Thursday, July 28, 2016

I want what I want and I want it now

I am sure I have said those words, or at least words similar to them. I am sure that I have thought ideas that are similar to them, as well. Haven't you? Haven't we all?

Isn't that what politics, at least the simplistic rhetoric of modern American politics, is putting on display in every news cycle? It sounds like this; a vote for me is a vote for you to get what you want! Doesn't this sound like every demanding boss or person in authority you've known? In every case, the means of achieving what I want right now is always about a grab for power. Yet, the message of the Gospel and was the message of this past Sunday's teaching is that Satan tempts with power and Jesus resists because that is not the way of God. Here is the same message from a different voice:

"Before we get too carried away with the thoughts of God's power, we should listen attentively to what St. Paul says about the "weakness of God" (1 Corinthians 1:25), which is a vital part of gods self – revelation. If we look at the way in which he discloses himself in Jesus Christ we have to acknowledge that he does not come into our world with a great display of superior power; in fact, this was one of the temptations which our Lord had to resist as being contrary to his mission, contrary to his true nature (see Matthew 4). He does not come in strength but in weakness, and he chooses the foolish and weak and unimportant things of the world, things that are nothing at all, to overthrow the strength and impressiveness of the world. As we saw earlier, he is like the judo expert who uses the strength of his opponent to bring him to the ground; it is the art of self-defense proper to the week. This is why, if we keep clamoring for things we want from God, we may often find ourselves disappointed, because we have forgotten the weakness of God and what we may call the poverty of God. We had thought of God as the dispenser of all the good things we would possibly desire; but in a very real sense, God has nothing to give at all except himself."

- from Prayer, written in 1975 by Simon Tugwell

May we place our trust in a God who is powerful enough to do anything, but doesn't overpower anything. God loves differently than that. May we love each other in the midst of our weaknesses, and speak the truth in love to every person who can hear it. Grace and peace, Scott

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