Tuesday, April 14, 2015

I did some remodeling and am only moving next door.

"Being here" somewhere else

I've been setting up a new blog with a different title and new appearance. There's some tweaking that  could still be done on it, but I'm fighting any perfectionist tendencies I have, because I'm only in this for the joy of it. 

I hope you'll move with me to the new blog.  The "Being Here" blog will probably keep "being here" just as it is.  I may eventually pack and move its contents to the new home. Or I may save and recycle some of the writings in a new and improved way.  Meanwhile, you'll have access to it for a while.

But now, you're invited to come on over to  Exploring the Earthly Domain.

Sunday, April 5, 2015


He is Risen!



Easter Sunday

An account of Christ's resurrection and the days to follow are found in Luke 24:1-53.

Christ is God's ultimate miracle and wisdom all wrapped up in one.  Human wisdom is so tiny, so impotent next to the seeming absurdity of God.  Human strength can't begin to compete with God's 'weakness.'  Everything that we have--right thinking and right living, a clean slate and a fresh start--comes from God by way of Jesus Christ.

                                                                              1 Corinthians 1:22-25, 30 (The Message)

If ever there was a day to celebrate in community with all Christians, it is today!  Hear the story!  Share the joy!  The Resurrection is the promise fulfilled.  We can live in eternal joy and thanksgiving with our Creator, for the Risen Christ has defeated death and the separation from Him that humanity suffers.  God truly reigns.

Christ is risen!

He is risen indeed!


Lord of all creation,

We praise you and give you thanks.  Teach us to be sensitive to your real presence and continue to guide us in your ways.  In the name of Jesus Christ,


Saturday, April 4, 2015



Saturday - Before the Resurrection

...my eyes are dim with grief.
I call to you, O LORD, every day;
I spread out my hands to you...
Do you show your wonders to the dead?
Do those who are dead rise up and praise you?
Is your love declared in the grave, your faithfulness in Destruction?
Are your wonders known in the place of darkness, or your righteous deeds in the land of oblivion?

But I cry to you for help, O LORD;
In the morning my prayer comes before you.
                                                                                                      Psalm 88: 9-13 (NLV)

Followers of Jesus often shed many tears by the end of Holy Friday.  Through scripture, passion dramas, and sermons, we've experienced the death of God's example of mankind perfected--his Son, our Christ Jesus.  Alas, today our journey hasn't yet brought us to the resurrection.

Read the scripture above as though you were one of the heartbroken apostles, or his mother or one of the crowd of faithful followers on the day after Jesus died.  They couldn't grasp the truth that the story wasn't over.  Feel their intense pain of loss, fear, and even anger that Jesus is simply GONE!

We've never lived in a world where Christ is absent, but we can imagine a fraction of such bleakness, because:
           we have lost cherished ones...
                         we've been diminished and left to feel powerless...
                                                we've felt unloved, and have forgotten to love.

Do we pray with such honest passion as the psalmist?  Being aware of the Resurrection, do we trust that tomorrow we will be able to see and know that God's Love is here for us through all eternity?


Dear Lord,
We are blessed by our bond with these heartbroken disciples, for we've suffered grief and anger over losses and betrayals.  Increase our patience when we cry out to you, unable to summon up visions of the glorious victories that lie ahead.  When we travel through days of darkness, help us use the emptiness as a space and time to seek, to heal.  Remind us of Easter morning.

Friday, April 3, 2015



Jesus knew that his hour had come to leave this world and return to his Father.  He now showed the disciples the full extent of His love.
                                                                                            John 13:1 (NLT)
In the Gospel of John chapters 13-17, Jesus speaks to his disciples during his last hours before He went to Gethsemane:
"I have loved you even as the Father has loved me...
remain in my love...
Love each other as I have loved you..."
These words are among those spoken by Christ to his past (as well as his future disciples)  soon before He had to leave them.  They are a tender command to live as the Creator intended.
"Love each other in the same way I have loved you.  And here is how to measure it--the greatest love is shown when people lay down their lives for their friends."
Jesus was literally laying down his life for us!  Is He saying we must daily, hourly, be ready to lay our lives aside when others need to receive God's love through us?  Earlier in his ministry, Jesus said we are to love our enemies (Matthew 5:44, Luke 6:27) -- does this mean they are beloved in the One Creator's eyes?  Must we set their need to receive God's love above our own needs?
None of this is easy in our ego-driven and angry world.  Will it help us, as it did the Apostles, if we remember Jesus' promise, "I am with you always."?


Loving God,
Thank you for your magnificent gift of tender and infinite love, shown through Christ.  Our words come easy and our intentions are often weak, so help us to live the way you intended when you created us.  May your will be our will, enabling us to lay down our lives for the sake of others.

Thursday, April 2, 2015


Maundy Thursday


He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, "Lord are you going to wash my feet?"
Jesus replied, "You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand...unless I wash you, you have no part with me."
"A new command I give you:  Love one another.  As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."
                                                                                            John 13:6, 8b and John 13:34, 35
The Last Supper is usually our focus on this day.  It comforts us.  Let's remember Jesus' words spoken during that bittersweet gathering with his beloved friends--vitally important words about a spiritual washing, and a new commandment.
In John 13:7, Jesus says as He washes the disciples' feet, "You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand."  Indicative of His divine genius, our Lord used this act to speak to them and to us long after his death and resurrection.  What a striking and indelible image for the Master to wash the feet of his servants!  Not one easily forgotten, but rather pondered, recorded, and read by generations to come.  The Bible is a living book, indeed!


Dearest God,
Thank you for continually sending us your Word by way of the prophets, in the man Jesus, and through the Holy Spirit sent to abide in us.  It is continually revealed in the holy scriptures, and through tradition and experiences.  How wondrous of You and your love for us, so huge that you always have and always will call to us by so many means!  We pray for open hearts to receive You and for open ears to hear You.  Guide us along the path that begins with loving one another in community and winds it way throughout all the world's peoples.


Wednesday, April 1, 2015





Hasten, O God, to save me; O Lord, come quickly to help me.
                                                        Psalm 70:1

Everything done in the name of Jesus Christ, from the smallest of chores to the sacrifices we make, menial or great, will be blessed.  When our responsibilities as Christian servants become heavy and overly difficult, we must pray for Divine assistance as the Psalmist has done in today's scripture.
We often forget after such a prayer to participate with the Holy Spirit within us, through whom God's response will come.  It's good to release the tensions in our necks and shoulders. It's helpful to close our eyes and breathe deeply and slowly, yet remain alert and listen with our hearts and all our senses for inspiration.  We can expect the inflow of renewed energy and confidence.
Jesus didn't need the attendance of the apostles while he prayed in the garden, but He loved them and surely wanted each remaining moment they had together to matter. What if they had managed to remain awake and alert?  Perhaps they would have been bathed in the ripples of Holy Power that was magnified in Christ that night.  Would the grief and sense of abandonment they were soon to experience have been lessened?


Ever-present God,
We breathe deeply now, drawing in strength to endure losses, and exhaling the pain that is part of this world.  We lean into you for reassurance.  Your embrace assures us of the Hope and Joy surrounding us even now in your kingdom.  Remind us always of the example your Son set for us, and to ask in his name for your help in everything.


Tuesday, March 31, 2015





Jesus replied, "the hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified."
"Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say?  'Father, save me from this hour'? 
No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.  Father, glorify your name!"
John 12:23, 25-28 (NIV) 
Engaging with the scriptures can expand our thinking. Does thoughtfully reading verses such as these evoke a range of emotions in you such as:
Great admiration?  Jesus continues steadfastly toward the cross.
Awe?  Do you experience a shift toward seeing Jesus more clearly, not only as the man of God, but also as the Christ, Son of God?
Deep sorrow?  We know the cruel death He faces; we know the pain and depression those who love Him are going to suffer at his death.
Anger?  After all, "Even after Jesus had done all the miraculous signs in their presence, they still would not believe in Him."  John 12:37
Would you say that Jesus became frustrated or disgusted with people?  Was He scared?  Did He worry?  What is a "troubled heart," and have you experienced it?  Do you think Jesus still carried all these emotions by the time he reached the Cross?            
Jesus taught that God is Love, unconditional and selfless.  He told the apostles that He was in the Mind of God and the Mind of God was in Him. Do you suppose his fears became fully contained within a Peace greater than the world can ever understand?
It's good to taste the scriptures and let the words become food for inner thought!


Holy God,
As we walk with Christ through the precious and important days of Holy Week, may our sorrow and concern for all those who suffer in this world, all those who are hated and persecuted, be channeled into prayer and peaceful actions for justice.  Let the power of your Spirit console us with the knowledge of your sheltering love as we take up crosses of our own.  May we always keep our eyes and hearts set upon You, just as your Son did.