Friday, November 06, 2009

Thursday, November 6, 2009

Today’s text

1 Peter 1:6-7

This is a great joy to you, even though for a short time yet you must bear all sorts of trials; so that the worth of your faith, more valuable than gold, which is perishable even if it has been tested by fire, may be proved -- to your praise and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.


Trials come with the sunrise. Sleep is blessed respite for those who can, but anxiety and pain flood the conscious mind of the burdened before slumber leaves their eyes.

It is so for many, and certainly for those who fill my mind as quickly as I choke the alarm’s infernal buzzing. Their faces bring no new questions, only old unanswered ones.

Why this suffering? Why do those who already have too much on their plate get second and third helpings? Why do even the young suffer so much illness, depression, abuse and untimely death?

This is so gloomy compared to the joy you speak to my heart, Lord. Your words penetrate and clear away my questions without offering an answer.

“You must bear all sorts of trials.” Yes, we know. You need not tell us. But the hope we hold is “a great joy.”

Now that we most often don’t know. Hope gets hidden in the cloud of trial, and its joy is lost to us. We must struggle for it.

We must remind each other that You are not silent. Love speaks. It is near as the trembling flesh and quavering voice of those who know neither what to do or say to end our trials, but who come near, bearing the weight of their own humanity.

There will come a day when the separation of our mortality and your immortality is gone, when our ceaseless need and your constant love fully find each other at last.

I believe this not because words on a page tell me so, but because every experience of love and loss, trial and struggle reveals an objection and a hope written on my soul. Each trial awakens awareness that we hunger for more, for freedom from all that disfigures life and snatches it away.

This comes from you and is flagged into flame by the resurrection of Jesus. So that on days like today, I look at the present circumstance knowing, “this, too, will find redemption.”

I don’t know how, where or when. But it will, and I will fight to make it happen even if I don’t get to see it until the day you make all things new.

It is your fight, Holy One. Let me fight it with joyous hope, for I want to honor you.

Pr. David L. Miller

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