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Jesus preached a radical message of individual spiritual awakening. Wisdom of the Carpenter presents those teachings with 365 prayers designed for the contemporary seeker. Incorporating his own new translations of the earliest available texts, comparative religion scholar Ron Miller brings Jesus’ voice and advice to life, while added commentary relates Jesus’ teachings to those of the world’s other great religious traditions. Little-known teachings of Jesus from the Gospel of Thomas, the Book of Q, and other lost sources are included. ?An extremely valuable resource not only for Christians but for all thoughtful seekers.” ? Jim Kenney, global director of the Parliament of World Religions
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Dr. Ronald H. Miller holds graduate degrees in philosophy, theology and comparative religions. He is Chair of the Religion Department at Lake Forest College and Co-Director of Common Ground, an adult educational center headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois.
Marcus Borg, author of the introduction, is the author of several top-selling books on the historical Jesus including "Reading the Bible Again for the First Time." He lives in Portland, OR.
My prayer now is that a beginning may take place in you.
The Secret book of James 11:1
What a wonderful prayer. If only our every moment could be a new beginning. Paul Cezanne said that there is a moment of time passing by right now and we must become that moment.
Let this day be a beginning for me, God, no matter how many endings my life has endured.
The wind blows where it chooses and you hear the sound of it but you don't really know where it comes from or where it goes.
In both Hebrew and Greek, the same word means both wind and spirit. God's spirit in the world, like the wind that is its symbol, cannot be pinned down, contained, or curbed. An important lesson for all of us when we want to control the divine reality or make it behave according to the needs of our ego.
Help me to be truly open to Your spirit today and to where that spirit leads me.
In all your dealings, treat others as you would have them treat you, for this is the sum of biblical teaching.
The Dalai Lama, a great contemporary exponent of Buddhism, has said that his religion is kindness. Jesus seems to agree, interpreting his own Jewish scriptural tradition in terms of the "Golden Rule" that is found in all the great spiritual paths.
Let me live by this one rule today, God, that I treat others as I would like them to treat me.
Let those who seek, continue seeking until they find. Then they will be troubled and after that astonished and finally rule over all.
The I found it bumper sticker is never the final truth; finding is followed by the troubling awareness that the divine mystery can never be fully found; this in turn leads to a new sense of awe and finally to the deepest kind of spiritual power.
Don't let me settle today for complacency, God, or easy answers but keep me growing in Your spirit.
Your faith has healed you; go in peace.
Jesus is not a magician. We need to trust God and to trust his role in mediating God's power and presence in the world. It is this trust that brings healing, wholeness, and peace.
Help me to trust You today and to experience your healing and your peace.
The Buddha taught: All that you have, you will lose. Jesus too reminds us that all things pass away and that there is no point in trying to cling to them. Not clinging frees us up to love and cherish what is offered in each moment.
Let me experience, God, the deep peace that comes from celebrating what is in each moment without clinging to any of it.
It is a blessing to be pure in heart; you will see God.
The Danish philosopher Kierkegaard claimed that purity of heart means to will one thing. But the only thing big enough and deep enougth to encompass our every moment is the divine reality, the mystery we call God's will.
Don't let my heart be sullied today, God. Keep it focused purely on Your will.
Never be glad unless you look at your brother or sister with love.
Gospel of the Hebrews 7
Christmas is love's birthday. Any discipleship that bears the name of the one whose birthday is commemorated by this day must be a discipleship of love; otherwise, it is a pretense and a lie.
In whatever else I may fail, let me love today, God.
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