Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Just before he got tossed into the lake of healing

Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; let the sea thunder and all that is in it; let the field be joyful and all that is therein. Then shall all the trees of the wood shout for joy before the LORD when He comes, when He comes to judge the earth. Psalm 96:11-12

. . . everyone in the crowd was trying to touch him because power came out of Him that cured them all. Then fixing His eyes on his disciples He said: ‘How happy are you who are poor: the kingdom of God is yours. Blessed are you who are hungry now: you shall have your fill. Blessed are you who are weeping now: you shall laugh. Blessed are you when people hate you, drive you out, abuse you, denounce your name as criminal, on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice when that day comes and dance for joy, look!—your reward will be great in heaven. This was the way their ancestors treated the prophets. But alas for you who are rich: you are having your consolation now. Alas for you who have plenty to eat now: you shall go hungry. Alas for you who are laughing now: you shall mourn and weep. Alas for you when everyone speaks well of you! This was the way their ancestors treated the false prophets.’ Luke 6

Yesterday morning, just sort of randomly during swimming, I heard Jesus say to me: People are going to act really surprised when they find out that I meant it when I said, "If you have two shirts, and someone is without, give him one of yours."

And oddly enough He gave me a perfect opportunity shortly thereafter to give away a figurative shirt.

So I was surprised with this morning's verse, and the great joy that will greet Him when at last He comes to judge the earth.

And I can see that it is a time when the wrong will be made right, and every tear will be wiped away in the future tense. But there will be a fresh round of grieving and gnashing of teeth as all is made clear, and the chaff will be blown away.

But what I noticed this morning anew is that the poor have the kingdom of God now, present tense. This power and happiness somehow belongs to those huddled in Gaza UN schools, and in South Sudanese ditches, and border bus stations. I don't understand that, unless they have the opportunity to experience the lovingkindness of Jesus with no distractions.

Something to think about as I swim this morning.

And feeling pretty stripped-down naked myself, as in Aslan-peeling-the-beastly-stuff-off, with the "first tear so deep that I thought it had gone right into my heart," leaving me smaller than I had been.

And I am pretty much left holding a basket of emptiness.

Let me hear of Your lovingkindness in the morning, for I put my trust in You; show me the road that I must walk, for I lift up my soul to You. Psalm 143:8

In You alone.