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The Forward Day by Day Meditation for April 3, 2014

We post a Forward Day by Day Meditation for every day of the year - and we invite you to consider them and talk about them here. If you'd like to comment, you can log in to Disqus with your Facebook, Twitter, or Google account; just click "Login," or the appropriate logo below. Or, you can sign up for a Disqus account; just use the entry form below, or click the "D" logo to start the process. You can find the past week's Meditations in the box at right (or below, for mobile users), or search for previous entries on the Archives page. You can also listen to the Forward Day by Day podcast anywhere you find podcasts!

THURSDAY, April 3

Mark 8:34. If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.

A few years ago, a young husband and wife started an intentional community in rural Ohio. They share the house with others committed to simple living, to daily prayer and worship, and to issues of justice, especially around hunger and care of the earth. The farm not only yields enough to feed the members of the house and volunteers, but also supplies thousands of pounds of food each year to the local pantries.

I was struck by one story about their common life. They decided to get rid of the clothes dryer. After all, it’s not a vital machine, they determined. They could use a clothesline and conserve energy and money. Hanging clothes to dry would be an exercise in patience, in slowing down, as well as in planning and coordinating the wash with others in the house.

This small sacrifice provides powerful insight into the faithful witness of this group of people. I don’t know if God wants me to give up my clothes dryer (please, God, I hope not). But I do believe God calls us to sacrifice, to make hard decisions, to give up important things, so that we can take up the cross and follow Jesus.

PRAY for the Diocese of Bungoma (Kenya)

Today the Church remembers Richard, Bishop of Chichester, 1253.

Ps 69:1-23(24-30)31-38 * 73; Exodus 1:6-22; 1 Corinthians 12:12-26; Mark 8:27—9:1

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