Thursday, March 20, 2008
On Glory and Devastation
Somehow God’s promise to put the world to rights is not achieved by blasting evil out of the way, but by his people bearing its weight so that the force of evil does its worst in the chosen people themselves. Alongside the vision of glory we also find the vision of devastation. NT Wright, lecture series on Evil Good Friday is a day of devastation, and a day of glory, and a day to ponder the paradox that the extremes of both intersect on the cross. Many times this week I’ve been reminded of my own heart’s desire to blast evil out of the way, to smash it with a lead pipe, to impose a triumphant order on this mucky world. That is what the disciples expected of Jesus. But that was not God’s plan. Being called to the slower path of bearing the weight of malnutrition and poverty and and hate and loss . . . Seeing it, touching it, sometimes experiencing it . . . That is the way of the cross. That is the way that evil truly meets defeat. That is the way seen only by eyes of faith, Good Friday eyes that squint ahead to believe that Resurrection morning will come. Join us in praying for Bundibugyo, and for our own hearts. In “downloads (pdf)” there are two prayer guides. One is based on John 14-17; we will be using it this afternoon with a broad spectrum of community people (teachers, church members, health center workers all invited) to apply the final words of Jesus to praying for His Kingdom to come in this place. The second is based on Isaiah 53; we will use it this evening as a team to meditate on the suffering of Jesus.