This is not over more. Even as some of us take our first, tentative, steps( carefully, since our cover-ups have fogged up our glasses and blurred the method) toward the altar rail, others are building funeral pyres. Millions sorrow as those who cannot look forward to a brand-new regular without the more-than-3-million lives left behind during this pandemic. Not to mention all of the other minor and major disasters, mountains, depressions, and cliff sides that life has to offer( along with its often impressive deems ).
But this is a cautionary tale for the hopeful.
After the Flood, after the destroyer of Sodom of Gomorrah, after the Exodus, after calamity and the narrow escape of suffering, the claustrophobia of survival, the families of a number of our biblical predecessors seems to be diverted into – that is, their appetites and notice were demoralized into- legends that do not always bear disclose in affable company. Incest and idolatry, drunkenness and displeasure followed the lifting of a cloud like mosquitoes after rain.
Before disaster descended, we vanished about our lives of small-time desperation and glee, pretending that each was within our seize and our endowment. During the disasters, listed by the knowledge of how much of animation- those little filaments of biology- is beyond our restrain, we strayed. Emerging, are we dared to seize back our affect, that apparition of omnipotence, to become, as though we had ever been, rulers of our own and others’ destiny?
Is this why violence seems to have explosion up among us like ardour before a stiff sail? Do we guess by force to retrieve the fruits of the tree that once invited us to clothe ourselves as deities?
A danger acknowledged is not always a jeopardy shunned, but it at least imparts us half a chance to remember that our highest purpose is not the pursuit of happiness but the disclosure of the forgivenes and forgivenes and loving-kindness, the fix of God. It is not the pot of gold at the end of a rainbow that will sustain us, reinstate us, pave our nature forward, but the much less discernible, untouchable more multi-faceted grace of God.
Wiping glasses from the shadow of breather and unwept sobbings, I pray that I may approach the altar this time with meeknes, with compassion for the agony that draws along behind me, with an ear to the shuffling strides of the haunts of my predecessors, the communication of saints and sinners, to correct my tack; with knees to catch me when I stumble, and a Spirit to rotate my cuss into prayers too deep for words.
The Revd Rosalind C Hughes is the Rector of the Church of the Epiphany, Euclid, Ohio, and author ofWhom Shall I Fear? Urgent questions for Christians in an age of violence( July 2021 ), and A Family Like Mine: biblical floors of beloved, loss, and longing. Read more from Rosalind at rosalindchughes.com.
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