Encouragements & Wisdom: June 15, 2014
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E & W reflections are additional helps for your Sacred Story prayer journey. Reflect on them at week’s beginning or outside of your 15-minute prayer periods.
It is never too late to open my heart to Christ and live my life as Sacred Story.
Jesus told a parable of a landowner hiring workers for his vineyard at three different times of the day: dawn, noon and evening. At the time of the payment, Jesus has the group hired last receive payment first. As each group gets the same day’s wage, the group hired first complains: “These last ones worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us, who bore the day’s burden and the heat.” Jesus responds: “My friend, I am not cheating you. Did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what is yours and go. Are you envious because I am generous?” (Mt 20: 1-16).
The Good News here is that God is generous. It makes no difference at what point in our “story” we more fully open our hearts to participate in the great Story of redemption. We must never lose hope and say inwardly to ourselves: “My life has been wasted and it is too late to make up for lost time!” That is the voice of human nature’s enemy and not the voice of our loving and compassionate Savior. Jesus never wants us to lose hope. He wants us to know that no matter how many chapters of our life’s story are written at this point, only the final chapter determines God’s ultimate judgment. This is why we are moved each year at Christmas time by Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. The selfish Ebenezer Scrooge is transformed late in his life by love and inspired to bestow generous gifts on those in need. It makes me cry every time I watch it or see it performed. This joy and hope is what Christ wants us to hold on to, as the Affirmations remind us: “It is never too late to open my heart to Christ and live my life as Sacred Story!
Lord Jesus Christ, you are Lord of History and all time and seasons obey your laws. You have made humankind in your image and likeness, and you have offered us mercy so that no matter what has happened to us, you can make of us a new creation. May we believe that this is your will for us,
and so open to you each day of our lives in
Creation, Presence, Memory, Mercy and Eternity.
Andrej Rublëv, “The Holy Trinity” (1421)