December 17th DAY TEN : PRAY
VISUALIZATION: From your sacred space, take 5 looong, deeeep breaths. Set a timer if you need. Try to spend at least 5 minutes here. Bring your focus to just one part of your body that you know needs healing, strength, or improvement. Imagine Jesus, as the divine physician, present with you, holding this part of you and you are looking back at him as he heals it. See it healed, feel how you would feel if it was better and imagine what you would do if this part was no longer an issue. Show Jesus your gratitude.
Staying in your sacred space, REFLECT on the following and if you would like, write any thoughts in your journal using the questions as prompts.
The Gospel according to Matthew starts out with the genealogy of Jesus in chapter 1:1-17. Today you will work on memorizing all the names for the sake of your cognitive health. Just kidding! Nothing of the sort. This passage gives us a sense of how Jesus fits into human family lines, as we all do. It sets the context for his coming and being an essential link. The idea I want you to explore here is to think back through your family lines on both sides. Those you know personally and those you only know through their stories that have been passed along. Think about who in your family has been the link to you knowing and practicing your faith. Do you know where their faith came from, and so on? Perhaps you are a “first generation believer” so to speak. Who was your “spiritual mother, father, or grandparent?” In other words, who would you consider to be the person who passed the faith onto you, and who has gone on to help you strengthen it? We are part of a tremendous heritage of Christians, all being written into God’s story. It is quite incredible. Contemplate this and pray about how you might be passing the faith onto others.
Ponder the same for your health. Thinking back through your family lines it is perhaps easy to see genes expressed, good and bad habits that trickle through the generations, and knowing what diseases people may have passed away from gives us certain insights. Who has played a role in how you think about, take care of, or neglect your health? Do people in your family enjoy healthy food or mock even the idea of purchasing organic food? Did anyone pass on to you a love for exercise, movement, or outdoor activities that naturally get you moving? Has the physical health of you and your family’s lineage played a role in influencing your faith? How about vice versa?
Take time today to pray for someone whom you know plays or has played a crucial role in your spiritual development. Send them a Christmas card or just write a heartfelt letter to them, thanking them for passing the faith on to you. Send it if you can. Similarly, if you know someone who has helped you learn to take care of yourself well and you are physically healthier because of them, thank them in a special way today.
A prayer for your day: Lord, each one of us is an essential link in our family lines. I know my actions and choices today affect the generations to come. Help me to live a life of virtue that I might influence those generations in a positive way. May I be the link that breaks the chains of familial sin. Amen.