God’s promises are spoken precisely for those moments when we need them. They hold us up when our faith feels shaky and unsupported. They provide strength and hope for our Christian walk. The times of discouragement, therefore, are not a denial of our faith; they are but the moments wherein we learn the strength of God’s eternal word, and the constancy of God’s presence.
God used the roundabouts, the twists and the turns, as avenues for growth. It was in their perceived lostness that Israel experienced the blessings of God in profound ways. And, in each step of way God proved faithful. Eventually, Israel got to where they were going; as did we.
If you are like me, the mere suggestion that we might say no to a request, particularly in the church, raises all sorts of objections. “I can’t do that – people are counting on me”, we might say. Yet what if this is but a mask? What if our refusal to say no is keeping us from going deeper in our relationship with the Lord? Like Mary sitting at the Lord’s feet, what if Jesus wants us to say no to other demands? What if Jesus is calling people to count on him and not on us?
Suddenly, without notice, the ugliness of life came and stopped me in my tracks. I felt unable to pray, the words simply would not come. I felt alone and abandoned. I pictured that great cloud of witnesses as eerily silent.
The truth is that these feelings really are times where Jesus invites us into a deeper love. Christ leads us into a broader experience of his presence and grace.
Have you ever felt the need to comment on something but find that you have no words to do so? That’s how I feel in this moment. The country weeps in the wake of the newly discovered mass-grave on the property of a Kamloops Residential School. Such things are what you expect to find in … Continue reading A Valley of Bones
Have you ever felt dissatisfied with your prayers? Have you felt that despite your best efforts you have never plumbed the depths of everything that prayer can offer you? Have you looked longingly to the saints before you, wishing to uncover a fraction of the prayerful intimacy they seemed to enjoy? I know I have. … Continue reading Lessons in Prayer 2: The invitation to be dissatisfied