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The Forward Day by Day Archives

We've published links to the last few weeks' Forward Day by Day Meditations below. You can search for past meditations (from June 2012 and later), and filter them by keyword if you wish, using the search form.

Please note: Some of our archived meditations are currently unavailable. We are working on the problem and expect to have the Archives page fully operational again soon.

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  • SUNDAY, October 22      20 Pentecost

    Today, you may not be contemplating refusal to pay your taxes on religious grounds, but you might be wondering about how to respond as a Christian to the rhetoric and actions of secular leaders of all political persuasions. Sometimes we are asked to support actions that violate our baptismal covenan....
  • SATURDAY, October 21

    A number of years ago, I loaded my youth group into a van to participate in a protest. We missed Willie Nelson’s performance, and Joan Baez wasn’t coming through the camp for another week. The night before we showed up, someone had plowed down the rows of white crosses representing soldiers kill....
  • FRIDAY, October 20

    The question John’s disciples pose to Jesus has a special urgency as John languishes in Herod’s prison. “Are you the one? The bringer of judgment and justice into the world?”

    Jesus responds to them, not with a list of proof texts or an explanation of the hypostat....

  • THURSDAY, October 19

    Nobody likes that guy who goes around saying, “We’re gonna lose. You might as well give up now.” At the siege of Jerusalem, Jeremiah was that guy. So, the prophet who once spoke on behalf of the Lord is thrown into an empty cistern—to sink into the mud and into the silent oblivion of death. ....
  • WEDNESDAY, October 18      Saint Luke, Evangelist

    Luke the Evangelist has fundamentally shaped our understanding of Jesus and what it means to be a Christian—the infancy narratives, the songs of Zechariah and Mary, beloved parables, meeting Jesus on the road to Emmaus, and the grand narrative of Acts. Over and over, Luke calls us to encounter Jes....
  • TUESDAY, October 17

    In Matthew’s Gospel, the people of the Jesus Movement are the vanguard of God’s resistance and liberation operation for the entire world that is held in bondage to sin and death. They are sheep sent into the midst of wolves, people of peace sent into a hostile and violent world, which will cruci....
  • MONDAY, October 16

    This passage from 1 Corinthians calls us to examine our relationships and ask: How can we stand in openness to each other and reflect who God is, so that the invisible God who is Love may be seen?

    Near the end of City of God, Saint Augustine reflects on this mys....

  • SUNDAY, October 15     19 Pentecost

    Sometimes, as I look around a world filled with conflict, I wish that the prophets offered a more detailed program for the realization of their radical visions of peace. Like Israel in exile, I desire a roadmap to lead me back to the way things were before everything fell apart—with the hope that ....
  • SATURDAY, October 14

    You know this feeling. It’s the queasy, overwhelmed feeling that shrinks back and insists, “I am not enough for this.” At the same time, you feel drawn toward the other because you know something about their pain and a part of you desires to fling yourself into the gap. This queasy, compassion....
  • FRIDAY, October 13

    We are all members of one body, and we all need each other. We are interdependent—the eye cannot say to the foot, “I have no need of you.” The foot cannot say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body—so peace out, y’all!” We understand this on a physical and personal leve....
  • THURSDAY, October 12

    When this woman says to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be made well,” she knows what could happen. But she also knows no one must see what she is about to do. Determined to be made well, the woman sneaks through the crushing crowd, reaches out, and brushes Jesus’ garment.

  • WEDNESDAY, October 11

    Trouble arises in Corinth because the churches don’t understand that the Lord’s Supper is not a typical dinner party. In this holy meal of radical unity, deep divisions of family, class, and faction have appeared. Paul warns the Corinthians not to eat and drink “without discerning the body,”....
  • TUESDAY, October 10

    Mind the gap.

    The lectionary encourages us to read from 1 Corinthians, chapter 11, verse 2, and then skip to 17-22. We might well wonder, “From what difficult text is the lectionary trying to protect us?”

    These particular verses have frequ....

  • MONDAY, October 9

    Matthew’s Jesus offers us a powerful sign through the swine in the country of the Gadarenes. When he casts the demons into the unclean herd and runs them into the abyss, Jesus shows how, even now, God’s kingdom is gaining ground and forcefully edging out the powers of darkness in the world. The ....
  • SUNDAY, October 8      18 Pentecost

    Just as the spurned lover in a revenge ballad revisits the moments of betrayal and calls her audience to take her side in the ensuing conflict, the disappointed beloved (YHWH) of Isaiah’s song demands a hearing. Expectations of faithfulness have been betrayed; trust has been broken.

    ....

  • SATURDAY, October 7

    The outcry of Jesus’ terrified disciples echoes the cries of humanity to God throughout the ages: “Save us!” Jesus’ faithful response to this outcry continues throughout the gospels and in our lives. Jesus deeply cares that we are perishing. He is on a mission against death, and it should be....
  • FRIDAY, October 6

    In The Freedom of a Christian, reformer Martin Luther uses today’s passage to describe the nature of Christian freedom: “A Christian is a perfectly free lord of all, subject to none. A Christian is a perfectly dutiful servant of all, subject to all.” These statements seem entirely con....
  • THURSDAY, October 5

    This reading from 2 Kings reminds me of the scene from the last volume in the Harry Potter series, The Deathly Hallows. Hogwarts is besieged by the Death Eaters, and Voldemort’s piercing voice is heard by those inside the walls. The voice seeks to overwhelm, undermine, and offer false pro....
  • WEDNESDAY, October 4

    Idol meat—it’s what’s for dinner! In the ancient world, the meat of animals sacrificed in pagan rituals was distributed to the poor at city festivals and served up to the elite who dined in pagan temples. Partaking of meat sacrificed to an idol was understood as partaking in the life and power....
  • TUESDAY, October 3

    The reign of the good king Hezekiah is something of a Great Awakening in Israel. Following the reign of Ahaz, Hezekiah has a lot of cleaning up to do. He starts with the temple. Then, Hezekiah sends word to the tribes of Israel—even to the fragmented northern kingdom—and urges them to celebrate ....

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