The fear of being labeled

May 22, 2008

My teaching is as precious as your eyesight—guard it!
Write it out on the back of your hands;
etch it on the chambers of your heart.
Proverbs 7:2-3 The Message

I’ve been following a UK story about stationery products for children emblazoned with the Playboy logo. The image of a 7-year-old girl carrying a Playboy bunny would be so jarring, I ask myself, How did this become commonplace? There are so many groups that should object–the evangelicals, the feminists, the Muslims, the Anglo-Catholics.
This has caused me to reflect on that potent stronghold–the fear of being labeled, the fear of being labeled narrow-minded, the fear of being labeled a troublemaker, the fear of being labeled a prude, the fear of being labeled a fundamentalist, the fear of being labeled an ally of the above. If we could see with our natural eyes what this stronghold looks like, I think it would be a cattle chute.
God admonishes us to write His word on the back of our hands, to etch it on the chambers of our hearts, to bind it between our eyes (Deut 6:8). When we embody His word, we embody His love. His love drives out the fear of being labeled. His love compels us to protect the defenseless against those who would label them for their own purposes. When we embody His word, we don’t fit into the cattle chute.

Lord, write Your word between our eyes, on the back of our hands, and on the chambers of our hearts, we pray. Amen.


Matthew 11:25-30

May 22, 2008

At that time Jesus answered and said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and have revealed them to babes.” (Matthew 11:25)
      Father, thank you that Jesus is the true measure of all things and that we need not be put down by those who are worldly wise. Thank you for feeding us day by day with your word.

“Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in your sight.” (Matthew 11:26)
      Father, help us desire what is good in your eyes. Help the deputies to the Diocesan Convention desire what seems good to you.

“All things have been delivered to me by my father, and no one knows the Son except the Father. Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal him.” (Matthew 11:27)
      Jesus, please reveal your father to all those who are going to the Diocesan Convention. Please reveal your father to all those going to the Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON) in Jerusalem in June and to the Lambeth Conference in London in July. Bless Bishop Bill as he participates in all these meetings.

“Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28 )
      Jesus, thank you for these words of comfort. Help us come to you and enter into your rest.

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:29)
      Holy Spirit, please help us have a heart after Jesus’ own heart.

“For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:30)
      Jesus, please help us be yoke fellows with you. Help each of us place your yoke upon us and do your will. Help each of us take up the burden you have set for us. Thank you.

” that they all may be one, as you, Father, are in me, and I in you; that they also may be one in us ” (John 17:21).
      Holy Spirit, please help us find our unity in the Father and the Son.

      A word received: Plead with me for my people to repent. Cry out to me for changed hearts in the Episcopal Church.

Thursday: 18:21-50; Proverbs 7:1-27; 1 John 5:13-21; Matthew 11:25-30
Friday: 22; Proverbs 8:1-21; 2 John 1-13; Matthew 12:1-14

      Notes from the Front Line

Bishop Bill will be going to both the Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON) in Jerusalem in June and to the Lambeth Conference in London in July. Sustain him with your prayers.

Albany Intercessor


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