Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Walking by faith

Readings for Sunday 17th June 2012 (Proper 11) The Third Sunday after Pentecost can include 1 Samuel 15:34-16:13, Psalm 20; 2 Corinthians 5:6-17*, Mark 4:26-34

Although it would be easy to think that ‘applying the Gospel’ is just common sense; we are reminded this week that we do not always see things in the way that God sees them
God looks on each human being with love and affirmation
there is nothing about me or you that God 
     does not,
     and will not love

that does not mean that God validates everything we do
in fact we are rather told that it is the other way around
We need to try and see as God sees
rather than to bludgeon God
into seeing things the way we do.
Perhaps our prayer
and spiritual effort
is better spent
trying to hear what God is inviting us to be and do
than in trying
to manipulate God
to do what we want.
St Paul says of this journey
we are called to walk by faith
That is to discern God’s will for us and to do that.
A little sign of this is given when Samuel is discerning who will succeed Saul as king, and he is reminded that so often we look at fairly arbitrary human characteristics
Popularity, success, physical stature
even age and experience
(this is the way of the world)
but Samuel is reminded to look at the heart.
Jesus uses the image of the seed
growing secretly and surprisingly
to remind us that it is
God who guides growth
and development.
and fruitfulness is often surprising
and different from what we expect

As we look at the week ahead
can we pray for openness to God’s purpose
Pray for insight to see
where we are trying to manipulate God
instead of being open to the Spirit.

Lord of the hearts
fill me with your love 
this and every day
that I may be open 
and ready to respond to your gracious spirit
and that I may be fruitful

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