14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. 18 Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19 And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. 20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed. 21 But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God. (John 3:14-21)
In the first reading, we hear the story of Naaman, a Syrian general, who comes to Israel seeking a cure from his leprosy. When Naaman finds the prophet Elisha, he offers all manner of riches and gifts as inducement and payment. But Elisha wants none of it. He simply instructs Naaman to wash seven times in the Jordan. Pretty simple and ordinary, yes? Continue reading
When one thinks of the word “speed,” what comes to mind? Fast cars or memories of childhood racing down a steep hill on your bicycle? The 1994 movie “Speed” with Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves (yes, it has been that long!)? There are all manner of “go fast” memories and thoughts that course through our minds, rapidly turning over in our heads as we race through the day, quickly getting ready for the day or the next thing to-do. We live in a speedy world.
“Speed” derives from the Old English spēd, which referred to prosperity, good fortune, and success. This sense of “speed” lives on in Godspeed, which comes from the Middle English phrase God spede you (meaning “God prosper you”) In Genesis 24:12, a servant of Abraham says aloud, “LORD, God of my master Abraham, let it turn out favorably for me” (NAB), but a older translation is “I pray thee, send me good speed this day…. ” These days, “God speed” lives on in our wishes for someone to have a prosperous and safe journey under the protection of God.
As you race though this and that, God speed to you this day!