These Reflections will continue through the end of this week and then leave space for you and the Holy Spirit to fashion your own personalized daily encounter. Toward that end, this week's contributions will all contain a helpful hint for reflecting.
Never, ever read the Bible looking for some single "correct" interpretation. If you can't come up with it, this gets frustrating; and if you do, it gets stale and boring. The Daily Office readings usually include three passages and a psalm or two. One of those is likely to prompt a reaction or curiosity. That reaction or curiosity is like a personalized invitation from the Holy Spirit to a conversation. Run with it. Ponder what your reaction says about yourself. Ponder how other parts of the Bible you know speak to your curiosity. Pray without words, just being mindful of the Holy Spirit's nearness, and see where she guides your thoughts. This approach never gets boring.
Here's what caught my attention today: In the first lesson, Joshua cautions the Hebrews to never, ever covet anyone else's would-be god. In the second lesson, Paul gets frustrated that his Jewish friends won't quickly accept Jesus. But they were just trying to heed Joshua's orders and stick with what their elders taught them, right? This Jesus was not the Messiah they were expecting!
The "Old Time Religion" many of us treasure is not a fossil. It lives and breathes and surprises. Look for surprises, not answers, and you won't be disappointed.