Daily Devotional – Tuesday October 31, 2006
Lord, bless me with understanding and clarity. Open me to your message and love.
Today we have 5 short verses full of meaning. Again, John gives us a vision of Heaven where the elders worship God. They also describe the Day of Judgment and the revealing of the Ark of the Covenant.
This vision is given to us on this Halloween Day. As a growing Christian, Halloween has never had much significance for me. I enjoyed tick or treating as a kid up in Canada. I remember putting my costume on over heavy cloths and venturing out into the cold to get candy that I didn’t eat and usually gave away. I never really understood the significance of witches, goblins and the focus on death. It still seems at odds with my belief in the afterlife. I have no fear of death. Heaven is a place I want to be. There is however the issue of the final judgment. Heaven is open to those that “fear” God.
There is much to fear all around us every day. We are threatened on all sides and at all times. Fr. Rob spoke of Hell on Sunday in a way that is very real to me and to many others I presume. For me, Hell on earth is living in fear. Fear of the unknown creates stress and influences our behavior. We develop natural defenses against this fear. I believe these defenses separate us from other people and from our God. As we fight the world around us we stop loving the world that God has given us and the other people in it.
Today’s Revelation passage describes our Heavenly destination where we are protected from the woes and tribulations that create our fear. God and his Christ have saved us from our enemies and have promised a heavenly home where we will live in perfect harmony without fear. Thanks be to God and his Christ who we know and love.
John Dickie, October 31, 2006