Grace Notes in the Desert

Grace Notes in the Desert is written for the saints of Rio Grande Presbyterian Church and the surrounding community.

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Grace Notes acknowledges we need God's grace and forgivness as much as the desert water.



Ever heard the saying “they’re too spiritually minded to be any earthly good”? The converse, of course, is also true: we can be so earthly minded (ie., ‘worldly’) that we have no heart for or understanding of God.

J. Philip Newell--pastor, retreat leader and spiritual director in Abiquiu, NM, at Ghost Ranch’s Casa del Sol--writes in his little book Promptings from Paradise:

"The true place of prayer…is never an escape from life
and from the struggles of the world. It is about moving intoa deeper consciousness of them and allowing our hearts to be touched by them…Prayer is not about stepping away from the world, but about approaching its center.”

What breaks God’s heart should break ours, too. What God is working out, in history--to save, salvage, heal, transform and redeem the world--is what we should be about, too.

As summer ends and fall begins, my hope and prayer is that we will take time to pray, individually, and, together, to discern what God is doing, here, in our city and around the world. And, that we will choose to be partners in God’s saving, salvaging, healing, transforming work to redeem the world—beginning with ourselves.

Prayer is a way of answering the question “What does God want me to do with my life?” and, then, receiving the power of God to live…a life of purpose…a life of integrity—an integrated life--integrating faith and action, prayer and service, contemplation with works of love.

Fall is, traditionally, the start of a new church year. As you read through this autumn newsletter, I hope you will discover new ways of putting faith in action; and, prayerfully, discern what God is calling us to do and be as friends and followers of Jesus Christ.

Yours on the Journey,
A Pastor in the Desert