Follow Me?

Hither ye behind me! Yep; that’s what Jesus said. Modern translations simply say, “Come follow me.” These words of Jesus were an imperative call to present and continuous action. One Greek Grammar says that Jesus was calling for long-term commitment; to habits suited to such a commitment; a commitment that would cultivate virtue leading to a certain lifestyle. Ignatius, working with this big kingdom idea, taught us to follow Jesus by finding God in all things. He and other spiritual masters knew that this meant we had to engage in practices of noticing, reflecting and discerning; learning to be steadily conscious of God, self and others.  Frank Laubach (Letters by a Modern Mystic), stands in this tradition. He writes that submission is the first and last duty of man; that we are learning to respond to God as a violin responds to the bow of the master.  He says this begins with listening, moves to surrender and finds it best fruit in a determined, resolved will to act with God. The question mark we’ve put at the end of Jesus’ imperative is both invitation and call to decisive action to take serious Jesus’ command to come follow me—and in so doing to find, in Laubach’s words, that every day is tingling with the joy of glorious discovery.

– Todd Hunter​

Lent Reading: Sunday, March 16

Reading:  Matthew 17:1-9

Reflection Questions:

  1. Matthew alerts us to a time sequence in the first verse of our Gospel passage: Six days later… This detail signals that the event to be described is connected in some way to what happened prior. Sit with Matt.16:21-28 as you begin your reflections for this week. Matt.16:21 through Matt. 17:13 marks a pivot in Jesus’ ministry and life as he moves toward the cross and the things he would suffer. What do you notice, hear, sense or learn about suffering and Jesus’ mission as you read this broader Scriptural passage?
  1. At the transfiguration, a reality which for Jesus was a moment-by-moment experience was made manifest to a few of his friends. His true inner identity and his relationship with his Father is that which accompanied him into the suffering to come.  In your dark moments, how have you noticed the transforming brilliance of God with you?
  1. When Peter was quick to nervously interpret his experience with Jesus on the mountain, God interrupted and asked him to listen to his Son. How might space for silence create space for God to speak and reveal himself in your present circumstances?

– Elizabeth Khorey

Lent Reading: Sunday, March 9

Reading: Matthew 4:1-10

Reflection Questions:

  1. As you sit with the passage of Scripture, what do you notice about Jesus’ relationship with the Holy Spirit? How does the knowledge of this relationship effect your perspective of Christ’s experience in solitude as he faces the tempter of souls and confronts the common temptations of humanity? Does this perspective give you courage in your own wilderness-like journey or confronting temptations? Why or why not?
  2. As you read through each invitation of the tempter to Christ, what might be at the root of each temptation? What kinds of invitations tempt you away from God? Think of places, things, people, influences or personal dispositions and attitudes where you are most tempted (places of vulnerability, defensiveness, desires for control, power, or esteem). What’s at the root of these for you?
  3. Discuss these things with God in prayer – openly, honestly. Listen for the word of God to you.

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man.
God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability,
but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape,
that you may be able to endure it.

1 Corinthians 10:13

– Elizabeth Khorey