Restorative Justice

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Love calls us to help those in need.

(Listen to my song “Mercy Reigns” on YouTube by clicking HERE)

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Isaiah 1:16

Make justice your aim: redress the wronged, hear the orphan’s plea, defend the widow.

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The prophet Isaiah said that God was not interested in the people’s sacrifices…their attempts to win favor…to somehow merit more of God’s love.

You can’t earn what is already freely given to you!

There is nothing you can do to make God love you more!

What God wants is for us to lay down our egocentric desires…so that God’s desires can rise in us.

God’s desires and our true self’s desires are one in the same.

Isaiah told the people that God called them to help those without power.

Jesus modeled this type of service for us and called us to follow him.

He told us that through the process of dying to our ego…we would become our true selves.

As Jesus put it, “Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 10:39).

When you let go of your ego’s insatiable desires…you will find the true life meant for you.

And that life will always involve helping those in need.

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Listen to the song of the day “Mercy Reigns” on the Mercy Reigns album by clicking HERE.

Stream and/or purchase my songs on iTunes by clicking HERE.

Remember…God loves you!

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Wholeness in Progress

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God is renewing all things…including you and me.

(Listen to my song “Let It Be Done to Me” on YouTube by clicking HERE)

(revised post from July 8, 2016)

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Psalm 51:12

A clean heart create for me, God; renew in me a steadfast spirit.

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God is in the redemption business…not the punishment business.

We have our struggles not so we can experience God’s wrath…but so we can experience God’s grace.

No matter how many times we screw up…no matter how many times we come up short…God is always embracing us in love.

That’s what “Love” does (“God is love” 1 John 4:8)!

Our Loving Creator only wants to heal us, restore us and renew us.

Forgiveness is always given.

Every pain, suffering or struggle and eventually physical death will lead to resurrection and new life.

Jesus demonstrated this pattern for us with his entire life. The pattern is all around us: the darkness of night is followed by the light of dawn; the dead of winter is followed by the new life of spring.

God is constantly but patiently working to heal us, renew us and bring us…and all of creation…to wholeness.

We are on a grand, transforming adventure of learning and love.

Two things necessary from each of us in this process of transformation…are humility and cooperation.

Some helpful advice on how to cooperate with God’s grace in creating a clean heart is found in Ira Byock’s book, The Four Things That Matter Most. Here are the four things:

  1. Please forgive me
  2. I forgive you
  3. Thank you
  4. I love you

Is there someone who needs to hear these four things from you?

Why not do it today?

May your heart and spirit be renewed!

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Listen to the song of the day “Let It Be Done to Me” on the Mercy Reigns album by clicking HERE.

Stream and/or purchase my songs on iTunes by clicking HERE.

Remember…God loves you!

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In the Name of Love

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May we freely share the gifts of our talents and uniqueness.

(Listen to my song “Shall We Sing” on YouTube by clicking HERE)

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Matthew 10:8-9

“Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give. Do not take gold or silver or copper for your belts; no sack for the journey, or a second tunic, or sandals, or walking stick.”

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This does not compute in our consumerist, quid pro quo culture.

When we receive something…we pay something.

When we give something…we expect something in return.

Let’s face it…this even goes for our relationships.

If I do a good deed for you…I kind of expect you’ll at least thank me.

But Jesus’ basically says that we have been given life and eternal life without cost…so we ought to give ourselves in service without expectation of being paid in return.

Now, I know in our culture…we have to make a living.

But Jesus is talking about true reliance on God…on a Higher Power…on a Love that will never let us go.

Jesus instructs his followers to share the love they’ve been lavishly given without expecting a reward.

The reward is in the giving.

And in the giving we will surely receive love that will outlast any material payment

Jesus wants his followers to let go of any attachment to money…clothing…or whatever else we are giving a top priority.

It’s only then that we are truly free to appreciate how much we’ve been given.

Share this Good News with someone today.

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Listen to the song of the day “Shall We Sing” on the Listen to Your Heart album by clicking HERE.

Stream and/or purchase my songs on iTunes by clicking HERE.

Remember…God loves you!

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Reign of God

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Be a conduit of love, mercy, justice and peace.

(Listen to my song “Breathe On Me” on YouTube by clicking HERE)

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Matthew 10:7

“As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’”

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When we are living in the Flow of God’s unconditional love…when we are giving and receiving this Love…then we truly are proclaiming: “The kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

This was the instruction Jesus gave to his apostles as he sent them out.

It is his same instruction to you and me right now.

Jesus clearly wanted us to cooperate in bringing the “kingdom of heaven” into the present

Easier said than done.

Our egos will not be on board with this. When a person’s ego is in control…that person will be self-focused and concerned about his or her own kingdom.

It takes a “dying to self” to be able to participate in the kingdom of God.

As Jesus so famously put it: “unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit” (John 12:24).

Letting go takes practice. It comes either through meditation / contemplative prayer…or suffering…or both.

So…how can I proclaim the kingdom of God?

It starts now…by being present to the Divine Presence in each moment…in each person…and in every created thing

Namaste.

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Listen to the song of the day “Breathe On Me” on the Listen to Your Heart album by clicking HERE.

Stream and/or purchase my songs on iTunes by clicking HERE. (Also available on other sites)

Remember…God loves you!

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Compassionate Care

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God is carrying you through your struggles to new life.

(Listen to my song “I Will Give You Rest” on YouTube by clicking HERE)

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Matthew 9:35-36

Jesus went around to all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and curing every disease and illness. At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd.

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Jesus was going around “proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom”…or in other words, “the good news of the reign of God in the here and now.”

We experience that reign when we know in our hearts that we are loved exactly as we are.

You don’t have to earn it.

That, my friends, is the Good News.

And once we know it…we can follow Jesus in proclaiming it through our words and actions.

When we are participating in the flow of God’s love, mercy, grace, forgiveness and compassion…the kingdom of God is near.

Notice that Jesus brought this message mostly to those at the bottom of society…those who were left out or rejected.

He brought this message to those who were sick…and he cured them.

Do you ever feel like one of the people in this crowd?

Are you troubled over something or feel abandoned?

Each of us has a place inside in need of unconditional love and compassion. We have an issue or a struggle that we just can’t seem to deal with on our own.

It is a part of the human condition that Jesus knew so well.

This isn’t so you can feel ashamed or defeated…but so you can experience what Unconditional Love is.

Jesus wanted to be with the people who were suffering and in need of help.

The Risen Christ wants to be your shepherd today.

Bring your troubles to him…and find rest.

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Listen to the song of the day “I Will Give You Rest” on the Live to Love album by clicking HERE.

Stream and/or purchase my songs on iTunes by clicking HERE.

Remember…God loves you!

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Grace

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Have no fear for Love will always lead you home.

(Listen to my song “Love Will Always Lead You Home” on YouTube by clicking HERE)

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Hosea 2:16

So, I will allure her, I will lead her into the desert and speak to her heart.

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Sometimes we have to be in a desolate place where we have no control…before we are open to hearing God’s voice…before we can feel God’s presence.

But it’s so uncomfortable to our egos to not be in control…to not be comfortable…that we will seldom willingly go to such a place.

It’s as if God lovingly lures us to the desert for our own good.

It’s not that our Creator wants us to suffer…but wants us to be free of all the stuff that held us in bondage.

When we are finally free of all those attachments, God can finally commune with us.

Did you ever feel like everything is falling apart…like all the things you were so sure about are crumbling? Welcome to the desert!

There will come times in all our spiritual journeys when we must move out of our comfort zones so that we can grow.

As Jesus said, “No one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins and both the wine and the skins are ruined. Rather, new wine is poured into fresh wineskins” (Mark 2:22).

For the Spirit to act in new ways we need to be open to new ways of being.

However, most of us will not willingly move into the desert. We will not want to let go of all the familiar ways that no longer give us life but we don’t know how to part with.

It will feel like dying.

But what if we go with the Flow and allow it to allure us?

In the desert we will be free to hear God’s gentle, kind whisper in our hearts…a whisper that will always lead us to transformation, healing, wholeness and peace.

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Listen to the song of the day “Love Will Always Lead You Home” on the Mercy Reigns album by clicking HERE.

Stream and/or purchase my songs on iTunes by clicking HERE.

Remember…God loves you!

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Have Faith

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The Light of Unconditional Love dissolves the shadows of doubt…if you say yes.

(Listen to my song “I Stand in the Light” on the Mercy Reigns album by clicking HERE)

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John 20:25

“Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands and put my finger into the nailmarks and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

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Thomas seems to get a bad rap because he doubted that Jesus had actually risen from the grave.

He will forever be known as “doubting Thomas” because of this scripture.

But let’s face it…would any of us have believed the news that Jesus had actually been seen alive after we witnessed his brutal execution?

I highly doubt it!

We all have our moments of doubt when it comes to matters of faith. 

But notice how Thomas was not scolded by the resurrected Christ.

When Jesus eventually appeared to Thomas in the flesh he said, “Peace be with you.”

His doubt is met with love.

Thomas made it possible for us all to witness how God does not reject us…even when we doubt.

All people would forever be able to identify with Thomas…and how Jesus offered him peace…not scorn.

His is a peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7).

Whatever it is that you doubt…know that it is precisely in that doubt that God is inviting you deeper into the Mystery that only wants you to know Love that is eternal.

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Listen to the song of the day “I Stand in the Light” on the Mercy Reigns album by clicking HERE.

Stream and/or purchase my songs on iTunes by clicking HERE.

Remember…God loves you!

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