Daily Bread November 27

Death Catches Us Unaware
Judy Luffman of Redmond, OR, USA

Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour. -Matthew 25:13 NRSV

Several years ago a member of the congregation I attended was diagnosed with late-stage pancreatic cancer. She continued to carry on her life as if there was nothing amiss, but eventually she had to be hospitalized and was admitted to a facility across the street from where I worked. I made several short visits to see her during my lunch breaks and enjoyed our conversations. Other than not having much appetite, she said she felt pretty much okay and to my eyes her appearance remained unchanged over the course of her hospitalization.

During one busy week I dashed over to see her, three days after my last visit, only to be told that she had died. The news was so shocking to me. I couldn’t believe it at first because during the visit just a few days earlier she hadn’t looked as if she had a potentially fatal disease, let alone near death.

It brought home to me as never before that we never know the day or the hour of our own or anyone’s passing from this life to the next. It was a poignant reminder of the importance of living a disciplined life attuned to God’s divine spirit each day. Being about Christ’s mission is much too important to put off until tomorrow.

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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