Gather Us In

Monday, July 22

7-22By Peggy Michael of Cantonment, Florida, USA

When your willingness to live in sacred community as Christ’s new creation exceeds your natural fear of spiritual and relational transformation, you will become who you are called to be. The rise of Zion the beautiful, the peaceful reign of Christ, awaits your wholehearted response to the call to make and steadfastly hold to God’s covenant of peace in Jesus Christ.

—Doctrine and Covenants 164:9b

These thoughts came to me as I was ministering in a congregation that was considering closing its doors. Since then, the congregation has grown and is now thriving.

People are gathering. They wave hello, stop to chat, and invite one another in. People are coming—world travelers as well as the homebound. Men and women, put down your tools of labor; children, put down your toys; cast aside idle pastimes to answer Christ’s call.

People come who have considered building community; others come who have never heard of it. They sit together to talk of Christ and ponder his mission. Christ stirs their hearts with hope as they sing praises, pray, and listen for the Divine.

They consider God’s bright promises of what is yet to be, what is beyond the horizon. The crowd is gathering. People are coming. Don’t close the doors. People are coming!

Prayer for Peace
O God, I would give my heart to you, but it is encased in a wall of stone. It is sealed with the mortar of doubt and pride, hardened by time spent alone. I am troubled by this, and cry out to you, “Cast this barrier down. I can’t, for I put all my strength into building it.” Why does this spinning sphere continue to fling us beyond your reach, O God? Gather us in so the sea of loneliness will not swallow us—so we will not be too far from people to share Christ’s peace.

—Peggy Michael

Spiritual Practices: Blessings of Community
Receive and share Blessings of Community. Begin with a prayer of gratitude for the relationships in your life. See and feel connections with family members, spiritual friends, people in your congregation and community, and people and creatures in God’s sacred web of life. What blessings flow to you from these circles?

Reflect, pray, or write in your journal about the call to be Community of Christ. Go deeper each day as you discern how you can invite people to Christ.

Peace Covenant
Today, God, I will seek the company of a stranger to make a friend.

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