Glimpses of Good

When we listen to the news or watch our Facebook feeds lately, it’s all bad news. Unborn babies harvested for their body parts, shootings, disasters, terrorism, persecution of Christians around the world, etc. Some of the abominable things going on in our country we need to know about, so we can change it, or know how to vote next year. Some of it, maybe we don’t need to know about so much, if there’s nothing we can do about it. Unfortunately, evil will always be with us here on earth. And constantly hearing about bad things all the time is very wearying.

It’s so wearying that sometimes I feel practically collapsed from the weight of it, and I find myself yearning for goodness. No more evil. Pure goodness.

For peace from above and for our salvation, let us pray to the Lord.  Lord, have mercy.

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I find some relief in being at home, in hanging out with friends, my husband, my kids, and in listening to music instead of the news. But there is only one person who is Good, who brings me rest down to my soul. In Mark 10, when the Rich Young man calls Jesus “good teacher” and asks Him what he must do to inherit eternal life, Jesus says, “Why do you call me good?  No one is good except God alone.”

Jesus is Good, because He is God. Unlike us, He’s not a “mostly good” person who sometimes makes mistakes. He’s only good, so good He righted the corruption of sin all around Him constantly, healing people, raising them from the dead. They only had to touch the smallest part of Him, the hem of His robe even, to be made right with His goodness. His Word is as powerful now to heal people’s souls and to give them rest.And that because He, who knew no sin, no evil, took it all upon Himself, suffering a physical and spiritual separation from God, from Good, on the Cross.

For those who work to bring peace, justice, health, and protection in this and every place, let us pray to the Lord.  Lord, have mercy.

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He heals my brokenness. I find refuge in His forgiveness, in tasting His body and blood, in remembering my baptism when He claimed me-even me!–as His. And I try to recognize the glimpses of good that He gives me here on a fallen earth. I see the picture of the love between Christ and His bride, the Church, in my marriage and in the marriages of my friends. I see Godly kindness: someone handing out water bottles to people standing in the sun protesting at Planned Parenthood, the people at my church praying for each other and for the lost. I see glimpses of good in the beauty of God’s creation when I hike. I see glimpses of good in people who cannot watch evil. I admire those pro-lifers who have not been able to watch the Center for Medical Progress’ videos because they would get sick.  It means there is something in their very bodies that fights against that evil, and that goodness is of God.  It gives me hope.  Hope in Him.

For the peace of the whole world, for the well-being of the church of God, and for the unity of all, let us pray to the Lord.  Lord, have mercy. 

I watch my children growing up in the love of the Lord, and I pray that as they grow up and see the uglier sides of life, that they do not become cynical.  I want them to seek goodness, truth, and beauty. I want them to yearn to take refuge under God’s wings, and to keep going back to church for more and more of that loving goodness. There is enough ugly in the world.  We must not forget to take our rest in His goodness as often as possible. For that Goodness is true, and it will triumph over evil in the end.

Rejoicing in the fellowship of all the saints, let us commend ourselves, one another, and our whole life to Christ, our Lord.  To You, O Lord.

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