Day 2 Readings and Reflection by Rev. Dr. Cheryl F. Dudley, Regional Executive Minister of the American Baptist Churches of Metropolitan New York
Maturing internally: “Abide in me as I abide in you” (John 15:4a)
- Ephesians 3:14-21, May Christ dwell in our hearts
- Luke 2:41-52, Mary treasured all these things
The encounter with Jesus gives rise to the desire to stay with him and to abide in him: a time in which fruit matures.
Being fully human, like us Jesus grew and matured. He lived a simple life, rooted in the practices of his Jewish faith. In this hidden life in Nazareth, where apparently nothing extraordinary happened, the presence of the Father nourished him.
Mary contemplated the actions of God in her life and in that of her son. She treasured all these things in her heart. Thus, little by little, she embraced the mystery of Jesus.
We too need a long period of maturation, an entire lifetime, in order to plumb the depths of Christ’s love, to let him abide in us and for us to abide in him. Without our knowing how, the Spirit makes Christ dwell in our hearts. And it is through prayer, by listening to the word, in sharing with others, by putting into practice what we have understood, that the inner being is strengthened.
Holy Spirit, may we receive in our hearts the presence of Christ, and cherish it as a secret of love. Nourish our prayer, enlighten our reading of Scripture, act through us, so that the fruits of your gifts can patiently grow in us. Amen.
You may also visit the GEII website at geii.org to find about more about the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.