Welcome to the first TPA Weekly newsletter in which I provide reasonably thoughtful and relevant advice and commentary on how to live a life that integrates faith, intellect, and mission/action/activism. In this is the week’s Bible readings, as well as one reading/resource to think about, one to pray about or with, and an action to take, which you can either do or it may inspire you to try something else. That’s it! Short and to the point.
We always begin in the Word, with our Bible in 3 years readings for the week. I see the Bible as a beautiful and treasured heirloom quilt (have you seen some quilts? They are amazing works of art!) sewn by many hands, using the fabric (stories) and thread of many different times and places that has been kept, as well as “repaired” and changed over the generations. As John Thomas (former General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ) said, we take the Bible “seriously but not literally,” appreciating the cultural, social, and political contexts of the Bible, as well as the ways in which scholars throughout history have added to the discussion of our understanding of the Bible.
Then we have some readings/articles/etc. that help us go deeper into Scripture and consider what we think and feel, and how we live out what Scripture is saying to us. I don’t know if you have ever felt God speaking to you in reading, writing, or other study, but I often have, and this is something I hope to encourage you into if you haven’t dove that deep before.
Each month we highlight a different prayer practice to help us experience the breadth and depth of prayer. I encourage you to try these prayer practices with an open mind and heart, to hear what God may be saying to you in them.
Once we have thought/read and prayed, we can be ready to go out and live our faith in the world. I particularly encourage us to find and become involved with one’s local faith-based community organization that is working on long-term systemic change in one’s area. It is usually fairly easy to find charity-based projects (though I will occasionally post some of the most notable here), but it seems less easy to become involved with faith-based justice work, and I encourage us to seek it out.
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