Getting It Together

January 24, 2013

Excerpt from Psalm 19 (The Message)

"The revelation of God…pulls our lives together."

William C. Green

I remember one of the Psalms saying, "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name." (103:1) "All that is within me"?  I see how good traits and inclinations can bless the Lord, but what about the other ones—anger, jealousy, resentment, guilt, shame. That list is as long as the nicer list. Is all the truth it contains to bless the Lord, too?

Thomas Kelly, the Quaker writer, said we are actually many selves at once "without being integrated, without all our selves being organized by a single, mastering Life within us. Each of our selves is a rank individualist, not cooperative. We are distraught and unhappy for over the margins of life comes a whisper, a faint call, a premonition of richer living which we know we are passing by." (A Testament of Devotion, 1941)

Jesus never excluded even the rankest individualist, as in his story of the prodigal son. The prodigal could hide nothing. His father overlooked nothing. He was intent on pulling together what had been torn apart.

We can't know God's love if we overlook parts of ourselves we'd rather weren't true. Sooner or later that trips us up. "For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open." (Luke 8:17) We're a blessing to God and one another when we're open and honest.

Prayer

God, without the mastery of your Spirit I'm at loose ends. Pull me together in the promise of your love and make me a blessing to others. Amen.

About the Author
William C. Green is Vice-President for Strategy and Development, Moral Courage Project, NYU Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, and the author of 52 Ways to Ignite Your Congregation: Generous Giving.

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