Daily Bread Feb. 4

Here I Am, Lord
By Dustin Davis of Los Angeles, CA, USA

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. —Matthew 5:9 NRSV

On an unremarkable day while walking in the neighborhood, I noticed a crumpled fast-food bag tossed in the gutter along the sidewalk. There was nothing unusual about this. I live in the city, and it’s a common sight. I’m even surprised I noticed it. I kept walking, but suddenly I couldn’t think of anything except that bag. Who was going to pick it up and throw it away? At the end of the block, I waited for some cars to go by before I could cross the street. In that smallest of pauses, I was struck by a consuming thought: I’m going to pick up that bag and throw it away. I turned around, walked back to the bag, picked it out of the gutter, and threw it away in a nearby trash can.

On a different day that seemed as equally unremarkable, I arrived at my congregation to overhear my pastor talking urgently on the phone. A mother and her son sat in the pews with their heads bent, faces toward the floor. They came to our church seeking help. Appointments with shelters and social workers were made for the next day. However, the mother and son would have to travel a few cities away on city buses and make several transfers. It wasn’t going to be easy, fast or cheap. They were asking, “How will we get there?” As I wondered, that same something was already stirring within me. As they were leaving the church I went outside after them and said, “I will take you to your appointments tomorrow.” The next morning I drove them where they needed to go.

I can think of no other way to describe my current state of being except to say that my heart is totally captivated by God’s vision for us as I understand it in this moment. Even though my understanding of the Peaceable Kingdom is constantly evolving, my heart and imagination are so taken with what I understand about it right now. Almost everywhere I look, I see a world drenched in God, and I am compelled to respond. It breaks through in the mundanity of my everyday life. It’s bursting through in moments of vulnerability. It’s transforming all parts of my life, not just Sunday mornings. God has captivated me in a way that is liberating and frees me to say with ever-decreasing hesitation, “Here I am, Lord.”

Prayer Phrase

God is with us.

Invitation to Spiritual Practice

Holy Attention

Ordinary time is a season for awakening to God’s presence in all the details and circumstances of our everyday, ordinary lives. Wherever you are, pay attention to your surroundings. Allow yourself to be fully present for a time with whatever is before you. Where do you sense God with you right now exactly where you are?

How does today’s story invite you to discover God in the realities of your everyday life?

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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