Tuesday, September 29, 2015

New every morning.

Satisfy us by your loving-kindness in the morning; so shall we rejoice and be glad all the days of our life. Psalm 90:14

 Do not be conformed to the thinking of this age, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2

Christians need one another. God's Word – the good news of forgiveness, reconciliation, and new creation in Jesus Christ – does not spring naturally from the human heart or intellect. It can only be communicated through the witness in word and deed of faithful believers listening attentively to one another, actively helping one another, and bearing one another. Empowered by the Holy Spirit, through such practical yet essential ministry, Christians are able to become proclaimers of God’s Word for and to one another. In a multiplicity of ways, the ministry or service Christians offer is that of meeting one another as bringers of the message of salvation. Bonhoeffer, Life Together

Well, even after all of last night’s Blood Red Super Eclipse hoopla, it is still there. Silently still. A full moon low over the western horizon greeting the new day of pinky golden wisps in the east. A new day. Every day. And sometimes the night whispers dark sad thoughts to me, and I wake up unrefreshed and weary, weighted down by the cares of the day before it even begins.

And Sunday was a beautiful reminder of the unexpected. Because He is like that. I woke up raspy throated and sneezy and tired before I even started up Sentential Peak as usual. And I managed to talk myself out of the weekly discipline, and turned around after only a mile, convinced of its hopelessness and settled on a quick vuelta around Reid Park.

But at the corner I bumped into one of those bicycle clumps. Twenty people hunched over their road bikes that cost more than their cars and their feet neatly clipped into their pedals. And I asked if I could join, and they asked if I were a safe rider, and I didn’t know how to answer that, so I asked where we were going. To Sahuaro National Park East. Like a 44-mile loop. And btw this is a training group for El Tour of Tucson with no dropping.

Sort of like those Yogi Berra quotes. When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

And I did it.

And how beautiful those rolling hills are in the bright morning light.

Reverend Susan talked about courage yesterday too. And opening different doors.

And maybe this new day thing is a reminder that we are a new creation in Christ Jesus. To be reminded what a fresh start is like because we need it every single morning as we head out into the world of people proclaiming the good news of forgiveness and reconciliation.

To a proclaimer of God’s Word because it is written all over who I am. In word and deed.

And last night the Monday night group talked about loving my brother. As in if you say you love God and do not love your brother, you lie.

God did not make this person as I would have made him. He did not give him to me as a brother for me to dominate and control, but in order that I might find above him the Creator. Now the other person, in the freedom with which he was created, becomes the occasion of joy, whereas before he was only a nuisance and an affliction. God does not will that I should fashion the other person according to the image that seems good to me, that is, in my own image; rather in his very freedom from me God made this person in His image. I can never know beforehand how God's image should appear in others. That image always manifests a completely new and unique form that comes solely from God's free and sovereign creation. To me the sight may seem strange, even ungodly. But God creates every man in the likeness of His Son, the Crucified. After all, even that image certainly looked strange and ungodly to me before I grasped it. Bonheoffer, Life Together

And a helpful thing is that each and every one of my kiddos has stitched across his or her chest in bright colors, “Image of God.”

May He give me eyes to see.