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Showing posts from August, 2018

sacred spaces

Many of us associate sacred space with a religious site or a church, but in reality, it can be any place in which we encounter the Spirit of Jesus, any place that is set apart by and for the presence of God. A bush in the back side of the wilderness became a sacred space when it caught fire; its unusual flame attracted Moses to a missional encounter with YHWH. The muddy water of the Jordan River became a sacred place of healing when a military commander dipped his diseased body in the river. A community well in the despised region of Samaria became a sacred space when a woman with a tainted reputation responded to Jesus' request for water. Perhaps the most unexpected sacred space in the Christian tradition is the wooden instrument of torture known as the cross, for on it Christ defeated sin and death through an act of divine love.

During the Vineyard National Gathering in Montreal last month, I led a small group in exploring some of the sacred spaces in the city. Montreal is home…

give us this day our daily bread

Over the summer, our faith community has been making its way through what is commonly known as the Lord's Prayer. This week we looked at the phrase: "give us this day our daily bread." At first glance, it reads like a simple request for God to grant supplicants food for the day, but there is a lot packed into these these few words.

BREAD: The Greek work here is artos, meaning leavened, regular bread. In this particular context, it is used as a synecdoche, a word which names a small thing, a part, but actually refers to the whole, to something much greater than its literal meaning. Like saying "wheels" when referring to a car or saying "hired hand" when meaning much more than just someone's hand, bread here is not just a loaf of baked dough. It is a meal (to break bread with someone is to share a meal). It is shorthand for sustaining food (bread is considered a staple). It is provision (to take bread for the journey means to take provisions, see G…