Thirsting for the Light

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Breaking Into Our Darkness God’s Light Invites Us to God’s Feast

of the Bread of Life and the Water of Eternal Life

Which Satisfy Us As We Were Created to Be.

Psalm 143:6

I stretch out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land. Selah

Revelation 22:17

The Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come.’
And let everyone who hears say, ‘Come.’
And let everyone who is thirsty come.
Let anyone who wishes take the water of life as a gift.

Words of Grace For Today

There are gifts that we give each other, some are things. They bear preciousness less in how much they can be sold for, as they are an object not unlike a savings account.

Though, as an aside, a ‘savings account’ that can be mobile and carried with one as one runs for one’s life, as refugees of many kinds do and as war has forced so many to do … these ‘mobile savings accounts’ can make the difference between life and death. The value therein can be bartered for the necessities of life as one runs … and/or one’s life can be taken by someone who wants to steal the ‘thing of value.’

The gift that God gives freely, generously, prodigiously cannot be taken from us. It is the water of life that satisfies our thirsts.

So we thirst for God.

We thirst for God like people trying to cross a great desert, a great parched land as our lives too often become.

We thirst in the wilderness of our hearts and souls for God.

We thirst from within our parched bodies, hearts and minds for God.

We plead with God to come.

We plead for God to come now and

to make right what is done wrongly to us,

to make right what is done wrongly to others,

to make right what we have done wrongly to ourselves and to others.

And God comes, breaking in on us like the heavens parting to shower light on a darkened world.

God comes, breaking into the cacophony we’ve allowed our lives to become in this noisy, information saturated world … with stillness, with calm, with silence.

God’s silence absorbs the cacophony of drivel and evil and lands us in a peace which is beyond our comprehension abilities.

God invites us to the fountain of the water of life, and says, “Drink and take all that you need.”

The wonders of life well watered can only overwhelm our senses, our thoughts, our histories, our stories, our minds and our hearts.

And we say a quiet thanks, allowing God’s generosity to pour over us on to those around us who are so parched they do not even know they are thirsty.

Into this day we go, swimming in the Light that no one can ignore, even though many deny it, wishing to hide their deceptions, schemes, and destruction of people and God’s creation.

Into this day we go, with a peace that deflects the noise of distraction from life.

Into this day we go, full of wonder and gratitude.

How else could it be, for us, who are so blessed by God’s many gifts?

Blizzard Fools

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Is This the Path, The Life, That Christ Calls Us To?

Where from Comes Our Strength to Carry on

Into the Wilderness?

Only from God Who Walks with Us!

Isaiah 45:23-24

By myself I have sworn,
from my mouth has gone forth in righteousness
a word that shall not return:
‘To me every knee shall bow,
every tongue shall swear.’
Only in the Lord, it shall be said of me,
are righteousness and strength;
all who were incensed against him
shall come to him and be ashamed.

John 6:51

I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats of this bread will live for ever; and the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.’

Words of Grace For Today

Yesterday the snow started in SE Saskatchewan, cm and cm fell. Then the wind up to 90km/hour blew it around like a chauffeur on meth.

The CBC article was well organized. A truck headed east to Brandon stopped to wait out the storm. Not his life, not his cargo is worth the risk of piling it up in the ditch or worse into other vehicles.

A young couple from Brandon travelled to a concert in Regina and they are on their way back, interviewed at the same spot the trucker has parked his rig, along with a collection of 18-wheelers. Who goes to a concert now in Covid times when all the restrictions are lifted leaving everyone so vulnerably exposed!?! A photo from the RCMP shows the visibility, which is forecast to get worse out of SE Saskatchewan into Manitoba. The road disappears into the white of snow and cloud ahead at 100 feet at most. The young couple says they are going to keep heading east until they come across a barrier across the road, or they simply cannot go further.

RCMP photo near Estevan SK

They are hell bent on getting back home.

What a contrast to the trucker who wisely sits out the danger of killing himself or others.

The arrogant leader portrayed in Isaiah at least knows where from his righteousness and strength come from: it comes from the Lord. I suppose that kind of arrogance could see him head out into a blizzard, ‘knowing’ that God calls him to travel!

But not likely.

For no matter how haughty we humans become, and even foolish, for those who recognize that their only righteousness and strength is not their own but that given as a gift to them by God, do not test fate for little to no reason. Risks are taken only to do God’s work.

So we know, that our lives are not anything, in fact we would not still be breathing, except that God has fed us the bread of life, Christ’ body. In him there is no darkness at all, the night and the day are all alike. In him we do not succumb to the fear of life, the fear of having to make our own way, the fear that we must achieve in order to have value. We know that our value is given in Christ’ body, and no one can take it from us. We are free and forever righteous and full of strength!

Therefore we follow Christ’ example: ministering to the poor, the marginalized, those whose voices have been taken from them. We bring God’s promise of life abundant, in sacrifice, giving life to others.

Come what may, blizzard or heat wave, floods or drought, war or barbarians ruining peace, we know that we live to Christ. We will die to Christ. And then we will live again with Christ.

So now we trust that God walks with us, and rests with us, as we stop to wait out the blizzards of life.

What Time Is It?!

Sunday, April 10, 2022

What Time Is It?

Spring Snow Heavy Falling Time.

Waiting for Summer?

Or

Living in the Wonders of Spring?

Isaiah 8:17

I will wait for the Lord, who is hiding his face from the house of Jacob, and I will hope in him.

Titus 2:13-14

… while we wait for the blessed hope and the manifestation of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ. He it is who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity and purify for himself a people of his own who are zealous for good deeds.

Words of Grace For Today

Enlyn Ott, Executive Director of Healthy Congregations, wrote early on in the Covid Pandemic (16 April 2020) in her invitation to her then upcoming workshop:

Constant change, new models and numbers are a way of life for us now. Regular patterns are upended. Relationships need to be maintained in new ways. Technology is used in places that never considered it a possibility before, raising issues of inadequacy as well as a sense of accomplishment. Death and illness are only a breath away.

I have decided to take a line from Winston Churchill for my workshop at the upcoming Navigating the Rapids conference. It is entitled “For Such a Time as This.” What time is this? And what kind of time is it calling us to?

Isaiah begins, I will wait

Titus continues a previous thought with while we wait …

This ongoing, perhaps never quite ending, Covid Pandemic, among so many other things has taught us again that we wait. We must wait. We must wait for the day when we can rush out with no thought of protecting ourselves and others. While we wait for ‘normal’ to return, we need to protect ourselves and other by physically maintaining distance, by wearing the best masks we can get, by improving ventilation and avoiding areas with poor ventilation, by constantly washing and sanitizing our hands, and ‘staying the blazes home!’ when we do not need to go out.

What is this ‘normal’ that we wait for?

Is it worth the wait!?

There is no advantage to anyone by disregarding reality, denying reality, and pretending that Covid is not here and here with a vengeance, and coming yet again with new and more contagious and deadly variants. The real problem we all have is that while we wait we have to know what we are waiting for! Otherwise we can go mad, and like so many, head out without waiting, without caution, without protection for ourselves and others … and with our denial of it’s reality we make the reality of the pandemic last and last and last … and kill and maim more and more people.

On this Psalm – Passion Sunday we remember Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem so celebrated by people, by people fervent with hope, but hoping for a saviour that was and is never to come, a political, a military, a worldly saviour to lead us into our own cruel and evil ways of living off the backs of others, instead of continuing as it is now when others live off our backs, while 2% of the 7 billion on earth live off the backs of the 70% who have next to nothing, and off the backs of the other 25% who believe they have lots, but have so little. The other 3% are God’s saints. Maybe the percentage is larger. One cannot know.

This Sunday we remember how Jesus rode into Jerusalem, and we remember what followed.

Confrontation

Celebration

Betrayal

False Charges

False Conviction

Capital Torture the Sentence

Cruel Taunting

Death

What kind of a saviour suffers these things, and willingly?

The Saviour of the world

Our Saviour

Our Saviour who redeems us from all iniquity and purifies for himself a people of his own.

The ‘normal’ we wait for is certainly not the return of what was ‘normal’ prior to the Covid pandemic and all it’s changes to our lives.

What we wait for is life,

blessed life, as one of Christ’s own, redeemed and purified, still sinners and always saints.

Constant change …. What time is this? And what kind of time is it calling us to?

This is, as always, God’s time, God’s blessed time for us. Our blessed time in God’s time, in God’s blessed creation.

This time, like all time for all generations, calls us to return to Christ, to confess the reality of our lives, the inevitable brokenness of our lives, and to give thanks for the blessings that flow over us so abundantly, waiting

waiting for us to share them with all other peoples.

Out of Bounds?! Brought Home, Again!

Friday, April 8, 2022

Go This Far

Not Past The Treeline!

Or Do You Live Outside the Boundaries?

2 Samuel 12:13

David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the Lord.’

Nathan said to David, ‘Now the Lord has put away your sin; you shall not die.’

Colossians 2:13

When you were dead in trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive together with him, when he forgave us all our trespasses.

Words of Grace For Today

Going out of bounds.

Growing up in Tanzania before the land was so densely populated so that our backyard went on for miles and miles of bush once we crossed the dry creek bed (which flowed strong and dangerously in the wet season) and on two different farms in ‘northern’ Minnesota both of which were surrounded by open land for miles, and in the Twin Cities where our back yard bordered on an old farm yard surrounded by acres and acres of undeveloped land which continued across the road into a huge impenetrable swamp, when we played we had free reign for miles. In each place there were boundaries as to how far we would venture, sometimes how far we were allowed to venture, sometimes how far we had agreed with each other to venture when we played. There had to be boundaries so that the games we played would work.

We did venture outside the boundaries, of course. We were after all children.

We did venture outside the invisible boundaries, like the time my older brothers killed a bird, started a fire, roasted it, and we each had a small bite. So exciting, in part because killing was ‘out of bounds’, starting a fire was ‘out of bounds’, and eating a wild bird was ‘out of bounds’. Thinking about it today the fire was reasonably dangerous, but eating a wild bird was ridiculously dangerous. Today, with all the ‘new’ diseases around it would be even more so.

Then there was the time that I just absently minded, not yet 5 years old, ventured beyond where my three older brothers were playing in that dry creek bed behind our house in Kiomboi. I was making what-I-cannot-remember in the sand and gravel. Darkness approached. My brothers probably yelled for me to come with them. They took off for the safety of the house. I continued to play, unawares of what was falling fast all around me. It was a short hike back home. Twilight lasted a mere 24 minutes at best. Once it was into dusk …

At night in the dark, as we were tucked into bed, each in our own bed, four beds, four older boys, in one large room with windows on one long side and one shorter side of the oblong room, the shrill piercing vicious cries and growls, the gaping mouths filled with big teeth, the yellow eyes and long noses of the hyenas more than often enough would jar us back awake and keep us awake for hours. Not that the hyenas wasted that much time at the windows, but our hearts would make up all sorts of terrible scenarios of them breaking in through the glass and/or the screens if the windows were open to cool the room for the ‘quiet’ of the night.

There I was, out of bounds playing in the sand and gravel of the creek bed, darkness falling fast as I was unawares. And then it fell. I jumped up in terror-alarm, and sped as fast as my panic fuelled short legs would carry me along the path between the bushes. The growls began behind me, the shrill cries pierced my little mind and my legs just would not pump any faster.

When I reached the closest door, the door to the kitchen, I grabbed it with what strength I had and …

Susanne, our house helper, pulled me in, closed the door behind me, and soothed my fears, before she stepped out the door for her walk home.

I was safe, and that welcome from Susanne told my little heart and mind that, though I had strayed outside the boundaries of safety, I was welcomed home, even if that welcome cost her her own safety as she made the trek to her own home of safety somewhere out there past the dark boundaries for us little boys, though well within her boundaries.

David steps many times outside the boundaries God has set for the ruler-warrior of the Israelite nation from its infancy to its heyday. The time he must pay with his life is when he has not only taken Bathsheba for his own, but he has ensured that her husband, his good general on the battlefield, will not return. David arranges for ‘friendly fire’ to kill Uriah, so that he can keep her, and cover up that she is pregnant with his child.

Nathan steps up to give David a lesson, a lesson that proud, powerful David needs, in order that David can confess once again how far out of bounds David has ventured, this time worse than many other times. The punishment must be David’s own life in exchange for Uriah’s.

Like Susanne at the kitchen door, once David has confessed his terrible sin, Nathan pronounces God’s forgiveness and welcoming of David, back ‘into bounds’, back into the safety of living in God’s house, in God’s creation, within God’s boundaries, boundaries that keep us safe from ourselves and from the evil ‘hyenas’ out there ready to tear us apart without hesitation.

So it is as always that God’s unconditional and steadfast love restores us to life. We can trust that even when we stray ‘out of bounds’, as we confess God promises us that we shall not die. Indeed God makes us alive together with Christ, forgiving us all our trespasses.

Stay safe today, and always. Know that even when we stray, God welcomes us home to safety with open arms, and the honest love of friends like Nathan, and soothing comfort of people like Suzanne.

Covid Costs! Listening to Whom?

Monday, April 4, 2022

What Do We See?

What Do We Hear?

Whose Voice Do We Follow?

Psalm 23:2-3

He makes me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside still waters; he restores my soul. He leads me in right paths for his name’s sake.

John 10:27-28

My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand.

Words of Grace For Today

Covid has exacted a huge cost on us. Not to mention the cost to global, national, and local economies. Not to mention the many people Covid has killed in one of the most excruciatingly painful ways. Not to mention many of those who survive serious Covid symptoms continue seemingly without end for years long-covid: fatigue, pains, circulation and nerve malfunctions, organ malfunction, brain fog, and depression. So much depression.

The greatest number of people suffer even though they have not had Covid, or the symptoms were so mild they barely noticed more than as if they had a light bout of the flu or a bad cold. The suffering is part and parcel, we are told, of living through a pandemic.

Mark Gollom described it this way:

“pandemic fatigue”
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney recently said that, despite the rapid spread of the Omicron variant across the country, Canadians may be at their “outer limits” of what further public-health restrictions they’re willing to accept.
While many people are “burnt out” on COVID and COVID-related news, many [say]
‘We’re sick of it. We hate it, but we’ve got to do it anyway.’
However, the researchers also discovered that pandemic fatigue affects “a substantial minority of people” who tended to have “greater levels of emotional burnout, pessimism, apathy, and cynical or negative beliefs” about the pandemic.
“In other words, pandemic fatigue was associated with heightened self-interest to the expense of community needs,”
That has led to a form of “systematic desensitization…. it’s as if we had built up antibodies against fear.”

https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/pandemic-fatigue-omicron-covid-19-1.6290026 Dec 18, 2021

There are many, many more things going on with all of us, not all of us equally, and some of us to the point that we are nearly totally debilitated, unable to live anything like normal, even taking into account that we may be isolated physically from others.

The words that describe what we suffer go on and on like this: languishing, languor, lethargy, apathy, listlessness, supine (laying on one’s back), supineness, anxiety, fearlessness, angst, dread, disquiet, foolhardy, imprudent, reckless, irresponsible, depression, desolation, despondency, gloominess, dispirited, bleakness, Weltschmerz ….

Or as University of Calgary classics professor Peter Toohey put it in an interview with CBC’s Chattopadhyay: We’re experiencing the ancient state of “acedia”

https://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1800018499786 1 year ago

There are so many voices blaring all over the place, whispering in corners, projecting over crowds and chat rooms, telling us what to think, what to do, who to blame, how to ‘return to normal’, how to be done with Covid, how to cope with Covid, how to live with Covid, for while we may be done with Covid, Covid certainly is not done with us!

Which voices will we listen to?

Like never before, like always before for every person in every generation how we see the world greatly determines what we see, how we feel (the emotional response that takes in all our perceptions, mixes them up with our convolutions from our past experiences), which in turn forms our ‘take’ on the world happenings, which in large part determines how we respond.

So how do we start each day?

Do we enter the new day with angst, panic, depression, apathy, detachment and fear?

Or

Do we listen to the voice that we know, the voice of the One who knows us completely, who created us and loves us and forgives us and renews us.

The One who makes us lie down in green pastures; who leads us beside still waters; who restores our souls. Who leads us in right paths for God’s name’s sake.

Whatever else we know about this day, first and foremost we know that No one will snatch us out of Jesus’ hand.

With that assurance, we are ready come what may.

‘Reframability’ & Possibility

Monday, March 21, 2022

Shadows Point to The Light

Each Morning, Noon, and Night

Psalm 143:8

Let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning, for in you I put my trust. Teach me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.

1 Timothy 6:6-7

Of course, there is great gain in godliness combined with contentment; for we brought nothing into the world, so that we can take nothing out of it.

Words of Grace For Today

While many strive to gain comforts, privileges, and securities (of many kinds, all futile), we seek the only gain that is sure: that God provides us love and faith (by Grace, ie as free gifts) and contentment in our lives, for while we come into life with nothing and we can take nothing with us, we do leave behind our own story.

What will that story be?

Will others gain faith from our stories? Or will they only learn to chase after what cannot offer them life?

It is not insignificant what story others have from us (as opposed to the stories that are untrue that many tell about us – those untrue stories work against the liars who create them and tell and retell them). It is not insignificant what story others have from us because each day, we humans are privileged to be able to ‘reframe’ our new day with how we think about life past, present and future.

That is: we are not written in stone from one day to the next. Some take this as opportunity to lie about their past and to scheme to ‘improve’ their future with more lies. Oh, what a waste that brings misery and despair to so many people, those liars and so many impacted by their lies.

God provides this opportunity to us each day (actually every minute), so that we can repent, that is so that we can turn our lives around, reframe them according to God’s Grace, Love and Hope for us (demonstrated in Jesus’ story), and proceed to be more of who God created us to be!

So we pray with the Psalmist: Let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning, for in you I put my trust. Teach me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.

It is not that we have never heard of God’s steadfast love, or that we do not know God’s way for us, or that our lives are in ruin and need to be rescued from the hand of the Devil, the Great Deceiver (though too often that is the case). It is simply that since we get to reframe our lives, we also must reframe our lives. If we do not turn to God to receive the Word that will reframe our lives according to God’s steadfast love for us, the Devil will certainly provide all sorts of words, lies always, that will draw us in, slowly turn us away from God, and consume us, until we are nothing like the creatures of steadfast love that God created us to be.

So what do we want to be today?

What word will reframe your day, this morning?

May God save us from the Deceiver’s tempting words that suck us in to the downward spiral away from life itself.

May God provide wondrous words to communicate God’s steadfast love, grace, and hope for us.

In a Word, we pray (it is not too much to ask, and it is everything so we beg):

May we see Jesus each morning!

Where, Oh Where … !?!

Friday, March 18, 2022

Where Is God?

Down This Path?

On This Mountain?

Beside This Lake?

In The Crowded Cities?

God Save Us, Now!

Psalm 10:1

Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?

Mark 4:38

But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke him up and said to him, ‘Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?’

Words of Grace For Today

I flew out in the fall to a remote fire tower to make a pastoral visit to the crew there. There was no way to announce my visit. I just took off, navigated by dead reckoning, and landed at the small grass clearing that served as a air strip. I’d circled over the tower and taken in the paths through the bush that wound the kilometre or so between it and the air strip. Airplane secured, I set off and …

hours later I was deep in the bush with no way of finding the tower in time to spend even a minute with the crew and still find my way back to the air strip before dark, and before dark I needed, most desperately needed to be in the air. There was no way a take off in the dark in an unknown airstrip was something I was even considering as doable. And anything not doable was certainly not ‘well, let’s see if it’s possible!’ So I oriented myself by the sun low in the sky back towards the plane.

As I came to a junction of paths in the bush, both directions on the new path hidden from view until I stepped into the junction, I got the scare of my life, or one of many.

There, not more than six feet to my right (the direction I needed to turn) was a calf and her mama, a cow moose. The calf was half size and still looked down at me. I froze. Moose have a pea size brain, and they survive only because they are bigger, tougher, and faster than most any predator.

Encounters with humans are so dangerous because, being so … well stupid … they are totally unpredictable and usually they charge, especially when their young are threatened! The results are usually -10 for the human and no effect on the moose.

Where was God!? How could this be happening to me? Why was this happening?

Always the photographer I reached for my camera hung on my shoulder, slapping my backpack with every step until I froze in my tracks. Why not document this so that if I did not make it someone would know how I came to my demise (or at least the last few seconds?) If I’d had a rifle, that would have been a smarter option, but useless as well, given the moose’s speed.

Before my hand was on the camera, mama and calf were well on their way across my path and down the to the left.

I breathed, settling the adrenaline rush to tolerable, and marched on. By the time I reached the plane all that adrenaline was gone. The take off was in the shadows, the sun just below the horizon, and my way home full of wonder.

God sometimes does save us from our own stupidity, from terrible circumstances, and from sure death. Other times we join the Psalmist’ and the disciples’ desperate plea: God where are you!? Do you not care what happens to us?!?

Only with time, and sometimes not even then, do we gain the insight to see and know … and trust that God walks with us, and suffers with us everything we suffer, and provides life abundant in every hour with every breath we breathe on this gift of creation God has brought us to live in.

So we pray, with full trust (or maybe barely any trust) that God hears us, for ourselves and for all other people faced with disaster, illness, and death this day, this week, this year: God be not stern with us, but gently save us and help us live each minute you gift us.

Recklessly Love God!

Friday, February 11, 2022

Boldly Catching the Curve

Following God’s Inspiration

and Blessings

Joshua 23:11

Be very careful, therefore, to love the Lord your God.

John 14:23

Jesus answered him, ‘Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.’

Words of Grace For Today

I am not at all sure that being careful is part of loving the Lord our God.

My experience and reading tells me that loving the Lord our God requires a foolish, even reckless, boldness, fuelled by a wonderful faith (given as free gift by God to us).

There is simply no way to get through life without sinning, though one can do one’s best not to hurt others, and to do one’s best to let God inspire and lead one to be a blessing for others.

God’s promise is that we are not alone. Even in Covid isolation and staying smart about it, we do not live alone. God walks right with us and ‘makes God’s home with us!’

Being careful?

Rather be bold, being all that God created and inspires you to be!

God’s Downtrodden, Poor, And Needy

Monday, December 13, 2021

God’s Miracles Are Not Mysteries

But Lovingly Given to Those Most In Need

Of Blessings

As Leaves In Spring Grow On Branches Once Frozen

Psalm 74:21

Do not let the downtrodden be put to shame; let the poor and needy praise your name.

Luke 1:58

Her neighbours and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her.

Words of Grace For Today

The way the world works, the downtrodden, poor, and needy are left out to ‘flap in the wind.’

God works through the downtrodden, poor, and needy as Jesus’ story makes so clear:

John the Baptist and Jesus are each born of mothers who are of no account, Jesus’ mother even more so than John the Baptist’s/ Elizabeth is married to a priest. Mary is not even married and she is engaged to a poor carpenter, from a nothing place called Nazareth.

Those who fear and love God know how to celebrate God’s work through the downtrodden, poor, and needy: we celebrate for God raises up the lowly, and brings down those who consider themselves to be on high. The wealthy are brought to poverty. Rulers are brought down to be peasants. Powerful are brought down to powerless. Oppressors are turned on and oppressed. This is justice, God’s way.

The miracle is not this justice.

The miracle is that without making the downtrodden, poor, and needy new occupiers of the wealthy, ruling, and powerful who ignore those on the outside of their privilege and comfort, God takes the outsiders (the downtrodden, poor, and needy) and blesses them with the blessings so amazing and over-abundant that those wealthy, powerful, rulers, and oppressors have no hope of living as fully, as blessed, as well.

God brings us on the outside to be God’s insiders, who carry blessings enough to share with all people. That is the miracle; to be feared by those who try to gain it themselves, and to be celebrated by those to whom God gives God’s favour and Promise.

Advent Darkness, Advent Light

Thursday, December 2, 2021

What Little Truth There Is

What Little Hope There Is

What Little Life There Is

Christ’s Light

Has Come,

Is Come, and

Will Come Again

Isaiah 51:4

Listen to me, my people, and give heed to me, my nation; for a teaching will go out from me, and my justice for a light to the peoples.

1 John 2:8

Yet I am writing you a new commandment that is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining.

Words of Grace For Today

The daylight grows shorter each day, at this latitude markedly, as we are only 20 days from the winter solstice. When clouds and precipitation block the light during the few hours the sun is above the horizon the drear and darkness grows on us, as if the end of time were approaching though we trust that is not so. In these times the winter darkness teaches us well what we may or may not know so well from our own experience: that injustice of the nation is prevalent, here and now for so many people, and the injustice of the world order (or chaos as it really is) tears so many people from life, and even more from living a life respected as a full human being.

Then we read the promise that God will bring words of truth to bear on our world, that Christ’s Light shines already bright for all people. We read these words of promise and hope with eager hearts, though hardly more so than the billions who suffer the chaos of injustice worked for the privilege, comfort, and power of the few.

When people recognize the Light of Christ, the world chaos can but fail as Christ’s way replaces human greed.

For this day we wait, for freedom from darkness, for freedom from blatant injustice, for freedom from all evil, and for freedom to serve Christ fully, without reserve, with our whole hearts, minds and strength. For this day we wait. On that day we will celebrate the coming of Christ as we have not ever yet.

This is the advent of awareness: that Christ has come, is come, and will come again, to bring into the light all that is done now as if in darkness, all that is done to throw others as captives into darkness, all that is done to supposedly ‘set things right’ when the actions are more unjust than those they pretend to correct.

This our advent. Advent as we prepare to celebrate Christ’s coming, again.