The Receptive Life

"We are beggars; this is true." (Martin Luther)

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 17

He Knows My Shame Scripture Reading:  John 8:1-11 Meditation She’s looking for “Mr. Right” in the wrong bed. It’s dawn. As the rest of the women in the village are getting dressed and going out the front door to do the morning chores, she’s sneaking through the back door of her neighbor’s […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Sabbath of Rest

“True to your word, you let me catch my breath, and send me in the right direction.” Psalm 23:3 Every journey has its share of starts and stops and it’s only the better part of wisdom that knows when it’s time to do which. Though the Good Shepherd asks his […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 16

He Knows My Refusal to Forgive Scripture Reading:  Matthew 18:15-35 Meditation Peter’s been hurt one too many times. One of his fellow believers has taken advantage of the gift of grace and has turned it into a license – a sanction to sin. To Peter’s credit, he’s tried to work […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 15

He Knows My Rebellion Scripture Reading:  Matthew 16:13-28 Meditation As Jesus walks toward Jerusalem, Israel’s nationalistic morale is low but its Messianic expectations are high. The crowd that follows this itinerant preacher from Nazareth is looking for someone to reclaim the crown of the kingdom of David. If Jesus wants […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 14

He Knows My Reluctance to Love Scripture Reading:  Luke 10:25-42 Meditation Jesus knows that love is an art and that the art of love is to take notice. Ever since his ministry began, Jesus has been trying to paint pictures of what life is like in the kingdom of God. […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 13

He Knows My Desire to Be First Scripture Reading:  Mark 9:30-37; 10:32-45 Meditation The road to Jerusalem leads to a cross but Jesus walks the path anyway. Though they pledge their allegiance to the Master, the disciples, however, want to go their own way. They want to walk the way […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 12

He Knows My Faith Scripture Reading:  Luke 7:1-10 Meditation Soldiers understand authority. They live and move under the chain of command. When their commander says ‘Go,’ they go. When he says ‘Come,’ they come. When he says ‘Do this,’ they do it double time. In the chain of command, every […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 11

He Knows My Unbelief Scripture Reading:  Mark 9:14-32 Meditation When a child is in constant pain and a father’s persistent prayers go unanswered, doubt tears faith apart. The father who brings his demon-possessed son to Jesus’ disciples has faith, but it’s a faith intermixed with unbelief. And right now, unbelief is slowly […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Sabbath of Peace

“You have bedded me down in lush meadows, you find me quiet pools to drink from.” Psalm 23:2 Peace. The very sound of the word is soothing to the soul. It’s a quiet word not easily heard above the clatter of the world’s daily chaos. It never shouts over the […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 10

He Knows My Loss Scripture Reading:  Luke 7:11-23 Meditation For the widow from the village Nain, the death of her only son represents loss upon loss. As her son’s funeral procession makes it way toward the village cemetery, the widow carries a double burden. She’s walked the path from her […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 9

He Knows My Helplessness Scripture Reading:  John 5:1-15 Meditation The pool of Bethesda is where the angel of the Lord swims. Popular belief has it that whoever is the first to jump into the pool when the angel splashes is the one who would be cured of whatever disease he […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 8

He Knows My Plea Scripture Reading:  John 4:43-54 Meditation The village of Cana is still abuzz about Jesus’ last visit. They all remember the wedding with the heavenly wine. But it was only after the wedding that they found out what had really happened. The groom had miscalculated—more guests than wine. […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 7

He Knows My Panic Scripture Reading:  Luke 2:41-52 Meditation A mother’s greatest joy is holding her baby close. But there comes a day when she has to open her arms and let him go. It’s a moment when she finds herself suddenly looking up at her son, not down. Suddenly […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 6

He Knows My Terror Scripture Reading:  Matthew 2:1-23 Meditation As Mary and Joseph settle in Bethlehem, a river of blood flows through Judea. Its headwaters begin at the foot of Herod’s throne and its current courses through the small Roman province. Herod’s terror surges through every village surrounding Jerusalem, sweeping […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 5

He Knows My Confusion Scripture Reading:  Luke 2:1-20 Meditation For a young couple planning marriage, timing is everything. First comes the bended knee—the pledge and the proposal. Next, there are the wedding plans, showers, invitations, and excitement of the engagement. Finally, there’s the ceremony, the “I dos”, the best wishes […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Sabbath of Provision

A David psalm “God, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing.” Psalm 23:1 David was the shepherd boy who became a king. Though he sat on the throne and wore a crown, his heart never left the green pastures and still waters. The nation of Israel might have been able […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 4

He Knows My Dreams Scripture Reading:  Matthew 1:18-25 Meditation Joseph’s a practical man with practical plans. He’s a carpenter. His life, like his work, is deliberate. He always starts with a set of blueprints. First he plans his work and then he works his plan. He measures twice so that […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 3

He Knows My Emotions Scripture Reading:  Luke 1:39-80 Meditation Expectant mothers, more than others, are filled with emotion. As they sit next to the empty-but-ready cradles, they dream God-sized dreams for their unborn children. They glow with anticipation. As the due date draws close, each mother-in-waiting rocks anxiously. But when […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 2

He Knows My Questions Scripture Reading:  Luke 1:26-38 Meditation Up until today, the only questions that have kept Mary’s mind racing are the ones that have to do with her upcoming wedding to Joseph. “Who should we invite? How many? Where should we have the banquet? What should I wear?” […]

Forty Day Encounter With Christ: Day 1

He Knows My Family Tree Scripture Reading:  Matthew 1:1-17 Meditation When the Father sent his Son into the world, he placed him in the care of a frail, human family. Though he was the only begotten fruit of the Father, Jesus fell from the limb of Abraham and David’s family […]

Lent 2016 – Forty Day Encounter with Christ

Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 10th. I know that I haven’t added any new content to the site since Lent 2014 (and our “Forty Day Journey to the Cross”) but, I’d like to invite you, starting on Ash Wednesday, to join me for a NEW Lenten journey. Forty Day Encounter with Christ Here’s what I’d […]