Today is Maudy Thursday. It commemorates everything that happened during the Last Supper: the meal, communion, washing of feet, and receiving the new commandments. Types of services the church holds include a Seder meal (sharing the same meal Jesus had at the Last Supper), feet washing, worship with communion, and a worship with a focus on alms.
Why is it called Maundy? It comes from a french word meaning something commanded and Latin phrase meaning command from God (dictionary.com). We can say Maundy means the new commandment given by Christ. The commandment given to us that day is that we love each other as Jesus loves us.
I like pretzels, the soft warm ones and the crunchy ones you buy at the store. It brings out the foodie in me that likes salty goodness. Today it made me think about the parable of the salt without taste, Mathew 5:13. People are the salt. Christians, the salt with taste, give life pep through Jesus and the Word. Then it is Christians’ duty to spread the goodness. A person without Christ is like salt without taste, that person does not have a zesty life and is useless to God. It is our mission to spread the tasty salt to these people.
This is a nice prayer, its called the Pretzel Prayer
Heavenly Father, we ask you to less that little breads. Each times we eat them may we be reminded of the special season we are in and that through prayer we will become better people to each other. Let us not forget those who are in need of our prayers daily. Keep your loving arms around us. Oh Father, Protect us always. Amen
When people would say “Just go to you happy place” I would be very annoyed. An imaginary place or New Age crap, would not make my pain all better. I tried it anyway and it didn’t work. When I was in the hospital I found a true happy place. It doesn’t make it all better, I am still in pain, but when I think about it but I feel better emotionally.
The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths for
his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
I imagine that I am laying in lush, soft, green grass on soft ground in a field. There is the sound of water near by. The sunlight is on my face. I am joined by my brother and sisters in Christ. There is a soft warm breeze surrounding us and flowing through us. Jesus, the Shepard, is in the middle leaning against a tree, watching over us. Every once in a while he takes a group to go to the stream. Jesus guides us and watches over us. The Lord protects us and provides. The Holy Spirit fills us and warms our hearts.
I spent the last three weeks in the hospital. I was diagnosed with psychosis (hearing voices, seeing things, and believing lies) and severe depression. I don’t remember most of the first 15 days of my psychotic state which is a blessing. They psychologist said the onset was caused by my persistent headache, chronic migraine, and severe depression going untreated. So if you are experiencing depression, please seek help.
I was told that the entire time I carried a Gideon’s Bible with me everywhere. I read Psalms out loud when I was afraid. I also prayed the serenity prayer daily. The interesting thing is that I do not know the serenity prayer. The only things that calmed me down were holding the Bible, the Psalms, and the serenity prayer. Time with God was my only safe haven. God gave me everything I needed: a psychiatric ward, a Bible, and a prayer that asks for calmness, peace, and for troubles to be taken away. The Lord provides.
Psalm 84:11-12 For the LORD God is a sun and shield; The LORD gives grace and glory; No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly. O LORD of hosts,
How blessed is the man who trusts in You!
I realized that I ask “Why me God” more often since the pain started. Why is my head hurting me? Why does it have to be me? Why are people being like this to me? Why does the doctor hate me? Why don’t people believe me?
So you can see there are no excuses for any of us. If your eyes shift their focus from yourselves to others–you have already condemned yourselves! You don’t realize that you are pointed your figures at others for the exact thing you do as well.
When we ask “Why me” it’s usually an unfortunate event. Asking God why did this happen to me is a good thing to do but we should also think about what we are asking “why?” about. Is it always something bad or do we sometimes think about something good that happened. In the book “Why God Why” by Justin Tul, he writes that asking “Why me” when good things happen turn prayers about suffering, protest, bamboozlement, and negativity into prayers of praise, wonder, promise and rejoicing that is good in the sight of the Lord. It takes your mind off your angst, suffering, and pain. Instead you focus on your blessings and find comfort in Jesus.
When we ask “Why me” it can turn our attention to those who have sinned against us and ultimately judge them. I’ve done it. Judging others makes you lose sight of your own sins, misgivings, and shortcoming. While distancing ourselves from a person or group of people we can lose out on blessings. So before we ask “why me” regarding someone else’s actions, we should ask “why did I.” Instead of “Why do they say I’m lying about the pain?” ask “Why did I lose my temper and leave?”
“Why me?” during the bad times and good times can bring you closer to God. If we ask “Why me?” and then listen, wait, and watch for an answer, we can see how God is working in our lives and answering prayers.
Prepare to be asked “Why me” more. I am going to ask “why me” when I am happy and coming to you with a heart of praise, not just when I am frustrated and hurting. Please give me peace and contentment as you answer “why me?” in Your own way and time. Amen
Tul, Justin W. “Why God Why: Sermons on the problem of pain.” Abingdon Press: Nashville. 1996