December 12

December 12

You are invited into a time of spiritual reflection and prayer in this Advent season—a season of waiting and listening, a season of expectation and hope.

O Lord, let me not conform to the ways of this world, but transform me by your Holy Spirit; renew me mind and heart that I may discern and do Your Will—what is good and acceptable and perfect. AMEN.

December 12. Deepest desire.

TAKE A MOMENT OF SILENCE as you begin

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? When evildoers assail me to devour my flesh— my adversaries and foes— they shall stumble and fall. Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war rise up against me, yet I will be confident.
One thing I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple. For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will set me high on a rock. Now my head is lifted up above my enemies all around me, and I will offer in his tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; I will sing and make melody to the Lord. Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud, be gracious to me and answer me! “Come,” my heart says, “seek his face!” Your face, Lord, do I seek.
Do not hide your face from me. Do not turn your servant away in anger, you who have been my help. Do not cast me off, do not forsake me, O God of my salvation! If my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will take me up. Teach me your way, O Lord, and lead me on a level path because of my enemies. Do not give me up to the will of my adversaries, for false witnesses have risen against me, and they are breathing out violence. I believe that I shall see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!
Psalm 27

REFLECTION from Cliff Johnson
I remember the question my Spiritual Director asked me more than 30 years ago: “What is your deepest desire?” At that moment, not a single thought entered my head. “Where do I begin?” I asked. He suggested I could find my deepest desire hidden somewhere in scripture.

And so, in the weeks that followed, I searched the Bible — and eventually found my deepest desire — in Psalm 27:4. Here is how the Message translation words the verse: Im asking God for one thing, only one thing: To live with him in his house my whole life long. Ill contemplate his beauty; Ill study at his feet.

     ReForming starts with you and me. It is not possible for our church to be re-formed if we, as members, aren’t open to being re-formed as individual followers of Christ. And so, a good place to begin the re-forming process is for each of us to discover — and live — our individual deepest desire.

PRAYER: God, thank you for gifting us with the capacity to ponder such thoughts as “what is my deepest desire?” Invade our consciousness this Advent on a daily, hourly, minute-by-minute schedule so we long to live in your house our whole lives, to contemplate your beauty, and to study at your feet. Amen.

TAKE A MOMENT OF SILENCE as you close.

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