Wednesday, April 10, 2013

"Lord, teach us to pray...." Love's Forgetfulness

"Why do you keep talking about my past mistakes?" said the husband. "I thought you had forgiven and forgotten."

"I have indeed, forgiven and forgotten," said the wife. "But I want to make sure you don't forget that I have forgiven and forgotten."

Sinner: "Remember not my sins, O Lord!"

Lord: "What sins? You'll have to prod my memory. I forgot them long ago."

Love keeps no record of wrongs (1 Corinthians 13).

(Anthony de Mello, The Song of the Bird, page 123)

Love One Another - Brian

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Sabbath Rest

Tuesday is the weekly Sabbath for the John 13:34 Blog. Thanks for checking in. Come back tomorrow for more adventures and reflections. In the meantime....

Love One Another - Brian

Monday, April 8, 2013

The Circus Story and the Example to Love One Another

Jesus said: "As the Father has sent me so I send you..... Abide in my love.....Love One Another" The following story, recalled by a young man, has been around for a long time. I thought it went well with the first portion of Sunday's Gospel lesson from John 20.

"Once when I was a teenager, my father and I were standing in line to buy tickets for the circus. Finally, there was only one family between us and the ticket counter. 

"This family made a big impression on me. There were eight children, all probably under the age of 12. You could tell they didn’t have a lot of money. Their clothes were not expensive, but they were clean.

"The children were well-behaved, all of them standing in line, two-by- two behind their parents, holding hands. They were excitedly jabbering about the clowns, elephants and other acts they would see that night. One could sense they had never been to the circus before. It promised to be a highlight of their young lives. The father and mother were at the head of the pack standing proud as could be.

"The mother was holding her husband’s hand, looking up at him as if to say, “You’re my knight in shining armor.” He was smiling and basking in pride, looking at her as if to reply, “You got that right.”

"The ticket lady asked the father how many tickets he wanted. He proudly responded, “Please let me buy eight children’s tickets and two adult tickets so I can take my family to the circus.”

"The ticket lady quoted the price. The man’s wife let go of his hand, her head dropped, the man’s lip began to quiver. The father leaned a little closer and asked, “How much did you say?”

"The ticket lady again quoted the price. The man didn’t have enough money. How was he supposed to turn and tell his eight kids that he didn’t have enough money to take them to the circus?

"Seeing what was going on, my dad put his hand into his pocket, pulled out a $20 bill and dropped it on the ground. (We were not wealthy in any sense of the word!) My father reached down, picked up the bill, tapped the man on the shoulder and said, “Excuse me, sir, this fell out of your pocket.”

"The man knew what was going on. He wasn’t begging for a handout but certainly appreciated the help in a desperate, heartbreaking, embarrassing situation. He looked straight into my dad’s eyes, took my dad’s hand in both of his, squeezed tightly onto the $20 bill, and with his lip quivering and a tear streaming down his cheek, he replied, “Thank you, thank you, sir. This really means a lot to me and my family.”

"My father and I went back to our car and drove home. We didn’t go to the circus that night, but we didn’t go without."

Jesus said, "All will know that you are my disciples if you love one another."


Saturday, April 6, 2013

The Weekly Round-Up for April 6, 2013

Baseball returned this week and our Cleveland Indians broke from the gate with two convincing wins over the highly favored Toronto Blue Jays. Hope springs eternal but was soon dashed with two losses that probably, more likely, showed the true character, and make-up, of this year's team. Even at .500, it is still great to hear the "crack of the bat", a fast ball "popping" the catcher's glove, and the voice of Tom Hammond calling a game on the radio. Nothing like baseball.

The Weekly Round-Up begins now....

Commentary: "American Winter" Families Struggle to Survive Fall from Middle Class (

Commentary: Courting Cowardice on Same-Sex Marriage (New York Times)

Commentary: The Top 8 Ways To Be "Traditionally Married" According to the Bible - Not What You Think (

Commentary: Freedom Loses One (New York Times)

Commentary: Jimmy Carter vs. the SBC/Driscoll/Victoria’s Secret: A Sea Change? (

Inspirational: Food Is A Sacred Gift, Not A System (TEDtalk)

Inspirational: 9 Power Quotes for Times of Struggle (

In Memoriam: Rabbi Herschel Schacter - He Cried to the Jews of Buchenwald "You Are Free" (New York Times)

Technology: Computers and Quantum Mechanics

Literature: Eighteen Words that Should Never Have Gone Out of Style (

Education: A Teacher's Open Letter About His Retirement and the State of Education in America (

Maps: What Your State Is Good At and What It Is Lame At (

Music: Orchestra Musician: It's Not A Cush Job (

Music: 11 Facts About Music Education (

Music: Opera and Elitism (

Music: The Case for Active Practicing (

Parenting: The Camp Counselor vs. The Intern (New York Times)

Sports: We Need More Courageous Voices Like Dean Smith (Winston Salem Journal)

Pope Francis: "I'll Stay at the Guesthouse" (

Pope Francis: Foot Washing Final Straw for Traditionalists (

Religion: All Is Quiet on the God Front (

Religion: This Week in God (Rachel Maddow)

Religion: Resurrection as Metaphor (

Religion: The Communal Resurrection of Jesus (

Religion: Easter is Coming (

Religion: A Relentless Faith (

Love One Another - Brian

Friday, April 5, 2013

Bracketology 2013 (Second Week)

Well.... who would have thought that going into the final weekend of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament the Final Four would consist of Louisville, Michigan, Syracuse and Witchita State!

Holy Upset....Batman!

I do not know about your Brackets, but mine are "toast". So I guess I will cheer for Syracuse (just can't root for Michigan) and Louisville. This way on Monday night I am delighted whoever wins the game.

But "Bracket-mania" is alive and well in the Community of Saint John tournament. Here is a complete list of participants and the points they have collected up until this point. It is still anybody's Tournament to win because eight folks have selected Louisville to win it all and one person went so far as to choose Witchita State!

Kathy S. 174 pts
Tyler S. 172 pts
Michelle O. (2) 170 pts
Barb. D. (2) 158 pts
Alex N. 152 pts
Dan C. 146 pts
Barb D. (4) 146 pts
Brian S. 144 pts
Cam O. (2) 142 pts
Lund Family 140 pts
Clark W. 138 pts
Cam O. (1) 138 pts
Tg N. 134 pts
Melinda N. 134 pts
Barb D. (1) 128 pts
Barb D. (3) 124 pts
Michelle O. (1) 122 pts
GailMarie F. 120 pts
Susie S. 114 pts
John H. 112 pts
Brian M. 106 pts

Remember..... all monies go to local charities. The Winner decides the beneficiary. A great weekend of Basketball ahead of us and AWESOME worship at the Community of Saint John this Sunday at 10:00 am.

Love One Another - Brian