Tag Archives: appreciation

J.B. Phillips’s Take on Study

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Thursday, March 16, 2017

bible studies, bible


J.B. Phillips’s Take on Study

I love J.B. Phillips’s modern translation of the New Testament.

He was an Anglican clergyman in wartime London who was concerned about young people, and how they could not relate to the antiquated language of the Bible. So, he translated a few letters of the New Testament into contemporary language. Encouraged by the reactions to his translations, he went on the translate the entire New Testament. [1]

I was particularly interested in Rev. Phillips’s personal appreciation for the translation process. Having done a bit of translation myself (from the Greek), I’ve gotten a taste for how exciting and enlightening it can be! Translation led him on “a personal journey of discovery…[he was] delighted to get in closer touch with first-century Christians. He also [was] glad that he can bring his readers closer to Jesus Christ.” [2]

I’d like to highlight one “serendipity” that J.B. Phillips lifts up, in his personal testimony. On translating 1 John 1:20, Rev. Phillips found himself needing to step back. “…there may be many factors in our lives for which we are not really to blame at all. We did not choose our heredity; we did not choose the bad, indifferent, or excellent way in which we were brought up….It is almost as if John is saying, ‘If God loves us, who are we to be so high and mighty as to refuse to love ourselves?’” [3]

What a striking insight. This really causes me to thank God yet again that I am His follower. Not a blind follower, heedlessly following, lurching along, but following God using my intellect, my senses, and my insights. (Also, using others’ insights, gleaned from decades of study.)

How amazing is God’s Word. Thank You, God, for the awesome majesty of Your Word, the Bible. Help us read, chew, ruminate, digest, and comprehend Your word. In Your name we pray.



Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my companion blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.  #PursuePEACE. My Facebook page, Pursuing Peace – Thanks! And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er.

[1] Spiritual Classics, edited by Richard J. Foster and Emilie Griffin. (San Francisco, California: HarperSanFrancisco, 2000), 93.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid, 95.

Nourish the Soul through Intention

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Friday, June 19, 2015

nourish your soul - design

Nourish the Soul through Intention

More on nourishing the soul today, in this chapter from Handbook for the Soul. Fascinating to think that so many different people can have different takes on how to nourish and nurture the soul. Wayne Dyer gave us more of a Jungian perspective in this chapter.

I have an appreciation for Jung and his concepts of development and some views on the stages that a person goes through as individuation happens. Dyer puts his own names on these basic stages, but the Jungian basis is certainly present.

So, how to nourish the soul? One way to do this and become a Witness “is to shut down the inner dialogue and to learn to become quiet.” [1] He stresses that quiet is all-important when it comes to knowing your soul. I could quibble, but by and large, I think quiet has a deep and lasting benefit to nourishing the soul. Also to seeking out peace and serenity, as well as calming down the breath and loosening the tight back, shoulder and neck muscles.

Dyer did not mention God very often, until the very end. But there, he acknowledged God (or as some would say, Higher Power) and made another fabulous statement: “The way you ultimately know God or your soul is the abolish all doubt, cultivate the Witness, erase your past, shut down the inner dialogue, and later the ego.” [2]

God willing, I strive to find a way to quiet the inner voices of noise. And God willing, what activities I discover will be nourishing and nurturing to the soul.


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er .

[1] Handbook for the Soul, Richard Carlson and Benjamin Shield, editors. (Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1995.), 123.

[2] Ibid, 125.


Pray for the One I Love (Focus Friday!)

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – February 6, 2015

LOVE you are loved

Pray for the One I Love (Focus Friday!)

Today’s prayer suggestion caught me off guard. I stared at the open page for some seconds.

Yes, I can think of the person I love most in the world. My husband, Kevin. I love you, sweetheart! I really do! But—the next words surprised me. “How can you see the presence of God in that person?” I do not think of Kevin in those terms very often. But, here is my attempt.

I see God’s presence in Kevin through his honesty, genuineness, and integrity. Through his appreciation of beauty in language, music, nature, and order in all things. I enjoy and appreciate my husband’s sense of humor and his creativity—both qualities that I know God has in abundance! And, I respect Kevin for his wisdom and discernment.

God, thank You for the gift of knowing Kevin, of having him as my companion, my friend, my husband and my lover. I thank You for the times we have to talk and joke, and for the times to be serious, even somber. I thank You for the opportunities we give each other to be apart from each other, and the trust and respect we have for each other. I thank You for Kevin’s excellent work ethic, and I praise his ability to make music—whether in the style of classical violin, bluegrass, or Irish fiddle music.

Dear God, thank You for the gift of love. I know that the Apostle John said to his readers, “We love, because He first loved us.” Lord, I know Kevin and I can give and receive love freely because of You and Your love for all of us. I am glad of our love, caring, and liking for each other. I pray that You bless that love, and encourage each of us to nourish those positive, loving feelings for each other. In Your mercy, Lord, hear all of my prayers.

This is a worthwhile suggestion. I felt it deeply in my emotional center, as well as my intellect. May I suggest that my readers follow the same example? Carry out and follow the same suggestion? Let me know how you do!

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blog, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.