This is the final installment of Cornerstone’s 2014 Lenten Devotional. We hope you have found it encouraging and helpful during this season. If you live in or around San Francisco, we also invite you to join us for Easter weekend. Click here for more details.
April 16 – Easter Sunday
SCRIPTURE READING – Lectio Divina
If you have never done Lectio Divina, don’t worry. Just click on the link above for a description. To start; get yourself into a comfortable reading position…take a few slow, deep breaths…and relax…let a few moments pass to clear your mind so that God’s word may come to rest within you. Now, you are ready to begin…and we pray that our Lord would richly bless you in this time of reflection!
On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!”
After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.”And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
MEDITATIVE READING – Margaret Silf – Wayfaring: A Gospel Journey in Everyday Life
Let yourself be there in imagination, and feel with the disciples something of the despair and fear that grip them.
Bring your own fears into the scene. Notice who or what is evoking fear in you right now. The source of your fear is on the other side of a locked door.
Is there anything you can do to open the doors to your fears? Simply notice how you feel, and what your real desire is in this place.
Now let Jesus come into your locked inner room, with his prayer, for your “wholeness.”
How do you feel? Is there anything you want to say to him? He shows you his wounds, and then he says that just as he has been sent by his Father, to kindle a new flame in the darkness of history, so he is now sending you.
But he doesn’t just commission you to go out into the world you fear so much. He gives you the empowerment to do so. He brings a new flame into being, and breathes new life, new hope, into the very heart of your being.
Can you remember any times when you have felt, perhaps unexpectedly, that you were able to cross some threshold that you would previously have thought impossible? If so, recall that “resurrection event” with gratitude, and take hold of everything it means to you.
“Being in the world without being of the world.” These words summarize well the way Jesus speaks of the spiritual life. It is a life in which we are totally transformed by the Spirit of love. Yet it is a life in which everything seems to remain the same. To live a spiritual life does not mean that we must leave our families, give up our jobs, or change our ways of working; it does not mean that we have to withdraw from social or political activities, or lose interest in literature and art; it does not require severe forms of asceticism or long hours of prayer. Changes such as these may in fact grow out of our spiritual life, and for some people radical decisions may be necessary. But the spiritual life can be lived in as many ways as there are people. What is new is that we have moved from the many things to the kingdom of God. What is new is that we are set free from the compulsions of our world and have set our hearts on the only necessary thing. What is new is that we no longer experience the many things, people, and events as endless causes for worry, but begin to experience them as the rich variety of ways in which God makes his presence known to us.
Show Me the Way, pp. 20-21.
ADDITIONAL POINTS OF REFLECTION FOR THE WEEK (Optional)
He also said, With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.’
Read Psalm 1:1-3
How do I see evidence that my life is fruitful for God?
Read Ephesians 4:14-16
In what ways has God called me to be part of his body of believers?
2 Corinthians 5:17
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
In what ways is God continuing to transform me?