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.
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.
Order Spring Cleaning: 2013 Lent Devotionals - new from the Stillspeaking Writers' Group and other favorite UCC writers. Lent starts Feb. 13.