Pondering for Friday, July 31, 2020

Daily Office Readings for Friday of Proper 12: Year 2

Psalms 69:1-23(24-30)31-38 73;  Judges 5:1-18Acts 2:1-21Matthew 28:1 – 10

Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”  (Matthew 28: 10)

Encounters with the Resurrected Jesus differ according to the Gospel we read.  In Matthew, the disciples are instructed to return to Galilee and there, Jesus will meet them.  Luke and John have Jesus meeting them in Jerusalem of Judea.  Mark is unclear about location in his extended version.  I like the Galilee meeting.  Galilee is where Jesus began his ministry and walked throughout Galilee preaching the Good news, and healing many, and casting out demons, for three years.  This place moved me as I sat in a boat in Lake Galilee in February of 2018 with a full view of the land that Jesus walked.  I took a picture of it and it is the scene at the top of each new One Who Ponders blog.

So Jesus says return to your beginnings and you will see me.  They were Galileans, for the most part, fishermen by trade.  Galilee is where they were grounded in their faith.  How about you?  Where were you when you were first told about our Lord Jesus?  Where is your Galilee?

Your Galilee may be more than a single, physical location.  Jesus’ instruction to return to Galilee may be an invitation to go back to the time (and place) when you first decided to follow him.  As Galilee is a vast area with several notable towns where our Lord Jesus taught and performed signs and wonders; like the Sermon on the Mount at Mount Tabor; the raising of a woman’s son in Nain; where he was raised by Mary in Nazareth; the feeding of the multitudes near Capernaum where he chose to live and other places as well.  

Your Galilee may be a vast area or collections of life-altars also.  Going back may be a serious meditation on your own Galilee experience.  My own Galilee includes St Vincent de Paul Catholic School in Nashville, Tennessee; Paris Island Marine Corps Recruit Depot in South Carolina; St Anne’s Episcopal Church in Memphis Tennessee; Virginia The Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia; and St Paul’s in the Pines Episcopal Church in Fayetteville, North Carolina. All of these are the building blocks of my spirituality.

What and where are your life-altar places that make up your Galilee experiences?  These are the places that Jesus is asking you to return to in order to meet him again. Meditate on these places.

Let us hear what the Spirit is saying to and through the saints of God and then ponder anew what the Almighty can do.  John

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