Thursday, October 15, 2009

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Today’s text

1 Peter 1:1-2

Peter, apostle of Jesus Christ, to all those living as aliens in the Dispersion of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, who have been chosen, in the foresight of God the Father, to be made holy by the Spirit, obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance.


Now, I return to work after a week of respite, wondering if I can hold the slender insights that appeared during these days away from the stress that steals my soul.

My soul has known no rest, no peace in my normal labors. The peace that passes all understanding has passed me by altogether. It has been utterly beyond my reach, belonging to a world far removed from the one I have inhabited in recent weeks.

Now, I see that your peace has eluded me because I was dwelling, by choice, in fear, in a home of my own making, a place where I could protect myself from the judgments of others. I was not true to my own heart, the heart that is in me when I know you as all-surpassing love.

I have known grace and peace in abundance, and reading these words (from 1 Peter) I am captured by the generosity of heart of the writer. But this generosity has its Source in the surging waters of your abundance, in the incomprehensibility of your divine kindness.

May grace and peace be yours--be mine--in abundance. This is your heart speaking to this oft-despairing soul so needy and resistant to trusting your kindness.

Lacking trust, I protect myself from others, from their views and judgments, not revealing the heart of this soul of mine, where I know you as the Love you are. Amid difference and controversy, I seek reasons others may find convincing or worthy of respect, knowing all the while that I am being false to my truest self, to the soul that I am, to the Love that dwells there, to You.

I know no peace, no rest, because I am not living in your love but in an illusion I create for my own protection. You make a home for me in which to abide, and I try to build my own.

I know why. The home you make for me is the way of Jesus, my brother. Sprinkled with his blood, I have his life, his Spirit, a paschal spirit in which the way of life is letting go, releasing control, refusing my normal strategies of self-protection and relying on your love alone.

The way to new life is through death, the way to joy is through sorrow, the way to assurance is abandonment of the supports and protective walls I build for myself. Abundant peace arises from frightening vulnerability. This is the blood-sprinkled way into which my life has been initiated.

Seven days away has taught me this … again.

I ache for the abundance of peace you promise, Loving One, but the way to this home scares me. May my hope and aching need prove stronger than my fear.

May I trust you to be the abundant home I crave, and let go of all that is not you.

Pr. David L. Miller

Note: Thanks for blessing me with your notes, letting me know that you are still receiving … and welcoming these posts. May God’s peace rest upon you all.

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