Today's "Daily Bread" from St. David's

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Daily Bread

But thanks be to God,
who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession,
and through us spreads in every place
the fragrance that comes from knowing him. For we are the aroma of Christ to God
among those who are being saved
and among those who are perishing.

- 2 Corinthians 2:14-15

It amazes me that in the midst of a global pandemic, which has drastically affected and changed sooooooooo many aspects of our lives, flowers are still blooming in rich and varied colors, ... and that during a challenging time like we're facing now in our nation, with deep-seated frustrations erupting and senseless violence occurring and groups getting further polarized, their beautiful and intoxicating fragrances can still fill a room.  The question is, "Can we stop and notice?"Because with too much to do, and not enough time to do it, ... with so many demands and obligations and commitments pressing on us, ... and with the problems of this world seeming sooooooooo large, the obstacles sooooooooo big, the divisions sooooooooo  deep ... who has the time "to stop and smell the roses?"  But everyone once and a while, maybe it's exactly the thing we need to do.The Jewish Rabbi and family therapist Edwin Friedman coined the term "non-anxious presence" to describe individuals who can avoid being drawn into the fray of anxiety swirling all around them and provide a calm, cool, focused, and collected environment that empowers others to be relaxed.  And I think it's safe to say that there is A LOT of anxiety swirling around us these days - in our homes and families, ... in our work places, ... in our communities, ... in our politics, … and in our nation.  We can sense our muscles tightening, … our jaws clenching, ... and our blood pressure rising as the anxiety of those around us creeps into our minds and bodies and hooks us emotionally, ... and physically, ... and even spiritually.  Therefore, I believe, what we need now more than ever are more people who can serve as a "non-anxious presence."So, when things start to get overwhelming, when your life begins to feel too complicated, when the stresses seem to become too much to bear, make the conscious choice to stop for a moment and just do the little and most basic things:
    *  find the beauty, value, and worth all around you
    *  count your blessings
    *  do a good job at whatever you do
    *  don't try to be more (or less)
          than the person God created you to be
    *  love your family with everything you are
           (and not all you can buy them)
    *  look for what's good & right & true
    *  don't give up on dreaming and thinking of what could beThe problems and obstacles and divisions will still be there afterwards, … but you'll be different.  You'll have regained at least a little sense of perspective and calm.  And who knows, maybe by periodically "stopping to smell the roses," you can become that much needed "non-anxious presence" to those around, and, in the word's of today's Scripture passage, you can help the comfort and peace and love of the "aroma of Christ" can fill the room.

  -- Pastor Micah 

In this spirit, I'm inviting you to take part in our:

St. David's
"Aroma of Comfort & Peace"
Photo Challenge

Please take a photo of somethings whose smell brings you comfort and peace.   It could be a food item, a beverage, a household item, something outside, … whatever.  Take the photo and send it to me by text (347 649-5282) or email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).  I'll compile the photos and share the results sometime next week.  Thanks.


Daily Song

***  Click on the image above to hear the song.


“Getting lost in the ‘big picture’
often prevents us from cherishing
the 'small moments' that make it all worthwhile...”


-  J.R. Wirth

In my normal everyday non-pandemic life, I run around the city, dashing from gig to gig, from the top of Manhattan to the bottom of Brooklyn. Like almost every other person that lives in the city, it’s rush, rush, rush, and hurry, hurry, hurry, trying to get from here to there as quickly as possible. The energy ticking through the air is electric, a vibrant pulse that courses through the very fabric of the city. But as I’m walking around the city today, there’s a different feeling - an almost palpable feeling of tension and unrest bubbling just below the surface. Emotions are running high, and there’s a look of uncertainty in the eyes of everyone I pass. Times are turbulent and unsure, and becoming more so with each passing day. Speaking for myself, I know that sometimes it can seem just a little too much.But then I have to remind myself to just stop, breathe, and focus on what is right around me. To fully experience each and every sound, sight and scent. When things get overwhelming, it’s easy to fixate on the chaos and disruption affecting our everyday lives, and to forget the little things that make our everyday lives special in the first place. Like going to the grocery store and walking down the coffee aisle, stopping just to inhale the intoxicating scent of fresh coffee. Or taking a walk through the park and smelling the beautiful flowers that have started to bloom. There’s an old saying that goes “God is in the details.” And He definitely is. God’s presence is everywhere around us – in the smile of a child, in the beautiful smell of a flower, in the song of a bird outside the window in the morning. He is there in each and every thing, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant. All we have to do is stop for just a second, open our eyes, and take it in.So in line with that idea of appreciating the little things in life, and taking some time to just “stop and smell the roses,” I would like to offer up the classic song “What a Wonderful World.” Sung here by the incomparable Louis Armstrong, this song reminds us that it is the simple, understated things that truly do make this world a wonderful place, no matter what might be happening all around us. I hope that this song brings you a bit of pause and peace as you start your day 



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