Dorothy Height, who led the National Council for Negro Women for over forty years, wrote an amazing chronicle of her life’s work entitled, Open Wide The Freedom Gates. I read her book while I was in Washington, D.C. not long ago and one day, as I walked around the city, I suddenly realized I was standing in front of their offices on Pennsylvania Avenue. These offices stand on the site that once housed a slave auction. She writes in this book about a particular search and quest for freedom, but it is also one for which we can all find relates to us in many ways. It reminds me that in the struggle to be free from whatever might bind us, and that which might keep us from experiencing life as God intended for us to experience, that we must first recognize that we are not alone in our journey. Jesus, whom we call and proclaim as the Christ, has already flung wide the gates to the kingdom of heaven and made them known to us on earth.
We pray, “on earth as it is in heaven,” and from our belief in the power and presence of God, always right where we are at every moment, we can begin to experience heaven more fully in our lives. Unfortunately all too often when we say the words, “on earth as it is in heaven,” we sail right over them without letting them truly speak to us in a new and wonderful way. Meditating, and reflecting on just how heaven shows up in our daily lives is a powerful tool to use in our realization of God’s presence in all aspects of our lives.
God does indeed open wide freedom’s gate to us, but it is up to us to make the decision to enter that gate and find our spiritual home there. The gift has been made, the door opened, the way prepared, the table set. And so affirm for yourself, “I take the hand of Christ that is extended forth and walk tall as I enter the gates of God’s presence. I do so knowing there is nothing to fear, for I cannot stumble or fall, for I have a helper in all things. The scenery through the gate invites me to a new life of all things I desire, and so as I enter I simply say thank you to God for this most precious gift.”
“For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand, it is I who say to you, “Do not fear, I will help you.” (Isaiah 41:13)
Affirmation: “I take the hand of Christ extended forth and walk tall as I enter the gates of God’s presence.”
Rev. Jefferson Beeker
We live our lives one thought at a time. Let each of those thoughts really count for something wonderful.
Be prepared to change your thinking and change your life. Please join us each Sunday at 5:30 PM in our Social Hall at First Christian Church, North Hollywood, CA for our Contemporary Celebration and Praise service. Come as you are and enjoy an hour of great music from our wonderful band and singers, inspiring messages and good fellowship. Those things in life that you have been seeking have also been seeking you. Now is a good time to receive them. We will lift one another to live exciting, abundant new lives of possibility and purpose.
Also, join me on Wednesday evenings from 7 to 8 PM for an hour of guided and silent meditation, reflection, affirmation and prayer. As always, we will share communion together. Everyone is welcome.
First Christian Church, North Hollywood, 4390 Colfax Avenue, Studio City, CA 91604. http://www.fccnh.org
Follow me on Twitter @jeffersonbeeker