Sing praises to the Lord, for he has done gloriously; let this be known in all the earth.
Acts of the Apostles 14:27
When they arrived, they called the church together and related all that God had done with them, and how he had opened a door of faith for the Gentiles.
Words of Grace For Today
Wonders never cease.
Faith based on God choosing us and not them is supplanted by God choosing them and us.
That can be very disconcerting when one has built one’s life on the assumption that ‘we’ are so much better than ‘them.’
And there we are, no better than them, and all chosen as equals to serve God … by serving others.
Things get messed around, so much so that pretty soon we’ve gotten people messing it around every which way to re-establish that their ‘we’ is the only good ‘we’ and every other ‘them’ is just not really human. And what that leads to is chaos, with ‘white supremacists’ [and many other flavours of racially based supremicists], religious intolerance and fanatical condemnation of other genders, colour, races, religions, and you name it … in various and sundry ways used to legitimate denigration, oppression, and ethnic cleansing.
Wonders never cease, and God responds to all this with mercy.
So we can sing praise of God’s great works for all to hear. Not that God has saved ‘us’ and condemned ‘them’, but that God saves us all.
Opening the door of faith to Gentiles is just a small sign of God’s inclusive stance towards humans. God welcomes us all, loves us all, forgives us all and sends us all out to do the same for all others.
Another day, when wonders will never cease to amaze those with eyes wide open to God’s great works.
See, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight—indeed, he is coming, says the Lord of hosts.
And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness for forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him.
Words of Grace For Today
The messenger comes.
But what news does the messenger bring.
Is it a bicycle messenger, quickly able to navigate the congested city streets where cars have clogged the life out of the city centre, bringing a small piece of news that greases the cogs of the economy as some win and most lose?
Is it a military dressed soldier bringing news of a comrade’s falling in service to his family of their loss, always covering up any disgrace or uselessness of such a life lost?
Is it a policeman bringing news of a car accident or other disaster that has claimed the life of a loved one?
No. While these are messengers that make up a real part of life for all too many of us, the messenger that God sends is the prepatory party for God’s own arrival on earth to live as one among us.
This is good news, the best news, better than great economic news, better than an engagement announcement between friends long over due (for us watching from outside their precious relationship.) This is God’s news that God has come to deal with our mess, fix it, heal it, and bring good order to the world once again.
Except that is not the news!
God gives us the freedom to love, and thus the freedom not to love, and that brings all sorts of chaos as we continually choose other than to love creation and all God’s creatures in it.
Jesus comes to demonstrate God’s steadfast attitude towards our chaos and sin: God forgives, heals, and sends us back into the fray, equipped to likewise forgive, heal, and assist people to return to the fray of this chaotic life that we humans are.
That is the best new possible, because our chaos is not going away any time soon. It is the only news that can enable us to carry on, and not succumb completely to the chaos and serve evil in all we do.
And what does Jesus get when he comes: nothing but grief from our chaos in this worlds and the Devil’s great power to seduce us to live other than as God’s own children.
God does not desert him to the Devil’s wiles, anymore than God abandons us to our chaos and sin. God sends angels, messengers again, to tend to Jesus in the wilderness among the wild beasts.
I’m quite sure that the wild beasts and the wilderness and even the Devil himself are no match for the chaos and destructive power of humans that Jesus will face, that we face each day. And eventually it kills Jesus, as we too all one day will die. Then we get to go home to Jesus, where a room is prepared for us, again by angels and messengers.
Until that day, we have the messengers and angels who tend to us in our wildernesses.
As it is today all around.
Thus with God’s own providing for us and protecting us we return to the fray, come what may, unafraid and at peace with God and the world around us.
Finding Our Way in the Cold, Is Less Life-Threatening, Than in Extreme Heat.
His shoots shall spread out; his beauty shall be like the olive tree, and his fragrance like that of Lebanon.
I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.
Words of Grace For Today
Around here lots of things grow, in the spring and summer anyway. That is wonderful if you are not allergic to the things that fly around as grass, bugs, trees, bugs, flowers, did I say bugs, and molds and mosquitoes, flies, and wasps … and ants.
Ants have taken on the woods pretty much wholesale and trees are toppling over from the base, the roots weakened by ants eating at them, and then beneath the stresses of wind on tall, heavy trunks, the just give up standing. Trees are also toppling over from any point between the base and the top where ants have attacked the wood, making their homes and eating the sap, or so they say.
We’ve reached the season where the grass does not need to be mowed every week. The evening light becomes darkness at an hour reasonable to sleep deep. The bugs have stopped multiplying exponentially and the pollen count is down.
One hopes that as the winter season closes in the trees have grown strong enough to withstand the storms and thereby provide protection from the winds that howl as snow swirls and the night is fast on the land before supper and holds tight until well after breakfast.
Many times and in many ways we’ve recognized that as trees are rooted in the ground and grow solid trunks that support many branches and branches support many twigs and twigs support many leaves. The comparison to our lives rooted in God abound, and well that they do.
We do not do well without a solid trunk (Christ) anchored with solid roots in the ground (Creation). Nor do we do well without exposure (like leaves) to the light of Christ so that we can grow each day and not succumb to the forces (like ants, like the devil’s minions) that would eat away at our existence, leaving us vulnerable to the winter winds (of evil.)
Therefore we celebrate the gift God gives us of anchoring us creation, growing us from Christ and making us reach the light (by the power of the Holy Spirit.)
It is no wonder that study after study shows that the noises of highways and industry limit growth in animals and people alike, and that we and most animals do better in the presence of naturally growing things (like trees and grasses) and flowing or collected waters (like streams, rivers, and lakes).
The sweet smell of Lebanon’s famous oak trees abounds for those rooted in Creation and grown in Christ, and in that fragrance we are able to produce much fruit, the fruit of sharing God’s abundant blessings with so many people.
On these hot summer days, it is helpful to remember that trees help relieve the heat. If it gets too bad you can always take a branch and hit yourself over the head. When you wake up it likely be cooler. OR you can prepare and spend your days in the shade, near cool waters, and in ground surrounded depths, for there God arranged for it to be 10⁰ C, everything else being equal. Ah, basements have a great purpose in the summer, the deeper the better!
Looking into the depths of our hearts this day to encounter again the Holy Spirit, chillin’.
But take care and watch yourselves closely, so as neither to forget the things that your eyes have seen nor to let them slip from your mind all the days of your life; make them known to your children and your children’s children ….
Remember then what you received and heard; obey it, and repent. If you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you.
Words of Grace For Today
There are many things to remember. The longer one lives the more things there are to remember. Even when one is born there is a vast expanse of things to remember, wider, deeper, longer, farther than the universe …
and most of it will not be remembered.
What will be remembered will either of itself be impregnated in one’s mind, burned like a cattle brand, scars too deep to be other than seen for the rest of one’s life because the event was so intense it can be no other.
What is remembered will be chosen and then recited day after day, week after week, and with the repetition deeply ingrained in one’s mind of today as if the yesterday recited happened just a moment ago.
Survival has programmed us to receive as ‘brands’ those negative events of our days, so that we can avoid them in the future and avoid such events or at least deal with them with less risk to ourselves. The positive events slip away more easily. Unless they are so much more intense than negative events or we choose to replay them (recite them), positive events pass like the light of day slipping away as the dark of night takes over.
There are many things out of our ancestors’ past, which we would do well to remember and use as the framework and colour scheme for our lives. We do well to remember the dangers survived, the manner in which dangers are averted or dealt with. The many things we do to survive, like growing and storing food, like building shelters to provide protection from the extremes of climate and predators, like making clothing adequate to guard against the cold, the heat, the bugs, the wet, and the burning sunlight. How many of us remember how to do these things for ourselves in this day when we buy everything already made for us, from shelter, to clothing, to food and drink?
There are many more things, much more important for life, that we can easily forget. These are the things that God has done for our ancestors (and for us before we were born), which in remembering them help us live lives worthy of all that God gives us. Our ancestors remembered God delivering them from slavery in Egypt bringing them across the Red Sea into the Wilderness, providing water and food for their survival there, and then bringing them into the Promised Land across the Jordan River. Our ancestors remembered Jesus’ birth, his ministry of healing and teaching, his undeserved torturous death on a cross, his burial, his rising from the dead to live again, his ascending to heaven, and his promises to be with us always (as the Holy Spirit is) and to return again at the end of time.
In the lives of those who lived when we have lived, our grandparents, parents, siblings and others of our faith communities, and even in our own lives, there are also so many wondrous works of God, and we do well to clearly notice them.
Our responses to such events (from the distant past up to our own yesterdays) are simple: to tell the stories of God’s wondrous works among our ancestors, to confess our sins, to repent of our sins, and to obey Jesus’ command to love the Lord our God with all our hearts, minds, and strength; to love our neighbours as ourselves (even our enemies).
When we begin and end each day with these memories recited and replayed in our minds, then our days begin and end with thanks. We can better live our lives filled with gratitude, fearing and loving God with honour in all we do … except when we don’t, and then we know to ask for forgiveness, instead of ignoring or denying that we have sinned.
Remembering God’s wondrous works gives us life like no other. It gives us life as God intended us to live it. We approach each day, with it’s challenges, successes, and disappointing failures, with a peace and joy that helps us see most clearly how our ancestors dealt with these and how God calls us to live through them to the next moment, ready always to serve others in need, as our Master bends to serve us, even when we are still slaves to sin.
Remembering, reciting and replaying God’s wonders makes for a life lived well. And that no one can steal from us.
But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day.
1 John 3:2
Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is.
Words of Grace For Today
The path …
I’m not so sure anyone really knows what any ‘path’ looks like, until they have travelled it and since no human can travel the path of righteousness (righteousness is reckoned to us by God, as a gift, unearned, untraveled, perhaps hoped for).
We wish we could. We pretend we have. We write about it as if we have. We try to inspire others to choose to travel the path that we have not travelled.
We should instead inspire people to trust God to reckon righteousness to us, and to be alert to the path that God provides for us. Though we do not travel it, God hauls us on that path in spite of us and our constant rebelling, and false, arrogant claims that we, oh yes, we have and do travel the path of righteousness. That is like most of our human powered efforts: it’s bunk. Or as the writer of Ecclesiastes said, it’s all vanity.
Theologians and writers who claim to know how we will be like Jesus, and what Jesus will be like upon his return speak that same language of over-exuberance at least and often pure arrogance and goal of controlling other people, even though they can control so little of themselves and their own life.
Humility is our beginning point, our mid-point, and our reality all the way to the end. The only thing we can ‘boast’ of is God’s good work in us, and in all creation.
Like the sun rising, with the most beautiful light, until it rises clear of the horizon and burns heat and energy down on the day-lit-earth. From that we have learned to create solar electricity. And from that energy plants through photosynthesis live and thrive … unless and until the heat and energy from the sun becomes too much and they wilt, burned out of life by the very energy that gave them life.
So it is for us. We need the sun to live, vitamin D being the least of it. Until the sun becomes too hot, too intense, too powerful an energy that it burns life up around us, and us with it.
Today it will burn hot in the meadow, with a forecast 30⁰ it will climb to at least 35⁰ and likely 40⁰ or more as the heat gets trapped in the meadow.
Thankfully the evening comes and cools it right off, usually 5⁰ cooler than elsewhere. A regenerating time, not just for sleep but recovery from the intense heat.
What do people do without that relief? They suffer. They die.
What do people do without the energy (Love) of God entering their lives with the great relief from the evils of the world to revive them (Grace). They suffer. They die.
We pray that today God will exercise Love and Grace abundantly for us and make us clearly aware of God’s work for us, as clear as the noonday sun, with relief from the cool water of life in the shade of the tall and healthy tree canopy, where so many of God’s creatures know to find relief from the heat.
The words of their mouths are mischief and deceit; they have ceased to act wisely and do good. They plot mischief while on their beds; they are set on a way that is not good; they do not reject evil.
Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice. He prostrated himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him. And he was a Samaritan.
Words of Grace For Today
Fools are too easy to find. People with mouths filled only with mischief and deceit are around every corner, if that far away. Actions of wisdom and goodness have long since faded from our landscape. The worries of the night when sleep evades them are filled with scheming how to do even more devious and evil deeds to try to achieve their own place in life. Evil is at their finger tips, pouring from the hearts and minds as readily as if they were the Devil himself.
Then … when one was about to drop dead from despair at the preponderance of evil all around with at least the hope that Jesus has prepared a room for us forever there … a stranger, a foreigner, a believer in other things, comes along, cured by Jesus, healed back to the fullness of life abundant and giving God thanks like we all ought to each day.
Which will we live out this day: out of the overwhelming deceit and evil that pours forth so freely from so many,
from the thanks and joy of one healed by Jesus’ Word?
We are, when we take care to look in a mirror of truth and wisdom, as much the producers of evil as any other.
We are, when we take care to look in a mirror of truth and wisdom, as much healed and capable of giving God thanks as any stranger.
So which will we embrace to start this day? And again throughout the day? And as we lay ourselves to rest for the coming night?
It’s hotter at 9 am today than the hottest moment yesterday,
Climate change in a day (yesterday’s extreme is today’s normal),
So maybe it’ll help orient us if we get reminded
that winter is coming and it’ll be blessed cold.
I will set a sign among them. From them I will send survivors to the nations, to Tarshish, Put, and Lud—which draw the bow—to Tubal and Javan, to the coastlands far away that have not heard of my fame or seen my glory; and they shall declare my glory among the nations.
And he said to them, ‘Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation.
Words of Grace For Today
So many people want to stay in their own little bubble of the world, safe, comfortable and sure of what will come tomorrow – and if what comes tomorrow is something different then they have great ability to lie to themselves and others to day what happened is not different, but it is still what they know how to handle.
So the people are done with Covid before the third wave, and now we face the seventh wave. Covid is not done with us. So many people may refuse to behave responsibly, protecting others by wearing masks, keeping physical distance, and providing ventilation indoors. We all may want to be done with Covid. It’s just that might just kill us, and if it will not kill exactly the fools that indiscriminately get infected and share that everywhere they go, it’ll kill so many of us, even us who are wise about our exposure and protection.
To be other than wise about Covid requires that one live in a bubble of foolish denial of reality. And that’s where so many people live, about Covid, about their rights and others’ rights, about justice and truth, about climate change, about God’s blessings and their obligations to the strangers.
God knew this would be so, and in every generation has sent faithful, wise people out into the world to be remnants, giving witness to God’s good creation, truth, and the challenges we actually face, living on this planet.
So which are you going to be today: a comfort seeking, reality denying, self-protecting-other-endangering, bubble living parasite,
one of the remnant of witnesses who remember and preserve the truth of God’s good works in every generation, as well as the honest reality of life on planet earth?
Today, in small ways we each will choose, though God will do everything to guide us
The sun shall no longer be your light by day, nor for brightness shall the moon give light to you by night; but the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory.
1 John 1:5
This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all.
Words of Grace For Today
It sounds like an apocalyptic movie: the sun shall no longer be your light by day, and the moon will not give you light by night. Polar darkness, for ever.
Then comes our salvation: the Lord will be our everlasting light, and our God will be our glory.
John puts the words there that seal the deal for us: God is light and in him there is no darkness at all.
Thank God, because it was beginning to look like the darkness had taken a firm grip our our world leaving us just a short time before we would plunge into eternal darkness.
January 10, 2022 I wake to a rustle followed by a huge bang. Then more rustling of tarps and more bangs, loud, crisp, close and … the ground shakes. I reach for the light to switch it on, and nothing. The batteries are dead as a 100 year old mummy, and as cold as if the mummy were uncovered from melting polar ice. That’s not right, I remember thinking. The fire should still be quite warm. I try to see what the thermometer reads but cannot see. I zip open the door and wind blows in my face crisp and instantly freezing cold. That’s not right, there was a fire in the fire box sheltered from the wind by a frame hung with insulated tarps. I cannot see anything. I feel for something, anything. But there is nothing. I stumble around pulling on a parka, pants, boots, gloves. I step out to where there had been a wood stove when I went to bed just a few hours ago. I thought I’d stoke it, but it’s not there.
I walk a few steps and the piercing cold bites deep into me, so much so that as I turn I lose my bearings, I flounder around a bit. Trying to work this out, I take one step and feel in a circle. I take a step back and then one more back and feel in a circle. Then I step in each side direction. Nothing. So I repeat the search this time taking two steps. This time my hand brushes against something. I take one more step towards it, trying to ensure I know the direction I’ve come from. It’s the zipper door flapping in the wind. I crawl back into the tent.
A loud to no one I say in a prayer: Would You Hand Me a Light!
As I reach to climb into bed my hand brushes something hard, a flashlight.
I have a light. I turn it on and realize in my restless sleep I’ve turned myself all around so that I have gone out the ‘back’ door of the tent. I look through the zipper of the front door and there is the shelter and fire, dwindling to almost no heat.
I get dressed again and go out to stoke it, lay myself back down to sleep again, and thank God
… for being the Light of my Life.
Or I could have panicked and never found my way back in the tent.
In the morning I see evidence that a bear has taken on a tree not 5 feet from my tent, and the tree lost. It was left banging against the tree next to it. My night of banging waking me turned around. Thankfully God got me straightened around.
God leads us and lights our ways in so many and various ways, but always God lights our ways, even on this day to come.
Do not put your trust in princes, in mortals, in whom there is no help.
John to the seven churches that are in Asia:
Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Words of Grace For Today
Princes of this world.
The Prince of Peace, Jesus the Christ, the Saviour of all, the Son of God.
In whom do we trust?
The USA dollar has inscribed on it ‘In God We Trust’, and that dollar has symbolized so much done in the last century that did not trust in God, but in the princes and powers of this world.
Oh, well. We do like to state the opposite of what is so obviously condemning of us, as if that could possibly save us from all we do to dominate over others. Instead of freeing ourselves, we lose our souls and destroy and destory so innumerably many other people.
By grace, today, the Holy Spirit will direct our thoughts and words so that we may hear, see, and acknowledge the folly of our trust in princes of this world, and the wonders of trusting God, loving God, and of giving God all glory and honour … and dominion over our hearts, minds, and souls.
‘Simple Sam’ the other children taunted him through grade school. He was different. He rarely paid attention in class. He was off elsewhere in his thoughts. The surprise that caught his teachers off guard was when they started doing basic algebra in grade 5. Sam flew through the assignments faster than they could even read them. He corrected and explained to the teachers, in concepts they barely understood, when they made math mistakes in front of the class. When his book report came in instead of the assigned two pages on a 125 page, easy to read book, he produced ten pages on Tolkien’s Trilogy of the Rings, with insights the teachers had never read of before, not even at university.
Then one teacher had a newspaper upside down on his desk, open to an editorial on the market fluctuations caused by the recent conflicts in Ukraine, the Middle East, and climate change. Sam came up, glanced at the newspaper and said that the author had totally forgotten to factor in the rare earth resources in Ukraine, the drive to carbon free energies, and the massive coalitions coming together between Christians, Jews, Muslims and atheists to move governments, multi-national corporations, research, and even world markets towards responsible living on planet earth, including carbon neutral living and ways of doing business. That would likely change the markets at least 2% this week and maybe 10% by the end of the year.
The teacher asked Sam if he’d read the article before, or if someone had told him all this. ‘Simple Sam’ answered, “No, this is the first I’ve read anything by this author.” She asked again, “When did you read this article?” “Just now. It’s there on your desk. It’s upside down, but that doesn’t matter.” “You read it now! That article fills the bottom half the newspaper!” Sam shrugged, “I read the top half, too. It just takes a glance to read it, doesn’t it?” “Sam, can we talk about this later.” “Sure.”
‘Simple Sam’ continued, by his choice through Grade 6, totally blowing the minds of his teachers. Instead of Grade 7, that year ‘Simple Sam’ was admitted to a special 2 year tutoring program to prepare special students for university. By October he completed all they could offer, and he attended University classes. By age 16 he earned two PhD, simultaneously. One in physics-pure math, and the other in political science. In both his theses, which were published immediately, he brought many other disciplines together, as well as his own faith perspective as a Lutheran, and the impact other faiths had on his topics.
Sam continues to write and publish technical as well as popular articles and books on our past, present, and future as a species, to teach grad students at the university, and to lead children, youth, and adults in small groups at his church. He’s amazing with his guitar and on the piano.
His favourite answer to complicated questions starts with, “It’s really simple if you start by trusting God, first. Then consider that ….”
To the tree above Sam said: “It’s not hard to work out the math of the physics of why that tree is bowed down, but start by trusting God. Then we see the tree knows to give God the glory. After that it’s all in the biology of the tree, the weather, and the magnetic attraction of the person passing below it.”
The last, he’d explain, is a bit of humour. No science at all.
If you listen, look, and consider with loving care, God demonstrates every day in many ways, the folly of trusting in princes of this world, and the wonders of trusting and loving God, and of giving God all glory and honour … and dominion over our hearts, minds, and souls.
But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Even heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain you, much less this house that I have built! Have regard to your servant’s prayer and his plea, O Lord my God, heeding the cry and the prayer that your servant prays to you today; that your eyes may be open night and day towards this house, the place of which you said, “My name shall be there”, that you may heed the prayer that your servant prays towards this place. Hear the plea of your servant and of your people Israel when they pray towards this place; O hear in heaven your dwelling-place; heed and forgive.
When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you.’
Words of Grace For Today
Since the beginning of time humans have asked questions about God, and the questions keep coming up again for each generation of people who think and care, and hope.
David wanted to build God a temple, after he’d built himself a palace and a kingdom, by his sword, his wits, his charm and his faith in God (and his trust of God’s faith in him.)
God says no thanks, I do not live contained in a ‘house.’
Solomon inherits the kingdom from his father and commences to build a temple for God and asks the question God had answered for David: Will God live on earth? And he answers the obvious that God is too great to be contained in any temple.
Solomon goes on, in his dedication speech-prayer, to tell the people that the temple is for them (not to contain God). The temple will give them a place, given God’s name, to which they can direct their prayers. Solomon prays-begs God to honour the temple and the prayers given there and in it’s direction; Solomon asks God to hear the prayers,
to hear all the people’s prayers and
Nothing more than forgive.
An old pastor (now I am older than he was when he said it) about to retire said to his friends gathered around at their annual card game and scotch sharing time, ‘I pray that I did not hurt anyone [in doing my ministry – in congregations and in prisons.]’
We begin each service, and each honest prayer to God, by asking for forgiveness.
Because God is good, and gracious, and generous, and
we are miserable sinners, always no matter what we try to become, we always remain miserable sinners (or actually we are very good at sinning, so maybe we are such good sinners that it makes us miserable people?)
Our relationship to God, God’s good creation, all other people, and even to ourselves, starts there: us miserable sinners, God greater than anything can contain, and we approach God trusting, like David, in God’s faith in us.
That is hardly the end of it.
For Jesus comes to live as one of us, heals and inspires us all, dies for us, swaps out our pasts for his future to give us renewed life, and then
then Jesus sends us out.
Often we become so afraid of the what others will do to us, for we are different. Like the disciples we hide. We may have boldly hoped that God would make our world different, better, just, honourable, livable, and then we run smack dab into the evil of others trying to do us an early death or more. So we hide.
Jesus comes and does not make us safe.
Jesus comes and does not tell us we have no reason to fear.
Jesus comes and does not make us so powerful no one will dare harm us.
Jesus comes and offers us the most precious thing, Peace.
Even caught up in very honest and realistic fears that make us wonder if we will live yet one more day, even there in that turmoil, Jesus comes and offers us Peace.
That’s something, like forgiveness, that given our miserable state of affairs, only God can give to us.
so we humbly accept yet another precious gift from God,
and turn to face another day filled with miserable sin, ours and other’s focused at us, trying to do us in.
We take up the only posture possible: that of the servant, who on Christ’s behalf, serves all people, even our enemies.