Daily Bread November 22

A Spiritual Revolution
Janne Grover, Council of Twelve Apostles

Who is wise and understanding among you? Show by your good life that your works are done with gentleness born of wisdom….But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace for those who make peace. -James 3:13, 17-18 NRSV

As a mother with three small children, I experienced profound spiritual awakening when introduced to the book, In the Midst of Chaos: Caring for Children as Spiritual Practice by Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore. The title alone was transforming! At the time I felt inadequate to meet the demands of motherhood while also trying to nurture my spiritual life. Through the pages of this book I was awakened to the sacredness of ordinary life and responsibilities.

Choices and consequences became life lessons of grace; meal time became a practice of examen as we shared highs and lows of the day. Diaper changes and bathing became moments of intimate connection in honoring the sacredness of human bodies. Laundering stained clothing became a practice of gratitude for the opportunity to care for these extraordinary young people.

Rather than separating the sacred and the ordinary, I was awakened to discovering the sacred in all the ordinariness and messiness of life. This is the same awareness Diana Butler Bass writes of in her book, Grounded: Finding God in the Word-A Spiritual Revolution. Rather than a spiritual life that mediates between a heavenly being and earthly realities, we are awakened to divine presence and connection in the realness of earthly life: the elements of soil, water, air, plant life, wildlife, and humanity. The whole of life is the spiritual life-if we choose to recognize it.

This is why Ordinary Time is my favorite liturgical season…if a favorite liturgical season is even possible! This season reminds us that every task is an opportunity for mindfulness and gratitude; every human connection is an opportunity to receive and share the peace of Christ. A spiritual revolution indeed!

Prayer Phrase

In God, I live and move and have my being.

Spiritual Practice

Breathing in the Spaces

When you move into different spaces throughout your day, consciously place yourself in the new setting with a desire to be alert to God’s presence. Over time, simply taking a deliberate breath will remind you that you are in God’s presence and that you want to be alert to God’s purposes in that setting. When entering the different spaces in your day (workplace, a colleague’s office, a restaurant or place of business, school or places where people meet) pause and take a deliberate breath. When returning home, pause to take a breath. As you take a deep breath, breathe in the goodness of the profound presence and purposes of God in each place you find yourself. Allow yourself to be drawn to people who may be blessed in simple ways by you being aware of them as persons of worth. -adapted from missionalleaders.org

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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