Politics is like dentistry…

“Politics is like dentistry.  You’re not really supposed to enjoy it, but the consequences of ignoring it are far worse than the pain of being involved…” -David LaMotte, Worldchanging 101, preface xiv

Politics are an area of culture that has never struck an interest in me.  While I know it is an important part of “civic duty” to be informed, I’ve always felt it would be better left to people that already knew about those things.  The thing is, they didn’t always know about issues.  You have to start somewhere.  The more informed I become, the more passionate about it I will become. -UCM Student

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Being thankful

“In spite of all this, O Lord our God, I give thanks to you, the most powerful, most good creator and ruler of the universe… In a loving creature such as this, everything is wonderful and worthy of praise, but all these things are gifts from my God… I will be with you, because this too, is your gift to me- that I exist.” -St. Augustine

Sometimes, it’s easy to get discouraged.  Stress, tests, fights, the unknown.  College life can be tough.  But, it’s important to remember to be thankful for all the good that we do have.  Especially getting to live a fabulous life! -LC

Anywhere!

We are using David LaMotte’s book Worldchanging 101 in our Thursday evening Dinner & Discussion group.  We alternate between discussing excerpts from the book, and inviting in people to talk about how they are changing the world, even though they say that’s not what they are doing.  This brief devotion is from the book.

“How and where can you offer your gifts & energy to a movement of people trying to shift things in healthier & more sustainable directions?” Worldchanging 101, p.26

UCM Student: Anywhere you see a need!  From advice to a friend to missions overseas.

Thoughts from a scholar:

No, this isn’t a cute headline. It’s the truth. I got home last night thinking that I left the student devotionals at work. But they’re not, and I won’t be home to look for them until later this afternoon. So, today you are getting a reflection from the New Interpreter’s Bible, volume 8, p. 537. The scripture is Mark 1:9-15, Jesus’ baptism, 40 days in the desert and the beginning of his public ministry. (I know, it’s a lot. Mark doesn’t waste time!)

“To prepare for the Lord’s coming, people must make a radical return to God. They must entrust themselves to God’s Word and not go looking for their own insurance policy. Excessive anxiety about success and security often leads to compromise with our religious values and personal well being.  We allow activities associated with work or school to eat away at time for family, for worship, and for service to others in the community. The good news is that we can still experience the rule of God in our lives. It will not be a smooth road to fulfilling all our dreams, however; Jesus begins to preach in Galilee after the king has imprisoned John the Baptist. Turning to the Lord means turning away from all the other voices calling us to walk some other path.”

Hearing & Doing the Word

You must understand this, my beloved: let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger; for your anger does not produce God’s righteousness. But be doers of the Word, and not merely hearers who deceive themselves. For if any are hearers of the Word and not doers, they are like those who look at themselves in a mirror; for they look at themselves and, on going away, immediately forget what they look like. -James 1: 19-20, 22-24

Here, God calls us to be doers of the Word. Anyone can understand who Jesus is/was and what he stood for, but to fully commit to walking in his footsteps is a completely different undertaking. One part of this is to stop and listen. It is easy to get caught up in school, work, friends, extracurricular activities, etc., when what we really need to do is listen. Listening is the most important part of communicating and can help us to better understand ourselves! -LHM

Got ashes?

Today is Ash Wednesday, the start of the Lenten season. Traditionally, we hear these words from Genesis 3:19 when we receive the imposition of ashes on our forehead: For you are dust, and to dust you shall return.. Earlier this week, though, a friend posted these words in regards to Ash Wednesday:

We are dust. We are beloved, broken, named & claimed, getting-through-this-world-together-dust.*

Today we start our journey to the cross, with Christ, but with one another, too. Do not let the brokenness overcome the belovedness- not with yourself and not with the world. The hard part has already been done for us. Now we just need to remember, and keep remembering through this season that the love and grace are already ours. Nothing we do or don’t do; nothing we take up or give up for the next 40 days will change that. We are named & claimed on this journey to the cross, to the tomb, to Easter morning. Let us journey together.

Got ashes?

-Susan

*SLeer, here is your Arkansas footnote!