Betsy Byrne, Bible, Bishop Leo Michael, Blog, Catholicism, Contemplation, Doris Stutley, Holly Michael, Hope, Jake Byrne, Learning to Lean, Nick Byrne, Peace, Prayer, Rich Maffeo, Richard Maffeo, Scripture, Stutley Tales, why do bad things happen to good people, www.writingstraight.com
My days of
wine whine are over. I am truly blessed and humbled by the many caring comments on my last post: Throwing Mountains into the Sea.
Back atcha dear friends with all that love, support, and prayers you showered me with. Now, prepare for a positive post after my previous pessimistic pondering. (I love alliteration).
My new attitude has nothing to do with any fantastic news. Still waiting for that call from my agent that my novel has been sold. Met with Jake. He returned home after being cut from the New Orleans Saints roster when the team acquired a veteran tight-end. We’re waiting to see what’s next for him. Nick is still wondering where he’s going to attend college in a few months. Betsy Boo left us to study in England for a semester. Here she is at 5:15 am at the Kansas City Airport. She Facebook messaged me today that she’s arrived and is enjoying lovely Bath, England.
And my husband and I are still coming and going between Kansas City and Northern Colorado, taking care of churches in both places. So, instead of whining, waiting, and worrying as we watch our wayfaring Prius’ reflection from the back of this semi…somewhere in Kansas…
…I chose to open Rich Maffeo’s: Learning to Lean, Volume 1. Within the pages of this contemplative companion, Maffeo beautifully and faithfully reflects on the storms of life, the travails of faith, and the relationship Jesus wants to have with each of us through it all.
What a book! I give Learning to Lean two full thumbs up. (Thanks for letting me use your thumbs, Betsy)
The author of Learning to Lean, Richard Maffeo, says he was raised in a Jewish home and careened into a life of careless living. Then, he read the 53rd chapter of Isaiah. The ancient Jewish prophet spoke of Jesus’ sacrificial death which paid the penalty for our sins. “But He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities, the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all” (NASB).
Maffeo, after delving deep into Scripture, committed himself to the Lord and joined the Evangelical Protestant church before his journey into Catholicism.
Learning to Lean (short meditations mixed with beautiful prose poems) answers the most profound life questions. What might it be like to meet our God on that first day in Heaven? Does Jesus walk with me along my journey? What might the Centurion have felt as he hammered the placard above Jesus’ head? Why do people of faith suffer? What can wash away my sins? What if it had been me lashed to the whipping post, instead of Christ? What does obedience to Jesus look like?
Maffeo’s humbleness in sharing his faith journey, his reverence to God, his knowledge of Scripture, and his well-crafted contemplations will lead readers to the throne of the Almighty, to discover a God of relationships who offers salvation for all through our Lord Jesus’ death on the cross.
I also enjoyed Maffeo’s method for contemplative prayers at the end of the book. He admits it’s more of a relationship than a method, though, and he explains how his maturing in that relationship translates into his prayer process.
I’ve been filled with hope, peace, and joy after reading Richard Maffeo’s Learning to Lean. Also, on my last post, I received many words of wisdom, including these from Doris… “I challenge you to shift the focus of your prayer. Don’t spend a lot of time describing your mountain to the Lord. He knows what it is. Instead, focus your attention on the mountain-mover: his glory, power and faithfulness. Then start walking in faith, following his leading, and watch that mountain step aside.”
Gotta love this support and inspiration we get from one another and from wonderful books, such as Learning to Lean.
So, after all the great advice, and miles of hope and humbling from the pages of Learning to Lean, my husband and I made our way to Northern Colorado, where I decided to quit whining, and you guessed it, learn to lean.
I’m also learning to let go and to not look back. And if I do, the Creator of the Universe, our God, who knows how to create, as well as move mountains, has it all covered.
http://tinyurl.com/mmbtr3 (Rich’s blog)
http://tinyurl.com/6mp9pu9 (Rich Maffeo’s Bible Study in Acts)