May 5, 2020

Daily Devotions

Meditation, Prayers, and Assorted Stuff for May 6, 2020

Henri Nouwen, Bread for the Journey, “The Temptation to Hoard”

As fearful people we are inclined to develop a mind-set that makes us say, “There’s not enough food for everyone, so I better be sure I save enough for myself in case of emergency,” or “There’s not enough knowledge for everyone to enjoy; so I’d better keep my knowledge to myself, so no one else will use it,” or “There’s not enough love to give to everybody, so I’d better keep my friends for myself to prevent others from taking them away from me.” This is a scarcity mentality. It involves hoarding whatever we have, fearful that we won’t have enough to survive. The tragedy, however, is that what you cling to ends up rotting in your hands.

This prayer comes from “Leading In Worship,” a website with resources written by Carol Penner, a Mennonite pastor currently teaching theology at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ontario.

Great God, you are an ever-present help in times of trouble, and that’s why we’re praying now. We are troubled and we’re worried things are going to get more troubling. This virus is spreading around the world: so many are seriously ill or will be seriously ill, so many health care systems are stretched or will be stretched. Be with front line medical workers, give them courage to do their work and keep them safe. Be with public health officials as they make decisions for the common good, and politicians as they roll those decisions out. Help us to be kind to one another, because anxiety can make us snappy. Help our communities to be resilient and expansive as we reach out to help all who are isolated and afraid. In these times of shutdowns and slowdowns, when travel is restricted or banned, as routines are disrupted and we spend
less time together or more time together, help us zero in on what is essential. Thank you that love is also contagious and stronger than any virus. You will be with us, and we will be with each other in sickness and in health. Amen.

A bit of hellish humor from The Far Side…

Today’s links! This man in Spain thought he could get around COVID quarantine by taking his goldfish for a walk. Police didn’t get the joke. Click here to see some of the winners in a worldwide 2020 contest for the best architectural photos. Have people no shame? Read how toilet paper scammers are sending people minirolls of one of life’s necessities. would you like to cook up a batch of Ikea’s famous meatballs for dinner? Here’s the recipe, direct from Ikea, written up like any of their other sometimes hard to decipher instructions. No worries, though—the recipe is easy enough to follow. something to do during lock down? Why not build an art museum for your gerbils? In the not for the faint of heart department, Atlas Obscura readers helped combine this list of 24 Children’s Stories That Still Give Us the Creeps.

When things get scary in your life, remember the confident words of the psalmist: “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold[a] of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”

Stay safe and stay well!