Friday March 25, 2011
You search the Scriptures, because you think you will find eternal life in them. The Scriptures tell about me. – John 5:39
One of the many things I enjoy about the Lenten season is that it is a time to rediscover Bible reading and devotion. During Lent, we break open the sacred text; approaching the Bible with an open mind and open heart. We again ask the ancient question, What are you saying to us, O God? Though we may come to the text for different reasons with different expectations; whether we seek God’s wisdom or forgiveness, we will have to confront the person of Jesus.
Some say that Jesus is the answer, but I have often found Jesus giving me answers I do not anticipate or desire. I come to the text to get what I want; but instead of feeding my greed and lust, Jesus points me toward the hungry, poor, and imprisoned. It is in the midst of “the least of these,” that the kingdom of God can be found.
Searching the scriptures for answers to my life’s problems often end with humility as I realize I am part of the powerful, the empire, and the oppressors which the prophets and the people of God stand against. Yet I still search.
God continues to speak a fresh word through the Bible. Assumptions are challenged. Ideas I take for granted are overturned. The divine mystery deepens as what I assumed was black and white blurs. The Bible is a living word. It speaks to us where we are and when we are. Let us engage the text prayerfully, using all of our faculties to discern what Jesus is saying to us today.
Your word is a light unto our feet and a light unto our path. Grant us direction. Override our internal compass which is often stuck on selfish. Help us to see your will and empower us to bring change in our lives, our community, and our world. Amen.
Craig M. Howard, MDiv, a 1995 graduate of McCormick is Chief Development Officer at McCormick.