The past few days have been full of war and evil. The Proverbs have sounded cautionary and even the prayers of joy in the Psalms have been set against a backdrop of struggles. Perhaps that’s why I approached tonight’s readings with hesitancy. My mind was coming up with all very good reasons why I should just leave it and do other things.
But tomorrow is already going to be a busy day and I know it will be difficult to find time to write. So I should try and write something tonight. However, I am struggling to keep going. Scientists have researched New Year’s resolutions and most fail within a few weeks. If I am to continue it will be with God’s help and the knowledge that this blog is not “just” a resolution.
And thankfully, the readings are striking a much lighter tone. In Genesis, for example, Abraham is finally settling down. Sarah dies and he is able to buy a piece of land for her to be buried in. He then finds a wife for his son, Isaac.
So the scene is set for Isaac to take over now that Abraham’s days are peacefully drawing to a close. A hopeful sign.
In Matthew 8 we learn all about Jesus’ ministry to the sick. He heals lots of people, including (spectacularly) the servant of a Roman officer. This servant is not even anywhere near Jesus. But such is the officer’s faith, that when Jesus commands it, the man is healed. It’s all about having faith and confidence. The two don’t always go hand in hand, but maybe they should.
Psalm 9 continues the prayer for deliverance of the writer from his enemies. But some words of hope here too: “The wicked will go down to the grave.” And I’m interpreting this to be an early grave in sorrow and torment. Unlike Sarah who went to her grave with good humour and in peace.
Proverbs 3 gives us some wise words tonight and I’ll finish with this (3:5) “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.”
So, basically, it doesn’t matter if you don’t know what’s going on. Just trust that God knows.