The writer and many of the topics are Queer, but there is more to the blog than that. Liberal spirituality, progressive politics, pop culture, social justice...mostly just good old fashioned left leaning musings.
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Blessed are those who mourn...
"Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted."
Jesus (Sermon on the Mount)
In Good Times
& Bad, Keep Praying... by Rev Dr Durrell
Watkins, Senior Minister
Many people have been in
my thoughts and prayers lately. There are those who are on our prayer list
(where they stay for four weeks at a time) as well as those in our congregation
whose circumstances are known to me. I've been very mindful of some who are
looking for work. I've been thinking of some who have been recovering from (or
preparing to have) medical procedures. There have been injuries. There has been
grief over the death of cherished loved ones (friends, relatives, even pets).
Over and over my thoughts are filled with the words, "God bless him" or "May she
soon discover joy again" or "I affirm blessings for them, trusting that divine
Love holds them and will not let them go."
Sometimes the prayers
seem to contribute to miracles. Sometimes, the prayers seem to offer comfort.
And sometimes the prayers seem to do little other than to help the one praying
feel as if loving concern prayerfully expressed might somehow make a bit of
difference that cannot yet be felt or seen. Still, in prayer I remember that
"there's not a spot where God is not."
When we remember our
unity with God, we are much more likely to experience hope, joy, and
fulfillment; and even when outcomes disappoint, there remains the divine gift of
inner peace and self-worth which were not given to us by life's circumstances
nor can they be taken away by life's circumstances. As the Apostle Paul said,
"If we live we live for the Lord; if we die we die with the Lord. So, whether we
live or die we are the Lord's!" In more contemporary verbiage we might say, "I
am never separate from divine Life. No matter what happens in life, I am
Eternity expressing in time; I am an individuation of perfect, universal
Today I have been
praying for one of our deacons and his life-partner. I heard this morning that
John was suddenly very ill. Updates throughout the day were consistently
discouraging. Finally, this evening, I received a call saying that John made his
transition from this experience of life to the next. His partner, Deacon
Ed, is one of our faithful diaconal care-givers who provide pastoral care
and comfort to congregants when they are in need. Today, my heart is heavy for
Deacon Ed and I continue to pray for his comfort, for his strength, for his pain
to soften over time into beautiful memories, for his grief to become a healing
process that leads him gently back to abundant joy.
Perhaps you have been
blessed by Ed reading the gospel or praying for our various intentions in
worship. Perhaps you have been encouraged by him or have known about his
ministry to seniors. So, I am asking you to hold Deacon Ed in your heart in the
days ahead, and bless him with your
Dear God, the light that we knew as
John shines throughout eternity,
forever blessed by the Love that you are. And so we give thanks even as we ask
you to hold
Deacon Ed in your tender care and
keeping and offer him the comfort he needs in the days to come.
William J. Dietrich Memorial Prize for the best paper submitted on the urban mission of the church (EDS, 2009 ), Maxwell Fellowship for Excellence in Parish Ministry (Auburn Seminary, 2006), & the Hudnut Award for Preaching Ministry (UTS, 2005), Awards for Oral Interpretation (Arkansas Speech Communication Asso., 1990), Excellent Acting Award (Texas Junior College Speech & Theatre Asso., 1986).
Educational Background: BA, Henderson State University, sociology (theatre arts minor); MA, Goddard College, theatre studies; MDiv, Union Theological Seminary, theology & the arts; DMin, Episcopal Divinity School, congregational studies. I am a writer, a performer, and spiritual humanist. I am ordained by both Metropolitan Community Churches and United Divine Science.
Author of 10 books, the most recent: Saved From Salvation.