Daily Bread April 06

Where Will Your Spirit Lead Today?
Chris Lasley of Vancouver, WA, USA

Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.  -Romans 6:4

In our scripture study class that meets weekly by Zoom, we were challenged to start our day with the Mission Prayer, a prayer of Examen, at noon and then again before we went to bed. I completely forgot about the challenge until several days later. I offered the Mission Prayer at 1:00 pm and then went shopping.

The store clerk watched as I picked up a 3-ring, D-shaped binder. She asked, “Can you turn the pages easily with that shape of rings? My father is 98 years old, and he has dementia. I was going to make him a photo album, but he needs to be able to turn the pages easily.”

I told her I was sure it would work. She said, “My father is in a care home. My friend owns it, and she is taking good care of him, but she won’t let me see him. It’s a one-and-a-half-hour drive one way. My dad told her he didn’t have any children.” I told her about my father who had dementia. I said I felt like I had lost my father five years before he passed because he did not remember who I was. I suggested she put pictures in from a long time ago; people with dementia usually remember things in their early years. She had heard that but was glad I had shared it.

She said the next time she goes to visit she will have a police escort so she can take her dad from the home. She wanted to take care of her dad but didn’t know how he would do in the car. The last time she took him for a drive, he got violent with her. “I know this is just too much information,” she apologized. I looked at her, trying to hold back my tears, wishing I could hug her, but with Covid-19, we had to stay six feet apart. She looked so worn out, so thin and frail. I said, “No matter what happens, take care of yourself.” She thanked me for that and said, “You’re right. I lost 20 pounds this month. I do need to take care of myself.”

I love it when God uses me as a listening ear and a messenger. I would never have told a stranger these things, but I was the right person, put in the right place at the right time. Thank you, God, for using me.

God, where will your Spirit lead today? Help me to be fully awake and ready to respond. Grant me courage to risk something new and become a blessing of your love and peace. Amen.

Prayer Phrase

“Practice Resurrection” (Wendell Berry).

Spiritual Practice

Breath Prayer

During this Easter season, we invite you daily into a breath prayer focused on resurrection. With each exhale, respond in a word or phrase to the question, “What is dying?” (fear, anger, assumptions, etc.) With each inhale, notice a response in a word or phrase to the question “What is rising?” (love, courage, trust, etc.) You may choose to use the same word or phrase throughout this season, or let each day bring its own unique response to this sacred pattern of dying and rising that is central to our faith.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

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