Daily Meditations Published by IT Fellowship of North America & Europe Diocese of Mar Thoma Church
Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
MINISTRY OF WITNESSING Acts 8:26-35 He replied, "How can I, unless someone guides me?" And he invited Philip to get in and sit beside him. (Acts 8:31)
What is the imperative of witnessing? Definitely, it is the question of somebody around us, (most often which is unheard) 'how can I, unless someone guides me?' Really, there are many people in the need of some guidelines, encouragement, enrichment and orientation in their life. Through the ministry of witnessing we are taking the responsibility of orienting and inviting others to Christ and Christian fellowship. We see that, after the martyrdom of Stephen the disciples were scattered and went from place to place but they witnessed Christ there (v.8:4).The disciples were in a journey of witnessing Christ, tirelessly. They were engaging in the ministry of witnessing at every moment through every act in their life. The text of today challenges us to do meaningful witness in a multicultural situation. Co-journeying with the Other:Witnessing is, fundamentally a question of relationship with the other. Here we see that Philip is being driven by the angel towards an alien, Eunuch who is totally an 'other' to Philip. Ethiopian Eunuch is a representative of an ethnically, nationally, culturally and gender alien identity. Philip was guided by the Spirit to 'go over to the chariot and join it'. It was a command to initiate a co-journey with the other/alien. Philip walked along with the chariot so that he could listen the inner search of the Eunuch. We need to initiate a co-journey with the other so that we can listen the sigh and search of the other. Co-journey is a costly affair. Conversing with the Other: Co-journey leads into meaningful conversations. In the text we see a meaningful conversation between the Eunuch and Philip. It was not a dialogue between Philip and Eunuch rather a conversation of both of them with the scripture. The scripture guided them in their search for the truth. Conversations with the 'other' in the light of word of God will elevate the relationship to a position of mutuality. Conversations are the ways by which we personalizing the faith. And they are the ways by which we witness our personalized faith. Co-sacramentality: Meaningful co-journey and conversation will enable one to enter into a sacramental relationship with God and others. Sacraments are the times of celebrating the faith. The Ethiopian Eunuch receives baptism as the mark of his faith affirmation (v.36, 37).The person gets elevated into a next level of sacramental communion. It is the mark of communion with God. Every witnessing act should reach towards the sublime point of Confession, communion, and sacramentality, like this. The relationship enriched by the sacramental relation with God and the other definitely will be meaningful and fruitful. They (Philip and Eunuch) continued their journey in different paths, but witnessing Christ in their own contexts. Every witness should create another witness. That is our ministry.
Prayer: Lord, give us the courage to co-travel with the 'others' and give us the strength to bear the cost for it. Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
Every journey is a new lesson of God’s grace,
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church
Revelation for LiberationActs 27:18-26 Sherine ThomasLong Island MTC, NY 20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small
tempest raged, all hope of our being saved was at last abandoned.
“After winter comes the summer. After night comes the dawn.
And after every storm, there comes clear open skies” so said a Scottish
clergyman from the 1600s. It’s been said, that hope can sometimes be the most
dangerous weapon. However, it’s sometimes the hardest weapon to carry
when you’re living with the loss of a loved one, something that almost feels
like a terrible nightmare that’ll never go away. It’s a weapon difficult
to carry when day in and day out no one seems to hear or see those tears that
are shed or silent cries that are made during a heartfelt prayer. It’s a
weapon difficult to carry as you see your loved one lying on that hospital bed.
It’s a weapon difficult to carry as you search and seek out answers to
tell a child as to why they’ve been abused, abandoned, and …
Exodus 40:12-16 Bring Aaron and his sons to the entrance to the Tent of
Meeting... wash them with water. Then dress Aaron in the sacred garments,
anoint him and consecrate him so he may serve me as priest (Exodus 40: 12-13). Priesthood
among the people of God was a divine command and initiation. God wanted some
people to be separated for the special ministry among his people. God appointed
Aaron and his descendants to take up this kind of ministry among the people of
God. Priests are always separated and appointed as channels that connect God
with his people. All throughout the history of Israel, priests played an
important role in connecting people with God and to lead and guide them in the
statutes of God. But there are incidents in the Bible where the priests failed
in their duties and that led the people to go away from God. So the priests
have a special and significant ministry to perform in this world among his
people. Two important things from thi…
Community Formation Around
Resurrection ExperienceActs 23:1-10 Vinod JohnsonCarmel MTC, Boston,
MA6 When Paul noticed that some were Sadducees and others
were Pharisees, he called out in the council, “Brothers, I am a Pharisee, a son
of Pharisees. I am on trial concerning the hope of the resurrection of the
Sometimes, the only thing that keeps you going through a brutal winter is
the hope for the spring. It may have been a hard hope to hold on to this
particular year in New England - a year in which Boston considered dumping not
tea, but the ever growing mounds of snow into its harbor. And yet, the waist
deep snow has dissolved away. White desolation has given way to increasingly
visible green shoots of spring. A resurrection is at hand!
this passage, Paul tries to defend himself before the Sanhedrin Council. He
seeks to drive a wedge between the Pharisees who believed in resurrection and
the Sadducees who did not; even though neither believed in the resurrection of