Every year, as we face the new beginnings in God’s time and remember the old, we encounter the age-old conundrum of finding our place in the universe. Like the psalmist, we may be in awe of the grandeur of time itself and the rapidity with which life slips through our fingers. Or we may simply carry forward with a resolve that our time, like life itself, is in God’s hands.
There is nothing wrong with acknowledging our own mortality—or the transient nature of life itself—as we yearn for the coming of Christ and his kingdom. After all, it is God’s kingdom that we are praying for (not our own kingdoms); and when we acknowledge God’s abiding presence over our mortality, we enter the timelessness of God.
Thinking about such imponderable matters gives us patience, fortitude, and—ultimately—faith. We cannot give ourselves eternal life. We cannot give ourselves another day of life. We do not create our own experiences. All of these are gifts of God.
—Todd Outcalt, Let Us Go Now to Bethlehem: Daily Devotions for Advent and Christmas (Upper Room Books, 2020)
What dangers and trials have you experienced in your spiritual journey? How has God shown up for you? Join the conversation.
Do not ignore this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day
is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like one day.
—2 Peter 3:8 (NRSVUE)
Prayer for the Week
Creator God, as you have made all things, I know you are still creating in me too. You are not finished working on me. Thank you for your patience throughout the seasons of my life, and I pray that I may offer beauty, comfort, relief, joy, and strength to those I encounter today. Help me to rely upon your counsel through all of the adversity of my life. Amen.
—Prayer by Todd Outcalt
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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