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Liberating Love Devotion February 27

In the fall of 2018, I heard a voice calling me to create a devotional that connects God’s children closer to God, closer to each other, and closer to the saints and sinners who make up the Bible. I heard it in the midst of a season when leaders who call themselves Christian were distancing us from God, from each other, and from those same stories that teach us who we are in the world. I hope these devotions offer comfort, encouragement, and deepening connections to God’s earth and God’s many and diverse children, so that we may be a people building God’s Beloved Community together. You’ll find a devotional here every Wednesday in 2019, and in other places I posted about below.* The devotions are written as if from God, and I hope I did not fail in my effort to honor both God and you in the process.

–Sandhya Jha


Obadiah 1:3-4 Your proud heart has deceived you,

  you that live in the clefts of the rock,*

  whose dwelling is in the heights.

You say in your heart,

  ‘Who will bring me down to the ground?’

4 Though you soar aloft like the eagle,

  though your nest is set among the stars,

  from there I will bring you down,

says the Lord.

—-

There is hardly a book in your sacred texts that does not call you to a life of humility. The best kings of Israel were humble, and when they failed to be humble their realms fell. This world punishes humility, but my realm rewards it beyond measure. A community grounded in humility is so much stronger and less prone to destruction from inside or out. I do not only call you to humility because it is right but because it is the only way to truly thrive. But humility requires a level of confidence in one’s own value that the braggarts and loud bullies who lead nations today simply do not possess. Today, reflect on what it means to be a treasured child of mine. Reflect on how much I love you. Reflect on what that makes possible. It is the beginning of the path to true spiritual humility.

—–

*You can find us Tuesdays on Twitter, Wednesdays here, Thursdays on Instagram, Fridays on Facebook, and if you sign up here, you’ll get a devotion in your inbox every Sunday!

Liberating Love Devotion February 20

In the fall of 2018, I heard a voice calling me to create a devotional that connects God’s children closer to God, closer to each other, and closer to the saints and sinners who make up the Bible. I heard it in the midst of a season when leaders who call themselves Christian were distancing us from God, from each other, and from those same stories that teach us who we are in the world. I hope these devotions offer comfort, encouragement, and deepening connections to God’s earth and God’s many and diverse children, so that we may be a people building God’s Beloved Community together. You’ll find a devotional here every Wednesday in 2019, and in other places I posted about below.* The devotions are written as if from God, and I hope I did not fail in my effort to honor both God and you in the process.

–Sandhya Jha


3 John 1:3-4 I was overjoyed when some of the friends* arrived and testified to your faithfulness to the truth, namely, how you walk in the truth. 4I have no greater joy than this, to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

 

If an apostle’s friends had been witness to your community life, what would they report back to the apostle? Or if they were witness to your personal life, what would their word be? The apostle who wrote this letter wrote to a man named Gaius to get him and his community ready for the visit of a beloved apostle named Demetrius, and the author was relieved to find that Demetrius would be working with good and open people. Today I invite you to ask how you and your community are readying yourself for the apostles I send to you to strengthen you. How are you practicing hospitality, and transparency, and visible faithfulness to me and my message of love? How can you support each other in those practices?

—–

*You can find us Tuesdays on Twitter, Wednesdays here, Thursdays on Instagram, Fridays on Facebook, and if you sign up here, you’ll get a devotion in your inbox every Sunday!

Liberating Love Devotion February 13

In the fall of 2018, I heard a voice calling me to create a devotional that connects God’s children closer to God, closer to each other, and closer to the saints and sinners who make up the Bible. I heard it in the midst of a season when leaders who call themselves Christian were distancing us from God, from each other, and from those same stories that teach us who we are in the world. I hope these devotions offer comfort, encouragement, and deepening connections to God’s earth and God’s many and diverse children, so that we may be a people building God’s Beloved Community together. You’ll find a devotional here every Wednesday in 2019, and in other places I posted about below.* The devotions are written as if from God, and I hope I did not fail in my effort to honor both God and you in the process.

–Sandhya Jha

 

Jeremiah 6:13-14 For from the least to the greatest of them,

  everyone is greedy for unjust gain;

and from prophet to priest,

  everyone deals falsely.

They have treated the wound of my people carelessly,

  saying, ‘Peace, peace’,

  when there is no peace.

—-

Someday you will find a way to honor each other and recognize that the land does not belong to you but you belong to the land. And there will be peace. And yet from generation, people place fear of each other and fear or not having enough (and greed for more than they need) ahead of their relationship to me. It is true of your generation also. Jeremiah was a faithful prophet who reminded his people of this. Can I call on you to be my prophet for peace? Today I invite you to reflect on your role in naming how people need to place each other before their own needs in order to truly be my people.

*You can find us Tuesdays on Twitter, Wednesdays here, Thursdays on Instagram, Fridays on Facebook, and if you sign up here, you’ll get a devotion in your inbox every Sunday!

Liberating Love Devotion Feb 6

In the fall of 2018, I heard a voice calling me to create a devotional that connects God’s children closer to God, closer to each other, and closer to the saints and sinners who make up the Bible. I heard it in the midst of a season when leaders who call themselves Christian were distancing us from God, from each other, and from those same stories that teach us who we are in the world. I hope these devotions offer comfort, encouragement, and deepening connections to God’s earth and God’s many and diverse children, so that we may be a people building God’s Beloved Community together. You’ll find a devotional here every Wednesday in 2019, and in other places I posted about below.* The devotions are written as if from God, and I hope I did not fail in my effort to honor both God and you in the process.

–Sandhya Jha

Hebrews 2: 16 For it is clear that he did not come to help angels, but the descendants of Abraham.

My Son did not come to you just for fun. Jesus came for you to thrive: you, my treasured creatures. He came for you to reconnect to all of my sacred creation. He came for you to reconnect to each other so you would not have to rely so much on cruel empires to feel safe when you could rely instead on me. Even when I invite you to worship, I do so in order that you might find comfort and reassurance and community, not because I require it. So today I invite you to reflect on how I have shown up for your spiritual ancestors and how I might be showing up for you right now. And I invite you to let me in, to help, to heal, to comfort, to nudge you into who you were created to be.

*You can find us Tuesdays on Twitter, Wednesdays here, Thursdays on Instagram, Fridays on Facebook, and if you sign up here, you’ll get a devotion in your inbox every Sunday!

Liberating Love Devotion, January 30

In the fall of 2018, I heard a voice calling me to create a devotional that connects God’s children closer to God, closer to each other, and closer to the saints and sinners who make up the Bible. I heard it in the midst of a season when leaders who call themselves Christian were distancing us from God, from each other, and from those same stories that teach us who we are in the world. I hope these devotions offer comfort, encouragement, and deepening connections to God’s earth and God’s many and diverse children, so that we may be a people building God’s Beloved Community together. You’ll find a devotional here every Wednesday in 2019, and in other places I posted about below.* The devotions are written as if from God, and I hope I did not fail in my effort to honor both God and you in the process.

1 Timothy 1:15 The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the foremost.

I do not work through perfect people, as the author of this letter knew. And I have never known a sinner I did not love. I love you. I want your life to be a life of wholeness and fulfillment and millions of moments of joy. Know that nothing you have done can keep you and me separated. Know that I long for your liberation, and that I can offer compassion and forgiveness for anything…or even the same thing over and over until you are truly freed from it. Today I invite you to receive that compassion, to let go of something you want forgiveness for or do not think you deserve forgiveness for. And know that my love is enough to cover you. My Son came that you might be freed. Let him unlock the chains today that weigh you down.

*You can find us Tuesdays on Twitter (@DevotionalLove), Thursdays on Instagram, Fridays on Facebook, and if you sign up here, you’ll get a devotion in your inbox every Sunday!

Liberating Love Devotion, January 23

In the fall of 2018, I heard a voice calling me to create a devotional that connects God’s children closer to God, closer to each other, and closer to the saints and sinners who make up the Bible. I heard it in the midst of a season when leaders who call themselves Christian were distancing us from God, from each other, and from those same stories that teach us who we are in the world. I hope these devotions offer comfort, encouragement, and deepening connections to God’s earth and God’s many and diverse children, so that we may be a people building God’s Beloved Community together. You’ll find a devotional here every Wednesday in 2019, and in other places I posted about below.* The devotions are written as if from God, and I hope I did not fail in my effort to honor both God and you in the process.

2 Kings 1:2-3 Ahaziah had fallen through the lattice in his upper chamber in Samaria, and lay injured; so he sent messengers, telling them, ‘Go, inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron, whether I shall recover from this injury.’ 3But the angel of the Lord said to Elijah the Tishbite, ‘Get up, go to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and say to them, “Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are going to inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron?”

The thing that made the people of Israel distinct from all others is that they had come to learn that I am the one true God. And yet everyone around them worshipped false idols, and they were constantly getting pulled away from their relationship to me, even kings like Ahaziah. My prophets, like Elijah, constantly had to remind my people to put me before all other gods. Today, I am not as worried about you or those in your community worshipping the god of Ekron. I am worried about you worshipping the god of materialism, of others’ approval, of self-indulgence at the expense of the community’s well-being, of personal comforts at the expense of this planet. What are the idols, the things you treasure, that come between you and me? How can we work together to banish those idols?

*You can find us Tuesdays on Twitter (@DevotionalLove), Thursdays on Instagram, Fridays on Facebook, and if you sign up here, you’ll get a devotion in your inbox every Sunday!

Liberating Love Devotion January 16

In the fall of 2018, I heard a voice calling me to create a devotional that connects God’s children closer to God, closer to each other, and closer to the saints and sinners who make up the Bible. I heard it in the midst of a season when leaders who call themselves Christian were distancing us from God, from each other, and from those same stories that teach us who we are in the world. I hope these devotions offer comfort, encouragement, and deepening connections to God’s earth and God’s many and diverse children, so that we may be a people building God’s Beloved Community together. You’ll find a devotional here every Wednesday in 2019, and in other places I posted about below.* The devotions are written as if from God, and I hope I did not fail in my effort to honor both God and you in the process.

2 Corinthians 2:15 For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.

Smells can be obnoxious and overpowering, but aromas are gentle and comforting and pleasant. My dream for the community gathered in Christ’s name has been so badly damaged so many times by people who do not understand the power of gentle compassion. But my beloved son Paul reminds you today that if you have chosen to follow my Son Jesus Christ, that you have a responsibility to be that aroma. My daughter Mother Theresa knew not everyone in the street could be saved, but those who were dying deserved to die with love and compassion surrounding them. Today I invite you to ask how you are serving as an aroma to those around you who need to be saved from something or who need compassion and love in their time of perishing.

*You can find us Tuesdays on Twitter (@DevotionalLove), Thursdays on Instagram, Fridays on Facebook, and if you sign up here, you’ll get a devotion in your inbox every Sunday!