t had a home to call their own for many years. They seek a shelter each night, hoping there will be room at the inn so they can avoid the peril of living on the streets.

Like Jimmy Stewart in the holiday classic “It’s a Wonderful Life”, I’ve been given a glimpse into what that side of life can be like. I’ve experienced what real worry is. I’ve laid awake at night wondering how I will care for my family and what the future holds. Fortunately, as with Stewart’s “George Bailey”, I had “Clarence the angel” enter my life in the form of people who genuinely cared about me. They helped me get through a bout with depression. They’ve provided opportunities to help us stay afloat when so many others have gone under.

I think of these blessings often as I move through Advent in a much better place than I was not very long ago. Like me, I hope you will reflect on the joy of blessings that have come your way in the past year. And while doing so, perhaps you’ll find a way to reach out to someone who might need a hand this Christmas season. Relieving worry can come in many forms. You’d be surprised at how the smallest things can make a difference in people’s lives. Believe me, for some it doesn’t take much to provide a peaceful night’s rest.

Be an angel this Advent. Hee! Haw!






Advent Day 8 – Good News for December 5

5 12 2010

Matthew 3:1-12

John the Baptist appeared, preaching in the desert of Judea and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” It was of him that the prophet Isaiah had spoken when he said: A voice of one crying out in the desert, Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths.

John wore clothing made of camel’s hair and had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. At that time Jerusalem, all Judea,and the whole region around the Jordan were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the Jordan River as they acknowledged their sins.

When he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce good fruit as evidence of your repentance. And do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you, God can raise up children to Abraham from these stones. Even now the ax lies at the root of the trees. Therefore every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. I am baptizing you with water, for repentance, but the one who is coming after me is mightier than I. I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fan is in his hand. He will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”

The Daily Path: John the Baptist is an Advent Man. He’s preparing the populace for the coming of Jesus. This is exactly what we should be doing in these days before we celebrate the birth of Christ. Do yourself a favor. Trade in a frantic holiday moment for some peaceful reflection with God.





Advent Day 7 – Good News for December 4

4 12 2010

Matthew 9:35-10:1

Jesus went around to all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom, and curing every disease and illness. At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.”

Then he summoned his Twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out and to cure every disease and every illness.

Jesus sent out these Twelve after instructing them thus, “Go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, drive out demons. Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.”

The Daily Path

“Trying to do as much good as possible in the limited time I have on this planet.”

Hugh Romney, aka:Wavy Gravy

How is that for a life mission statement?

Wavy is best known in pop culture as a member of author Ken Kesey’s Merry Pranksters from the Beat and Woodstock generations. He’s been a lifelong activist sporting a diverse resume that few can match. Some may view him as nothing more than one of the last remnants of the psychedelic hippies, a living artifact of society gone wild. I would challenge them to look beneath the colorful exterior at Gravy’s spiritual side and the deeper mission. In fact, I think Hugh Romney might have fit in nicely with a certain band of Twelve that followed the Christ.





Advent Day 5 – Good News for December 2

3 12 2010

Matthew 7:21, 24-27

Jesus said to his disciples, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock. And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”

The Daily Path: Don’t ask me why, but when I was searching for an image to include in today’s Advent Calendar window, this one grabbed me. Let’s just say that these three young women had a lot of faith back in the 50’s or 60’s… and many cans of hair spray!





Advent Day 2 – Good News for November 29

29 11 2010

Matthew 8:5-11

When Jesus entered Capernaum, a centurion approached him and appealed to him, saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.”  He said to him, “I will come and cure him.” The centurion said in reply, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof; only say the word and my servant will be healed. For I too am a man subject to authority, with soldiers subject to me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come here,’ and he comes; and to my slave, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”

When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him, “Amen, I say to you, in no one in Israel have I found such faith. I say to you, many will come from the east and the west, and will recline with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the banquet in the Kingdom of heaven.”

The Daily Path: In today’s Advent Calendar window, I’m sending you a reminder of the wonderful gift of companionship. What could we offer to the residents of a local care facility? Imagine someone’s parent sitting all alone through this season. How can we light a smile on a lonely face?