Monday Musings

Yesterday’s epistle reading was a long beloved passage–certainly for at least 35 years of Bible reading and marking up favorite verses (thanks for the great personal example, Da’ & Mom!)–that I thought I’d share an excerpt from it this morning because God’s Word is always timely and perhaps someone else needs the reminder like I did. Instead of quoting the New American Standard translation used in Mass, I’m using a one I became familiar with while growing up but didn’t become a regular reader of until becoming Catholic (incidentally, I’ve always read multiple translations; my current two regulars are the RSV-CE and the JB). I’m also including Eugene Peterson’s unique idiomatic translation because I find it helps shake the cobwebs out of my brain by giving me the ability to look at familiar verses with new eyes. The verses are Philippians 4: 6-8 and the emphases are mine.

There is no need to worry; but if there is anything you need, pray for it, asking God for it with prayer and thanksgiving, and that peace of God, which is so much greater than we can understand, will guard your hearts and your thoughts, in Christ Jesus.

The Jerusalem Bible

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.

The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language

My prayer for you–as for myself–is that today we’ll each be able to set aside ingrained habits of worry and instead convert worry into prayer. Some of us may have anxiety issues that make this more complicated but it still can (and should) be done. God’s Word is always efficacious and therefore should be a core part of our daily routine; for me that comes through the daily Mass readings as well as verses from Elisabeth Elliot’s A Lamp Unto My Feet, a wonderful six month collection of brief devotionals I’ve gone through most years for over a decade now. I like to think of how I’m sharing readings with my fellow Christians and it gives me goosebumps sometimes to feel a foretaste of the unity we’ll have in Heaven but that is sadly often lacking here on Earth. In the meantime, it’s great to be able to have this blog where I can share without the confines of us being in different places on Sunday mornings. I hate the feeling of not being able to “let our hair down,” so to speak, and share what’s in our hearts as to what truth we received during our Sunday worship that gave us that particular nudge we needed from the Holy Spirit to work on better putting His Word into practice in the week ahead.

In the meantime, let us all “Live Jesus!” to the best of our ability and not let our Adversary divide our efforts to let Christ be at the center of all we think and do. I’d love to hear what Scripture(s) inspired you lately to keep on fighting the good fight of faith amidst the worries and cares of your own life, so feel free to share them in the com box. We all have areas of anxiety–be they great or small–and Our Lord cares about each and every one of them equally. He will help us bear them all with His abundant grace if only we will let go of our habitual grip on them and hand them over to Him! We may need to also practice breathing exercises (as I do) to get our anxious brains to slow down enough to remember to do this<g>, but as we continue to deliberately choose to meditate on Scripture we will be able to replace unproductive, anxious thoughts with “that peace of God, which is so much greater than we can understand.” Amen to that!





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