24 June 2016

The Mercy and Glory of God

This morning I'm feeling pretty humble. Not because of any effort on my part--but because I fell flat on my face last night in the patience department. Hard. And this morning, when my habits and history demand I beat myself up hard and long, I heard this song:

"Blessed are the poor in spirit who are torn apart
Blessed are the persecuted and the pure in heart
Blessed are the people hungry for another start
For this is the Kingdom
The Kingdom of God"
~Matt Maher, "All the People Said Amen"

This morning, I definitely feel poor in spirit and on the torn up side. Persecuted? By the enemy of my soul, yes. He definitely got some good digs in. Pure in heart? Yes, I claim that, because Jesus lives in my heart, and that's all I want. Even when I wrestle with my flesh, with the weakness and fatigue of my physical body, and lose. He doesn't leave me when I fail. He's there with unchanging faithfulness, sticking closer than a brother, the bridegroom of my soul for better or for worse. I'm amazed, again, by the miracle of His love, the beauty of His will, by the way He does things. This morning I am so hungry for another start--and just as Jesus told His disciples that our Father knows what we need before we even ask, I have seen steady and faithful evidence that my Father has already provided another start for me: in the person and sacrifice of Jesus.

And this brings us to the verse of the day. Let's go fire up Qwerty . . . :oP

“The result of humility is fear of the Lord, along with wealth, honor, and life.” ~Proverbs 22:4 HCSB

Reading this verse after hearing the Matt Maher song this morning is physically tangible comfort to me. I want to fear the Lord more and more every day, giving His word more weight in my heart. I want to give Him primacy in my life, total and complete. And the fact that this place of humility bears the fruit of that longing is a comfort so new and miraculous to me; a steady and solid support to rely on as I reorient and get my feet under me yet again. This is the profoundly beautiful mercy of our God: that our failings put his glory and love on display.

Papa God, I love you. I'm so amazed by you. Thank you for this comfort--this comfort that is so new and so unfailing. Thank you for staying close to me in times like these, for making a way that I can be close to you as I struggle. Thank you, Jesus, for what you have done. I will never cease to be amazed at the love and humility your work required, and the paradigm-exploding truth you hold out to me: that you *are* the Truth of all things. Bless my family, God. Draw us further into you, into who you are, into your way of living and loving. Let us see your way of seeing things, let us understand with your heart and love with your love, in Jesus' name, amen.

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I welcome questions and concerns--they are most often what spur us closer to the truth. I only ask that we all give everyone the most generous benefit of the doubt, assigning the best motives possible. A soft answer truly does turn away wrath, and an atmosphere of Jesus's love is the best for learning, no matter which side of a discussion you're on.

Thanks so much, and God bless you!