Walk the Talk

Where Are We Staying

There is one thing I ask of the Lord;
for this I long;
To live in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,

For there God keeps me safe in God’s tent.
In the days of evil God hides me.
In the shelter of God’s tent on a rock
God sets me safe….

And now my head shall be raised
above my foes who surround me.
And I shall offer within God’s tent
a sacrifice of joy.

Psalm 27:4-6

I just got back from a road trip with my daughter and her twin boys. The kiddos are eleven. Time flies by so quickly. It seems like yesterday they were toddlers getting into all kinds of mischief. They are growing up now, experiencing some disappointments. Friends can be hurtful at times. Wanting to fit in, to be part of the team is a huge way we add value to our life and measure our self worth. We want others to accept and treat us with dignity. We all carry wounds and needs. We hurt others and often don’t realize the consequences of our actions. As much as we would like to insulate our children and grandchildren from all the unpleasantness, we live in a world filled with a deeply wounded humanity.

Henri Nouwen, in his book “Peacework” (Prayer. Resistance. Community) writes:

“We have a strong desire to be blameless in the eyes of our children and friends, to not hurt them, and to keep the pain we have suffered far from them. Yet we will come to the painful realization that they too will feel wounded and carry on in their lives, a search for a love we could not provide, a search stretching far into the future. This is the pervasive tragedy of humanity, the tragedy of an experience of homelessness that winds through history and is passed by each generation to the next in a seemingly unending sequence of human conflicts.” This vicious repetition of wounds and needs creates the milieu of “those who hate peace.”

This paints a scary picture I know but, God in Jesus, has given us a totally new language, the language of prayer. “The word “prayer” stands for an entering into an entirely new dwelling place. It points to a new way of speaking, of breathing, of being together, of knowing - truly a new way of living.” Nouwen

If I’m a follower of Jesus do I choose life, which he so freely gives? Didn’t he give that life for all? Do I try daily to sow peace with all my actions, or do I get caught up in the chaos of fear? Do I try to love even the unlovable? Do I really follow the way of the cross? Am I willing to let the peace of Christ change me? Let go of the things that feed my false sense of security. I revisit these questions often. These are questions we need to pass on to our children and our grandchildren. We need to tell everyone of the deep, deep love of Jesus.

Living Christ,
I come to you holding my sin in my open hands asking you to help me accept my true self. Purify my heart Lord with your spirit. Strengthen me with your love so, I can stand for peace, not just with words but, action that brings your life and love for all, into our hurting world.  Amen

Lois Autterson

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