Come and Be Filled
Richard Betts of Lee’s Summit, MO, USA
Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And all ate and were filled… -Matthew 14:19b-20a
I remember reading about a Lutheran congregation in Philadelphia. Several years ago, as a ministry to the growing number of homeless people living in their community, they began opening their church building so they could have a warm, safe place to sleep overnight. However, the city government learned of their ministry and began to crack down on it. The pastor was told they were not allowed to run a shelter without the proper permit, nor would they be granted one because the city did not want a shelter there.
So the congregation thought and prayed about what to do. They decided to follow the city government’s ordinances and announced that they would no longer be running a shelter. They then immediately announced that every evening from 8:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. the church would be having a “revival.” Each night the revival would begin with singing, worship, and sharing, and then around 10:00 p.m., they transitioned to a 10-hour period of “silent prayer.”
What a powerful and creative example of God’s love overcoming circumstances to meet people in their time of need. What holds us back from extending the invitation to “come and be filled”?
“… the breath of the Almighty gives me life” (Job 33:4).
Breathing God’s Compassion
Pay attention to your breathing and let it become calmer and deeper as you focus on God’s presence. Ask God to breathe in you. Imagine each breath carrying the light of God into your lungs, bloodstream, and every cell in your body until God’s Spirit fills you. Now imagine breathing out God’s compassion and grace each time you exhale, especially into places and situations in need of loving care. Give thanks to the Spirit, source of every breath, source of 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.