Daily Bread October 20

Dust to New Life?
Larry McGuire of Gilbert, AZ, USA

Jesus Christ, the embodiment of God’s shalom, invites all people to come and receive divine peace in the midst of the difficult questions and struggles of life. Follow Christ in the way that leads to God’s peace and discover the blessings of all of the dimensions of salvation. -Doctrine and Covenants 163:2a

I’ve been known to dust when I’m watching a football game on TV. I get really nervous, so I get up and begin dusting. Now that we live in Arizona, I need to dust more often!

The other day I was restless and found myself dusting. I moved things off the dresser and wiped away the dust. After finishing the dresser, I began dusting the tables beside our bed. As I turned back toward the dresser, it appeared there was more dust. I switched cloths and added some spray to the equation.

As I moved on to bookshelves, door trim, pictures, and TV cabinets, the amount of dusting to be done was exhausting. I finally sat down to rest, but all I could see were particles of dust floating in beams of sunlight. I was discouraged. My efforts seemed to simply move the dust around.

I wanted to close the blinds so I wouldn’t keep seeing dust. As I watched, I wondered if that’s how people feel about their congregational life: no matter what we do, it doesn’t seem to make a difference. Some have chosen to simply close the blinds and hope something changes. Others try different ways to attack the dust. Others have simply surrendered and don’t worry about the dust.

In his book, Encounters in Silence, Karl Rahner, SJ, reflects, “If there is any path at all on which I can approach You, it must lead through the middle of my very ordinary daily life” (St. Augustine’s Press, 1999, p. 54). What path was I being asked to walk as part of this ordinary experience of life?

I suddenly realized I needed to change my relationship with dust; rather than seeing it as a problem to be fixed, I was being asked to embrace the new life that was happening even when I wasn’t aware of it happening. I was being invited to keep the relationships of my life from becoming dusty. I realized that people were still interested in becoming disciples of Jesus Christ. Suddenly I wasn’t consumed with a problem but was excited by the new life around me.

Keep the blinds open! Keep wiping away the dust that is just a part the journey of life. Keep sharing Christ and invite people to new life-keep dusting to new life!

Prayer Phrase

“Attention is the beginning of devotion” (Mary Oliver).

Spiritual Practice

Holy Attention

Spend a few moments paying attention, wherever you are. Notice your surroundings. What draws your focus? Look more closely at detail and color. Notice what pulls or prods within you. How is the God-in-all-things speaking to you through what you see and feel right here, right now?

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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