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“What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?”   The man answered, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”  “Right!” Jesus told him. “Do this and you will live!”

~ Luke 10: 26-7

I awakened from a dream in which I was at a KC Cougars baseball game and a woman was judging others in the name of Christianity. After some strange shenanigans (yep, it was a dream alright!), I had a chance to explain that I could sum up my faith with “Love God with all your heart. Love your neighbor as yourself.”  And “judge not lest you shall be judged.” 

(When I typed the sentence above, instead of ‘chance’, I typed ‘change’.  I find myself caught up in realizing the  similarity of these words…  and their relationship.  Hence, the title for this post.  And, yes, I’ve always been tangential!)

Now I have this song in my head. Not a bad earworm…

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Will you pray with me, please?

Good morning Good God,
You amaze me. You fill my head with thoughts of you even as I sleep. You send synaptic communication. You are in every cell of my being. And of course, you are in every other cell and molecule of creation. You add a drop of yourself, your energy, your love. I adore you. I worship you.

Faithful Foundation, Gracious Grantor,
Many spring to mind, as I think of those ‘standing in the need of prayer’. My friend, Amy, who was so sick last spring is stricken with pneumonia. It’s so hard for her to avoid illness with that nasty lupus. Heal her, Lord, and send a cure for lupus! There are infants who have congenital issues and babies with little bodies that don’t serve them.  There are parents who need to know about Baby Safe Haven laws to avoid abandoning their infants unlawfully.  Make them all whole. There is evil to be overcome; I see it in selfishness of individuals and countries – greed fills the gaping holes people have that wouldn’t exist if they would allow themselves to be filled with your love. Be with Laura’s father as he struggles with lung cancer and the unfortunate side effects from testing agents. Imbue him with your strength and love, fill him with your energy of healing. Soften Steve and remove his anxiety over money. Fill him with hopeful energy. Remind him to relax when he’s not in control of circumstances and needs to be patient.

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Give my friend, Melissa (with such a similar name) a wonderful 10th anniversary cruise – ensure she at least avoids pain with her ear/sinus infection, keep her safe and let her bask in the love of her husband.

Incredible Imagineer,

Thank you for Thea and her health. Thank you for Nancy to advocate for me in my battles — and succeeding when I would have given up. Thank you for the promise of plans for my welfare, not destruction. Thank you for bringing me and so many others through troubled times. Thank you for reminders to avoid pride, for only you are the potency; I am but the vessel to be filled with it (filled to overflowing, I might add!). Thank you for friends who show me your support and enfold me in love and peace. God, I love you so much!

In Jesus’ name,
Amen.

To God be the glory!

© Melissa Pazen, 2013

Live Inspired: pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; laugh frequently!

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“… they look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart”

 from I Samuel 16:7

 

Kate is in love!  And she has been for about five years.  Her beloved Will seems also to be head over heels with Kate. 

 

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Kate & Will indulge me with a smile while watching a good old fashioned Demolition Derby (@ Sycamore Speedway). Aug., 2012.

When they had been dating for a while, Kate brought Will to the house so we could meet.  My first thought (forgive me!) was, “she’s SO beautiful and he’s NOT a Ken doll look-alike.”  Isn’t that horrid?  So evil for a supposedly Christian woman! Refusing to act on such wretched thoughts, I listened & talked and got to know this person my daughter esteems.  The light in his eyes when he looks at my daughter is enough to bring tears to my eyes.

Consider that many believe “God is Love”.  Now, replace “the Lord” in the I Samuel verse with “love”.  Now think about how Kate looks on Will and how Will looks on Kate. 

May we all begin to be love when we look on others.  Will you pray with me, please?

 

Lord of Love,

Yours is the energy that keeps the universe in motion, ever changing.  Your plan for us is love, mercy, understanding and a quest for justice.  You are AMAZING.

Source of inSight,

Help us to look more in than on others.  Help us to remember to keep our perspective pure from pettiness.

Generous Giver,

Your extravagant and relentless love overwhelms us.  It seeps into every pore and every space in our beings, until it overflows. And you never stop.  Thank you.  I am so grateful. 

In Jesus’ name,

Amen.

 

Not to us, but to God be the glory!

© Melissa Pazen, 2013

Live Inspired:  pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; live authentically; laugh frequently!

This morning, I read an article on The Bonobo And The Atheist, a book written by primatologist and atheist, Frans de Waal. I added it to my Amazon Wish List because it looks to be right up my alley. In it, de Waal argues that ethical behavior, known in humans as morality, is an evolutionary phenomenon. The reviewer (theist and anthropologist Barbara J. King, whose book Evolving God also went on my Wish List) mentions that chimpanzees, macaques, and bonobos all are empathetic. De Waal also notes “there is little evidence that other animals judge the appropriateness of actions that do not directly affect themselves.”

Amazing Almighty,
You are. That alone leads me to praise you, merely for who you are. I rise in the morning and see evidence of you everywhere. You are. Amazing!

Lord of Light,
A non-judgmental being seems far worthier of your love than I am. I want to be non-judgemental. What happened in our evolution that took us away from the level of primates who have empathy and kindness. Do we need to be judgemental in order to be sentient? Perhaps these are two sides of the same coin; perhaps to be able to think and make decisions we must be able to judge. But, somehow, Lord, I’d rather not have the brain chemistry to judge others unless I can fully understand them. And I don’t think I can ever fully understand another. I think that’s your realm – not mine. For you are the Creator and I am but the creature.

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So today, Lord, perhaps you can help me to be more like the primates. I like being able to think and I love having free will, but it would be wonderful not to have the hateful sin of judging others. As Paul said “all have sinned and fall short.”

Source of all Seen,
I thank you for my health and my sister Thea’s recovery. I thank you for the promise of spring.  (And, btw, Source of Humor and Whimsy, I will always be grateful for opposable thumbs!  Great idea!)

primateWorld

Amen.

To God be the glory!

Melissa Pazen © 2013

Live Inspired:  pray continually; think boldly; dare greatly; love unconditionally; act deliberately, kindly, justly, mercifully and humbly; forgive easily; laugh frequently!

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