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From the Tanho Center--a ten-week meditation series to begin and end your week:  

Alive in Troubled Times

Join us in taking a few minutes a day to acknowledge these troubled times and claim a sense of being alive. We find ourselves enlivened by newly discovered ancient texts from the earliest Jesus movements. A new reflection arrives on our website, our Facebook page Monday and Friday for the next nine weeks. Simply like our Facebook page to ensure you don't miss a reflection. 

~Stephanie Duzant, Celene Lillie, Natalie Perkins, John Rogers, Hal Taussig

                                                                      Photo Jovon Grossi

Week 2, Friday Meditation

One day when John was going to the Temple…a Pharisee… approached him, “Where is the one you used to follow?... This Nazarene deceived you and shut your hearts….”

[John said,] When I heard these things, I turned…to the mountain… and I grieved greatly …. Just then….the whole creation…was illuminated…. I was afraid and watched. And look, a child appeared to me. Then the child changed himself into the form of an old man. I did not understand this wonder….

God said to me, “John, why are you…fearful…. Do not be faint-hearted! I am the one who lives with you always. I am the Father. I am the Mother. I am the Child.”

~The Secret Revelation of John 2:1,2,4,6,7; 3:1,2,4-6,9-12

When things go wrong for us, we often feel the ways John does. We are afraid, sad, and unsure. Sometimes it also makes us mad.

What are we to do? Especially when nothing can make things “all better.”

In this story, John’s fear is interrupted by a child and an old man. It turns out that the little child and old man are God. God in these forms reassures John that God is always with us. This reassurance helps, but not completely. That is, God does not say, ‘Don’t worry, I am going to fix everything.” Nor does God say, “I’ve got a great program. If you follow it, the bad things disappear.”

The child/old man/God simply says, “I live with you, and may help you feel less faint-hearted.”

As we face hard times, let’s feel God living with us. Rather than just fretting or just working harder, let’s make space for the little child, the old man, the sea breeze, and the beauty of spring. I suspect this kind of presence in our lives can give us perspective and energy.

~Hal Taussig

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