So Simple and Ordinary
By Esther Steward of Norwalk, ia, USA
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. -John 14:27 NRSV
Have you ever felt God’s Spirit with you when you least expected it? Maybe on a Tuesday-in the middle of the day, outside church, when you weren’t even looking for it?
Did you recognize it as the Spirit? Was it a surprise to you? Was it comforting?
At times that have seemed so simple and ordinary I have been keenly aware of the Spirit’s presence in my life:
- While driving, listening to the radio and worrying about a personal problem in my life, I heard the exact words I needed sweetly sung out across the airwaves. The song brought comfort, calm, and peace to my day.
- At farmers’ markets I have seen the kindness of people passing out free bottles of water on extremely hot days, people handing out free balloons to children and watching them play, people paying for breakfast for the next several persons in a food vendor line, and people living in community-laughing, loving, and experiencing life together!
- When researching and studying the scriptures, I have at times not known where to begin to look for answers. Many times thoughts, ideas, and leadings from the Spirit have guided me to the answers.
- When I have felt most alone, the Spirit has been with me. In times of struggle, illness, severe pain, and grief, I have felt the Spirit’s calming presence nearby or gently wrapped around me.
- At the happiest times in my life, I have experienced the Spirit celebrating joyfully with me!
How will you be open to look for the Spirit in your life?
I dwell in your presence.
Prayer of Examen
Spend a few moments recalling your day. Let details, events, and conversations drift through your memory. Offer gratitude for the day and pray to be aware of how God was present. What did you notice or feel that brought meaning? Pay attention to moments when you felt least in harmony with God’s vision for creation. Offer a prayer of confession. Pay attention to moments when you felt most in harmony with God’s vision for creation. Pray to be even more aware of and responsive to God’s presence in the days ahead. Amen.
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.