We stand on the shoulders of Christians who, over the centuries, sought and encouraged times of silence and solitude. During this time of quarantine, here are my suggestions for maintaining, and even growing, our relationship with God:
Those who have been saved by Jesus are left with a common call: be citizens of his kingdom in our present world. Our faith is spilled out in our actions. This is not in an attempt to save ourselves, but to be ambassadors of Jesus' kingdom.
Imagine, if you will, yourself on the shores of the river Jordan. Down by the river is a man—long-haired, dressed in camel skin—yelling at the top of his lungs.
But we wait with the hope of Advent. We await the time when Jesus's reassurance to those Christians who would endure the fall of Jerusalem will be entirely fulfilled: "Your redemption is drawing near."
Jesus is the one good king to whom the righteous rulers of legend and literature all point. He, too, comes to us in a humble position, as a God birthed in a stable, crucified as a criminal, before being exalted to glory. He, too, overcomes the enemy armies—in his case, the very armies of Evil itself. He, too, saves us from affliction—not merely pestilence, but the very disease within our souls.
As daytime shortens, our ensuing depression causes us a struggle to function or to find any joy in our relationships, even with God... Perhaps this is why it is appropriate that Halloween falls at the cusp of such a season.
In the story of redemption, the grievance is from one direction and the reconciliation from the other.
It's easy to get depressed when circumstances don't go as we plan. Happiness in wavering, though. What we must rest on is joy.
Year A Readings: Isaiah 11:1-10 | Psalm 72:1-19 | Romans 15:1-13 | Matthew 3:1-12 So, this post is a day late. That's somehow fitting for an Advent post. I mean, the prophets and Jesus himself spoke of his second coming as a seemingly close event, but we've been waiting almost two thousand years. And while time beats … Continue reading Advent 2: Peace
Lent. Otherwise known quite often in my mind as six weeks without soda--or something like that. Oh, it starts off well enough. The first few days I'm really into it. I go to my church's early morning Ash Wednesday service. I'm reading the scriptures, prayers, and devotions of the season. I'm challenged by fasting from … Continue reading The Lent Trap