Saturday, September 11, 2010

"...dying suddenly and unprepared..."

From all oppression, conspiracy, and rebellion; from
violence, battle, and murder; and from dying suddenly and
unprepared, Good Lord, deliver us.

From The Great Litany, Book of Common Prayer

The anniversary of an international act of evil and national trauma absorbs us. Yet, in a challenging rebuke, Jesus warns us to not fix our minds on the horrors and shocks of our time:

There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

He follows this with an encouragement to "repent" (turn) by yielding our time to him, letting his work renew us, to bring forth in our lives the goodness God desires,

And he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. And he said to the vinedresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’ And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure. Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’”

May we live our short season of life responsive to Christ's love and fruitful to God's purposes. As we receive Christ's work, he delivers us - not from the circumstance of death, but from its worst possible consequence.

1 comment:

Scott said...

It was a gorgeous day yesterday. Perfect for getting outside, thanking God for the many blessings and enjoying the day. Hope yours was the same. Today looks like a carbon copy. Thanks be to God.